From TLL to STN

14 04 2017

Back to writing about my trip to Tallinn, Estonia which was followed by a very brief stop in London, England.

The travel between the two cities involved lots of firsts.

The line leading up to security. There is just one gate. Estonians being efficient, it wasn’t as bad as it looks but seeing this upon arriving at the airport was rather discouraging.

My ride from Tallinn to London. First time flying with the Irish LCC.

My seat was 1A. This was my view when I sat in my seat.

And looking out the window.

As the door closed. That would be my foot, the black thing on the floor.

And we flew into Stansted Airport to which I had never been before. Again a long line at immigration.  We left Tallinn at 12 noon and arrived in London at 1 pm local time after a three-hour flight.  Decided lunch at the airport was a good idea.

I then took the Stansted Express into London Liverpool Street Station. Another first.

Then a cab ride to my hotel in Paddington.

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Dining Out in Tallinn, Estonia

12 04 2017

The final (and there wasn’t much other) dinner in Tallinn during my short visit to the capital city of Estonia turned out to be the highlight of the trip thanks to our Finnish host.  Blessed with good company and well-prepared, delicious dishes and lovely wines, everyone including yours truly was very content (read full).

 

Leib Resto & Aed

 





The KGB Hotel of Tallinn, Estonia

11 04 2017

It is quite unbelievable that Estonia and other Baltic states were all under Soviet rule until the early ’90s.  I cannot imagine the fear people lived under and the limited freedom they were allowed.

In the only hotel in Tallinn, Estonia where foreigners were allowed to stay during the Soviet regime, is the “KGB Museum“.  On the 23rd floor of the still working hotel were the secret KGB offices used to spy on guests.  Filled with memorabilia including one room where everything is left as the KGB left it, rooms have been turned into a museum.

Near the ticket booth of the museum, you find cynical and irritated Snicker bars which we thought was hilarious.

View from the 22nd floor balcony

The door to the stairs leading up to the secret 23rd floor. The museum sign reads “entrance” at the top but the bottom part in Estonian and Russian apparently says “Do not enter” as it said when the top floor was occupied by the KGB.

Old floor guide

Selfie point

Direct to Moscow line

Our funny and excellent guide

What the KGB left in chaos.

The hotel in its present day at night





The Tallinn Creative Hub – Kultuurikatel

9 04 2017

One of the venues of the convention I was at recently in Tallinn, Estonia was this former power plant, the home of Kultuurikatel or the Tallinn Creative Hub.

It looks like a factory or a construction site from the outside especially from where I was.

Inside quite a maze.

Lining up to get into the official opening reception of the convention.

Cheers.

The reception was followed by an anniversary party for one of our business associates.

Happy 15th.

A DJ set going on above in what remains to look like inside of an old factory.





Vene Kultuurikeskus, the Former Soviet Officers Club in Tallinn, Estonia

8 04 2017

During my recent visit to Tallinn, Estonia, I was attending a convention and some of the events held during the day took place at Vene Kultuurikeskus or the Russian Cultural Center, a former officers’ club of the Soviet navy.

The ceiling of the main hall

Lunching

Maybe it had something to do with the way the building was built but the whole time it was so cold inside!!





Lunching in Tallinn, Estonia

7 04 2017

My friend and I, after walking the hills of the Old Town of Tallinn, Estonia in the morning, were ready to go for a good lunch.  Our obvious choice was the restaurant that seemed to be the most popular on social network reviews and so off we went to Rataskaevu 16 but at 12:30 pm w/o a reservation, the two of us were turned down although the restaurant tried to accommodate us in other sister restaurants nearby.  As we walked out of the restaurant dismayed, we ran into my friend’s friends that had a reservation for a table of four though they were three.  Quickly we went back in the restaurant with them and it was confirmed that they could take five people.  Lucky us.

The food was great, much better than they appear to be in the pix above.

 





Glögg to Go

3 04 2017

Under the beautiful but bitterly cold sky of Tallinn, Estonia, “glögg to go” seemed like the perfect idea.

In a coffee cup with a straw. Brilliant.








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