Picking cowberries by Karl Ander Adami


Total area: 45,339 square km. Neighboring Finland, Sweden, Latvia and Russia

Population: 1.3 million (2016) Capital: Tallinn (423,000 inhabitants)

50% of Estonian land is covered by forests.

We have inhabited this land for thousands of years. This is phenomenal in the whole of Europe and rare in the world. We have been daunted by various wars and foreign domination but we’re still here. There is heroic romance in our rootedness. It also gives us unique language and traditions.

Estonian is the official language of the Republic of Estonia. Estonian belongs to the Finno-Ugric language family. Estonians tend to be at least bilingual, and according to recent studies, are among the best English speakers in Europe.

We ourselves come from the east, and many people have come here from the east. We have inherited our generally quite hospitable nature from the east. Also, our present educational background has discernible eastern influences.

According to OECD’s PISA results, Estonian basic education is the best in Europe and in the top 3 globally. Our pupils’ science, math and reading skills are outranked only by Singapore and Japan. Problem-solving skills were among the best in the world. Schools and teachers had done a good job in helping weaker students, including those of disadvantaged backgrounds. A high-quality education can be earned in public as well as private schools, in rural areas and urban centers alike.

This leads to the high-tech society. From voting to signing documents online, Estonia implements hassle free and modern approach to running one’s errands.

By culture consumption, Estonia is one of the leading countries in Europe. Our 1.3 million inhabitants make about 3.4 million museum visits, 3.5 million cinema visits, 2 million concert visits, and 1.2 million theatre visits annually. Estonian Song and Dance Celebration is one reason why Estonians are often referred to as the “singing nation”. The uniqueness of this mesmerising event has even earned a place at UNESCO’s list of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Estonia’s UNESCO world heritage capital city Tallinn was granted city rights in the 13th century by the King of Denmark. Since then, the streets of Tallinn have seen many world powers, from the Danes and Swedes to Germans, and tsarist and Soviet Russia. The wealth of architecture in medieval Tallinn Old Town means that there are many legends and stories to explore.

Estonia is a Nordic country. That means unspoilt nature, mercilessly harsh weather, white nights and dark days. It also means the strict discipline required from us by our climate – clear shapes, quality in both thinking and action, as well as sustainable development and concern for the future.

Welcome to Estonia.

Estonia at a Glance