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Moving to Tallinn?

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Francis White

Living in Estonia, from the UK

"With so many business opportunities in Tallinn, you just have to find the right partners. Guess where I found them? On InterNations."

Kim Demers

Living in Estonia, from Canada

"Settling as an expat women in Tallin was really hard. But when a friend invited me to InterNations, I quickly got connected."

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Tallinn at a Glance

Moving to Tallinn

Tallinn boasts both global smart city status, with many considering the city to be in the top ten “digital cities” in the world. This juxtaposes with the Old Town of Tallinn, which has UNESCO World Heritage Site status. So expats moving to Tallinn can look forward to an interesting mix!

About the City

Tallinn is divided into eight administrative districts, with Lasnamae being the most populated, and considered a commuter area, or bedroom town. The fewest people live in Pirita, which is a wealthy and prestigious district with the largest beach in the city, and fewer high rise apartment buildings.

While the population of Tallinn is around 450,000, which equates to about 32% of the population of Estonia, only 55% of Tallinn inhabitants are Estonian. The largest lake in Tallinn is Lake Ulemiste, which provides the city’s drinking water.

The Climate in Tallinn

The climate in Tallinn is considered to be a humid continental one. This means warm, mild summers, with cold, snowy winters. The temperatures in winter can vary from -18°C up to 5°C, depending on the wind. Expats moving to Tallinn will need to consider these temperatures when deciding what to pack.

There is not much sun during the winter months, either, varying from just half an hour up to four hours a day. Even the winter solstice has just six hours of daylight. Winter may be cold, but is very beautiful in Tallinn. The snowfall over the old town looks stunning, and there are Christmas markets and concerts in churches to enjoy.

Towards the end of May, temperatures pick up to the mid-teens, but drop back to freezing at night. Summers are mild with temperatures around 19–21°C, dropping to 9–12°C at night. The summer solstice sees daylight lasting more than eighteen and a half hours, due to the city’s high latitude. Rainfall is distributed evenly throughout the year, with March and April the driest months.

Visas for Estonia

Estonia has been an independent country since 1991 and a member of the European Union since 2004. Since then, EU citizens, as well as for example those from the United States, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand do not need a visa to enter Estonia, at least not for shorter tourist stays.

Expatriates from the countries where a visa is required, or non-EU citizens hoping to take up employment in Estonia, will need to have this in place before they arrive in the country. An Estonian visa is then valid for visits to most other European countries, as well. You can find more information on visas in general, as well as a list of all nations where a visa is required in particular, on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

InterNations Expat Magazine