Favorite Quote

"The world is a book, and those who do not travel,
read only one page." St. Augustine of Hippo

Thursday, November 15, 2012

The end of our Tallinn holiday

As all good things tend to do, our visit to Tallinn came to an end.  I've had thousands of pictures to go through and here are the last ones that I want to share with you.  For one reason or another, they just didn't fit it on the other days' posts (or the posts were getting too long so I took them out) but some were just so good that I want to share them with you even if there is not a rhyme or reason to them.

Here is the Kiek in de Kök Tower in the evening.

The Freedom Monument all lit up at night.

The Town Hall Square in the evening.

The first mention of the Town Hall Pharmacy was recorded on April 8, 1422!!!  Can you imagine?  The medieval pharmacy was much more like a small shop than a modern chemist's shop.  When you stopped in to pick up your medicines, you could also pick up smoking pipes and tobacco, playing cards, ink colors (no .... not for printers) and even gunpowder.

During medieval times the chemist's shop didn't just sell medicine and drugs.  It was also a gathering place for the town people.  Just as the town hall was a place for making important decisions, the chemist's shop was also a place for discussion of important political and trade matters.

Usually the talking was done over a glass of claret, which was flavored with spices and served with a so called "morseli" biscuits, made in the pharmacy.  The claret of the Town Hall Pharmacy was made according to a special recipe, which has remained unchanged through out the years.  Even today, you can buy claret in the pharmacy as a souvenir, prepared with the old recipe.

There is a museum, but the day I was there it was closed for inventory.

Trams run all over the city.

I'm not sure what building this is, but I liked it.

Oh look, another antique store.  :)  There are plenty of them around the town.

I think I showed this picture earlier but it's the town wall.  The first wall around Tallinn was constructed in 1265.  It was less than 5 meters high (more than 16 feet) and about 1.5 m (almost 5 feet) thick at its base. Since then it has been enlarged and strengthened. The walls and the many gates are still largely intact today. This is one of the reasons that Tallinn's old town became a World Heritage Site.

And it's possible to walk up on the town walls.  Ron and I decided to go up on our last day in Tallinn.

Narrow steps.

Yes, this is the latrine.  :)

You can see the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral between the two church towers.

A look along the top of the wall.

Then I found my way into a glass blowing shop.

And of course, I had to buy some.

More pictures of the town walls.

I love the windows in the picture above.  Here is a close up of the windows.

Lots of people dressed up in town.

Oh look, a bike with its own sweater.

Those that know us, know we collect antique clocks.  I took this picture to show Ron.  I thought it was Swedish but the gentleman said no, it was Finnish.

More town walls.

The Russian Orthodox Alexander Nevsky Cathedral.  It was constructed in 1900.  The 5-domed cathedral has three altars and will hold up to 1500 people.  It was designed according to the Moscow cathedrals of the 17th century.  This is a BEAUTIFUL  church.  Just amazing.  I wish I could show you what it looked like on the inside, but the signs said no pictures. I'm betting you could probably find some online however as even though it said no pictures, people were still taking pictures and acting oh so surprised when they were yelled at.

Outside door

The Parliament building right next to the Cathedral

Lots of cool souvenir shops.

Next up is the Dome Church.  It was consecrated as St. Mary's Cathedral in 1240.  The first written record of it goes back to the year 1233. The interior is plain and practical.  Sculptures of Jesus Christ, the Virgin Mary and John the Baptist surround the 17th century carved altar.  There are many tombstones dating from the 13th to 18th centuries as well as multiple coats of arms and epitaphs from the 17th to 20th centuries.  Once again, you can probably find pictures online from the people that did not pay attention to the NO PHOTOS signs. 

You can see the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral from the church.

A sundial on the outside of the church.

If you pay €5you can climb the 110 steps to the top of the tower.  I asked if I could take pictures there and they said yes.

The view from the top of the tower.

The windows from the top of the tower.

The steps are very narrow and go round and round and round.

Cobblestones streets everywhere.  And lots of ladies walking around in heels that I would have broken my neck in.

Tunnel leading to Pikk yalg (short leg street)

This is Lühike yalg (Long leg street)

A painter along the wall.

Another antique store.

Oh look, another one!  :)

The next few pictures are just some that we took one night wandering around town after dinner.  I don't have any information on the places, which is why I didn't include them in past posts, but I thought I would share them here. 

Do these look like tombstones to you?  I didn't think so but it's true.  They are in St. Catherine's passage.

There must be a story here, but I don't know what it is.  He makes me smile though, every time I look at him.

Viru Gates
Well, that is the end of THIS time in Tallinn, but hopefully we will be back again, in the summer, so I can see more of Estonia.