Tallinn shore excursion
Small group of max 12 participants
Duration 5.5 hours, including free time
The capital of Estonia is well known for its beautifully preserved medieval old town, and no Tallinn shore excursion is complete without exploring the cobblestoned streets. In the first half of the tour we stroll through the centuries old area. We break down the history of Tallinn, tie it in with remarkable events of recent times and discuss the significance of selected points of interest found in the bustling sector. You will get to know the meaning of the statement „the city air makes you free“ – a source of inspiration for many Estonians in the Middle Ages that encouraged them to make one of the biggest changes in their lives- as we look at it from different perspectives.
However, for Tallinners, life today revolves around work, culture, wellness and food, and most of it is happening outside of the old city walls. You will really connect with the city and its people, when, after a couple of hours in the Old Town, we take you around some of the neighbourhoods that don’t usually feature on the standard Tallinn shore excursion routes.
First, we´ll explore Telliskivi –an area full of character, where Tallinn is undergoing rather remarkable transformations. It is a peculiar part of town that has boomed in recent years. Learn on this Tallinn shore excursion how the district evolved from a forgotten industrial wasteland to the popular urban space it is today, brimming with eateries and local design shops. In addition, Telliskivi Loomelinnak is home to the highest concentration of creative industries in Tallinn. We will give you a brief but inspirational insight into the doings of some of the NGOs and startups located at Telliskivi.
Following this, you’ll have time here to take in the atmosphere while you enjoy lunch (there´s a great choice of lunch places at Telliskivi), or browse the local stores and hunt down some treasures.
After a pick-up, the tour continues with a drive through Kalamaja neighborhood. One of the city´s oldest areas has seen many changes. From being a district where mainly fishermen lived during the Middle Ages, to a strategically important defensive zone and then a residential area for industrial workers, this area is now a trend-setter. Currently, cosiness and and a strong local community are the keywords here.
The final stop of the Tallinn shore excursion is at a quiant Rotermanni Quarter, an area similar to the Old Town when it comes to the density of historic buildings. See marvellous results of the challenges of preserving the industrial heritage from 19th century in the face of (re)development as we visit the car-free area. We shed light on topics such as the current state of the real estate market, and the property reform and privatization in Estonia in early 90s, shortly after the country had regained independence.
The tour ends with a return transfer to the cruise terminal.
The total tour duration is 5 hours and 40 minutes, including 1.5 hours of free time
Tour language: English
Activity level: strenous. The total walking distance is 4 km/ 2.5 miles, half of which is over cobblestone surfaces, so typical to Tallinn. The shore excursion is not suitable for people with mobility difficulties.
NB! Actual start time will be given in the confirmation/response to your request, which you will receive via email. In most cases, the tour departs 60 minutes after the ship´s arrival.
8:00 the cruise ship arrives
8:40- 8:55am gathering time for the Tallinn shore excursion. Our guide will meet you right outside the cruise terminal exit gate, which is located approx. 300 meters/0.2 miles of walking from the ship. The cruise terminal exit gate is the meeting point for the independant operators.
9:00am the tour leaves
9:00-9:15 drive to the Upper Old Town
9:15-10:25 discover Toompea Hill on foot. The points of interest include Toompea Castle, the Cathedral of Saint Mary the Virgin, St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, great view over the city & the sea from Kohtuotsa viewpoint and Long Leg street. 800 meters/ 0.5 miles of walking. Then, descend (60 regular-size steps) to the lower Old Town.
10:25-11:30 explore the vicinity of the Town Hall Square and some scenic side streets. The highlights include the Great Guild Hall, a passage where the history of Estonia is literally written on the pavement, a beautiful clock from 1684, the Town Hall Pharmacy, St. Nicholas’ Church, the Gothic Town Hall; the city wall with watchtowers, the Nunne Gate. 1.3 km /0.8 miles of walking.
11:30- 12:00 the Tallinn shore excursion continues with a walk through and a short stop at Balti Jaam Market- a historical site located just outside the old city walls that has purposefully been given new life. Then, arrive to Telliskivi. 1 km/0.6 miles of walking.
12:00-12:20 learn about Telliskivi Creative City
12:20-13:45 Free time in Telliskivi. Experience this area as a native Tallinner. Browse the design & lifestyle shops and have a delicious lunch (own expense) at one of the eatieries. A peek into what to expect: https://telliskivi.cc/en/restaurants/
13:45-14:00 Pickup. Hear the story of Kalamaja as we drive along the colorful streets of this neighborhood.
14:00-14:30 Stroll through Rotermanni Quarter and admire the eclectic mix of contemporary high-quality architecture and the rejuvenated 19th century industrial buildings. 0.5 km/0.3 miles of walking.
14:30-14:40 drive to the cruise harbor
14:40 the tour concludes at the cruise terminal gate.
The maximum group size is 12 people.
– Pickup and dropoff at the cruise port exit gate
– English-speaking tour guide for 6 hours
– Minibus services for the one-way transfer in the morning, and the drive in the afternoon
Lunch is at own expense.