Judix2 travels to USOpen, Estonia & Poland travel blog

War of Independence Victory Column

St. Catherine's Passageway

Fat Margaret

Master's Courtyard

Town Hall Square at Night

Farm Dwelling

Today we headed out of Old Town to the Estonian Open Air Museum which is a life-sized reconstruction of an 18th-century rural/fishing village, which comes complete with church, inn, schoolhouse, several and mills, a fire station, twelve farmyards and net sheds. All of the buildings are actual ones transported to this site. We got directions from the TI on how to get there by bus and passed thru Freedom Square where the War of Independence Victory Column stands commerating Estonia's War of Independence 1918-1920 on our way to the bus stop. Unfortunately there were two stops with similar names and we got off one stop early. But it was a beautiful day and not too windy and we had a nice walk thru the woods. The site borders on the Kopli Bay with a view across the water of Old Town, but the winds were so strong by then we only lasted a minute before heading back. We stopped for lunch at the Kolu Inn which is a 19th century roadside inn and had barley and mushroom stew, a traditional Estonian dish, and then headed back to the entrance to catch the #41 bus back to Old Town. As we were exiting, we noticed a bus schedule which took us a few minutes to figure out and then confirmed the bus stop across the street was the right place to catch the bus. And, of course, as we were walking out the bus drove by. I tried running and waving, but the bus took off without us. So it was back to the Kolu Inn for barley cake and we also tried the mixed berry cake. Fortunately, it was only 30 minutes until the next bus which we managed to catch. Back in Old Town, we were pleasantly surprised to see a lot fewer people than yesterday. There must not be any cruise ships docked here today. We decided to revisit St. Catherine's Passageway from our tour the day before and to explore the other end of Vene Street where we are staying. The Passageway is very picturesque and has many artisan shops, most of which we visited--glass, ceramics, wood, knitted clothing. We found St. Olaf's Church, the tallest building in the world in 1500; the Great Coast Gate; Fat Margaret's Tower, an 82-ft wide cannon tower; and the Master's Courtyard, another picturesque alleyway with more artisan shops and lovely outdoor restaurants. By now we needed to get off our feet for awhile, so it was back to our apartment for a nap before we went out to dinner. We discovered a lovely restaurant right next door and had an excellent dinner of lamb chops for me and chicken on a bed of barley, kale, and shaved beets. We also discovered creme bonjour which was served with an excellent dark rye bread. It is somewhere between sour cream and cream fresh and tasted of lemon and garlic. After dinner we walked back up to Upper Town because we wanted to get some pictures of the beautiful lighted domes across Old Town. We stopped at the Kohtustsa and Patkuli viewing platforms but, unfortunately, it wasn't dark enough to get the effect that we wanted. On the way home, we came through the Town Hall Square which is surrounded by restaurants that were all lit up, along with the Town Hall steeple, so we got some night light pictures after all. JB

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