Tallinn, Estonia Travel Review

Hilton Smith in Tallinn, Estonia
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My recent two week adventure to Europe was precipitated by the first LGBTQ PROUD Travel Conference in London.  It became much more with rewarding stops in Frankfurt, Germany and Tallinn, Estonia.  Return visits to all still resulted in updated experiences and fulfilling my constant wonderlust.  Warm and sunny weather throughout was a special bonus.    

My first stop was Frankfurt, just an overnight, but worth it.  I stayed at the convenient and historic Villa Kennedy, a Rocco Forte Hotel just 10 minutes from Frankfurt Airport.  Beautifully restored, it is in the heart of the historic mansion and museum area. It is also in walking distance of the just enhanced Frankfurt Old Town.  A quick look around and a tasty dinner in the hotel courtyard set up the non-stop flight to Tallinn, Estonia the next day.

Most Americans know Tallinn as a day port stop on North Cape cruises.  I have the good fortune to know friends there so my stay was five days. I got to know this small part of the former Soviet Union much better. Only about 1 million population, this unique, prosperous and technically advanced country is impressive.  Now part of the EU and on the Euro, Estonia leads with high tech of the future but strictly maintains its historic and cherished Old Town Tallinn.  

I was amazed at the gourmet dining quality and restaurant designs.  Service was slower than American standards but that is the custom here.  The high quality Hotel Telegraaf was impressive in its outdoor dining, Equally impressive were both Restoran Dominic and Restoran Rukis.  For a special dessert, Meeleviljad for hand made chocolates was amazing.

Aside from the food and drinks,  the Old Town from the 1600's is worth a few days and even getting out in the countryside.  Most Americans will continue with the all too brief port call, but if you are looking for something special a few days here can be combined with a 2 1/2 hour ferry ride to Helsinki, Finland. Even further, overnight ferry connections to Stockholm, Sweden can be added.  From there, SAS Scandinavian Airlines provides non-stop daily service to Los Angeles.    

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