A strategically sited stepping stone between Scandinavia and Russia, Estonia has developed rapidly since gaining independence and is now a Baltic gem where tradition, myth and legend co-exist with modern technologies and contemporary culture.
The charming capital of Tallinn has a medieval old town, cobbled streets, red-capped towers and steepling spires; Toompea Castle is one of the oldest and grandest architectural monuments while Raekoja Plats, the cobbled market is as old as the city itself. The seaside resort of Pirita has pine-forested parks and good beaches as well as a giant viewing tower fro where the coast of Finland can sometimes be seen.
There are three national parks to explore; the forests and swamps of Lahemaa, Soomaa and Vilandsi are almost unspoilt and hide brown bear, lynx and wolves. Elsewhere, Lake Peipsi is Europe's fourth largest lake. The outlying island of Saaremaa is the location of one of Europe's few accessible meteorite craters, at Kaali.