The best time to visit Estonia is from May through September. Music and theater are ingrained in its people and the appreciative audience for the Song Festival is a testimony to this fact. The cities of Tallin and Sillamae are worth lingering over. Exploring the countries landscapes and architecture is a ritual for its visitors.The typical foods in Estonia are black bread, pork, potatoes and dairy products. Estonians famously prefer fresh food – berries, herbs, vegetables, and fruits. Hunting and fishing are also very common.
|Resource||ISBN or ASIN||Best Price||Description|
|Estonia Bradt Travel Guide||978-1841623207||$20||An extensive 40-page general information followed by practical travel information and region-wise coverage including Tallinn, Around Tallinn, North and Northeast Estonia, Central Estonia, South and Southeast Estonia, Western Estonia, and the Islands.|
|Back on the Map: Adventures in Newly Independent Estonia||978-1449503147||$11||Beautiful depiction of the life and the people of Estonia in 1992. The author Marc Hyman lived in Estonia for five years teaching accounting finance and economics.|
|Estonia Map by ITMB||978-1553412038||$5||1:400,000 Scale. Includes inset map of Tallinn.|
|Tallinn Street Map||978-1553417095||$9||1:8,000 scale. Inset of the old town at 1:4,000 scale.|
|Estonia Grounded Travel Adapter - GUB||B001FD5DQ2||$8|
The first stamps of Estonia were a set of four stamps released between 1918 and 1919. The set (Scott #1 to #4) catalogs for around $5 MNH and $4 used. The imperforate stamps featured a very simple design with the “EESTI POST’ inscription in the middle and the denomination below. Estonia declared its independence from the Russian empire in 1918. However, Tallinn (capital and largest city) remained under Soviet control. A set of stamps which were ‘Eesti Post’ overprints were provisionally issued at Tallinn on May 7, 1919. The set of nineteen stamps (Scott #8 to #26) is rare and very valuable. Each stamp in the set is valued between $25 and $3300 for MNH and the valuation is similar for used. The most valuable is the 10r scar, yellow, and gray (Scott #20). These stamps have been counterfeited and so it can be hard to acquire a good copy. Imperforate simple designs continued until 1923.
Estonia released a set of seven stamps between 1922 and 1923 showing local industry. The set (Scott #58 to #64) catalogs for around $60 MNH and $25 used. The designs show weaver and blacksmith. The same designs were reissued between 1922 and 1925 using different denominations. That set (Scott #65 to #75) catalogs for around $75 MNH and $4 used. Other themes during the period include a sketch of a Viking ship and a sketch of the skyline of Tallinn. Those imperforate sets (Scott #28 to #37 and Scott #39 to #46) are not especially valuable cataloging for $15 and $10 respectively for MNH and $6 and $2 respectively for used.
Other issues of Estonia enjoying good philatelic interest include
- A set of two stamps released between 1923 and 1924 showing the Map of Estonia. The set (Scott #78 and #79) catalogs for around $110 MNH and $15 for used. A couple of similar sets featuring the National Theater in Tallinn and the Vanemuine Theater in Tarfu followed. These sets (Scott #81, #82 and #83) catalog in the $10 range.
- A long set of fifteen stamps released between 1928 and 1940 in the Three Lions Arms theme. The set (Scott #90 to #104) catalogs for around $85 MNH and $5 used. A number of sets showing local scenes and President Konstantin Pats were also released during the period. These sets also are pretty valuable cataloging in the 10s of dollars range. Estonia lost about 25% of the population during World War II due to Soviet deportations, German deportations, and the Holocaust. It was incorporated into the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) and no stamps Estonian stamps were issued till their independence in 1991.
- A set of nine stamps issued on October 1, 1991 to mark Estonia’s independence. The set (Scott #200 to #208) is inexpensive cataloging for less than $3 MNH or used. The design shows National Arms (Three Lions) and a map.
- A set of ten stamps released between 1993 and 1997 in the Architecture theme. The set (Scott #243A to #251) catalogs for around $5 MNH or used. The designs show Toolse Castle, Paide Castle, Purtse Castle, Narva Fortress, Haapsalu Cathedral, Monks Towner at Kiiu, Rakvere Castle, Kuressaare Castle, and Viljandi Castle. Estonia was ruled by Germans, Russians, Danes, and Swedes during the period from the 12th century to the 19th century leaving a trail of castles and other stately manors.
- A stamp released on May 1, 2004 to mark admission to European Union. The stamp (Scott #486) catalog for around a dollar MNH or used. Estonia was part of a group of ten nations incorporated into the European Union (EU) on that date. This was the largest single expansion of the EU.
The first coin of Estonia was a Copper-Nickel Mark released in 1922 showing Three Czech Lions in Obverse and Denomination in Reverse. The coin catalogs for around $10 UNC. A number of different denominations in the same general theme denominated in Marka and Senti were issued during the period till 1936. A few Krooni (100 Senti = 1 Krooni) denominations with varied reverse designs were also issued. Modern Republican Era coinage started in 1991 following independence. Estonia has also issued gold coins including the stunning 500 Krooni commemorative issue for the 80th anniversary of Estonia released in 1998.
Numismatic items of Estonia include:
|Coins||$1 and up||Proofs from the 2000s start around $1. Silver coins from the 1930s onward in XF start around $25. Senti’s from the 1920s in VF starts around $50. Olympic Silver Proofs, Anniversary Proofs, etc go into the $100 range. Gold coins go well into the 100s.|
|Paper Money||$2 and up||Kroonis from the 2000s in UNC starts around $2. Recent high values (100 Kroonis) starts around $15. Bundles, ZZ Replacements etc start around $30 and can go into the $100 range. Rare early specimens can go well into the 100s.|
Traditional hand-knitted woolen sweaters, limestone candle holders, dark bittersweet Estonian chocolate and marzipan are some of the timeless souvenirs of the country.
|Art||$10 and up||Ex-libris limited edition prints often depicting human figures and exotic animals start around $10. Original historic 19th century photos and paintings start around $100.|
|Antiques||$20 and up||19th century maps start around $20. Original maps and silverware from 18th century and prior fetch a good premium.|
|Militaria||$10 and up||WWII and later patches and other memorabilia start around $10. Badges and medals from the same era start around $25. Early 20th century and prior medals, badges, and order crosses start in the 100s.|
Last Updated: 12/2015.