Tallinn is the capital of Estonia with a beautiful walled center. The old center is also the main attraction of this former Hanse town. The class difference used to be clearly visible in Tallinn: the notables lived on the hill in the Upper Town (Domberg); the lower class lived literally lower in the Lower Town.
The city has over 400,000 inhabitants, approximately one third of Estonia's entire population.
Estonia is the northernmost country of the Baltic States and Tallinn is located in the north of the country, on the Gulf of Finland. Across the gulf lies the Finnish capital Helsinki. South of Tallinn lies a large lake, Ülemiste järv, not only a recreational area, but also the source of the city's drinking water.
Being the country's capital, the government and related services play an important role in Tallinn. The port also creates activity and there are textile and food-processing industries. In recent years, Tallinn has developed into the technology center of the Baltic States. The successful communication platform Skype was born in Estland's capital. Because of the improved sea and air connections with Northern and Western Europe, tourism is now an important source of income in Tallinn.
Tallinn Airport is situated near Lake Ülemiste, less than 5 kilometers southeast of the city center. To reach Tallinn Airport by rental car from the city you take the highway to Tartu (Tartu mantee). The way to the airport is clearly signposted.
Tallinn has an extensive public transport network, consisting of buses (62 lines), trolley buses (8 lines) and streetcars (4 lines). You can buy a ticket at a newspaper kiosk or with the driver. There are also good bus and train connections with for example Tartu, Narva and Pärnu in Estonia, but also with Saint Petersburg in Russia and the Latvian capital Riga. From the port there are fast ferry connections with Helsinki.
In the entire center you have to pay for street parking. Only the first 15 minutes are free (to be indicated by a parking disc behind the windshield). It may be difficult to find a parking meter nearby your parked car. There are also several guarded parking lots and garages in and around Tallinn's center where you can park your rental car.
Although the costs of living have increased in recent years, room prices in Tallinn (especially compared with Western Europe) are completely reasonable. The choice is varied ranging from accommodation for backpackers and basic guesthouses to luxurious hotels. The five-star hotel Telegraaf in the center is special. As indicated by the name, it's housed in a former telegraph building, but with a very modern design. We advise booking your accommodation well in advance if you want to visit Tallinn in the summer. There are several campsites outside the city.
For more information about Tallinn, we recommend Google and the following sources: