On Saturday evening we left Stockholm on the Baltic Queen‘s 16 hour journey across the Baltic Sea to Tallinn in Estonia.

Nearly brand new, just over a year old.

After finding our cabin (2 single fold out beds with a private toilet/shower room) we went up on deck and ate a picnic dinner while we cruised slowly through the famous Stockholm Archipelago.

Great weather for island watching. Look, islands!
Even the tiniest islands have little summer cottages on them - in red with white trim of course.
Some of the larger islands have developed sizable communities and there are car ferries that connect them.
Sometime around 11 we watched the sunset from the outside deck.
Her hair, her hair, her hair is on fire!

We were pretty tired and knew we had a big day ahead of us so we avoided the three nightclubs on board and went to bed.  One of the channels on the in-room TV cycled through the cameras from the nightclubs and it looked like we weren’t the only ones going to bed early.  As much as the Baltic Ferries have a booze-cruise reputation we definitely didn’t experience that on our trip.

After a comfortable night's sleep we awoke in time to see Tallinn appear on the horizon.

Since we only had one day to experience the city we headed straight for the Old Town that contains a majority of the sights.  The Old Town is a well preserved medieval city that has been influenced by its various rulers including Danes, Germans, Swedes and most recently the Russians.  We were lucky that ‘Old Town Days’ was in progress which is one of the biggest festivals of the year which meant lots of artists and performers around town many in period costume.

Medieval houses - notice the pully lift systems at the top.
Catherine commented that it looks like a storybook castle.
You could easily imagine archers shooting arrows from their posts.
But now the only real danger are German tourists on Segways - I kid you not.
Probably the best building in town is the Orthodox church in the upper town. It is built in the St. Petersburg style.
For lunch we can a great Latvian feast at Lido. Lido is an institution in Latvia, but now has expanded into Estonia. It's kind of like an upscale cafeteria with a whole bunch of stations where you can pick from various hearty selections. We loaded up on potato pancakes, chicken balls, fried cabbage, salad and more. Total for both of us including beer and a desert was about $14 - sweet!
Here is the door to a Pilates studio. Thought Mom and Dad might appreciate that.

After about 8 hours of walking around on the cobblestone streets we were pretty tired when we made it back to the ship for the return trip to Stockholm.  We didn’t have the energy to stay up for the sunset this time, but did make it through a movie in our room before passing out for the night.  We woke up a couple hours from Stockholm allowing us to experience the archipelago again before spending the rest of the day in Stockholm checking out the preparations for the royal wedding that is now less than two weeks away.

Same islands, just from the opposite side of the channel this time.

1 Comment

  1. awesome post! Sounds like you guys had a great trip.

    i like that sniff’s hair, her hair her hair was on fire!

    looks like a delicious meal and pretty boaty ride.

    sounds like you guys picked the best time to go – during a cool festival.

    also, i like the story book castle.

    love you

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