Friday, 30 August 2013

Where to Find the Best Views of Tallinn

Each time I visit Tallinn I like to expand my photograph collection by seeking out new objects of interest. Lately I have enjoyed walking around town and snapping away at the various sculptures and statues that adorn the streets. Some are really beautiful.

When people come to Tallinn they often want to take the perfect image of the city, a keepsake to share with family and friends and treasure for years to come. In the Old Town there are many lovely vantage points but if you want to capture Tallinn in all its glory; the towers, the church spires and terracotta rooftops, there are two places I recommend - The Radisson Blu Hotel and St.Olaf's Church.

On the 24th floor of the Radisson Hotel is a nice cafe that has both indoor and outdoor seating areas. If you fancy some light refreshments and want to take in the view of Tallinn at the same time, this is the place to go. I have been there twice now and found the atmosphere relaxing and inviting.

St. Olaf's Church also offers excellent views of Tallinn. The entrance fee to climb up the tower is only 2 euros and is well worth it.


Olly Murs "Heart Skips a Beat" live in Tallinn

Olly Murs performed at the Robbie Williams concert in Tallinn this year. Before I attended the concert I have to admit I didn't know a thing about Olly Murs music but after seeing this song performed live, it quickly grew on me. Nowdays it's one of my favourite songs; whenever I hear it come on the radio it always brightens my mood!

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Luke Mõis (Luke Manor) - Nõo - Estonia

During my recent trip to Estonia I visited Luke Manor once again to check the progress of the renovations being made to the steward's house. One day, in the not too distant future I will be able to sit and eat in the building once home to my family for over a hundred years. It goes without saying that I am looking forward to the opening of this new restaurant / function centre very much!

Here is an overview of Luke Manor in pictures.

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Ravila Mõis (Ravila Manor House) - Estonia

I spent my summer holidays in Estonia this year. It was a spontaneous trip as I was there only a month ago but as I have been researching my family history and connecting with distant relatives, I was eager to return. I spent a wonderful twelve days visiting important sites, conducting research at the national library and meeting relatives I once never knew even existed. It was great!

Ravila Manor has always been on my list as a place to visit. As my forefathers were head stewards, several of the manor houses in Estonia are connected with my family history. Luke Manor, Saksi Manor and Ravila Manor have all been managed by my family at one point in time. My great grandfather, Arthur Lestal, was born at Ravila Manor 1887.

Ravila Manor (front)

Ravila Manor (back)

The Stewards house where my great grandfather Arthur Lestal was born in 1887.


"The Mad Baron" - Peter August Friedrich von Manteuffel (1768-1842).
He inherited Ravila Manor when he was eleven years old. Apparently he was quite a character. Peter wanted to be the first pilot and made an aeroplane and flew it off the roof of the manor house and landed in the cabbage garden. Peter von Manteuffel  was also renown for his writing; he was one of the first nobles to write poetry in Estonian when the official language was German. 

Kose Parish

The new exhibition inside Kose Church features information on Ravila Manor and the "Mad Baron."

Inside the library in Kose church.

Ravila Manor was owned by Countess Alexandrine Mathilde Kotzebue-Pilar von Pilchau (1849-1943) when my family lived there. For the past sixty years Ravila Manor has been used as an nursing home and was only recently purchased by a private buyer.

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Robbie Williams Rocks Tallinn

Robbie Williams put on a spectacular show in Tallinn last night. With over 60,000 fans filling the Song Festival Grounds, it was a truly beautiful sight to see Estonian flags waved high in the air, displaying national pride. Robbie opened the show with his hit song ´Let me entertain you´ and ended with the heart warming ´Angels´. The fireworks display ensured the concert ended with a bang leaving the fans in the audience and those watching it live in cinemas across Europe, wanting more. It was definitely a concert to remember  and I'm sure I'm not alone in saying that Robbie Williams is welcome back in Tallinn any time.

Unfortunately none of my photos turned out as I'd hoped but they're a good keep sake none the less.

Robbie's band voted Tallinn as their their favourite gig - by far! Yay!