MisterAirmiles’ guide to 36 hours in Tallinn

Tallinn is the capital of Estonia and one of the newest routes on British Airway’s network. In the run up to the launch (and presumably unrelated!) there was a superb fare, offering a return business class fare for about £235, earning 200TP if routed via Helsinki as opposed to the 80TP if direct to Tallinn. A number of people jumped onto it, resulting in a large group from FlyerTalk meeting up for a ‘do’ on a Saturday evening earlier this month.

Getting there

Whilst the £235 fare has gone, it is still possible to get a reasonable fare for about £350. . As this departs from T3, you have a choice of lounges, but the Cathay Pacific one is the nicest. A morning flight makes it perfect for breakfast.

Time it right, and you can get on Finnair’s A350 from LHR – HEL which, in business, gets you get a fully flat bed, drinks and a meal. This is it arriving on the inbound leg.

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Which mean that there was time to visit the bar in the lounge before heading to the gate.

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The flight was great – it was the first time that I had been on a plane with cameras to see what was going on!

I had ordered the special Seafood Meal which was tasty enough, although for some reason comes with the gluten-free accompaniments rather than the normal ones, so I had some disgusting crumbly bread and rock solid ‘donuts’ alongside my fish.

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The hop from Helsinki to Tallinn is on a ATR-72 – board from the back and choose as high a seat number as you can.

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There is very little space aboard, so a small rucksack is ideal. There is no service on this flight, but given that it is so short, it doesn’t matter.

The airport is small and takes only a couple of minutes to get landslide. An Uber into the centre of town cost us €3, so don’t bother with the bus!

Accommodation

I stayed at the Hilton Tallinn Park; just outside the centre, but only a 10 minute walk to the old town and the right side for the airport. As a Diamond Honors member, I was treated to a glass of prosecco and private check-in in the Executive Lounge. I had originally booked a the cheapest room available on a flexible rate, and then changed it to a non-flexible rate in a higher category during a sale. I was upgraded to a Junior Suite, although this was on the 4th floor and not the Executive level, but that didn’t matter.

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The drinks and nibbles in the lounge at 6pm were plentiful, and the views over the city are fabulous. Breakfast is available in the lounge or in the main restaurant. I went for the latter and was not disappointed – so much choice, from freshly cooked eggs to hot buffet, cold meats and cheese to fresh fruit and pastries. The outer tables by the windows are reserved for Hilton Honors members which is a nice touch.

The hotel is also connected to the Olympic Casino which was a fun way to end our evening.

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Food

The Hellhunt was the venue chosen for the do and is highly recommended. The service was excellent and the food was delicious. They had a huge craft beer selection and the prices are very reasonable.

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Sightseeing

There is lots to see and do in Tallinn, but given that I didn’t actually have that long there, I didn’t get to do much apart from potter round the Old Town.

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There is meant to be an excellent Sea Plane Museum, a KGB / Spy museum and some excellent walking tours. The town itself is beautiful and with the narrow, cobbled streets it is a wonderful step back in time.

Verdict

I had a fantastic time and will certainly go back to explore more. The place is ridiculously cheap – given that my hotel and flights had been paid for in advance, I think I spent less than €40 on transfers, dinner and drinks. Try doing that in London! Grab yourself a decent fare and give it a go!

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