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Estonia, like a local

Tere, Tere! As an Erasmus or international student in Estonia, you've already had the chance to experience some of the country's beauty and charm. However, with spring just around the corner, there are many exciting cultural events and activities that you won't want to miss out on. This article will share local spots, hidden gems, and cultural recommendations to help you have a FULL Estonian experience and taste life like a local.

Visit the National Museum of Estonia:

The National Museum of Estonia is a must-visit spot for history lovers. Located in the heart of Tartu, Estonia's second-largest city, the museum offers a glimpse into the country's rich history and culture. Here, you'll find fascinating exhibits showcasing everything from prehistoric times to the present day. With interactive displays, educational programs, and guided tours, the National Museum of Estonia is an excellent way to learn more about the country's past and present.

Explore the Kalamaja Neighborhood:

The Kalamaja neighbourhood in Tallinn is a trendy and vibrant area favourite among locals. The neighbourhood features colourful wooden houses, trendy cafes, and boutique shops, making it the perfect afternoon to explore. Head to Telliskivi Creative City, a cultural hub located within the neighbourhood, for a taste of local art, music, and food. Don't forget to snap photos of the colourful street art and murals lining the neighbourhood's walls.

Taste Estonian Cuisine:

One of the best ways to experience Estonia like a local is to sample the country's delicious cuisine. Estonian cuisine is known for its hearty and comforting dishes, featuring ingredients like potatoes, cabbage, and meat. Head to a traditional Estonian restaurant, like Olde Hansa in Tallinn, to try classic dishes like black bread, sauerkraut, and elk stew. If you're feeling adventurous, try lesser-known Estonian dishes like Verivorst or head cheese.

Experience Estonian Saunas:

Saunas are essential to Estonian culture and offer a relaxing and rejuvenating way to unwind. Estonian saunas differ from traditional saunas in that they are often heated with wood, and water is typically poured over the hot stones to create steam. For a truly authentic experience, head to a traditional Estonian sauna like the Saunamaa in Tallinn. You can also try a smoke sauna, which uses smoke from a wood fire to heat the sauna and provides a unique and unforgettable experience.

Estonia has much to offer, from its rich history and culture to its beautiful natural scenery. By exploring local spots and hidden gems and trying Estonian cuisine and saunas, you can have a FULL Estonian experience and truly live like a local. So, take a break from your studies and immerse yourself in the beauty and culture of Estonia. You won't regret it!

P.S To get a full Estonian experience, branch out and befriend the locals. Start a simple conversation and we are sure a simple Tere will go a long way!

ESN (Erasmus Student Network) TalTech IC is a student-led organisation that provides support and social events for international students at TalTech. The organisation offers a range of activities, such as parties, trips, cultural events, and sports. Joining ESN TalTech IC is an excellent way to meet new people, explore Estonia, and maximise your study abroad experience. ESN TalTech IC also offers a mentorship program that pairs new international students with a local Estonian student, providing a support network and a source of valuable information.

Authors: Rimsha Noor, Ayesha Noor


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