Travelling in the Baltics
We have loved travelling in the Baltic countries – Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. I am shocked by how much! We loved all the capitals – Tallinn, Riga and Vilnius – and I cannot even pick a favourite. They all have different things to love.
This part of the world often seems to be ignored by travellers who rush to the better known cities of Paris, Rome or London, but this part of the world is very much worth visiting.
Where are the Baltics?
The Baltic states consist of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. They are tucked away in the North East of Europe between Russia, the Baltic Sea and Poland.
Why travel to the Baltics?
Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania all are worthwhile tourist destinations in their own right. There are plenty of great attractions, good food and cheap prices.
We were only lucky enough to explore the capitals of each country.
Views of Tallinn Old Town from the Town Hall Tower
We found Tallinn’s Old Town to be the most beautiful we have seen. There are stunning buildings, cobble stoned streets and many towers to climb. In addition to the Old Town, there are many worthwhile attractions including some out in the countryside. Read more in our full guide.
Riga Old Town
Riga was a nice surprise for us. After Tallinn’s Old Town, we thought we might be disappointed. Riga’s Old Town is not as pretty but it is very picturesque. It is not only a lovely Old Town, but it feels real. There are plenty of Latvian’s going on about their normal life and it is not as touristy. This added to the appeal for us. Read more in our guide.
Vilnius Old Town
Vilnius is a very pretty, low key city. It’s Old Town area is wonderful to wander and packed full of attractions. Despite this, we often felt like we had the city to ourselves. We enjoyed exploring the history of this city and there are some awesome kids’ attractions. Read more in our full guide.
The Baltics are also very kid friendly. We found plenty of attractions and playgrounds to entertain and engage our kids. Our kids were welcome everywhere and it seemed normal for restaurants to have something for children – even if it was just colouring pencils and paper. This has not happened elsewhere for us before.
Enjoying the outdoor dining in Vilnius
If you are travelling on a budget, and who isn’t, then the Baltics are incredibly budget friendly. We travelled on less than US$100 a day for a family of 4 and stayed in good places, ate well and enjoyed the local attractions.
The Baltic countries are in the Schengen Area so getting in is easy and there are no border formalities to worry about.
How to travel in the Baltics
Our Lux Express bus to RIga!
Travelling around the Baltics could not be easier thanks to a great bus line, Lux Express. We took this bus line between each of the capitals and it was ultra easy.
You can book tickets online on their site. The journey time between each of the capitals is only 4.5 hours, so it is definitely temping if you are heading to one of these cities to see them all.
Lux Express from Tallinn to Riga
The Lux Express buses are luxurious. They are comfortable with included wifi, hot drinks and seat back entertainment units! I managed to do some work when I wasn’t watching movies. On one trip, I “chatted” to friends on Facebook for half the journey.
There was an impressive range of things to watch and do in the entertainment units, so the kids were well entertained and these were some of our easiest journeys. Another big plus are that the seats had USB chargers and power points – Lux Express is a digital nomad’s dream!
Too many movies to chose from 🙂
Everything was on time except our departure from Riga – staff came out and told us in multiple languages that the bus would be 5 minutes late. I don’t think I have ever had that happen anywhere before. We made up the time on route.
If you prefer travelling by train, there are trains in the Baltics. However, there are no direct trains between capitals, so it is far quicker and easier to take the bus.
Walking into Tallinn’s Old Town with our kids
We had a fabulous time in the Baltics and wonder why more people don’t visit this part of the world. It’s full of interesting attractions, beautiful Old Towns and they are just so budget friendly. We found them to be better value than countries in Asia and with the added bonus of being able to drink the tap water!
Should you go to the Baltics? Definitely! Will we go back? For sure!
Have you considered travelling in the Baltics? What is stopping you?
You may also like:
- Our Guide to Things to Do in Vilnius
- Our Guide to Things to Do in Riga
- Comfort, Location and the KGB at the Original Sokos Hotel Viru, Tallinn
- Quick Guide to What to Do in Tallinn
- The Best Things to See in Helsinki, Finland Guide