Tallinn capital of Estonia

Trip Start Apr 29, 2006
Trip End Nov 15, 2007

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Flag of Estonia  ,
Monday, June 26, 2006

Driving through Helsinki was quite easy really, considering it's a capital city. Des had to pick up his watch from the jeweler before we boarded the Tallink ferry to Estonia. Only a 90 minute trip, so just time for a coffee and a nap. It's tiring being a tourist.

I can still see the Estonian border guards scratching their heads when not one, but two Australian vehicles drove off the ferry. To complicate matters, Lou's vehicle is registered in Northern Territory and ours in South Australia, so the paperwork is different. Our personalized number plates didn't help either. After much toing and froing and disappearing acts on the part of the officers, we were finally let through with a big smile and genuine wish for a good journey.

As soon as you enter Estonia, you drive into the old town which is really pretty. Tallinn has the most beautiful silhouette as you enter from the harbor. They've done a lot of work on the town to attract the tourists, but still kept it in its old style. There's not much you can change about steep, cobbled streets and fortresses. Tallinn's old city only covers about 1% of Tallinn's total area, but it's that little bit which gives the town its charm. It was a healthy climb to the top of this quaint little town with its beautiful Cathedral.

The EU has greatly assisted with ex-Baltic states like Estonia and the service in shops and petrol stations was good. Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania each have their own currency, not Euros yet. Estonia's is the Kroon (EEK). Their resources are oil, shale and forestry and Estonia manufactures textiles, petrochemicals and fertilizers. Their main agriculture is barley, potatoes and oats. We saw the biggest fungus growing on a tree, just had to take a picture.

We stayed in a Euro Park overnight. This is a plot of land not bituminized which has markets and is car parking for a shopping centre by day and offers overnight parking for a small fee with no facilities. At 7am the parking inspector comes around to see you've bought a ticket.

We met 2 Italian couples on this terrain who were very apologetic about the soccer result. They shared our mat over coffee and we enjoyed Anna's home made liqueur. And I slept like a baby that night. Luciana was the only one who spoke English. Riccardo and Olinto were very interested in our camper as Olinto makes campers, (but not like ours). Everywhere we go, people come up to us and ask "Are you really from Australia? How did you get your cars here?"
Estonian beach we called in at was busy with windsurfers. They pump up the outside edge and the stay struts of their wind surf kites.
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