After leaving Stockholm, our next port of guide was the lovely port of Tallinn, Estonia. On leaving the ship there was a lovely little local craft market to walk through before heading off for the 20 minute walk into Tallinn. P&O were operating a shuttle bus service which was £4 per person per way, but we were happy with our map and our feet to walk round and explore. The weather was overcast and there was 3 other cruise ships in with us that day – the Celebrity Silhoutte, Silver Whisper and the Ocean Princess, and the US Navy were there watching over all 4 ships whilst we were in port.
The great thing about the maps from the tourist information centre, which was next to where we docked, was it showed a self guided walking tour which takes you around all the sights of the old town of Tallinn. We started our walk at Fat Margaret Tower and made our way through the cobble streets to the Main Square where the Town hall is, then up to the Russian Orthodox Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, on to Toompea Castle, through freedom square, we saw the memorial to the 800 people who were killed when the Estonian ferry sank in 1994.
The old town was easy to walk round, some slight inclines to get to the top of the old town. There is also a newer part to Tallinn with the big shopping centres and all the shops and brands you would expect to see at home.
We arrived into Helsinki on a sunday and was blessed that the sun had come out, so it was time to get the suntan lotion out. Where we docked was quite a walk into town, P&O were running their shuttle buses into town at £4 per person each way. However as it was a Sunday and nothing opens in Helsinki we decided to take the hop on hop off bus which was outside the ship and cost us 20 euros each. The first driver we had was really miserable and if you wanted to get off he didn’t give you much chance before he was off again. He took us up past the Olympic Stadium, past Parliament, the Sweidsh Theatre, We got off the bus at Senate Square (seemed all the other tour buses had also descended here) and then had a walk around the area, to the market which was along the harbour, saw the Uspenski Cathedral and then walked up the main shopping street (shops were starting to open) and to make us feel at home they even had a Marks and Spencer.
Watching the sail in/out of Helsinki is fantastic as you pass lots of little islands.
Next time I will write about our final ports of calls which were Copenhagen and Oslo