DD (2015-08-14) Tallinn

Dear Dollary (2015-08-14)

Christopher Travel Journal Leave a Comment

Ok, I know I said I’d stop using the A word when talking about every city we see.

So Tallinn, Estonia is [click this link].

It is one of the oldest capitals in Europe, and is absolutely stunning, which comes across in two seconds if you are standing in one of the beautiful Old Town squares:

Tallinn 01

Get off the main square even a few streets and you’ll avoid a lot of the cruise ship crowds.  Sometimes having the entire beautiful, charming, medieval street to yourself:

Note:  trying out a new little web trick.  Click the first picture, then a player thing should pop up.  Use the left/right arrows or swipe to browse them.  When done, click the little “x” in the upper left to get back to this page. 1

Right? 2

Addressing the business side of our trip.

Or so I was led to believe.  Because Lauren found a trendy department store place on the edge of old town and convinced me that we should take a look.  “Market research” she called it.

Well.  This is what market research looks like:

Tallinn shopping

Yep.  I hold the stuff; she tries it on.3

Then she told me this “sweater” was very trendy:

Tallinn 10

…And I told her she looked like a flying squirrel. 4

But it’s not just Old Town.

I took a little three hour adventure outside of Old Town this morning to do laundry.5  And I ended up in a sort of business district.  Which was also awesome:



Clean, shiny, new.  With well dressed ladies and gents everywhere.6

So Tallinn is a pretty amazing capital all around – it’s not just the awesome old town.  I’ll eventually do a full “country profile” post,7 but at a glance we are very impressed with the country.  Some quick facts for those interested:8

  • about 400,000 of Estonia’s 1.3 million citizens call Tallinn home
  • The population is about 70% Estonian, 25% Russian, at least 2 American tourists9, and the rest a mix;
  • Interestingly, in Tallinn about 50% cite Estonian as their first language and the other 50% Russian.  There are some interesting political issues at play.  I’ll save that for a future post.
  • Estonia is about the size of New Hampshire and Vermont combined;
  • Joined the EU and NATO in 2004;
  • Adopted the Euro currency in 2011;
  • GDP = $35 billion
  • GDP per capita = $27,000
  • Budget surplus/(deficit) = -0.2%10
  • Debt to GDP = 9.9% 11

So that’s it for now.

Thanks for reading,
Sherpa (& Flying Squirrel)

  1. Note 2:  I hope it works.

  2. As crazy as it sounds, the pics do not do it justice.  It… Is.Gorgeous.

  3. #GoodHusband

  4. …lovingly.  No, seriously.  We both laughed!

  5. Yep.  Seeking out self-service laundry is the unglamorous part of this trip.

  6. I think I was near a mini-hub of private equity, investment funds, and other financial service firms based on the signs.

  7. …if I can ever get caught up…

  8. source: CIA World Factbook

  9. Lauren and I, obvs.

  10. …basically the gov’t balances the budget.  Awesome

  11. Also awesome in this day ‘n age.

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