AITO: The Association of Independent Tour Operators
Baltic Explorer Holiday

Baltic Explorer Holiday

Baltic Explorer Holiday Overview

Explore the enchanting Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. On this small group tour we start in cosmopolitan Helsinki before moving on to explore the magnificently preserved old towns of Vilnius, Riga and Tallinn. The tour also gets off the beaten track to see some areas of outstanding beauty away from the capitals.

Itinerary
Day 1 – Helsinki
Arrive in Helsinki and transfer to your hotel. Depending on when you arrive there may be some time for you to explore the city or you may wish to just relax after your journey. This evening around 7:30pm there will be a short pre tour briefing by your local Helsinki guide. Overnight at Hotel Cumulus Kaisaniemi or similar.
Day 2 – Helsinki - Tallinn
This morning we explore some of the key sights of Helsinki. We visit the Market Square and Market Hall, the Uspenski Orthodox Church, Senate Square and Cathedral, the Church in the Rock and Sibelius Park. This afternoon will be at leisure until you are transferred to the port for the ferry to Tallinn. Your Estonian guide will be accompanying you on the ferry to answer any questions you may have. On arrival in Tallinn you will be transferred to the hotel. Overnight at Hotel Centennial or similar (B)
Day 3 – Tallinn
Today we explore the city of Tallinn. Visits include Pirita with St. Briggita’s convent ruins, Kadriorg Park and Palace and Russalka Monument. We take a guided walk of the old town and see the medieval city walls of the upper city of Toompea with Toompea Castle, Aleksander Nevsky Orthodox Church, Dome Cathedral and the lower city including the Town Hall Square, the Black Head’s House, Fat Margarita Tower and Viru Gates. After the sightseeing you may have some time at leisure later in the afternoon. Overnight at Hotel Centennial or similar (B)
Day 4 – Tallinn – Lahemaa National Park – Tallinn – 3 hours driving approximate
Today we visit Lahemaa National Park and Palmse Manor. We take a walk on Viru Bog on a marked 4km boardwalk trail which passes through a forest and marsh environment typical of Lahemaa National Park. On the walk we learn about the flora and fauna of the area. We can climb a viewing tower which affords a scenic view of the landscape. We also visit the manorial estate of Palmse dating back to the 18th Century containing remarkable pieces of period furniture and clothing. Both the manor itself and the grounds are a delight. Lunch will be taken here and afterwards it will be possible to take a walk in the grounds. Finally today we visit Altja fishing village, first mentioned in the mid-15th Century and containing many reconstructed traditional buildings. Later return to Tallinn. Overnight Hotel Centennial or similar (BL)
Day 5 – Tallinn – Parnu - Saulkrasti – Riga – 4 hours driving time approximate
This morning we transfer to Parnu, a coastal city of Estonia famous for its beautiful coastal scenery and white sand beaches. After a short stop in Parnu we continue south along the coast of the Baltic Sea towards Latvia. We visit Munchausen’s museum, located in the picturesque seaside town of Vidzeme in Dunte, 55km from Riga. If time allows we can also take one of the forest trails ranging from 1-5km in length. Continue to Saulkrasti and take a walk on the fine stretch of beach and admire the dunes. Continue to Riga and transfer to the hotel. Overnight at City Hotel Teater or similar (BL)
Day 6 - Riga
This morning we start a city tour of Riga. We visit the old town including the National Opera House, the Freedom Monument, the big and small guildhalls, the Dome Cathedral, Riga Castle, Three Brothers’, St Jacobs’s church, the renovated house of the Brotherhood of the Black Heads and St Peter’s church. Lunch today is at your own leisure. This afternoon we visit the central market, Art Nouveau Museum, and drive on the left bank of the Daugava River to see the interesting architecture of the old wooden houses, and visit Kipsala Island which has nice views of the city. Towards late afternoon enjoy a 1-hour canal and river boat trip which again affords nice views of Riga city. Overnight at City Hotel Teater or similar (B)
Day 7 – Riga – Gauja National Park – Riga – 3 hours driving time approximate
Today you will travel inland to the picturesque green valleys of the National Park of Gauja River, also known as North Switzerland. We visit Sigulda city, where you will visit the authentic medieval castle of Turaida, Gutman’s Cave and Sigulda Castle ruins. We will also visit Amber craftsmen who will explain to us how to distinguish real amber from fake, teach us about different amber crafts and show you his unique family collection of different coloured amber stones. Later we return to Riga. Overnight at City Hotel Teater or similar (BL)
Day 8 – Riga – Ragaciems – Jurmala – 2 hours driving time approximate
From Riga we drive a short distance to Ragaciems, a fishing village situated on the Baltic Sea gulf after the Jurmala border. You will have the opportunity to see the authentic and modern fishermen houses. You may get the chance to chat with one of the local fishermen. After Ragaciems we continue to Jurmala, a summer resort town with a lovely white sand beach and authentic wooden houses which are included in UNESCOs heritage list. This afternoon is at your leisure to stroll along the beach or relax at the hotel which has good spa facilities. Overnight at Jurmala Spa Hotel or similar (BL)
Day 9 – Jurmala – Klaipeda – 4 – 5 hours driving time approximate
This morning we depart for Klaipeda. En route we stop at the Hill of Crosses where pilgrims over the years have left crosses one the hill. The number is estimated to be over 100,000 and it is a quite remarkable sight. Continue to Klaipeda and on arrival transfer to the hotel. This afternoon take a city tour and visit the old town with its ‘Fachwerk’ and interesting neo-gothic buildings. If time allows we can visit the Blacksmith Museum which has a particularly interesting local story. Overnight Old Mill Hotel or similar (B)
Day 10 – Klaipeda – Nida Curonian Spit – Klaipeda – 2 hours driving time approximate
Today depart early with our local guide to explore the Curonian Spit. A short distance from the centre of Klaipeda we take the short car ferry over to the Spit. Once on this wonder of nature we will take in a number of places of interest. Firstly we will stop to admire the fabulous stretch of Baltic Sea coast and take a short stroll on the sands. Visit the ‘Hill of Witches’ where your guide will regal some of the local fairy tales of this region. Next stop at a remarkable site where a huge colony of black cormorants has taken residence of a stretch of the pine forest. Continue to the Parnida dune with its spectacular views of the lagoon to one side and the Baltic Sea to the other across the forest. Visit the Thomas Mann Museum, a former residence of the famous German writer and winner of the Nobel Prize. His summer house has magnificent views over the lagoon. Continue to Nida close to the Russia border to explore the town and take a short boat tour to admire the dunes from the Curonian lagoon. Finally visit the Great Dune for stunning panoramic views over the amazing landscape. For those that wish, it is possible to take a scenic 40 minute walk from the Great Dune back to Nida where you can meet the transport. Later return to Klaipeda once again taking the short car ferry journey across from the Curonian Spit. Overnight Old Mill Hotel or similar (BL)
Day 11 – Klaipeda – Palanga – Vilnius – 5 hours driving time approximate
This morning we travel to Palanga where we will visit the Botanical Garden and the Amber museum which is particularly notable for specimens of Amber with inclusions of fossils such as mosquitos, insects and even lizards! Continue to Vilnius and on arrival transfer to the hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure. Overnight at Hotel Grata Vilnius or similar (BL)
Day 12 - Vilnius
This morning we explore the city of Vilnius including a visit to Peter and Paul Church, the old town and Cathedral Square, Vilnius Cathedral, Gediminas Castle and Tower, Gediminas Statue and St. Anne’s Church. We also visit Subacius Hill where you get a panoramic view of Vilnius. Finally we visit the Dawn Gate, one of the most important symbols of Vilnius City. You will have some leisure time in the afternoon and those who wish to do more sightseeing may like to visit the KGB museum (own expense). Overnight at Hotel Grata Vilnius or similar (B)
Day 13 – Vilnius – Trakai – Vilnius – 1 hour driving approximate
Visit Trakai Castle, a medieval castle located on an island on Lake Galve, built in the 15th Century by Kestutis, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Drive back to Vilnius where any time remaining in the afternoon is spent at leisure. Overnight at Hotel Grata Vilnius (B)
Day 14 – Vilnius Departure
Transfer to the airport for your onward flight (B)

Contact us for details regarding our optional extension to Kaliningrad
Find out more about the Baltic Explorer Holiday

Reviews of this holiday

Baltic Explorer Holiday by PennyS, 25 Jun 2019
Traveller rating:

A delightful mix of culture, old world charm and extraordinary scenery read more

Baltic Explorer Holiday by Andy, 2 Jul 2018
Traveller rating:

We had a two week trip to Estonia,Latvia & Lithuania with Undiscovered Destinations flying in to Helsinki for two days first... read more

Overall Holiday Rating
100%
Excellent 2
Good 0
Average 0
Poor 0
Terrible 0
Reviews Submitted: 2
Reviews Accepted: 2
Reviews Rejected: 0
Baltic Explorer Holiday by PennyS, 25 Jun 2019
Traveller rating:

A delightful mix of culture, old world charm and extraordinary scenery read more

Baltic Explorer Holiday by Andy, 2 Jul 2018
Traveller rating:

We had a two week trip to Estonia,Latvia & Lithuania with Undiscovered Destinations flying in to Helsinki for two days first... read more