Because of Tallinn's fascinating and vast history, choosing a shore excursion through which you can explore this incredible town can be perplexing. -And if your time in Estonia is brief, this problem is compounded. This 3.5 hour city tour does offer you the opportunity to see a variety of city highlights you might otherwise miss, including Kadriorg Park, the site of the Song Festival, the ruins of St Bridgette's Convent from the 16th century, and the Olympic Yachting Complex. Once this drive is completed, you then have a walking tour of Tallinn's Old Town, which includes seeing Toompea Hill, Palace Square, the exterior of Toompea Castle, the Russian Orthodox Church of Alexander Nevsky, a visit inside St. Mary's Cathedral (from the 13th century), and a view of the towers and tiled roofs of Lower Old Town. If anything, this tour will provide a great way of determining those sights you'd like to experience with more time and detail in the future!
Price: Adults expect to pay around $46.
Booking Advice: Because of the walking (including walking on uneven surfaces), these tours receive a moderate rating in terms of physical exertion. Cruise line prices are quite competitive with third party vendors for this tour.
Medieval Rakvere & Tallinn
This 7 hour tour begins with a walk in Tallinn's Old Town, where you will see Toompea Hill, the exterior of Toompea Castle (home to the Estonian Parliament), the Russian Orthodox Church of Alexander Nevsky, the interior of St. Mary's Cathedral, and a view of Lower Old Town. You are then driven to Rakvere, one of Estonia's oldest towns and home to the Rakvere Distillery Museum and the 13th century Rakvere Castle. At the distillery, you'll learn of it's history and distilling, and have the option to sample vodka. Your tour of the castle includes seeing Tarvas (the bull statue), a medieval watch tower, a stone throwing machine, and a working cannon. Lunch is included and occurs in the courtyard. Ther's time for shopping and strolling about before you return.
Price: Adults expect to pay around $86.
Booking Advice: Because of the walking, which in this case includes touring a castle over 700 years old, this activity is rated as strenuous. Cruise line prices are considered to be fairly competitive with third party tour options.
Upper Town & Kadriorg Palace
In 4 hours, the walking portion of your tour of Old Town begins at Tall Hermann Tower and progresses to Toompea Hill, the Russian Orthodox Church of Alexander Nevsky, and St. Mary's Cathedral (the Dome Church). By coach, you then travel to Kadriorg Palace, which was built by Peter the Great and has since been restored to former glory. You'll see the upper and lower gardens, the Swan Pool, lovely grottoes, and the Black Angel Russalko Monument (which commemorates the lives lost when the Russian Naval ship, the Russalko, sank in 1893). You'll also see the magnificent interior palace rooms.
Price: Adults expect to pay around $42.
Booking Advice: This tour is rated as moderate regarding physical exercise due to the walking involved. Cruise line prices, in our opinion, are competitive.
Bicycling in the Open Air Museum & Old Town Tour
This 3 hour tour actually begins in Old Town, where you will visit the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and then see the Lower Old Town sites including Town Hall Square, and the exterior of the Gothic Town Hall, and have the option to shop in the stores along Viru Street. By coach, you then travel to the Rocca Al Mare Open Air Museum (which you can visit). The biking portion of this tour is guided and includes seeing Kakumea as well as other sites. The tour finishes with a snack of pastries and refreshments.
Price: Adults expect to pay around $79.
Booking Advice: This tour is rated as strenuous, so there are age requirements and physical restrictions. In our opinion, you'll find lower prices for biking tours through third party vendors.
Tallinn Old Town with Beer Tasting
This 4 hour tour begins at Tall Hermann Tower, and from there you'll see Palace Square, the exterior of Toompea Castle, and Alexander Nevsky's Cathedral and St. Mary's Cathedral. You then reach Lower Old Town on Short Leg Street, and see Wheel's Well (Witches Well). You'll learn about the making of beer and have the option of tasting three different kinds over lunch. The tour finishes after you see Town Hall Square.
Price: Adults expect to pay around $100.
Booking Advice: Because of the walking, this tour is rated as strenuous physically. Cruise line prices appear to be competitive.