A less ordinary itinerary for design, food and urban culture art connoisseurs willing to get acquainted with local life and experience Baltics with a local expert in each city, showing you around, taking you to cool places and chatting on interesting topics.
Day 1: VILNIUS (5 KM)
Arrival to Vilnius airport or railway station and transfer to your trendy Comfort Hotel, located in the transforming Newtown area of Vilnius. The once- booming industrial and residential district is home to many old factories converted to loft housings and clubs, galleries and quirky restaurants. Time at leisure to get used to city’s pulse. Your evening walk with a local expert will get you acquainted with city’s sights, facades and people. Your first dinner is hosted at the trendy gourmet bistro located in the area. The night will continue visiting a former railway union cultural palace, now a trending nightlife spot with artistic performances, an indoor skate park and a happening bar.
Day 2: VILNIUS (20 KM)
After breakfast (the hotel also features a cool gym) you will get to know the essence of Vilnius, undoubtedly the Easternmost city of the Western civilisation. Beginning with the Old Town you will visit the former Jewish quarter and ghetto, today home to designer galleries and delis. Your tour will feature a visit to the Contemporary Art Centre and selected design studios/shops. Time for lunch at in a happening restaurant, serving locally sourced produce. The afternoon is devoted to explore Uzupis, an independent artist republic with its own constitution and lifestyle. WWII ruins, Tibetan souvenirs, local artist galleries and one of region’s best beer joints. Tonight we invite you for a ‘treat-yo-self’ dinner in a local restaurant with great atmosphere and delicious meals. Enjoy a night stroll along the main party streets to get into some of the best courtyard bars and clubs.
Day 3: VILNIUS TO RIGA (300 km)
After an early breakfast you will head to Vilnius coach terminal to catch the intercity Lux Express coach bound to Riga with free WiFi onboard. Upon arrival you will be met by your hip expert of Riga, spending some quality time with you and getting you acquainted with the city feel. You will begin Riga’s discovery with the Central Market and its new lunch spots. After a great lunch discover the newly rising Spikeri area and the Jewish heritage in Maskavas Forstate. You will then take the tram to the renowned Art Nouveau district, home to a variety of start-ups of the young entrepreneurs including bars, cafes, galleries and shops. Check-in to Albert Hotel for a two-night stay. Besides the great location, this Einstein-themed hotel offers smartly appointed rooms, a fabulous sky lounge where you will enjoy a welcome drink. Tonight’s dinner is at Galerija Istaba, a restaurant with daily changing menus and an art gallery. After dinner you will head to Kanepes Kulturas Centrs, a public place beloved by Riga’s creative youth. Occasionally holding arthouse movie screenings and exhibitions it is mostly known for its in-house democratic bar and a lovely courtyard.
Day 4: RIGA (20 KM)
On this leisurely morning you will explore the UNESCO-listed old town. Apart from the main sights your walk will include a visit to hidden courtyards and cobblestoned streets with quirky street art and eye- catching shop windows. The Dome Cathedral is definitely worth a visit, having one of Europe’s greatest organs, replicating the human voice. Lunch around the lovely Berga Bazars. A scenic tram ride gets you to Mezaparks, also known as Kaiserwald, which is an upscale residential area with stunning turn-of-the-century villas on the shores of Lake Kisezers. On the way back we will stop at the Miera street neighbourhood and the emerging former Tobacco Factory creative industry space. The dinner is at the local burger joint, Street Burgers, located on the corner of a random downtown parking lot. After a delicious low-key dinner we will be taking you to a local beer bar, an institution of its own.
Day 5: RIGA TO TALLINN (315 km)
After a great breakfast you will hop on the reliable Lux Express intercity coach bound to Tallinn. You will have plenty of time for a nap, to catch-up with friends via free WiFi or to sample Nordic landscapes with the Baltic seashore along the way. Upon arrival in Tallinn you will be met by our local hip Tallinn expert. Before indulging into Tallinn’s progressive lifestyle we would like to invite you for a relaxing lunch in the up&coming Rottermann area. The afternoon will be dedicated to the incredibly well preserved medieval old town. The Town Hall square is the major happening place, surrounded by sharp facades of former merchant warehouses and dwellings. Your stay can’t be more central when staying at the ParkInn Central hotel, your base for a two-night stay. A great summer evening in Tallinn welcomes you on a gourmet dining experience in the old town. Should it be a locally caught fish or organically grown beef, topping your dinner with a creative dessert and some good wine will make the evening a memorable experience. Why not extend it to a selected local bar serving a variety of local and imported liquids.
Day 6: TALLINN (20 KM)
This late morning will get you acquainted with Kadriorg, a neighbourhood famous for its tsarist heritage, lush parks and wooden architecture. Our destination this morning is KUMU, the Estonian Art Museum housed in an award-winning building designed by Pekka Vapaavuori, a contemporary Finnish architect. The museum has a rich collection of Estonian romanticism, Soviet pop art and functionalism as well as contemporary masterpieces. You will then advance to the former seaplane harbour encompassing such great haunts as the Culture Kilometre art space, former Patarei prison, the monstrous Soviet-built City Hall and the Estonian Maritime Museum with lunch at the quirky museum cafe. The afternoon is devoted to explore the Telliskivi and Kalamaja areas of the town. Shunter depots, abandoned railways, wooden houses and a great variety of emerging young citizen start-ups. Dinner is served locally, in a resto-bar, followed by an after-dinner stop for digestives.
Day 7: TALLINN (5 KM)
Depending on your flight/train/coach schedule, the morning is at leisure to enjoy breakfast and optional shopping in Tallinn. We’re talking elk and deer decorated sweaters, fancy shoes and sleek tableware. This itinerary is also available in a shorter weekend version (4 days). We also suggest staying one more night and getting onboard the high-speed ferry for a daytrip to Helsinki. Transfer to Tallinn airport/railway/coach terminal.