Thursday, May 29, 2008


I travelled overnight from Stockholm to Helsinki and spent Sunday being shown around the island fortress of Suomenlinna but will leave that until I finish my time in Finland next week. On Monday I travelled across the Gulf of Finland to the city of Tallinn in Estonia and after 2 nights there I have now returned to Helsinki.
I think Tallinn is the most authentic of the medieval old towns I have seen while in the Baltic Countries. I could post hundreds of pictures of the 0ld houses, narrow cobbled streets and walls with their turrets. A few will have to do. I paid to climb the tower of St Olafs and those who know my fear of heights will imagine my state after climbing over 250 steps mainly circular and then seeing the narrow plank I had to walk around on. The photos were a case of point and shoot without looking down.
But there were many such views without the same terror as the following seen from the higher area known as Toompea.
And this will have to suffice as I keep changing my mind as to which of the many photos of house fronts to post.
The Town Hall is th only surviving Gothic Town Hall in Northern Europe and was built between 1371 and 1404. It dominates the large city square.
I did not go into as many museums as elsewhere but the City Museum had the history of the city and showed the various crafts guilds. An elderly man insisted on explaining to me and a couple from Sweden the display of Soviet propaganda compared with the panels of showing what life was really like. At one stage he described how things began to open up (I think in the early 80's) with 3 ships per week between Helsinki and Tallinn while now there are 30 per day.
I went by tram a few kilometres out of the city to Kadriorg Park and the Palace The interiors had fine displays of art and porcelain.
Nearby I could walk along the seafront and look back at the port with the many ships now plying the Baltic.
It was by luck, on my final morning that I chose a outdoor cafe for coffee and found myself looking at a church I had not visited and realised it was the 13th century Church of the Holy Spirit mentioned to me by my blogging friend Doorman-Priest. It has some elaborate wood carving and painted interior. The 17th century baroque pulpit stood out
It is a city in which you just wander and keep finding another quaint view at which to marvel. These three buildings are known as the Three Sisters.
And this was a particularly pretty spring scene
Now off to Lapland and the Midnight Sun.


Doorman-Priest said...

My parish placement church. You found it. Yay!

Boaz said...

Once again Brian the photos are great. You must have a very good camera or is that an insult to your abilities as a photographer?

They come up so well when enlarged on the computer screen. They're going to give you enormous pleasure when you set them up on the screen at home.

June Butler said...

What a wonderful bit of serendipity to come upon DP's church. Your pictures are beautiful, but you had a lot to work with. Tallin sounds a lovely place.

Brian R said...

Thanks D-P, boaz and mimi.
It is not the most expensive camera, but if you take lots, some should be worthwhile.

Grendel said...


I asked my friend Dave to point our where you went on the map and I Got Dizzy.

Did you meet Good Dogs all over the World?

Did you eat different kinds of Snausages??

Love and Gravy,


Brian R said...

Thanks for visiting Grendel, good to hear from you again. Ate lots of sausages in Germany but they call them Wursten and put mustard (Senf) on them instead of gravy so you might not like them but I do.