Estonia never quite became a true Soviet republic following its annexation by Stalin in 1940, somehow maintaining its language and culture. Now a dynamic western European country following independence in 1991, you will be dazzled by medieval Tallinn, formidable castles, wilderness areas and pristine beaches.
Most Estonia holidays concentrate on the wonderful city of Tallinn with its maze of medieval cobbled streets that teem with tiny shops, pavement cafés and stylish restaurants. Don't miss impressive Kadriorg Palace, a Baroque masterpiece that was once Peter the Great's summer palace. To this day the border town of Narva continues to defend Estonia as its imposing castle stares broodily across the river at Russia's Ivangorod Castle.
Covered by wilderness areas of forest and remote offshore islands, Estonia holidays are invigorating for those who love hiking and cycling. Best explored by bicycle, windmills, wooden churches and lighthouses are scattered across Saaremaa island, linked to the mainland by ice in winter. Follow trails past lakes and waterfalls and along the rugged coastline in Lahemaa National Park and then spend a few days relaxing in the spa town of Parnu, with its white-sand beaches, historic town and quiet leafy streets which come alive on warm summer nights.