Estonia didn't enter in the top 10 of my favorite countries, well not even in the top 30 if I have to tell the truth. I came here after visiting Latvia and Belarus to find a super touristy, soulless land of shopping malls.
My first city in Estonia was Tartu. I came here from the border with a bus that for some mysterious reasons (mysterious because nobody could explain it in English) was totally FREE and I am not complaining about it! :)
Tartu is an ok city for 1-2 days with a pleasant city center and a couple of interesting museums and art pieces : best one has to be the statue of a random pig!
One thing that I really suggest to visit is the KGB rooms museum.
From Tartu I took the train to Tallinn, a one-way ticket is 12 EUROS!!! yes, 12 Euros for a very slow train... Estonia is NOT cheap!
Tallinn was a big disappointment! waves and waves of tourists coming from cruise ships, so crowded that wasn't pleasant at all staying in the city center...but as soon as you leave the center it is just a shopping mall after the other; a city that lost ( or better sold) its soul to the tourist business.
I only save 3 places in Tallinn:
1. VIRU HOTELL
This was a super interesting tour to discover the secret past of this hotel built by the KGB to spy on its customers. This is a guided tour that needs to be booked in advance as it gets filled up very quickly. The museum is a the top of the hotel and there are some rooms with original KGB pieces of equipment and objects. It is crazy to know that the KGB put microphones everywhere from ashtrays to plates and cups.
2. SOVIET STATUES
n the process of decommunization, all Soviet statues have been hidden outside the city. They are not easy to find but they are not impossible to reach. Just outside Tallinn, It took me 1-hour walk to get there, there are many Soviet statues including 4 statues of Lenin and one of Stalin. These are behind Maarjamäe Tallihoone: a ticket is not needed to visit the park with the statues but you will need to purchase one if you decide to visit the indoor museum.
This is the location:
3. STREET ART
Another place I discovered when I decided to avoid the city center packed with tourists. This area behind the train station is full of amazing pieces of street art and nice coffee shops...totally recommended!