"Haapsalu- Small Town with Great History" Top 5 Page for this destination Haapsalu by remigia

Haapsalu Travel Guide: 78 reviews and 301 photos

Haapsalu is one of the oldest towns in Estonia . It's built on a peninsula that formed from many smal islands- wherever you go you would reach the sea. That's why sometimes it's called Nordic Venice. The town was first mentioned in 1279 and for 300 years it was a capital of Saare-Laane Bishopric. At the beginnnig of XVII age Haapsalu became Swedish land. But 100 years later , after the Nordic War it became a part of Russian Empire. When at the beginning of XIX century the healing qualities of local mud were proved Haapsalu got the status of resort. Even the Russian Tsars had an official residence here.

When Tsar family took Haapsalu for one of their summer residences the town started developing very fast in XIX century. The railroad was built connecting the town with st. Petersburg. Lots of people were coming to Haapsalu , among them famous composer Piotr Tchaikovsky and painter Nikolay Roerich. New houses were built for visitors. The Promenade built along the seaside became a most popular place .The original Kurhaus building on the Promenade is still standing- one of the oldest in Europe that was never rebuilt. It is surrounded by roses, of course, the flowers are not that old, but some of the species still are planted the same as at those glamourous times.Down the Promenade visitors can see P. Tchaikovsky bench overlooking the sea.

During the Soviet times Haapsalu was both healing resort and industry town. Just like many other post-Soviet towns it went through period of fall when Estonia regained independance in 1990ies. But now it's seems going back to life. Mud cure clinics and spa centers were modernized and more visitors are coming. New hotels and leisure centers are built. So the future seems bright for Haapsalu.

  • Last visit to Haapsalu: Aug 2007
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (2)

Comments (4)

  • yumyum's Profile Photo
    Oct 19, 2008 at 3:42 AM

    What a great looking railway station! Shame that there aren't any trains anymore.

  • Toshioohsako's Profile Photo
    Nov 23, 2007 at 2:07 AM

    Regimia, what is this rocket? Thanks for the new information.

  • HORSCHECK's Profile Photo
    Nov 13, 2007 at 1:47 PM

    Fabulous little page with interesting info. There seem to be quite a few worth seeing towns in Estonia. Hey, I have finally finished my Kaunas page ... :o)

  • Dester's Profile Photo
    Nov 9, 2007 at 3:03 AM

    Thanks Remi, Tell your Mum hello for me. I love your new pages



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