With a third of Estonians living in the country’s capital city, you can be assured that there is something to do or see in Tallinn all year round. When the heat of summer leaves the city and the days get shorter in autumn, the city remains a beautiful destination.
Just to the east of Tallinn’s Old Town you will find the most stunning park of the city, Kadriorg Park. The park was created in the 18th century and surely is the best place in town for a relaxing stroll. While some parts of the park have been turned into formal gardens, most of the park has a natural landscape with meadows and forest groves which turn golden in autumn.
If you need to escape a spot of rain you can visit one of several museums that sit within the park. The park is actually part of the Kadriorg Palace estate. The palace, which has Baroque architecture and was built for Peter the Great, now houses the Kadriorg Art Museum, displaying hundreds of 16th- to 20th-century paintings by Western and Russian artists as well as prints, sculptures and other works. Other museums that can be found within the park include KUMU (Estonian Art Musuem), Mikkeli Museum and the Miiamilla Children’s Museum.
A quick ten minute drive from Tallinn city centre brings you to the Estonian Open Air Museum, on the west side of the city. The Open Air Museum features a reconstructed historic fishing village and walking trails. The museum is dedicated to Estonian history and traditions. In autumn they organise events around days such as the Day of Estonian Bread (September 13th ), for Estonians bread is a dietary staple and a cultural identifier). Or Onion and Fish Day (October 3rd) which is celebrated by passing on the knowledge of the Setos and Old Believers around vegetable gardening and fishing.
For centuries Tallinn’s Old Town was divided into two sections: Toompea Hill and Lower Town. Toompea Hill is considered the birthplace of Tallinn, especially Castle Square (Lossi plats), which is right between the seat of Estonia’s government at Toompea Castle and the Alexander Nevsky Catherdral. If you are looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city without leaving Old Town, the Danish King’s Garden awaits you. There you will find trees, benches, little nooks to hide in and a spectacular view of the Niguliste Church spire, which is located in Lower Town.
A bog? Yes, a bog! Estonia is ranked third in the world for its amount of marshes and bogs. A short 45 minute drive east of the city, nature seekers and lovers will find the Lahemaa National Park to enjoy. It is Estonia’s largest national park and offers picturesque coastlines, lush forests and the Viru bog. A boardwalk forms a 3,5 km trail through the 235 hectare bog. Half-way the boardwalk you will find an observation tower with beautiful views of the surroundings. The trail will introduce you to landscape and vegetation typical to Estonia. Here the changes of colour in autumn are especially noticeable and enjoyable.
Tallinn’s Botanical Gardens are a sight to behold whether it rains or not. The 123 hectare garden has both outdoor and greenhouse expositions, which feature over 8000 species. The extensive greenhouses are open year round and houses everything from banana plants to house plants.
If you prefer a view from high up, you will not want to miss out on a visit to the TV Tower, which is right next to the Botanical Gardens. The tower is the tallest building in country, from the top you can enjoy panoramic views of the city, the sea and the surrounding countryside. If you want to check if you have vertigo, you can go outside on the observation deck or talk a ‘Walk on the Edge’.