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Destination Estonia
Estonian islands

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Estonia’s coastline is dotted with about 1500 islands. The biggest of them are SAAREMAA and HIIUMAA - known not only for their pure nature with junipers, sandy beaches, sea birds, wild animals and unique plants, but also for rich traditions and cultural historic background.
 

Saaremaa
In 700 years the Germans, Danes, Swedes and Russians have taken turns at possessing the islands. During this history fortifications and castles, churches and manors were constructed; the town of Kuressaare, houses and lighthouses, harbours and bridges, wells and chapels were built. The islanders have their own dialect, customs, songs, national clothing, tales and heroes, a special sense of humour, even their own way of salting fish, baking bread and brewing island’s famed beer.

SAAREMAA

www.visitsaaremaa.ee

Highlights:

  • Koguva fishing village, an example of Estonian peasant architecture, a living Estonian village and an open air museum;
     
  • Liiva (13th c) Church with unusual ship murals;
     
  • Eemu - the only working trestle windmill of Estonia;
     
  • Lake Kaali - formed by a crashed meteorite 2700 years ago;
     
  • the capital Kuressaare with Bishop’s Castle (1384), the best preserved medieval fortress in the Baltics;
     
  • Panga pank (Cliff’s cliff), an over 21 m high limestone bluff
     
  • the 5 windmills of Angla;
     
  • the Karja Church with its unique pagan frescoes and sculptures.

Sightseeing options

  • Walking tour of Kuressaare and visit to Bishop’s Castle, 3 hrs;
     
  • Coach tour of Saaremaa, 5 hrs;
     
  • Coach tour of Muhu Island; 3 hrs

HIIUMAA

http://www.hiiumaa.ee

Highlights

  • Remarkable variety of wildlife (over 1000 species of plants – 50 of them rare and under protection);
     
  • the West-Estonian Archipelago Biosphere Reserve;
     
  • the capital Kärdla – a small lovely green town;
     
  • Tahkuna and Kõpu Lighthouses;
     
  • Pühalepa Church (12th c.);
     
  • Kassari peninsula – an idyllic peninsula with a long tail-like extenuation, with a few metres wide end, finally disappearing in the sea.

Sightseeing options
 

  • A full day coach tour of Hiiumaa.


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