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For a more conscious traveler, such as you, who clearly articulates the expectations of the trip, the question of when is the best time to visit Estonia takes on a fundamentally different meaning. Usually, there is a specific event, activity or destination which affect the choice of the best time to visit Estonia or any other country.
Estonia has a specific climate, which occupies an intermediate position between the maritime and temperate continental types. Winter is quite mild but snowy; the temperature of the air during the day ranges from -1 to -4 ° C, going down to -9 ° C at night. Anomalous frosts from -20 ° С and below periodically occur therefore warm things must be in the suitcase.
Best time to go to Estonia if you want to spend your time skiing or snow hiking is definitely winter. Comfortable, a little bit cloudy weather in Estonia in winter stirs up the interest in skiing and speed skating. The hiking trails of natural reserves turn into trails for cross-country skiing, snowmobiles, and off-road vehicles in the winter; cities also allocate zones for skiing. Skiing holidays in Estonia in winter are represented by very well-maintained sports facilities in the villages of Võrumaa, Läänemaa, and Lääne-Virumaa, where the snow lasts from December to mid-March. Low hills with gentle slopes, perhaps, are boring for serious athletes, but amateur skiers will long remember the fabulous snowy forest along the tracks and endless snow-white valleys at the foot of the hills. The most advanced ski lovers can join the Estoloppet ski marathon, which is held every winter month in different cities of Estonia. You can go to Haapsalu and take part in a hike along the Tahu and Tagalaht bays. Already on December, on the coast, there are ranges of thick ice, which can withstand the mass of the car, so you can safely join the ice skating tour of small islands or take part in the colorful national fun – boat races, set on runners.
Christmas celebrations, music festivals and pancake week celebrations in Estonia deserve a separate discussion. Colorful carnival processions, romantic evenings in concert halls and a festive menu in decorated street cafes, are woven into a tapestry of lively folklore tradition that unites the past, present, and future.
Spring comes to Estonia quite late. In March, the frost is still preserved. The snow drifts are accompanying by drizzle and gusty wind from the sea. The stable warm weather in Estonia in the spring is established only in April when the air warms up to 7–8 ° C. The massive melting of snow is accompanied by a sharp rise in the water level in rivers and lakes, that is why the spring flood period from April to May is especially attractive for fans of rafting and rowing. The best time of the year to visit Estonia to take a tour around Estonian sightseeing, castles also estates of Estonia starts in Spring, in April and May. By this time, the weather has settled down, and prices for accommodation in hotels and visiting museums have not yet risen to the summer level. Springtime activities in Estonia are traditionally popularly between naturalists and photographers. Hiking trails of national parks and nature reserves lead to observation towers for observing the parking of migratory birds. In April-May, Estonian tour operators arrange excursions to the ornithological centers, offering to take part in the banding of cruise travelers.
If you love to swim in Baltic sea, play beach volleyball and take a sunbath, the best time to visit Estonia in your case, undoubtedly will be summer.
The high season in Estonia traditionally falls during the summer months, when it is time for holidays and beach bliss. The Baltic Sea does not indulge the bathers with warmth: even on the hottest days, the water temperature does not exceed 19–23 ° C, and the weather in Estonia in the summer is infinitely far from the sultry passions of Turkey and Egypt. In Estonian seaside resorts, the thermometer rarely rises above 20–22 ° C; intermittent rain is a common phenomenon, which, however, is not particularly annoying travelers.
The cool sea breeze compensates for the high humidity of the air, so the sensation of stuffiness does not occur, and isolated episodes of heat with temperature rise to 26–27 ° C do not cause a sharp deterioration in health in elderly people and those suffering from cardiovascular diseases. By the way, beach holidays in Estonia in summer can be combined with rejuvenating and health-improving procedures: the popular, marine and near-sea resorts can boast significant successes in the field of balneotherapy and hydrotherapy.
The breath of autumn begins to be felt already in the first days of September. Although frosts are still far away, frequent precipitations do not allow one to entertain illusions. Because of the cold nights, the sea is rapidly cooling down, leaving no hope for a velvet season. The water temperature in the middle of the month drops to + 12 ° С, so only hardened locals continue swimming.
The vagaries of the weather in Estonia in autumn limit the possibilities for active recreation. Since September, navigation on small islands is closed, and sailing on a yacht is unsafe due to the risk of a storm. The restless wind from the sea pleases only professional riders, protected by wetsuits, and fans of kiting, who have taken possession of the empty beaches. From sports entertainment, there is only golf, and even then only until November.
Since mid-October, the low season in Estonia comes into its own. Hotels reduce the prices for accommodation, and museums are returning to the usual ticket prices, which are traditionally used by fans of budget excursion tours. Cultural holidays in Estonia in the fall have other advantages – no queues at the ticket offices and free museum rooms. Visiting excursions are best carried out until November when the cold heavy rains begin, and visits to city museums can be postponed to a later date. So, if you want to take a budget trip, don’t like big human crowds, the best time to travel to Estonia for you is autumn.