Discover Estonia and you will see a phenomenal country of changes and contrasts. Side by side you will find the old and the new, pure nature and innovation, high-technology and the open countryside.
It takes no effort to grasp that rapid changes are taking place around you. Change means development, fulfilment, and a process of improving. Estonia’s technology sector is thriving while the past - our history and nature - has been perfectly preserved. From untouched nature to post-modern city culture, you can experience solitude and the power of crowds. Big business and handicrafts passed from generation to generation and go hand in hand. Everything fits snugly together.
Estonians have been living on the Eastern shore of the Baltic Sea since approximately 2,500 B.C., which makes them the longest settled of the European peoples. Due to Estonia’s strategic location as a link between the East and the West, the country has been at various times under Danish, German, Swedish and Russian rule. In 1991, Estonians regained their independence and peacefully broke away from the Soviet Union.
Since the re-establishment of independence the Baltic Sea region is the fastest growing business region in Europe. Trade flows between countries in the region have increased constantly year by year. Numerous foreign companies have found Estonia to be a highly attractive location. The Estonian telecommunications sector is one of the most developed in Central and Eastern Europe. It is the country which could be called the homeland of the three info technological super achievements - Kazaa, Skype and Hotmail. The Internet and the new e-economy is equally being embraced by the commercial, governmental and financial sectors of Estonia. As an example, the Estonian Taxation Board has launched a new e-revenue service where tax income-returns can be dealt with on the net. In August 2000, the Government of Estonia, as a world pioneer, changed its Cabinet meetings to paperless sessions using a web-based document system.
The capital of Estonia – Tallinn - is one of the best-preserved medieval European towns. The unique value of Tallinn’s Old Town lies first and foremost in the well-preserved completeness of its medieval milieu and structure, which has been lost in most Northern European capitals. Since 1997 the Old Town of Tallinn has been on UNESCO’s World Heritage list.
Estonia is a diverse country that ought to suit the taste of even the most demanding visitor. There are ancient defensive walls, medieval fortresses and cobbled streets coupled with leafy parks, long coastline with romantic sandy beaches and numerous islands, lots of deep forests, wooden windmills, modern hotels, luxury restaurants and tourist farms. The four seasons are distinct in Estonia and provide an environment for plenty of activities.
Estonia may be a small country, but it is positively surprising and its welcome is warm and generous.