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“Rural view of Estonian life”

Estonian Open Air Museum
Ranked #8 of 305 things to do in Tallinn
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Within just a 15-minute drive from the center of Tallinn there is a delightful place – the Estonian Open Air Museum that invites you to see rural architecture and get acquainted with village life.The 12 farms of the museum show the visitor the life of families of different income and occupation in the 18th-20th centuries. As in anyreal village, there is a church, an inn, a school, a number of mills, a fire station, a village shop and net sheds by the sea.Although 74 buildings have been brought over so far, the museum is far from being completed; it is constantly changing and developing.You can have good time and also learn something at the Estonian Open Air Museum in any season!
Reviewed May 11, 2014

Be prepared to walk here! We took the Hop on hop off bus here and had 3 hours. We didn't get to see everything but loved what we saw. Helpful and friendly guides dressed in the local costume of the times explained how the people lived during the different decades.

Thank LindandJohn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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265 - 269 of 829 reviews

Reviewed April 25, 2014

This was about 1/2 hour bus ride outside of the center of Tallinn, but worth the ride. The neighborhood itself is more upscale than you see in the town center - beautiful, large homes in a tree-lined neighborhood. The "museum" is a collection of representative settlements and farmlands mostly from the turn of the 19th-20th century, placed along meandering paths in the woods and along the Baltic waterfront. Representative settlements are gathered from Western, Northern, Eastern, and Southern Estonia. People dressed in period pieces were in some of the houses, demonstrating life at that time. Not as overtly commercial and kitchy as the Plymouth, Mass., settlement or Mt. Vernon, D.C. If you have the time, it is worth a couple of hours to visit.

Thank Elizabeth P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 6, 2014

If you're only in Estonia for a few days (say, you've popped over to Tallinn from Helsinki for a weekend like we did) I'd definitly recommend coming out here to experience a bit of Estonian countryside and village life from the past. It can be done in just 3 or 4 hours if your short on time, leaving you plenty of day left to explore Tallinn and it's beautiful old town.

We came in winter which, I will admit, wasn't quite as beautiful as it would have been in the summer, but it also meant we had the whole place to ourselves which was very peaceful. Come on a clear sunny day, not when it's raining, because you are walking out in the open the whole time - it would be miserable and muddy in the rain. Bring lots of warm clothes because some sections are next to the sea where it can be windy and cold, and wear good walking shoes.

The park is quite large (you can hire a bike to zip around if you don't want to walk it all) and throughout the forested park there are lots of lovely thatched 18th - 20th century farm buildings, windmills a wooden chapel and a village school and shops to learn about and explore. A few of the buildings were closed over winter when we went, and we only saw a couple of staff members demonstrating how people lived and worked in times past (I'm sure it's much more lively in the summer) but there were signs written in English everywhere so we could still learn a lot as we wandered around.

As previous reviews have said, don't miss the tavern for a lovely hot drink (we tried the hot wine and it was wonderful!) and for a delicious filling authentic Estonian lunch - good portion sizes for a great price (hot lunch dishes ranged from about 4 euros to 6 euros). This was a delightful place to warm up after a few hours of walking around the park.

The park is easy to get to by public transport - we walked to a bus stop in town and took the number 21 bus which dropped us off at the Rocca al Mare bus stop right outside the museum. There is a helpful map and information on their website: http://www.evm.ee/eng/home
Over winter when we went they are open from 10 am until 5pm (Sept 29 - April 22)
Over summer they are open longer, from 10 am until 8pm (April 23 - Sept 28)
It only costs 4 euros each to get in (6 euros in the summer I think)
This place shouldn't be missed - it's a lovely retreat from the busy city and gave us more of an insight into Estonian culture.

Thank Katie C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 24, 2014

We visited this museum on a very cold morning when snow still lay on the ground. The museum is set out like a village in the forest and it was lovely to walk around in bright winter sunshine, with blue skies and birdsong overhead. The buildings originate from all over Estonia and are all more than a century old. There is a plaque describing the purpose of each but an audio guide can also be hired from the museum shop. Only a few of the buildings were actually open at this time of year - the school house, the inn, the village store and a rather lovely 2-storey dwelling house. The inn served a most satisfying and hearty pea soup as well as other local favourites, all at very reasonable prices. Beer and wine were available for purchase along with tea and coffee. The delightful village store stocked all sort of goods from pots and pans to haberdashery and fabrics. You can purchase sweets, biscuits and chocolates too. We used the "hop-on, hop-off" tourist bus from Tallinn which allowed us approximately 3 hours to visit the museum - plenty of time to look around the village, eat lunch and spend a little time browsing in the museum shop. An interesting museum in a lovely location.

Thank Elaine002
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 20, 2014

We decided to visit this open air museum on a Monday as many museums and attractions are closed on Mondays in Tallinn. We found out the bus number from our hotel and walked to the Baali Jaam station to travel there! Buses are on time! We arrived at the entrance, it was very snowy and slippery underfoot but we walked around some of the farmsteads and windmills there, we had a map from the reception office. Shame the buildings weren't actually open but we looked at them from outside. It was lovely to walk in the pine forest. There's a great cafe in a wooden building - wonderful menu .... and a mug of hot wine (this was most welcome on a cold, snowy day I can tell you! So much so, we callled on our way back to the bus and had another!!). Interesting to see the windmills and we walked to the sea - it was amazing to see the beach and shoreline was frozen and white! I have been to St Fagans in South Wales where buildings have been recreated. This reminded me of that! I'm sure it would be wonderful in the summer! Well worth the trip, glad we did!

Thank spanishmiss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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