Cycling through the Baltics
The Baltic region
The coast is flat, but the landscape becomes hilly in the inland. Suur Munamägi (en. „Big Egg Mountain“), located in Estonia, is the highest peak of the Baltic countries. It raises to an altitude of 318 m. The landscape is shaped by agriculture and forestry; lakes and bog lands are also characteristic.
The countries are home to many wild animals including mooses, wolfs, and bears. However, those are rare to come across, even in the large forests. Storcks are the sole wild animal that one frequently sees during the summer months, when dozens of storcks hunt for food on freshly mowed grasslands.
Street in Cēsis. Compared to Western Europe, the population density is low. One can go for miles without going through any major cities. However, especially in agricultural regions, solitary farms can be found everywhere.
Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania are all part of the Schengen area. The Euro is the official currency in all three countries.
Tourism is getting increasingly important for the local economy. The former Hanseatic cities offer impressive cityscapes and many interesting sights for fans of history and architecture. Tallinn, the capital of Estonia, is a destination of particular interest: its medival city center is well preserved. As the sights are close to the harbour, Tallinn is an attractive destination for people coming by boat. Most cruises through the Baltic stop there. Finns use the direct ferry connection between Tallinn and Helsinki for shipping trips to Estonia. Old city of Tallinn.
The Baltics also attract many cyclists. Many transeuropean long-distance cycling tracks pass through these countries. Route 13, for instance, leads along the coast of the Baltic sea. For people who prefer day trips, it is possible to rent bikes in most major cities. Depending on the bike, prices vary between ten and twelve Euros per day.
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Bernd Krüger, 2017