rural road

RURAL ROAD, COUNTRY LIFE
FINLAND – ESTONIA – LATVIA – LITHUANIA

The tour exposes today’s life in rural Finland, Estonia and Latvia. Visits to small farms raising livestock and producing delicious foods, ethnographic villages preserving the traditional lifestyle in contemporary environment.The tour involves also sights of historical and cultural interest.

Duration 10 nights/11 days
Route Helsinki – South Finland – Helsinki – Tallinn – Lahemaa national park – Rakvere – Mustvee – Setumaa – Madona – Gulbene – Riga – Bauska – Liepāja – Palanga – Nida – Klaipeda – Kaunas – Trakai – Vilnius
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Arrival in Helsinki, Finland 

DRIVING DISTANCE: 120km

Helsinki city tour.The Helsinki Cathedral and the Senat Square, the Parliament, the Old Market Hall and Market Square, the Esplanade park, the Kamppi Chapel of Silence, the Temppeliaukio church, the Design District Helsinki, the Suomenlinna Sea fortress.

Drive to South Coast Finland Region.

Overnight at Spa Hotel Päiväkumpu.

South Coast Finland

DRIVING DISTANCE: 100km
PROGRAMME DURATION – 8-10 h

Fiskars Village –a tour of three small local breweries with produce tasting: Ägräs Distillery, Fiskars Brewery, Kuura cider.

Kettukallio – the Fox Rock, a traditional forest place in Lohja municipality.

A herb trail in Purnus river valley in Siuntio.

Overnight in spa hotel Cumulus Resort Siuntio.

fiskars2

Helsinki – Tallinn

DRIVING DISTANCE: 40 min
FERRY

Ferry to Tallinn. A city tour.The tour combines walking and bus. The walking tour includes the Toompea Castle, the 13thcentury Dome church, the 19thcentury Russian orthodox Cathedral of Alexander Nevskij, the 15thcentury town Hall square, the Old Guild built to celebrate Tallinn’s membership in the Hanseatic League, and St. Olaf’s church. The bus tour includes Tallinn’s suburbs and Song Festival Grounds, St. Brigitte’s monastery and Pirita area.

Overnight in a hotel in Tallin.

tallinn

Tallinn – Lahemaa national park – Rakvere

DRIVING DISTANCE: 180km
PROGRAMME DURATION – 8 h

The Jägala waterfall. Iisaka Sheep & Handicraft Farm. Workshop “From the ancient times to a contemporary functional family farm” at the farm. Nice and quiet Kuusiku Nature Farm on the edge of the Lahemaa National Park by Lake ViitnaPikkjärv. Käsmu fishing village – the former Estonian naval centre and Käsmu Maritime Museum where You can take a sea voyage with the Viking shipCastle ruins in Rakvere with a theme park  where visitors can experience everyday life of the 16th century. A possibility to order medieval dinner.

Overnight in Rakvere town.

Rakvere – Mustvee – Setumaa–Madona

DRIVING DISTANCE: 420km
PROGRAMME DURATION – 12 h

Avinurme Wooden Handicrafts Centre – local woodcraft, woodworking workshops, Estonian traditional foods. Mustvee village by lakePeipsi. It became a haven for Russian Old Believers. Mustvee has held fairs for the past two centuries. Traditional fishing town. Setomaa in South-East Estonia is a unique area for its people (the Seto) and culture. A very specific type of singing – leelo, is in the UNESCO list of Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. Visit traditional Obinitsafarmstead.

Overnight in Mārcienas SPA hotel at Madona.

setomaa

Madona  -Gulbene- Riga

DRIVING DISTANCE: 270km
PROGRAMME DURATION – 12 h

Goat farm Līvi. Tasting various sorts of cheese and watching how the goats are milked. Herbal tea farm 55 Mārītes, biological farming. Stop by the Cesvaine castleFarm Lācīši specialises in grain farming (577 ha), rapeseed farming (295 ha), and various grasses.  It is also a dairy farm with some 100 cows to produce meat and breed calves.

Overnight in Riga.

Riga– Bauska –Liepāja

DRIVING DISTANCE: 350km
PROGRAMME DURATION – 12 h

Riga city tour.The Dome Cathedral with one of the world’s largest pipe organs, St. Peter’s Church with magnificent views of the city from its steeple, the old Guild Houses, the Swedish Gate, the architectural ensemble Three Brothers, St. Jacob’s Church, the Parliament House, Old Riga Castle, Art Nouveau area.  The Historic Centre of Riga is a UNESCO Heritage Site. Dairy farm Celmi uses milk from its own cows for cheese production. The Ribbe windmill shows the exhibition “The Path of the Grain” – a history of how agriculture has developed over the centuries, from ancient times up to modern day technology. Miķelis, a farmstead museum and vintage car exhibition, a restaurant. Lively Liepāja with its old town, promenade, nice beach and impressive military history.

Overnight in a hotel in Liepāja.

Liepāja – Latvia/Lithuania border – Palanga – Klaipeda – Nida

DRIVING DISTANCE: 170km, FERRY: 15min
PROGRAMME DURATION – 8 h

Liepāja Craft Centre.Watching various craftspeople at work: amber jewellers, weavers, etc. Palanga- a busy beach resort with an excellent and very informative Amber Museum. Vienkiemis – tradition Lithuanian farmstead with a restaurant. A ferry from Klaipeda to theCuronian spit (15min.) Nida village with traditional architecture and the Curonian Spit – a white sand dune.

Overnight in Nida. 

vienkiemis

Nida – Klaipeda – Kaunas  -Trakai–Vilnius

DRIVING DISTANCE: 380km, FERRY: 15min
PROGRAMME DURATION – 12 h

Ferry from Curonian spit to Klaipeda. Lunch at a country restaurant and fish farm Karpyne half way between Klaipeda and Kaunas. Rumsiskes – open air museum of Lithuania. The museum presents the way of life, works, and traditions of peasants and townspeople of all Lithuanian ethnographic areas. Trakai Castle.The picturesque castle was built on an island in the lake (14th – 15thcentury). Karaites’ cultural heritage museum (ethnic group of Turkish speaking Crimean Tatars which settled here in 14th -15thcentury). Traditional Lithuanian food in Trakai.

Overnight in a hotel in Vilnius.

Departure

City tour of Vilnius.Vilnius Old Town, the Gediminas tower, Presidential Palace, St. Anne’s Church, Sts. Peter & Paul’s Church, The KGB museum, The Gates of Dawn, The Bernardine Gardens, the Castle Hill, the Hill of Three Crosses, Gediminas avenue, Sugihara Sakura park.

Departure.

vilnius