|Sightseeing and round tours
HANSEATIC TOWNS OF ESTONIA
The commercial and cultural flowering of the Baltic Sea region during the 14th - 16th century until the Livonian War in 1558 was greatly supported by the Hanseatic League which unified about 100 cities from Germany, the Baltics, Scandinavia and Russia. 5 towns from contemporary Estonia belonged to this important trade organisation.
Tallinn (two nights)
Tallinn Old Town is considered the best-preserved Hanseatic town on the coast of the Baltic Sea. It has retained a medieval city structure with its street system, squares, city quarters, the protective town wall and esplanade surrounding the Old Town.
During the sightseeing you can marvel at the numerous dwelling houses and warehouses with medieval main walls on the estates that used to belong to Hanseatic merchants and artisans. In addition, original guildhalls, the Town Hall, armoury, almshouses, churches and monasteries have survived. Medieval banquet will be served in the restaurant Olde Hansa.
Narva (no overnights)
Since the 16th century the River Narva has marked the border with Russia. The status of the border town has been accompanied by the blessings of trade but also the disasters of war and ethnic transformations. A segment of the town wall and a part of the Hermann Stronghold are the only pieces of Hanseatic Narva that have been spared by wars and fires. Now the Narva region is known for its great coal-fuelled power stations, the Kreenholm textile plant and other industrial enterprises.
Before leaving Narva we have a late lunch in the restaurant located in the fortress.
Tartu (two nights)
After breakfast departure to Lahemaa (about 1-hr drive). On the way a small stop in Jõelähtme at stone barrows from the bronze age. The sights of the national park are connected both with nature and culture. Our trip includes a visit to the Palmse and Sagadi Manors, a short walk on one of the park’s nature trails and lunch in the fishing village Altja. Overnight in Tallinn.
Viljandi (no overnights)
Viljandi was a settlement situated at the crossroads of ancient trade routes. Today the remains of the Hanseatic Viljandi are buried under several meters of cultural layers. The town was destroyed completely both in the Livonian War and the Great Northern War in the 15th and 18th century. However during our sightseeing you can still admire the impressive ruins of the Viljandi stronghold, which once was the largest in the Baltics. Lunch in a manor complex Heimtali, a few kilometres outside the town.
Pärnu (two overnights)
Since Pärnu lay on profitable trade routes on the shore of the Baltic Sea, the town played an important part in the Hanseatic trade of Old Livonia. Today, Pärnu is the most popular summer resort in Estonia, it is famous for its white sand beaches, shading alleys and romantic seaside villas. Also a dinner will be served in the hundred-year-old elegant Ammende Villa.
Tallinn (departure day)