"Shades of Grey" Top 5 Page for this destination Tallinn by antistar
Tallinn Travel Guide: 1,932 reviews and 5,359 photos
According to legend, Eskimos have over a hundred words for snow. Being continually exposed to the same thing normally causes humans to develop an ability to differentiate between things most normal people can't see. My Estonian friend told me one morning that the weather had improved. "But the skies are still grey", I complained ungratefully. "But it's a lighter shade of grey," she explained.
By the end of the week in Tallinn I finally got it. I looked out of the window and could see from the shade of grey that the sun was only a single layer of cloud away from me and about to appear in the flesh. I whipped out my camera and marched into town to take pictures while I could. For when the sun shines in Tallinn it is a wondrous place. The old city is fantastically well preserved and a joy to walk around.
But don't worry if the sun isn't shining. Tallinn has a collection of some of the best bars and restaurants I've ever experienced, and the best seem to be unknown to tourists completely. I was lucky enough be guided by a local expert, taking me to possibly the best curry I've had outside of Britain, and some of the cosiest (smoke-free) bars on the continent.
Thankfully the locals still seem to be very friendly and welcoming despite the hordes of tourists, mostly British and Finnish, that descend on the city all year round. The number of tourists does mean that most people speak English and that there are lots of tourist facilities. You also have to put up with the tourist crowds, and the pick-pockets they attract. You can also find English beer in most bars, although I'm not sure that's a good thing...
Overall a great city, one that should be high on anyone's list of places to visit. Even if you can't figure out what you'd do in Tallinn for more than a few days, there's another major European capital just a couple of hours ferry ride away across the Gulf of Finland. Ferries to Helsinki run every day, come hell or high water, and you can do a day trip in either direction very easily.
It's cheaper going from Tallinn, though, as is everything. You can drink beer, rent a hotel room, take a taxi, eat food, etc. for a fraction of the cost you'd expect in Finland. Just as an example, I bought a sandwich the size of a matchbox for 5 euros in Helsinki airport, along with a donut for 2.50. That's the price of a main course in a nice Tallinn restaurant!
There are photo albums from my 2008, 2009 and 2010 visits on Facebook (better quality).
Much to my girlfriend's annoyance, I insisted on trying out the Finnish rival to McDonald's: the Hesburger chain. They... more travel advice
In its original push for independence during the early years of the 20th Century, one thing the leadership most wanted... more travel advice
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antistar's Related Pages
Tallinn Travel Guide
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- "Shades of Grey"
- "A medieval marvel"
- "Tallinn - A Great Mixture of the Old and the New"
- "Tallinn - medieval spirit city"
- "In the bleak midwinter ..."
- "Towers and tiles and spires and cobbles."
- "Tallinn - Nordic beauty with soviet past"
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- Nightlife in Tallinn
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