One of the places where everyone is going and its like a must see place if you visit Latvia and Baltics.
Traveling is one of the most exciting experiences that you can ever have and touring the Baltic States is perhaps the best thing. Although they have been independent for many years, the Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia are still often lumped together in our minds. From contemporary neighborhood to beautifully preserved historic sites these former Soviet republics are quite distinct. Although they are neighbors, they carry very different historical baggage. This can be seen in their unique and versatile architecture. Apart from their historic heritage, they are also proud of their unspoiled nature. Here are some of the most visited sights during Baltic tours.
1. The Old town Tallinn
As the capital of Estonia, Tallinn is a town with a very well preserved past. As a UNESCO world heritage, touring this old town is a very beautiful experience. Being one of the most preserved towns, this town dates back to the 13th century. By taking a stroll in this charming place, you will not only get lost in the alleyways but also come across old buildings that dot every turn. To get a spectacular view of the town, you can climb up the Toompea hill.
2. Estonian open-air museum
If tourists can’t go to the countryside then the countryside is brought to them. That is actually the mode of operation of this place. These are unique buildings that have been plucked and transplanted among the trees. Apart from the chapel that dates back to 1699, there are also activities such as blacksmithing, weaving, and traditional cooking. If you find yourself here during the mid-summer, you can come over to witness the traditional celebrations. When you are on the Baltic sightseeing tour, do not forget to visit this place.
3. Narva Castle, Estonia
Discovered in 1256 and later bought by the German Livonian Teutonic Knights order, this castle has witnessed very many tumultuous historic events. It’s perhaps the best preserved and the most defensive castle in the country. It also hosts a museum which will enable you to learn more about the country and its rich historic past.
4. Rundale Palace
Built on an earlier medieval castle, the Rundale Palace was designed by the famous architect Bartolomeo Rastrelli and constructed for so many decades during the mid 18th century. After a tumultuous 20th century when it acted as military barracks and school, this 54 room Rundale underwent an extensive renovation up to 2014. Today, the ornate garden and palace are among Latvia’s most popular tourist attractions. It’s one of the places that you should not ignore when going for Baltic sightseeing.
5. The Islands
Of the three countries, Estonia has the highest number of islands at 2,222 of them. While many of them are small and uninhabited, quite a few of them provides the chance for unique excursions. Some of the most popular islands include Saaremaa and Muhu which are easily accessible and filled with beaches, great nature spots, and colorful folklore. There is also Kihnu, the women’s island which has preserved a distinct and proud matriarchal culture. More so, off the coast of Tallinn, there is Prangli Island which only has 15 residents.
6. The Curonian Spit, Lithuania
Named by the UNESCO as a world heritage site, the Curonian Spit can simply be described as a natural wonder. It’s a 98 km Spit comprising of sand dunes deposited between the Curonian Lagoon and the Baltic Sea. If you are looking for one of the best places to go for Baltic sightseeing then you need to visit this impressive and most popular place in the country.
7. 100,000 Crosses
After the 1831 uprising, crosses were left here by the solder’s families in the Lithuanian city of Siauliai. Because this tradition continued, this place came to be known as the Hill of crosses. During the Russian occupation, the government tried to destroy the site by removing the crosses to make it an important place of pilgrimage for the die-hard Catholics. However, adding more crosses began in earnest in early 1990. Although the exact number of crosses here is not known, it’s estimated that there are over 100,000 crosses at the site.
8. Vilnius, Lithuania
This unique capital is among the most protected places by UNESCO. This town is not only crowned with the Gediminas Tower but also has various hills where you can get amazing views of the city. It boasts of an abundance OF cultural venues, architectural landmarks, bars, restaurants, and cafes that will provide the entertainment and the sites that you are looking for. It’s also among the only few major cities in Europe that allows hot air ballooning.
There you have it, the top 7 things to see on the Baltic tour.
Great video on the things that can be seen in Latvia.