A Tale of Two Countries
If you are in search of an inspiring off-the-beaten-track city break that can give you all the culture, sightseeing, shopping, and local culinary extravaganza, the "Tale of Two Countries" trail, taking you across three staggeringly diverse cities in the countries of Finland and Estonia will tick all the boxes and then some more for you.
Finland, known as the Land of Midnight Sun, is a country written in blue and green - with a staggering number of over 188,000 lakes and 180,000 islands including the largest Lakeland district in the world, and the Finnish coast boasting the world's largest archipelago. This experiential journey will traverse through the vibrant Finnish archipelagoes, Finnish Lakeland - the largest lake district in Europe, and the charming medieval city of Tallinn, with all the ingredients you seek in a bespoke multi-country offbeat itinerary. Marvelous architecture, contemporary designs, island hopping, luxury Baltic Sea cruise, UNESCO heritage sites, maritime traditions, alluring natural landscapes, ski slopes, gastronomical stopovers, wine tasting in Monastery - this fantastic itinerary will have you explore the real reasons why Finland is titled the 'Happiest Country in the World', now the fourth time in a row. For culture and nature lovers alike, this itinerary is a fantastic blend of authentic local life, must-dos and hidden gems, without turning into a hectic hop-on-hop-off rush just ticking off destinations.
- Guided tour in Helsinki visiting the major city attractions, the UNESCO World Heritage site "Suomenlinna Island Sea Fortress", Rock cathedral, Uspensky cathedral, contemporary art museum of Kiasma, Oodi city library, etc.
- Archipelago boat cruise in Helsinki enjoying the waterfront views of the city.
- Exploring the real heart of Finland - the Lakeland region, the largest lake district in Europe with thousands of pristine lakes and islands
- Explore the eclectic culinary heritage of the City of Kuopio, awarded the European Region of Gastronomy title, 2020-2021.
- Enjoy a leisurely boat cruise through Lake Kallavesi, the labyrinthine expanse dotted with lush green islands and rocky islets.
- Visit the old Russian Orthodox monastery in Valamo, relocated from the Russian Karelia during the winter war, and tasting session of Valamo's famous monastic liquors crafted by the monks inside the monastery walls.
- Visit the Tahko ski slopes, Finland's southernmost ski resort with a ski lift trip, a nature walk through the magnificent and rocky gorge of Mäkiautio, and lunch in the Panoramic restaurant up the slopes.
- Baltic Sea cruise from Finland to Estonia.
- Guided city walk and bus tour of Tallinn, Estonia's capital including its astonishingly well-preserved picturesque medieval Old Town, a UNESCO cultural heritage site, and other main city attractions such as gems such as the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Kadriorg Palace, Pirita Convent, Olympic village, etc.
- Experiencing Estonia's vibrant coastline on a ferry trip to Estonia's best-kept secrets - the Viking islands of Muhu and Saaremaa, including hidden gems such as the Kaali Meteorite Crater Field, Panga Cliff, and the Järve beach.
- Visiting the island of Kuressaare in Saaremaa, with a guided culture trip to the Episcopal Castle-Fortress, the best-preserved medieval castle in Estonia.
- Experiential local culinary experiences such as traditional Karelian Slavic cuisine, Estonian cuisine, and a unique dining opportunity in an old windmill restaurant, dating back to 1899, selected as one of the WHITE GUIDE TOP 100 Estonian restaurants.
Who is this for?
This is a fully-escorted premium leisurely trail specially tailored for older travelers or large multigenerational families, looking for a relaxed holiday with genuine Nordic and Baltic local experiences, the diverse landscape, culture and gastronomy. All the activities are attuned to mild-activity levels to especially suit 50+ travelers.
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