Tartu Travel Answers

change location

Tartu vs Tallinn

by throbbinghand Online Now Aug 12, 2007 at 6:32 AM

Hi,

Which city is better to live in for a 30-something year old professional software engineer (I telecommute full-time for one the major search engines) - Tallinn or Tartu?

I'm in Tallinn now but it's just so touristy that I find it overwhelming.

I guess I'm looking for a place that's open-minded and tolerant, with small-town hospitality, enough activities to keep a 30-something year old happy (I like folk music, English-language movies, sports, hiking/camping, and good conversations in quieter lounges and bars), and close to nature (forests, lakes).

I read "Tartu - population 100,000+" and fear it may just be for 18-22 year old students who prompty move away after graduating...and dies completely when school lets out.

Thanks.

Quote & Answer
9 Answers
  • sihi's Profile Photo

    Re: Tartu vs Tallinn

    by sihi Online Now Aug 12, 2007 at 8:01 AM

    Tartu is better. Johvi town is smaller & also good:)

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
  • SabrinaSummerville's Profile Photo

    Re: Tartu vs Tallinn

    by SabrinaSummerville Online Now Aug 12, 2007 at 9:12 AM

    I'm afraid I haven't been to Tartu...yet! That saying, it's on the very-soon list and Tallinn was gorgeous.

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
  • riksti's Profile Photo

    Re: Tartu vs Tallinn

    by riksti Online Now Aug 12, 2007 at 10:20 AM

    Tartu seems to be the answer to almost all your requirements, except possibly on the open-mindedness and tolerance department. Don't get me wrong, most people there are wonderful, but there is a small group of people who have problems with any kind of minorities. I've personally never had any contact with them (I lived in Tartu for 4 years) but according to Estonian press the problem is there. Other than that Tartu seems to be exactly what you're looking for.

    Kristi

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
  • Re: Tartu vs Tallinn

    by throbbinghand Online Now Aug 12, 2007 at 11:24 AM

    I'm curious. How do you guys feel about living in downtown Tartu versus living outside the city (say, 10-20 minutes drive from Tartu Vanalinn) in the countryside?

    The thought of living by a nice peaceful forest and lake just appeals to me for some reason...but I fear I'll miss the bustle of a city once the winter hits.

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
  • Re: Tartu vs Tallinn

    by throbbinghand Online Now Aug 12, 2007 at 11:44 AM

    Thanks for your help. The long ride / drive home after a night out does seem like a pain...

    Do you guys know which of the "valds" near Tartu Kesklinn offer the ideal scenario of:

    1. Closeness to Tartu Kesklinn
    2. Large houses (not shacks) that are surrounded by forest with no neighbors in sight (a small lake or pond would be nice as well)
    3. Large groundspace that come with the house (anywhere from 5-15 hectares)

    I ran across quite a nice on on the web located in "Kambja Vald" that's 14.2 hectares, but don't know much about the area at all.

    I can't afford such places now but I'm told the real estate 'bubble' will burst at some point, so I'm doing my homework starting from today.

    Thanks.

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
  • Re: Tartu vs Tallinn

    by throbbinghand Online Now Aug 12, 2007 at 12:15 PM

    By the way, any of you guys know if they're building a true "fast train" between Tallinn and Tartu?

    The current one takes about 2 to 2.5 hours, but one that's 1.5 hours would be ideal.

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
  • Lethe's Profile Photo

    Re: Tartu vs Tallinn

    by Lethe Online Now Aug 16, 2007 at 3:22 PM

    I doubt they will be running a proper train between the cities in the near future. The current situation is considered very good by Estonian government's and Edelaraudtee's standards so not much hope of any improvement. Perhaps when the last ancient Russian locomotive falls apart they will decide that it's time to get some new ones but I wouldn't hold my breath. I don't know how long you have lived here already and how much you have gotten to know the country but this really isn't a fast-developing place (despite the claims and media hype). The government is too preoccupied with sorting out their holiday-allowances so they can't be bothered with real issues.

    When it comes to choosing between Tallinn and Tartu I chose Tartu. I strongly dislike Tallinn, I can't put the reasons behind this into words, it's just the feeling I get whenever I visit Tallinn - I just can't wait to get out from there. Tartu seems to tick all the boxes. And there's no fear of finding yourself alone on the streets when the school finishes, there always the slow learners who have to stay to re-take their exams ;)

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
  • Re: Tartu vs Tallinn

    by Katherine2 Online Now Oct 2, 2007 at 3:40 AM

    Tartu is very homy. You can get everywhere by foot. Yes, there are a lot of students and pensioners, but if you don't have friends there, you might feel a little lonely at the end. Population Tartu 100th versus Tallinn 400th+ tourists. Then again you don't have the lakes in Tallinn, but you have the sea. You have to find a hobby. In Tallinn it can be the jazz club events every Fri and Sat, it should be the same in Tartu. Check out estjazz.ee/index.php?option=.... Plus find yourself a fighting club or some hoby and you feel home wherever you are.

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
  • nganassan's Profile Photo

    Re: Tartu vs Tallinn

    by nganassan Online Now Nov 18, 2007 at 11:26 AM

    Pro:
    Tartu University has also Computer Science Department
    Tartu University library has lot of publications, if you need any.
    There are lot of no cost Wifi areas.
    There are quite green zones around central Toome Hill ("Toomemägi") and near river (also in northern part of city called Tähtvere).
    People are not so money minded as in Tallinn.
    Contra:
    Transport to Tallin (e.g to airport) demands up to 2 and half hours
    Apartment rent cost will may be even higher than in Tallinn.
    Outside centre, it is not so green and if you like to go jogging or walking, then it is not so pleasant to use streets for it.
    Not near by sea (actually it is worst thing in Tartu for me).
    If you like go hiking, you have to go by bus or by train outside of city at least 20-30km.

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
Your Answer
Advanced Editor View Guidelines