Thursday, 14 April 2011

Estonian Open Air Museum

On our first day in Tallinn, we spent a while just exploring the city and went to find the Russian Market. After walking round it, we decided to visit the Open Air museum as I'd read good things about it and it seemed relatively cheap, that and we happened to be right beside the bus stop for it.

Some of the buildings
After waiting for ages and trying to figure out what side of the street we were on, we finally got on the bus. In Tallinn, most people buy their tickets in advance so it was a little difficult with the few phrases I had learnt but managed to get a ticket from the driver (for the record, the bus tickets in Tallinn are some of the loveliest bus tickets I've seen) and then we were off!

It was about a 20 minute ride until we reached the stop and the closer we got, the more snow there seemed to be. As we discovered a few days later, there had recently been a lot of snow and so it hadn't melted as much on the outskirts. The entrance fee to the museum was extremely cheap and so we splurged extra Euro for a map (even though there was a mini one on the back of our tickets)

The windmill

As it was winter, most of the buildings were actually closed, but we were still able to read the signs and it was nice to just wander around and look at them all. It was really peaceful with hardly anybody there except for a few people in the distance. At one point we even saw a squirrel on the path, but it ran away as soon as we got close.

At one small group of farm buildings, we decided to trek through the snow to get a closer look at some (in particular one house that looked tiny) but that turned out to be a huge mistake as the snow was a lot deeper than it looked and our feet kept sinking. I spent the rest of the day with cold, wet feet as a result of that.

My small venture onto the ice
We made our way to the village swing via a lovely wooden windmill and attempted to swing on it although it was rather awkward, but from there we were able to see the frozen sea and so after consulting our map, we made our way along to the fisherman cottage where we were able to scramble down to the beach and I was able to actually walk on the frozen sea. I must say, that was an incredible experience although I didn't venture out too far out since I wasn't sure how solid the ice was.

After our little "miracle", we made our way to the old schoolhouse which was one of the few buildings still open during winter and so were able to have a look at what a traditional school looked like, seemed quite cosy which I suppose it needed to be since they mainly went to school in the Winter as in Summer they would be too busy working on farms.
Inside the old schoolhouse

By now, we were quite cold, tired and hungry so we decided to head back to the hostel, although finding the bus stop proved to be a slight problem so we just got the bus at the stop we got off at and rode it to the end where it circled back and we discovered that the "bus stop" for the opposite direction was actually just a pole with an image of a bus on it.

It was a great experience, although would be nicer to visit during summer when more things are open although the snow did make it feel lovely and peaceful.

The informative signs at each building

More buildings

On the village swing

A lovely little wooden signpost
The frozen sea

1 comment:

  1. Brrr! It looks way too cold for me! But beautiful photos!


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