VILJANDI AND SOOMA NATIONAL PARK
The town of Viljandi is ancient town in southern Estonia situated on hills above a picturesque lake. The town’s many church spires and its famous Water Tower, with its viewing platform, are reflected in the lake, adding to the beauty of Viljandi’s natural setting. Beside the lake is a hiking path, tennis courts, diving tower, playgrounds, boat hire and catamaran trips. The most famous legends of the region, celebrated in local song, surround the Viljandi boatman who rows the lake and longs for his beautiful-eyed girl. The ruins of the 13th century Viljandi castle are another must see stop, including a stroll across the deep moat on another one of the city’s symbols, the suspension bridge. Besides the Kondas Centre for Naïve Art with its exhibitions and workshops, the Traditional Music Centre barn is a special treat for all devotees of folk music. From Viljandi County to the expansive Estonian wetland area, you will discover the Soomaa National Park, with over 537 known species of bog plants, 185 kinds of birds and 43 mammals. This is a tranquil place of primal beauty with ancient forests and board walk hikes through the virgin bogs. Way-marked routes include a walk on the beaver trail that starts by the national park visitor centre.
For more information visit the websites www.viljandi.ee and www.sooma.ee
Source: Estonia Tourist Board – Visit Estonia
Here’s a sampling of major yearly recurring events in the region:
International Hanseatic days Viljandi
For one weekend in June the town becomes medieval. A market, concerts, workshops and sporting events offer delights of discovery for everybody.
For more info visit the official website http://hansa.viljandi.ee
Viljandi Old Music Festival
Viljandi Old Music Festival is the oldest such festival in Estonia (since 1982). Music is performed by local and foreign musicians.
For more info visit the official website http://vivamu.ee
Viljandi Folk Music Festival
One of the most important music event in Viljandi. The event is organised in the castle hills of Viljandi and various venues all across the town.
For more info visit the official website www.folk.ee/festival