Estonia: Soviet Sub Base and Obligatory UNESCO-listed Old Town

Estonia was my shortest stop. Coming in at night from Latvia, the only way I could fit the schedule together was to fly out midday for Ukraine.

I had given up renting a car due to severe after-hour charges from the all the agencies (after hours start at 6 pm), so I planned to stay within the confines of the UNESCO-listed Old Town of Tallinn. That seemed too much like surrender, and despite lack of attractions I felt to be must-see, I still wanted to get out of the city, as I always strive to do when visiting a country. So I was delighted when the chatty reception at Hotel Braavo located a local agency with a car to hire. Hotel Braavo doubles as fitness center and spa, not the only one in Tallinn, and that deserves a post of its own.

A short sleep and I was heading to Tallinn’s suburbs for the former Soviet nuclear submarine base at Paldiski. An hour later I looked mostly in vain for dramatic Soviet remnants. Most has been picked over by looters, and areas of town are given to a new port and economic zone.

On the road back I noticed a brown scenic spot sign in Estonian that began with the word Holocausti. My GPS and guidebook made no mention of the site. I turned into the forest road to explore the sadness laying ahead.

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  1. @Lively – it was Klooga Concentration Camp, a site of which I confess ignorance. According to Wikipedia, from September 19-22, 1944, with the Red Army approaching, the Germans evacuated, slaughtering an estimated 2,000 prisoners, with only 85 surviving or escaping. Because of the solemn nature and import of the subject I feel it best to give that a dedicated post.

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