After Tallinn, I had to make a choice. Either take the ferry and visit Helsinki, or take a bus and go to Tartu. I chose the latter and I'm glad I did.

Tartu was everything I missed from Tallinn. It has the small city feeling, with all the amenities like shopping places, numerous restaurants, and transport, but also close to nature and is very walkable. It has its river flowing in the middle of the city, called Emajogi, with numerous bridges crossing it.

And everywhere I went, even in the city center, some greenery is always nearby.

While Tartu is a regional center with connections inside Estonia, it wasn't easy to go directly to Riga. There was a direct bus leaving early morning, and some trains after that going to Valga, from where another train goes to Riga. I chose the early bus, but I was surprised how few options exist.

Map of Tartu

Things to do in and around Tartu

Toomemagi park

Living in the city center usually means busy streets with cars and people, and mostly buildings. Not here.

I stayed in a hostel at the main square, went to a coworking space approximately 20 seconds by walk, then had after-lunch walks in this park, ~1 minute from the center.

And it's not a small one either. It even has a cathedral ruins on the far side.