a VirtualTourist member from Vienna
Hello all, I´m planning a 10-day trip to Riga, Pärnu and Tallinn in March, hoping it is a good season to go there? Also, I´d like to know what else is there to visit in Latvia and Estonia? For example, is it nice going to the countryside or towns apart from the capitals in winter? Or would it be better to include Helsinki on this trip to see more?
Please let me know! Thanks!
I would imagine Parnu is pretty dead in March. I was there in early June, about a week before the high season started, and it was pretty quiet. There were only two or three people on the beach and that's the main attraction for Parnu. It's really just a small town, and you can see the town centre in an hour or two. Tartu might be more interesting if you want to see another Estonian city.
I've been to Tallinn and Riga in all weathers, and there's plenty to see and do there. Helsinki is also definitely worth a day trip at the very least.
I agree with the other guy -Parnu would not be my nr.1 choise. Maybe you better think about Narva or Tartu in Estonia. Saarema island is nice point, too, but i've been there in summer. It might be not so nice there in early spring. Helsinki is also a good option.
I continues this harmony, visit Parnu during summertime unless you don't want to spen some days in Spa with some healthcare. You can easily spend your time in Riga and Tallinn and you can take one of Saaremaa/Tartu/Narva. Helsinki? Yes, but don't take to much to you itinary, the less places you concetrate the better idea you get from em. Have you checked our Travel Guides, take a look, please.
Riga has a fantastic old town and wonderful art noveau architecture in its new town. Tallinn has a lovely old town. Plus the Kadriorg area is worth visiting.
With 10 days you might want to include Helsinki which is interesting and easily accessed by ferry from Estonia, or Vilnius in Lithuania which is also worth visiting.
Just be prepared for price shock in Helsinki compared to Estonia if you go. It was so expensive we really couldn't enjoy ourselves even though the people and sights were delightful. I would second the last posters recommendation for Vilnius. We enjoyed Tallinn, Riga & Vilnius on our journey. Prices seemed to get cheaper the further south we went. Kaunas Lithuania was a really great stop as well in our experience.
Hello, thanks for your responses!
Since I am a bit short of money, I might not want to go to Helsinki then. :) But I think it can´t be more expensive than Copenhagen or Stockholm? Also, the ferry must not be so nice in winter, I suppose.
So what else besides Riga, Tallinn and Tartu could you recommend? How about Daugavpils in Latvia? Is it nice?
I have been to Kaunas and Vilnius and was fascinated by both towns! Unfortunately, I won´t have time for Lithuania again.
Yep, Scandinavia is more expensive, to make it sure I checked the consumer price indexes (2012 and 100=NYC), they are 104=Fin, 110=Swe, 117=Den and 70=Est, 67=Lat and 62=Lit and cities Vil=64, Rig=69, Tal=74, Cop=124, Sto=122 and Hel=110.
By the way the most expensive town is Trondheim in Norway with the index of 189.
Restaurant indexes: Stavanger=201, Oslo=156, Cop=139, Sto=118, Hel=102, Rig=67, Tal=61 and Vil=41!!!
And Austria is 96 with Vienna 98.
Thanks for that! Vienna is still cheap concerning food.
So which other towns are recommendable in Latvia and Estonia for this season (March)? I guess it´s not worth going to National Parks at that time...
You must visit North-East of Estonia. Narva city (mentioned here) - Narva castle and Ivangorod stronghold make amazing picture, you can see also great bastions and Kreenholm manufacture district.
Just 20 km from Narva - Sillamae town is situated. This town has great Soviet/stalinist architecture - worth a visit.
Also in this region: great attractions - Kuremae orthodox nunnery, Valaste waterfall and Toila searesort.
You can spend in this region 2-3 days. After sightseings you can stop for example in Maetaguse manor - hotel, restaurant and spa/water centre.
Thank you. But I won´t drive there. Can I get to these places by bus/train ?
By train and intercity bus you can get to Narva and Johvi (20 km to Sillamae, 15 km to Kuremae) from Tallinn.
By local bus you can travel from Johvi to Kuremae, Sillamae, Toila searesort, Maetaguse.
If you go to the centre like Johvi or Narva, it is not problem to get to other places by bus or taxi.
As you have ten days, you'll have more than enough time to include Helsinki, which is refreshing even in this time of year, which is not high season either for Estonia, Latvia, or indeed, for Finland.
Thank you all for your answers! I have now decided on the Riga - Caesis - Pärnu - Tallinn option as time is a bit limited with my arrival and departure dates and I´d rather spend more days in Riga and Tallinn. Also, my budget is a bit limited to visit Helsinki this time! I consider visiting Finland another time of the year...
Please, can anybody tell me the best option to go from Pärnu to Tallinn in the morning? I would like to do a train trip (which I heard is cheaper), but how long would this take me?
Thank you for your responses.
Check for example the info from here: visitparnu.com/en/useful-inf... According to that you need to be around early
2h44mins, right (take look to schedules, just change your locations): http://www.edel.ee/piletikassa/
The train system in the Baltics is not good. It's much better to go by bus, which are clean, fast, cheap, modern and typically have wi-fi. The trains are slow, old and run to odd schedules. For Parnu there are only two trains a day to Tallinn, and they leave from a station that is about 5km from the centre. It's not even a station, really, more of a part of the track that the train stops at. The buses, on the other hand, stop right in the centre of Parnu.
There are many bus companies, but you can use this site to search for them:
The bus station in Tallinn is not so central, but there's a tram to the centre. In Riga the bus station is just outside the old town.
BTW, I did the Tallinn-Parnu-Riga-Vilnius run in June last year, all by bus. I did consider the train for at least part of the journey, just for the novelty, but my Estonian wife talked me out of it. There are some journies you could take by train, for example I think Tallinn-Tartu is a good alternative. But the Riga-Parnu, Parnu-Tallinn and Tallinn-Riga routes are just not worth the trouble.