A Travellerspoint blog

Bratislava.

Capital of Slovakia.

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My husband with the papparazi statue - Bratislava

My husband with the papparazi statue - Bratislava

Bratislava.

Bratislava is the capital of Slovakia. It has a population of about 430,000 and is situated on the Danube River. It has quite a pretty old town with a castle, churches and squares.

Our Day.

Despite being July, the weather was freezing when we visited,15 degrees, windy and raining. However, we did not let that spoil the day. We took tram 13 from the train station to the old town. The ticket from Vienna includes transport in Bratislava for the day. Make sure you do have a valid ticket as there are many ticket inspectors around. With limited time we concentrated on the beautiful old town and the castle. There was a lovely feel to Bratislava despite the temperature. One of the things tourists like doing in the old town is posing with the quirky bronze statues which are dotted around the place.

The old town from St Michael - Bratislava

The old town from St Michael - Bratislava

Main Square.

The main square of the old town is scenic. Here there are some lovely old buildings including the old town hall. There is also a pretty fountain and two of the quirky bronze statues a Napoleonic soldier and a sentry.

The main town square - Bratislava

The main town square - Bratislava

The main town square - Bratislava

The main town square - Bratislava

Bratislava Castle.

Bratislava Castle is perched on a hill just outside the old town. It is a pretty white building with a museum inside. We did not visit the museum. I think it was closed when we visited. The castle has quite nice gardens but the main reason to visit is for the lovely views over the Danube and the old town.

Bratislava Castle - Bratislava

Bratislava Castle - Bratislava

View of the castle from the old town - Bratislava

View of the castle from the old town - Bratislava

View towards St Martin - Bratislava

View towards St Martin - Bratislava

View over old town - Bratislava

View over old town - Bratislava

View towards Novy Most Bridge over the Danube - Bratislava

View towards Novy Most Bridge over the Danube - Bratislava

Statues.

A fun thing to do in Bratislava is to go and look for all of the quirky bronze statues dotted around the town. We found the ones listed below.

Sentry Statue.

The quirky sentry statue is on the main square near the old town hall. He is one of Bratislava's many very photogenic statues. We made it our business to find as many of these as we possibly could. I think they are quite a fun idea and well worth a look.

Sentry Statue

Sentry Statue

Napoleonic Soldier Statue.

The Napoleonic soldier statue is also on the main square generally surrounded by tourists. I do not entirely know his significance to Bratislava but he takes a good photograph and is quite good fun to pose next to.

Napoleonic Soldier

Napoleonic Soldier

Schoner Naci Statue.

The Schoner Naci statue is on a lane just off the main square. It is quite a nice statue to photograph or pose next to. I would never do so if Bratislava were more touristy and you had to queue up for such a thing, but at least when we visited it was not.

Schoner Naci

Schoner Naci

Cumil Statue.

Just along the road from Schoner Naci is Cumil or Rubberneck peering out of the ground from a manhole. There is a warning sign near him to stop cars running over him. It is quite a unique idea. I have never seen a statue like this before. He is located at the junction of Laurinská and Panská streets.

Cumil Statue

Cumil Statue

Cumil Statue

Cumil Statue

Papparazi.

If you are standing facing Cumil go left and walk along the street until you find the papparazi statue. He peers at you down the lens of his huge camera, so make sure you are up to no good when you walk in front of him.

Papparazi

Papparazi

Post box.

This skateboarding girls post box is on the shopping street outside the Crown Plaza Hotel.

Post box

Post box

Train To Bratislava From Vienna.

We visited Bratislava on a day trip from Vienna. To get there we travelled on the U bahn to Praterstern then changed to the S-bahn to the Sudbahnhof. We exited the station, went left, crossed the road and entered the Sudbahnhof. We bought tickets from the red ticket machines for 14 Euros return. Trains left at 20 past the hour and took 1 hour 10 minutes to Bratislava making it an easy day trip.

Posted by irenevt 18:57 Archived in Slovakia Comments (0)

Poland.

A Year in Poland.

Glorious Polish Autumn, Lebork. - Poland

Glorious Polish Autumn, Lebork. - Poland

Poland.

In 1994 we left our jobs in North Cyprus to work in Poland for a year. We lived in a small town in Northern Poland called Lebork. This is not a touristy place which was good as we were not ripped off in local restaurants or bars and we got a sense of what living in Poland was actually like. Our teaching job was quite easy with reasonably well-motivated students, a four day working week for me, and a three day working week for my husband, plus every other day seemed to be a saints day holiday. However, our pay was appallingly low and our bosses started to mess us around. Although we found Poland beautiful, we did not complete the year. We walked out of our jobs in January rather than working until June. This was a shame because we were enjoying exploring Poland and had hoped to experience it in all seasons. Oh well, at least we managed autumn and winter.

As teachers we were apply to get a special card which enabled us to travel all over Poland by train for half price. We made good use of this and visited some of the towns on the Baltic coast, Leba, Kartuzy, Gdansk, Gdynia, Sopot, Slupsk, Torun, Malborg, Hel, Elblag, Warsaw, Krakow. One of the things I liked about Poland was the mentality of the people. I think they had suffered a great deal during the wars and during Communism and, though life may have improved, they still suffer. This makes them empathize with others. In Lebork I watched a destitute, homeless woman gaze hungrily into the window of a bakery and the woman inside come out and hand her a large cake free of charge. In Gydinia I sat in a bar where a filthy, ragged, homeless man sat nursing an empty coke glass hoping he would not be ordered back outside into the cold when suddenly a woman customer he did not even know handed him a meal she had ordered and paid for. At such times I was moved by the generosity and thoughtfulness of the people here; something I have rarely come across in other places. I think it derives from a past with shared hardships and a mutual knowledge of what it is like to go without. Another great thing about Poland is it is so underrated. Everywhere we went our guide book told us was bleak, gray, soviet, depressing and we'd get there and discover it was colourful, lively and beautifully restored. Expectations zero; reality wonderful.

Lebork.

We lived and worked in Lebork from September 1994 to January 1995. Lebork, pronounced Lemborg, is a town in Pomerania, Northern Poland. It is about halfway between Slupsk and Gdansk. Lebork, then called Lebno, was part of Poland, then it was occupied by the Teutonic Knights and became Lauenburg and was part of Prussia. It was handed back to Poland along with other areas of Prussia after World War I. Lebork has a town square, the 14th century Gothic church of St James, a castle built by the Teutonic knights, the Leba and Okalica rivers, a market, several restaurants and bars. It is surrounded by forest and we enjoyed walking here in autumn and viewing the glorious autumn colours. There were also pleasant walks by the river. There were some old city towers remaining, too and one had been converted into a restaurant. I tried steak Tartar here for the first time -yeuk! I could not manage to eat the raw beef. During World War II, Lauenburg was the location of the Nazi concentration camp Lauenburg. This was a subcamp of the Stutthof concentration camp. On 10th March 1945 Lauenburg was taken over by the Soviet Red Army. Most of Lebork's old town was destroyed later in a fire, however the Gothic Church of St. James and the castle survived.

Lebork

Lebork

Lebork

Lebork

Lebork

Lebork

Lebork

Lebork

Lebork

Lebork

Slupsk.

Slupsk is pronounced Swupsk. There should be a line going through my letter 'l' which makes it a 'w' sound in Polish. We visited Slupsk just once. Like Lebork it was once part of Prussia and is now part of Pomerania. Slupsk is located near the Baltic Sea on the Slupia River. It has an attractive town hall, churches, a park. It is the gateway to some of the resort towns on the Baltic coast. Slupsk is the location for a Polish Piano Festival and a Jazz Festival.

Slupsk

Slupsk

Slupsk

Slupsk

Darlowo and the Baltic Beaches.

On our first weekend in Poland the two English teachers who lived next door to us took us in their car to see some of the towns on the Baltic coast. We went to Ustka and Darlowo. The Baltic Beaches are wonderful long stretches of silver white sand. At Ustka as we explored the beach and pier, we were buffeted by extremely bracing Baltic winds causing us to fasten up our jackets tightly. We were then very amused to see Polish people in swimming costumes sunbathing happily under these conditions. Darlowo is a pretty historical town with a town hall on its main square and the Church of St Mary nestled behind the town hall. Darlowo also has a castle which was once the home of the Dukes of Pomerania. On Darlowo's main street we watched a boy skateboarding using puppy power.

Darlowo And The Baltic Beaches

Darlowo And The Baltic Beaches

Darlowo And The Baltic Beaches

Darlowo And The Baltic Beaches

Darlowo And The Baltic Beaches

Darlowo And The Baltic Beaches

Darlowo And The Baltic Beaches

Darlowo And The Baltic Beaches

Darlowo And The Baltic Beaches

Darlowo And The Baltic Beaches

Town Of Leba.

Leba is pronounced Weba. It is another word that should have a stroke through the L making it a W. Leba was one of our favourite places in Poland and we went here a lot. Leba is a town on the Baltic coast; the River Leba flows through it. Leba has a beautiful long silver sand beach. On the beach you can see the historic Neptun Hotel. This hotel dates from 1907. Someone told me this was once Goebbel's summerhouse, but I'm not sure if this is true. At one point this hotel was apparently a casino. Filming for the movie "Effi" based on the novel "Effi Briest" by Theodor Fontane was carried out in front of this hotel in 2007. The old town of Leba changed location in the past because it was getting covered over by encroaching sand dunes. These ever growing sand dunes are now part of the Slowiñski National Park. This park is about 8 kilometres west of Leba. It is filled with sand dunes, pine trees, lots of different species of birds and apparently has wild boar though we did not encounter any. The park occupies about 186.18 square kilometres. UNESCO designated the Slowinski National Park a biosphere reserve as part of its Programme on Man and the Biosphere in 1977. Polish beer is excellent, but Leba was one of the few places we could find it on draft; most places sold bottles. We always rounded up a trip here with a pint of draft Hevelius before heading back to Lebork.

Town Of Leba

Town Of Leba

Town Of Leba

Town Of Leba

Town Of Leba

Town Of Leba

Town Of Leba

Town Of Leba

Town Of Leba

Town Of Leba

Kartuzy.

Kartuzy was another of our favourite places. We always went here by train. Unfortunately it was only served by slow local trains and when I say slow I mean you could practically have walked faster. As we only ever went when we were not in a hurry, we found this very funny and got used to the gentle chug, chug, chug of the train together with frequent long, unexplained stops. Kartuzy is situated on a lovely lake surrounded by forests. Its famous building is a large church by the side of the lake. This was built in 1380. It was once home to a small group of Carthusian monks originally from Bohemia who were obsessed with death and preparing for the afterlife. The roof of the church is shaped like a coffin; the monks slept in coffins and there is a huge clock in the centre of the church with the angel of death on it. His scythe forms a pendulum and there is a Latin inscription on it reminding us that - 'every second takes us closer to death'. You can hear the ominous ticking of this cheerful timepiece all over the church as you wander around pondering your own imminent demise. I loved it, because I found it so hilariously over the top. Kartuzy also had a very good market and lovely lakeside walks.

Kartuzy.

Kartuzy.

Kartuzy.

Kartuzy.

Kartuzy.

Kartuzy.

Kartuzy.

Kartuzy.

Kartuzy.

Kartuzy.

Sopot.

Sopot is part of what is known as the tricity: the cities of Gydinia, Gdansk and Sopot. Sopot is in the middle between Gydinia and Gdansk. The word Sopot means stream or spring. Sopot is on the Baltic Sea and has a beautiful long silver sand beach. The beach is edged with woods which are stunning shades of red and orange in the autumn. Sopot is a spa town and people come there for rest, relaxation, recuperation. It has the longest wooden pier in Europe 650 metres long, 450 metres of that actually in the sea. The pier was normally surrounded by swans and was a favourite haunt of walkers and fishermen. The Grand Hotel is a wonderful luxury hotel on the beach at Sopot. The hotel has a casino and luxury shops.The hotel was built around 1927 at a cost of 20 million Danzig gulden. It was originally known as the Kasino Hotel. It is now owned by the Sofitel Group. Famous guests at this hotel include: Alfonso XIII, King of Spain; Martin Bormann, private secretary to Adolf Hitler; Charles Aznavour; Fidel Castro; Marlena Dietrich; Charles de Gaulle; Hermann Göring, second in command of the German Third Reich; Adolf Hitler; Annie Lennox; Greta Garbo; Vladimir Putin; Demis Roussos; Omar Sharif and Boney M. Sopot has a famous lighthouse which dates from 1903. Sopot is home to the famous Sopot International Song Festival.

Sopot

Sopot

Sopot

Sopot

Sopot

Sopot

Sopot

Sopot

Sopot

Sopot

Swans on the beach at Sopot. - Poland

Swans on the beach at Sopot. - Poland

Gdynia

Gdynia is a city and major port on the Baltic Sea. It is part of the Gdynia, Sopot, Gdansk tricity and stands on the Bay of Gdansk. Gdynia is mainly a modern city. On its sea front it has a monument to Joseph Conrad. This monument was created by Danuta and Zdzislaw Koseda and Wawrzyniec Samp. It was originally unveiled in 1976. Joseph Conrad came from Berdychiv in the Ukraine and had no links with Gdynia, but he was of Polish origins and wrote books about the sea such as Lord Jim so I guess a monument to him in a Polish port makes some sense. Near this monument stands the Maritime Museum with several weapons displayed outside. My fondest memory of Gdynia is when we came and ate in its Chinese restaurant to celebrate my birthday as I was missing Chinese food since I had just lived for three years next to a Chinese restaurant in Northern Cyprus.

Gdynia

Gdynia

Gdynia

Gdynia

Gdynia

Gdynia

Gdynia

Gdynia

Gdansk.

Gdansk is the third part of the Gdynia, Sopot, Gdansk tricity. It is a port and is located on Gdansk Bay. As Gdansk is quite a famous city, I already had expectations of what it would be like before I first visited. I expected it to be industrial and filled with shipyards. While it does have industry and shipyards, the centre of Gdansk is actually very beautiful and interesting. Most of Gdansk was flattened in the Second World War, but as with many Polish cities, the historic centre has been beautifully restored. Gdansk old town has tall buildings with gabled roofs. It always reminded me of Amsterdam when we visited. Gdansk has lots of churches and museums. One of the churches, St Mary's is the largest brick church in the world. During martial law between 1981 and 1983 members of the Solidarity movement sought refuge in St Mary's. The old town has a pretty fountain called Neptune's Fountain. Its centre piece is the god Neptune clutching his trident. Neptune is made of bronze. He was first erected as a statue in 1549. Later in 1633 he was converted into a fountain. He survived World War II as he was dismantled and hidden. The Motlawa River flows through the old town of Gdansk. This river has many ships and is lined with museums, restaurants and bars. Gdansk's Maritime Museum can be found here. This museum is made up of four separate parts:The Crane, the Soldek ship, the National Maritime Museum and the the Maritime Culture Centre. The museum is on both sides of the Motlawa River and a ferry will take you from one part of the museum to another. Some of the old town's streets are lined with shops or stalls selling amber jewellery, wood carvings, wooden boxes and wooden chess sets. We did not always go to Gdansk as tourists. We often went to visit the British Council Library. We had our favourite cheap restaurant where we would go and eat a big plate of bigos and our favourite bar on the Motlawa River where we would drink ice cold bottles of Gdanskie beer. This was my favourite Polish beer.

Gdansk

Gdansk

Gdansk

Gdansk

Gdansk

Gdansk

Gdansk

Gdansk

Gdansk

Gdansk

Enjoying a beer in Gdansk. - Poland

Enjoying a beer in Gdansk. - Poland

Torun.

We visited Torun on a freezing cold winter's day. That's my excuse for my rather bleak, colourless, brown, photos. As we approached the walls of the historic city centre we stopped to watch some children having a great time sledging in the snow. Torun is located in northern Poland on the banks of the Vistula River. It is one of the oldest cities in Poland. It was the birthplace of astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus. The medieval centre of Torun was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997. Torun's historic centre is surrounded by thick defensive walls. Torun has a cathedral, several churches, a town hall and a leaning tower. By accident we strayed onto the grounds of the closed ethnographic museum. Its skansen has historical farmsteads, a windmill and old wooden cottages. The oldest cottage dates back to 1767. The ethnographic museum was established in 1958.

Torun

Torun

Torun

Torun

Torun

Torun

Torun

Torun

Torun

Torun

Malbork.

Malbork is a town in northern Poland situated on the delta of the Vistula River. We visited here on a day trip in order to see the famous castle of the Teutonic Knights. This is the largest brick castle in the world. Malbork Castle was built in the 13th century as the headquarters of the Order of Teutonic Knights. They came here to convert the local population from Paganism to Christianity. Malbork Castle is situated on the banks of the Nogat River. Malbork means castle of the Virgin Mary. The castle complex is actually three castles combined into one. When Malbork was part of Prussia the Teutonic Knights based in Malbork Castle collected tolls from any boats passing along the Nogat River. They also had a monopoly on the amber trade here. Malbork was a member of the Hanseatic League, and many Hanseatic meetings were held in Malbork Castle. Malbork Castle suffered damage in World War II.

Malbork

Malbork

Malbork

Malbork

Malbork

Malbork

Malbork

Malbork

Warsaw.

Warsaw is the capital of Poland and its largest city. It is located on the River Vistula. We visited Warsaw just once on a day trip. It was a bitterly cold day in the middle of winter. Warsaw suffered dreadful damage during World War II, but its historic centre has been beautifully restored. The restored buildings are all in the same period style. The reason for Warsaw's destruction was that in 1944 the population of Warsaw rose up against Hitler's occupying forces. The German Reich's revenge was swift and resulted in the burning, bombing and destruction of 90% of the city. There are statues and sculptures all over the restored old town commemorating the Warsaw Uprising. Resistance fighters are depicted emerging from manholes, grenades in hand as they try to drive out the invaders. It took many years to rebuild Warsaw's historic centre. Researchers used paintings and photographs as an architectural blueprint. The restoration work was not finished until 1962. Now the historic centre of Warsaw is included on the UNESCO World Heritage List. We travelled to Warsaw with a work colleague with a very different travelling style to us. She kept wanting to eat, while I kept wanting to sight see. Consequently I did not see everything I wanted to see. Warsaw has a beautiful old town square, a castle, a cathedral, churches, museums. In the evening we strolled through the Old Jewish Quarter. The Jewish Ghetto was flattened after an attempted uprising in 1943, but some parts of the Ghetto wall still remain. Warsaw has many memorials. One of them is Syrena the mermaid. This statue commemorates an old legend. One day Prince Kazimerez lost his way while on a hunting expedition, a mermaid guided him back to safety by firing burning arrows to lead him back to his companions. The mermaid is the symbol of Warsaw. Another well known memorial is the little insurgent the statue of a boy soldier holding a sten gun and wearing an oversized helmet. This statue was raised on October 1st, 1983. It was designed by Jerzy Jarnuszkiewicz. The statue is a tribute to the children who served as messengers and front line troops in the uprising. Many of them were killed in the fighting.

Warsaw

Warsaw

Warsaw

Warsaw

Warsaw

Warsaw

Warsaw

Warsaw

Warsaw

Warsaw

Krakow.

Krakow is the second largest city in Poland. Its historical centre has survived wars with considerably less damage than any other Polish city, making it Poland's most historical city. Krakow is located on the River Vistula. We visited Krakow for a day. It is a beautiful city with a huge castle called Wawel Castle right in its centre. It also has an old town and an Old Jewish Area Kazimierz. In the Jewish area we visited a former synagogue which is now a museum. The museum documented life for Jewish people before, during and after the Second World War. For me the most distressing exhibit was a school photo of a primary school class taken around 1937. All the children in the photo are Jewish. Their happy, smiling faces look into the camera with so much hope for their future and underneath there was a little note stating the number of them that were dead by 1945. I have seldom seen a more powerful symbol for the horrific pointlessness of war. Parts of the film Schindler's List were filmed in Krakow. The Wawel area dates from the fourteenth century and consists of Krakow's Castle and Cathedral. You can view the Polish crown jewels in the castle treasury here. The cathedral was the site of the coronation of every Polish king and queen. On the riverbank outside the castle there is a statue of the Wawel Dragon. This terrifying creature once lived in the large cave behind where he stands. He terrified the local people and plundered their livestock. The dragon was eventually tricked into eating a bag of sulphur which killed him. This statue dates from 1972 and was designed by local artist Bronislaw Chromy. The heart of the old town is Rynek or Market Square with its magnificent cloth hall, town hall tower and St Mary's Basilica. Here you can also find Saint Wojciech's Church with its green roofs this is one of the oldest churches in Krakow. In the centre of the square stands a monument to Adam Mickiewicz, a famous Polish poet.

Cracow Or Krakow

Cracow Or Krakow

Cracow Or Krakow

Cracow Or Krakow

Cracow Or Krakow

Cracow Or Krakow

Elblag.

We visited Elblag purely because we discovered it was the home of EB beer which was one of the most popular Polish beers when we stayed in Poland. The Elblag Brewery is Poland's largest brewery. It belongs to the Zywiec Group. Zywiec is also an extremely popular Polish beer. Nowadays it is exported to the UK among other places. Brewing beer in Elblag dates back to 1309. In that year Teutonic Master Siegfried Von Leuchtwangen bestowed brewing privileges on the town of Elblag. The current brewery dates from 1872. Elblag is situated about 55KM southeast of Gdansk. The city is a port located on the River Elblag. Elblag was almost totally destroyed at the end of World War II. The old town has now been partially restored. Its skyline is dominated by St Nicolaus's Church.

Elblag

Elblag

Posted by irenevt 06:23 Archived in Poland Comments (0)

Riga, Latvia.

Baltic Queen of Art Nouveau Architecture.

sunny

Riga.

One of Riga's many faced houses - Riga

One of Riga's many faced houses - Riga

Riga is the capital city of Latvia. It has a population of around 700,000. This city was founded in 1201 and is a former member of the Hanseatic League. Riga has an old town with lots of beautiful old buildings and a new town with lots of Art Nouveau architecture.

The New Town: Art Nouveau Architecture.

Riga's New Town is famous for its Art Noveau architecture. Beautiful examples can be found at Alberta 2, 2a, 4, 6, 8 and 13; Elizabetes 10a, 10b and also at Strenieku 4a. These streets are close together and while there is Art Nouveau architecture elsewhere in Riga this area is the most beautifully restored. We walked around this area 3 times on our visit, because we found it so stunning. The house at Strenieku 4a was built in 1905. It used to be a student hostel but now houses the Stockholm School of Economics. Alberta 12 houses the Riga Art Noveau Museum, which is open from 10am to 6pm. This building contains the apartment of Konstantins Peksens who was one of Riga’s best Art Noveau architects. He is supposed to have created around 250 buildings in Riga. The building was also home to famous Latvian painter – Janis Rozentals and writer Rudolf Blaumans. There is also some beautiful Art Nouveau architecture in the old town, for example at Jauniela 25 there is an Art Noveau building with a large female head.

Art Nouveau - Riga

Art Nouveau - Riga

Art Noveau - Riga

Art Noveau - Riga

Art Noveau - Riga

Art Noveau - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

Art Nouveau Architecture. - Riga

The Old Town.

The Old Town in Riga is also a beautiful place to visit. Sights here include the great and small guild halls, the cat's house, the beautifully restored house of the blackheads, the three brothers (three houses next to each other which each show a different style and period of architecture) and the Riga Museum of Occupation. There are also many churches and a beautiful cathedral. There are also lots of places to eat and drink. There is a beautiful park separating the old and new towns. When we visited, it was a very popular place for people to have their wedding photos taken. The Independence Monument also known as Milda is located on the parkland. It used to face a statue of Lenin, but that is long gone.

My husband with the old town. - Riga

My husband with the old town. - Riga

Gardens: Bastejkalns Park.

Bastejkalns Park consists of gardens which stretch along Riga's Canal dividing the old and new town areas. These are a very pleasant place for a stroll and a spot of people watching.

Gardens. - Riga

Gardens. - Riga

Gardens. - Riga

Gardens. - Riga

Gardens. - Riga

Gardens. - Riga

Gardens. - Riga

Gardens. - Riga

The National Opera House, Riga. - Riga

The National Opera House, Riga. - Riga

Wedding Group. - Riga

Wedding Group. - Riga

The Freedom Monument.

The freedom monument is located in the parkland dividing the old and new towns. The freedom monument is a woman standing on top of a tall column holding three stars in her hands. These represent the three historical regions of the country: Kurzeme, Vidzeme and Latgale. Locals affectionately call the woman on their freedom monument Milda. She was first unveiled in 1935. She was designed by Kārlis Zāle. At the base of the monument there are friezes showing Latvians working and fighting for their freedom. The freedom monument used to face towards a statue of Lenin which has long since been toppled. Milda is an important symbol of freedom for the Latvian people. There are guards around the bottom of it. Locals place flowers at its base and newly weds pose for wedding photos next to it.

The Freedom Monument - Riga

The Freedom Monument - Riga

Freedom Monument Guard - Riga

Freedom Monument Guard - Riga

Milda - Riga

Milda - Riga

The Cat House.

As a major cat lover, I really wanted to see this house. It is called the cat house because there are two statues of angry black cats on the roof of the house. It is located at Meistaru10/12. Legend states that the owner of the house was a wealthy merchant who wanted to join the Great Guild opposite his home. At that time the guild was controlled by German merchants and they did not want to admit a non-German into their ranks. In fury the owner of the house ordered his two roof top statues of angry cats with arched backs and raised tails to be turned so that their bottoms pointed directly at the Great Guild. The Guild members were outraged by such disrespect and took the merchant to court. After a lengthy court case the statues were turned round and the merchant was admitted to the guild.

Cat House - Riga

Cat House - Riga

The Cat House. - Riga

The Cat House. - Riga

The Cat House. - Riga

The Cat House. - Riga

The Cat House. - Riga

The Cat House. - Riga

The House of the Blackheads.

This beautiful building stands on the main square in Riga's old town. It was used by bachelor members of the blackheads merchant guild. The original building was completed in 1344. Over the centuries it was expanded and embellished. However, it was completely destroyed in the bombings of 1941. The building was completely rebuilt and was finally finished in the 1990s. This fits in nicely with the inscription over the building's door 'if I should fall, build me again.' There is a statue of Roland, Riga's patron saint in the centre of the square near the House of the Blackheads.

The House of the Blackheads - Riga

The House of the Blackheads - Riga

The House of the Blackheads - Riga

The House of the Blackheads - Riga

The House of the Blackheads - Riga

The House of the Blackheads - Riga

The House of the Blackheads - Riga

The House of the Blackheads - Riga

The House of the Blackheads - Riga

The House of the Blackheads - Riga

The Three Brothers.

The Three Brothers refers to three houses that are next to each other, but each one comes from a different architectural period and style. These three houses are the oldest stone houses in Riga. The oldest house is N°17. This house dates back to the 15th century. The other two date from the 17th and 18th centuries.

The Three Brothers - Riga

The Three Brothers - Riga

The Academy of Sciences.

Riga like many former Communist countries has removed lots of traces of its Soviet past. The Academy of Sciences Building survived. Locals nickname it Stalin's Wedding Cake. I rather liked it myself. There are still some hammer and sickle emblems on it. The building is 65 metres high. There is an observation deck on the 17th floor. This is open in the summer months, but there is an entrance fee.

The Academy of Sciences - Riga

The Academy of Sciences - Riga

The Academy of Sciences - Riga

The Academy of Sciences - Riga

Central Market.

Riga's Central Market dates from 1930. It is housed in five pavilions that were used as zeppelin hangars during WWI. It is colourful and well worth a stroll.

Central Market - Riga

Central Market - Riga

Central Market - Riga

Central Market - Riga

Great Choral Synagogue.

This is a very sad review. On July 4th 1941 while Riga was occupied by the Nazis, hundreds of Jewish refugees from Lithuania, together with local Latvian Jews were locked up in the basement of this synagogue then it was set on fire. The synagogue's ruins remain today. They are located about 10 minutes walk from the train station. Inside the ruins a metal menorah and a memorial stone remain as about the only indication of the buildings original role. Nowadays the remains are a peaceful place where children play and locals get on with their every day life.

Great Choral Synagogue - Riga

Great Choral Synagogue - Riga

Great Choral Synagogue - Riga

Great Choral Synagogue - Riga

Great Choral Synagogue - Riga

Great Choral Synagogue - Riga

Flower Stalls Riga.

There were some lovely flower stalls in Riga. It is customary for locals to place flowers at the base of the freedom monument. At one time during the communist era this would have been an offense.

Flower Stalls, Riga. - Riga

Flower Stalls, Riga. - Riga

Flower Stalls, Riga. - Riga

Flower Stalls, Riga. - Riga

Flower Stalls, Riga. - Riga

Flower Stalls, Riga. - Riga

Daugava River.

Stroll down to the River Daugava and walk across one of the bridges there for good views back towards the old town.

The River. - Riga

The River. - Riga

Pet Cats: No car should be without one.

I just found this cat rather cute in its comfortable resting place. I love cats and will photo any I see on my travels. Many are born posers.

Riga cat - Riga

Riga cat - Riga

Buskers.

There were quite a few buskers on the streets of Riga including one young girl playing a form of bagpipe.

Buskers - Riga

Buskers - Riga

Buskers - Riga

Buskers - Riga

Mrs World.

As we walked home on our last night we bumped into a beauty competition which held my husband up for a while, I can tell you. Personally, I did not know there was such a thing as Mrs World, or I might have entered!!!

Mrs World - Riga

Mrs World - Riga

Hotels.

The Reval Ridzene Hotel.

The Reval Ridzene was in a perfect location for us. It is situated between the old and new towns. It is a handy walking distance from everything we wanted to see the independence monument, new town with its art nouveau, old town with its beautiful old buildings, the bus station. However, although it is very central, it is far enough from the centre to be quiet at night. Our room was clean and comfortable. Staff were pleasant and the bill was correct at the end of our stay. We had a daily breakfast buffet with an extensive choice of food within the hotel restaurant which is shaped like a pyramid and made of glass. Address: Reimersa Street 1, Riga, LV1050.

Our Hotel. - Riga

Our Hotel. - Riga

Transport.

Eurolines Buses.

We travelled to Riga from Vilnius, Lithuania by Eurolines bus. Then from Riga to Tallin, Estonia by Eurolines bus. The buses were on time, clean, comfortable and very good value. I would definitely recommend them.

Overkill on the warnings"

We read so many negative things about Riga before we went, we almost did not go. We almost expected to be attacked as soon as we stepped off the bus. We saw no trouble at all during our visit and were not overcharged anywhere. Of course, be careful as you would be anywhere and certainly keep away from the dodgy bars/sex clubs with blacked out windows, but Riga in my opinion gets a worse than merited press.

Posted by irenevt 23:16 Archived in Latvia Comments (6)

Vilnius, Lithuania.

Quirky Capital City.

Beautiful St John's Church in Vilnius university - Vilnius

Beautiful St John's Church in Vilnius university - Vilnius

Vilnius.

We visited Vilnius in summer 2009 and loved it. It is a small city and you can certainly do the centre on foot. Vilnius was City of Culture 2009. There are several different aspects to the place. It is a city of churches, mainly in the Baroque style and has a beautiful old town. Some of the churches have been beautifully restored; some are in a sorry state of repair after misuse during Soviet times. Perhaps the most insulting misuse carried out by the Soviets was making the Church of St Casimir into the museum of atheism. The churches are not just museums. The Lithuanian people still appreciate their new found freedom of religious practice and you'll see lots of worshipers in the churches as well as tourists.

Vilnius - a troubled history.

Lithuania has been occupied by the Germans, the Russians, the Poles, the Latvians and the French. Its cemeteries provide an interesting insight into its past. Likewise so do its museums such as the Museum of the Holocaust, The KGB Museum, the TV tower. Vilnius also has its eccentric side, for example, its independent Republic of Uzupio and its Frank Zappa Monument.

My husband outside Holocaust Museum - Vilnius

My husband outside Holocaust Museum - Vilnius

Places to Stay:

Hotel Rinno: Good Location for Visit to Vilnius.

We stayed at the Rinno for two nights. It was within easy walking distance of the train and bus stations. The hotel is family run and the staff were helpful and friendly and spoke good English. Rooms were comfortable and clean but with no added frills. Leave valuables at the front desk. Breakfasts were good. You can eat inside or out. Help yourself at the cold food buffet and order extra hot food such as delicious homemade pancakes or egg dishes. It is very easy to walk to the city centre from this hotel. There are supermarkets and restaurants nearby. It is close to tram/bus stops.The only downside was the hotel was a bit noisy at night due to late night revelers on the street. Address: Vingriu 25.

Places to Eat.

Restaurant Gabi: "A filling meal in pleasant surroundings"

This restaurant is located half way between St Anne's Church and the main street of the old town. You will pass it if you follow the sign for St Anne's Church in the old town. It is near the Amber Museum. The restaurant has a pleasant old-fashioned interior and a lovely beer garden out the back. It has an English menu with clearly marked prices. Service was quick, pleasant, efficient and honest. Food comes in large hearty extremely filling proportions. We had garlic bread with cheese as a bar snack with our local Utenos and Svytyrus beers. Lithuanian beer is very good. I had mushroom filled ravioli for my main and my husband had zeppalini a local specialty of minced meat covered with potato and shaped like a zeppelin. We could hardly stand up by the end we were so full or maybe that was the beer. The bill was accurate and extremely good value. I'd happily eat here again.

My husband in Gabi restaurant - Vilnius

My husband in Gabi restaurant - Vilnius

Things to do:

Antakalnis Cemetery.

I found this cemetery fascinating because Lithuania has had such a varied and troubled history and this cemetery contains reminders from nearly every part of it. Antakalnis is sometimes called The Soldiers Cemetery. There is a monument to the Napoleonic soldiers who once occupied Lithuania, rows of small wooden crosses commemorating the Polish soldiers who died here, rows of Tartar graves, and an extinguished eternal flame and row of red army guards protecting the Soviet Army graves. A beautiful pieta statue stands next to the graves of the border guards and civilians killed in Lithuania's 1991 struggle for independence. We just happened to visit on the anniversary of one of these massacres and found that every one of the graves was adorned with beautiful fresh flowers showing that the Lithuanian people have not forgotten those who died to ensure their freedom. A visit here is a fascinating and moving experience. Some of the grave stones are incredibly ornate. Directions: Take a bus or tram heading towards Antakalnis from the centre of town. This cemetery is about 10 to 15 minutes walk from the Church of St Peter and St Paul.

Antakalnis Cemetery

Antakalnis Cemetery

Antakalnis Cemetery

Antakalnis Cemetery

Antakalnis Cemetery

Antakalnis Cemetery

The Church Of Sts Peter And Paul.

This church is away from the centre in the Antakalnis district of town. It can easily be combined with a visit to Antakalnis Cemetery and is reachable on foot or by tram. The church dates from 1668 and is worth visiting due to its stunning Baroque interior. The walls and ceilings of the church are covered everywhere with around 2000 white stuccoed figures. The church also has a huge chandelier shaped like a ship.

The Church Of Sts Peter And Paul

The Church Of Sts Peter And Paul

KGB Museum.

This is an interesting though fairly depressing place to visit. The KGB Museum is housed in a fairly attractive looking building which was once used as gestapo headquarters during the German occupation of Lithuania, then later became the headquarters of the KGB. Part of the building once housed a KGB prison. The outer walls of the building are now inscribed with the names of victims who died inside the prison's execution room. The museum is on 3 floors. Upstairs is concerned with life during the Soviet occupation. It contains the eavesdropping room in which people once monitored phone calls and bugged rooms etc. The ground floor has exhibitions concerning the life of Lithuanian partisans. Your life expectancy once joining a partisan movement was only around 2 years. This floor also houses exhibitions connected with deportations to Siberia, including photos and examples of handicraft showing how the Lithuanians maintained their traditions in the Siberian labour camps. Downstairs is the prison building with cells, a padded cell for prisoners who cracked under strain and where beatings could take place soundlessly. There is also a very disturbing water torture cell where victims were made to stand on a tiny raised platform. If they fell asleep or moved they would fall into the cold water or ice below. There is a small exercise yard and a glass floored execution room. Under the glass some of the belongings of execution victims are displayed. As can be expected the place, especially the prison, has a disturbing atmosphere, but provides an interesting insight into Lithuania's disturbing past.

KGB Museum

KGB Museum

Green Bridge.

This bridge dates from 1952 and has a soviet style sculpture at each of its four corners. When Lithuania gained its independence almost every Soviet era statue was removed and destroyed. Somehow these four survived. The statues represent Youth, Peace, Agriculture and Industry and Construction. Peace, which is a statue of two armed Soviet soldiers, has one of the very few remaining hammer and sickle symbols to be found in Vilnius.

Green Bridge

Green Bridge

Uzupio.

After Lithuania gained its independence this breakaway republic decided to declare itself independent, too. Located in the centre of Vilnius, just across the river from St Anne's Church , Uzupio attracted a community of artists and misfits, who decided to write their own constitution and declare themselves independent. Their independence Day is on April 1st and on that day people crossing into Uzupio can have their passport stamped. The Uzupio constitution includes clauses such as granting every dog the right to be a dog. In the centre of Uzupio, at the junction of Uzupio and Malunro, there once stood a giant egg statue. It was eventually claimed that this egg was hatching and on the first of April 2002, the now covered up egg was unveiled to reveal that it had changed into a beautiful angel statue. We found the original egg statue still going strong in a square near the Great Choral Synagogue.

Uzupio is worth a visit for its sheer lunacy. There are lots of restaurants here. We had a pleasant meal in the Uzupio pizza restaurant. The Bernadine Cemetery is in this area. Although we did not have time to visit this cemetery, it is described as the most romantic cemetery in Vilnius due to its beautiful location along the river. Directions: Walk across one of the bridges near St Anne's Church and you will see the defaced signs declaring you are entering the Republic of Uzupio.

Uzupio

Uzupio

Uzupio

Uzupio

Uzupio

Uzupio

The Gates Of Dawn.

The Gates of Dawn were originally part of the city walls, but later they were converted into a chapel. The chapel dates from the 16th century and houses an image of the Virgin Mary. The image which can be seen from the street as well as from within the chapel is supposed to be able to work miracles. If you are in the street facing the image there is a door to your left, pass through and climb the stairs to enter the chapel.

The Gates Of Dawn

The Gates Of Dawn

The Cathedral Of Sts Sanislav And Vladislav.

The cathedral is an impressive looking white building with a separate bell tower. The statues of 3 saints stand on the roof of the building. They are St Stanislaus, St Helena and St Casimir and represent Poland, Russia and Lithuania. The originals of these statues were removed by the Soviets in the 1950s. The present statues are copies and date from 1997. The present cathedral building dates from 1419. Inside have a look at the golden altar and the chapel of Saint Casimir ­ the patron saint of Lithuania. During Soviet times this building was used as a picture gallery. There were even rumours it was to be converted into a car repair shop. The building was reconsecrated in 1989. Outside, about halfway between the cathedral and the bell tower, you will find Stebakalas or the miracle stone. This stone marked the end point of the human chain for independence which stretched from Tallinn through Riga to Vilnius on August 23rd 1989. If you stand on the stone, you can turn a complete circle clockwise and make a wish. At the side of the cathedral is a statue of Grand Duke Gediminas and his horse.

The Cathedral Of Sts Sanislav And Vladislav

The Cathedral Of Sts Sanislav And Vladislav

St Anne's Church.

You can reach this church by following the sign post on the main street of the old town. This church was designed by Benedikt Rejt who also designed parts of Prague Castle. The exterior of the building is very gothic and beautiful and is apparently made up of around 33 different kinds of brick. When Napoleon saw this building he was apparently so impressed with its beauty he wanted to take it back to Paris with him in the palm of his hand.

The Church Of St Ann

The Church Of St Ann

St Anne's Church

St Anne's Church

A Few Interesting Monuments.

The monument to Chiune Sugihara.

Chiune Sigihara lived from 1900 to 1986. From 1939 to 1940 he worked in the Japanese consulate in Kaunas. He was so alarmed by the horrendous treatment of Lithuanian Jews at this time that he, together with a Dutch colleague, issued around 6000 visas directly against his government's orders. He saved thousands of lives through his actions. When he was moved to Berlin in 1940 he gave his official stamp to a Jewish man on the train station platform enabling him to continue saving Jewish lives. Around 95% of Lithuania's Jewish population was murdered in the Holocaust. There is a small monument to Chiune Sugihara outside the Holocaust Museum. We did not enter the museum as it was closed when we got there. There is another monument to him outside the Reval Hotel Lietuva. I did not visit this but it supposedly has several cherry trees.

A Few Interesting Monuments

A Few Interesting Monuments

The Monument to Frank Zappa. ­

This monument is located in a car park and consists of a brass replica of Zappa's head on top of a stainless steel pole. It was commissioned by a Lithuanian student who is a Zappa fan and was made by Konstantinas Bogdanas a sculptor in his 80s who spent much of his creative life churning out Lenin statues. There are several psychedelic murals behind the statue.

A Few Interesting Monuments

A Few Interesting Monuments

A Few Interesting Monuments

A Few Interesting Monuments

The Three Muses.

The somewhat sinister looking statue of the three muses is located outside the National Theatre on Gedimino Street.

A Few Interesting Monuments

A Few Interesting Monuments

The Monument of the Barricades.

This is located outside the seimas or parliament building on Gedimino 53. Parts of the barricades erected to defend the newly independent Lithuanian parliament from a Soviet crackdown on January 13th 1991 have been kept. They are encased in glass and covered with political graffiti.

A Few Interesting Monuments

A Few Interesting Monuments

Vilnius In Your Pocket.
Look up Vilnius in Your Pocket on line before you go. It's got great tips on accommodation, restaurants, things to do and current events. We bought a hard copy at the airport when we arrived, too. The in your pocket series covers most of eastern Europe and some of western Europe, too. It is a wonderful travel guide.

Buses And Trams.

I strongly recommend a ride on some of the slightly battered local buses or trams. You can buy your ticket from the driver. They are great fun. However, make sure you get a ticket, the little old ladies who sometimes inspect tickets are noted for taking no prisoners when it comes to fare dodgers.

Posted by irenevt 03:39 Archived in Lithuania Comments (2)

Estonia.

Two very different visits to Tallinn.

sunny

My husband by Tallinn - Tallinn

My husband by Tallinn - Tallinn

Tallinn Revisited - Last summer August 2009

I was fortunate enough to visit Tallinn, Estonia. It was a short visit just one overnight, as Madonna was performing a concert there, and accommodation prices for the dates of her concert were through the roof. This was not our first visit to Estonia. We went to Tallinn on the 26th of April 1986. How can I be so precise about the date? Because it was the same day as the Chernobyl disaster, though of course, we were not to know that at the time. Myself and my husband, at that time my boyfriend, were both living in Finland and decided to take a day trip to Tallinn. It was a popular trip in those days as the ferry had 9 bars, and since alcohol was (and indeed is) extortionate in Finland, many Finns made the four hour trip and did not even get off. At that time Estonia was very much part of the Soviet Union and as soon as we told people we were going there, they started telling us horror stories about how they knew people who had visited and never been seen again. We laughed it off at the time, but when we actually set out, we began to be a little nervous in case the stories were true.

We were part of a Finnish tour group and should have gone on an organized tour round the city, but when we arrived all tour members with Finnish passports passed through customs at speed, while we two British passport holders, threw the authorities into confusion. It took us a full hour to be let into Estonia. And our entire trip there was only supposed to be four hours long. When we finally got through, our tour group was long gone, and we had to venture round by ourselves. At that time it was compulsory to change a certain amount of money. We spent our whole stay running round the beautiful old town and the in tourist shop trying to spend our money. Unspent roubles would be confiscated upon departure. We bought masses of beautiful Russian wooden dolls, painted wooden spoons, tins of tea. We had so much money left it was unbelievable. We started buying street snacks and telling the vendors to keep the change. They would not. They were too honest or too afraid. We could not get rid of our money in the allotted time. It was simply impossible.

We arrived back at customs an hour early in case we had the same problem getting out as in. We were both in the same queue. I got through first. I got distracted for a moment, turned round and my boyfriend, who had been just behind me had disappeared. I thought maybe he had come through, passed me and gone on the ship. I boarded. I thought no, he would not have got on without me. I got off. No sign of him. I boarded again. Still no sign of him. I got off. Stories of people disappearing started to make sense. I was running on and off the ferry in a state verging on hysteria. Finally, as the ferry was about to depart, whistles blowing, people screaming at me to board, he turned up. Our passports had been removed when we entered Tallinn. By chance, I had got in the right queue to get my passport back as we left. My boyfriend had got in the wrong queue. Due to linguistic differences no-one could tell him this. So the lady at passport control got on her phone and summoned two armed guards to frogmarch him to the right queue. He thought he was about to get shot or arrested. As he waited in the correct queue, he watched me running back and forth hysterically but could not catch my attention. Anyway it kept us amused at dinner parties for months to come and somehow we both made it back alive. Thank God for those 9 bars on the return voyage!

Tallinn Now.

In Tallinn now you will have no problems spending your money. There are shops, bars, restaurants, cafes all over the old town. The streets which in 1986 were almost totally empty are filled with hoards of locals and tourists. I feel so fortunate to have seen both stages of Tallinn's history. We even left Tallinn for Helsinki from the same ferry terminal where we had lost each other in 1986. It is now covered in graffiti and its roofs were a popular location for local sun bathers. Times have certainly changed.

Visiting Tallinn.

We visited Tallinn's old town and further afield we visited Kadriorg the former palace of the Russian Tsar, now an art gallery set in stunning grounds.

Tallinn's Old Town.

Tallinn's old town is beautiful. I especially loved the city walls with their rows of tall circular towers. It's great to take a stroll along them and there are many opportunities for beautiful photographs. There are lots of churches, gateways, a huge town hall set in a wide open square. The upper part of the old town has beautiful views across the red roofs of Tallinn and a lovely old Russian church. Lots of good locations to eat and drink, too.

Tallinn's Old Town - Tallinn

Tallinn's Old Town - Tallinn

Tallinn's Old Town - Tallinn

Tallinn's Old Town - Tallinn

Tallinn's Old Town - Tallinn

Tallinn's Old Town - Tallinn

Tallinn's Old Town - Tallinn

Tallinn's Old Town - Tallinn

Tallinn's Old Town - Tallinn

Tallinn's Old Town - Tallinn

Kadriorg Palace Art.

Further afield you can visit Kadriorg the former palace of the Russian Tsar, now an art gallery set in stunning grounds. As our hotel was equidistant between the old town and Kadriorg, we walked here on our last morning in Tallinn. We did not have time to visit the art gallery as we had to catch the boat to Helsinki early that afternoon, but we strolled through the beautiful grounds and admired the palace building from the outside. Definitely worth a visit. Directions: Walk through the park along Weizenbergi, then take a left at the KUMU museum. Peter's home is an easily overlooked white cottage on your left.

Gardens at Kadriorg. - Tallinn

Gardens at Kadriorg. - Tallinn

Kadriorg - Tallinn

Kadriorg - Tallinn

Kadriorg - Tallinn

Kadriorg - Tallinn

Kadriorg - Tallinn

Kadriorg - Tallinn

Toompea Hill viewing platforms.

Tallinn's old town can be divided into the upper town on Toompea Hill with its castle, Russian church and viewing platforms; plus the lower town with its city walls, town hall, churches, towers and squares. The Kohtuotsa and Patkuli viewing platforms are on the edge of Toompea Hill from these you get great views across the red tiled roofs, church spires and towers of the lower old town.

View over the lower town. - Tallinn

View over the lower town. - Tallinn

View over the lower town. - Tallinn

View over the lower town. - Tallinn

View over the lower town. - Tallinn

View over the lower town. - Tallinn

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral.

This Russian Orthodox cathedral is named after Alexander Nevsky, a Russian nobleman who attacked southeastern Estonia in the 13th century. The cathedral was designed by Mikhail Preobrazhensky and was completed in 1900. It is a beautiful building and dominates the upper town. Address: Lossi plats 10, 10130 Tallinn.

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - Tallinn

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - Tallinn

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - Tallinn

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - Tallinn

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - Tallinn

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - Tallinn

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - Tallinn

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral - Tallinn

Town Hall Raekoda.

Tallinn has a huge town hall building dominating the town hall square of the lower town. This building has been the centre of civic rule in Tallinn since the Middle Ages. The town hall was completed in 1404. On the roof of the town hall there is a weather vane, the locals nickname Old Thomas. This has watched over Tallinn since 1530. Town Hall square is a bustling lively place. Address: Raekoja Plats.

Town Hall Square - Tallinn

Town Hall Square - Tallinn

Tallinn's Town Hall. - Tallinn

Tallinn's Town Hall. - Tallinn

City Walls and Towers.

One of the pleasures of Tallinn's Old Town is strolling along the walls and viewing the many defensive towers around town.

Fortifications - Tallinn

Fortifications - Tallinn

Fortifications - Tallinn

Fortifications - Tallinn

Fortifications - Tallinn

Fortifications - Tallinn

Fortifications - Tallinn

Fortifications - Tallinn

Fortifications - Tallinn

Fortifications - Tallinn

Loose Women.

My husband spent most of his time in Tallinn picking up loose women and having his photo taken with them.

Conquest number one - Tallinn

Conquest number one - Tallinn

Number Two - Tallinn

Number Two - Tallinn

And Number Three - Tallinn

And Number Three - Tallinn

Ferry Terminal.

This is the ferry terminal where we had so many problems in 1986. It is much more relaxed now and a popular spot with sun lovers. It was very interesting to see it again after having such a bad experience of it in the past.

Ferry Terminal

Ferry Terminal

Ferry Terminal

Ferry Terminal

Wander Aimlessly.

The lovely streets of Tallinn's old town lend themselves beautifully to a spot of aimless wandering.

Tallinn old town - Tallinn

Tallinn old town - Tallinn

Tallin old town. - Tallinn

Tallin old town. - Tallinn

Posted by irenevt 00:31 Archived in Estonia Comments (2)

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