We've taken this trip many times to Tallinn from Helsinki. We usually wait until there's some kind of voucher or offer doing the rounds here in the newspaper and then you can go for as cheaply as 14€ each. The boa we take leaves Helsinki harbour at 11:00, the trip takes just over two hours and then the boat leaves Tallinn to return at 18:00 giving you a few hours to look around the city, go and eat etc. The boat has a massive buffet which we've eaten pretty much every time. Sometimes the food's been amazing and other times just so so. If you want to have the buffet I'd recommend booking it in advance because the places sell out quickly and if you try to pay onboard you'll be disappointed. Wine and beer is included in the buffet and I've noticed a lot of people use this to it's full advantage and spend the entire journey in the restaurant getting steadily wasted on free alcohol. My only complaint in the past has been the lack of seating on the boat. There is a big bar area and of course the upper deck but especially during summer months the boat is filled to capacity and it's hard to find anywhere to sit down. The boats are always on time so don't be late...they won't wait for you!! I would recommend the day trip for people on holiday in Helsinki who want to see another country too. Old Tallinn is really beautiful and the main attractions can all be seen in the five or so hours you have on the day cruise from Helsinki.
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