Great way to spend your holiday is to visit South-Estonia. Probably the most beautiful and scenic part of the country. If you live here or you are planning to visit Estonia in summer then its basically mandatory to go to south. Nature, people, peaceful villages, hills, rivers, deep forests, endless gravel roads, lakes and really cool camping places.
We have almost 300 RMK free camping places in Estonia, so you can easily make your own route and take some tips from ours!
It all depends how much time you have. Our team is helpful with all the questions you might have. Just contact us through social media or via email firstname.lastname@example.org
Here is a short overview of our trip to south last summer. Maps, pictures and some route descriptions.
INFORMATION / MAPS / LINKS
- Google maps route (camping places, sightseeings, routes, good restaurants)
- RMK camping information and rules
- Find some more free wild camping places: RMK list
- Train tables: Search Trains Tallinn-Tabivere / Tallinn-Tartu and for coming back: Viljandi-Tallinn (Elron is the only train line in Estonia).
So lets begin:
- Get a bike!
- Come to Estonia!
- Start an adventure!
(Train: Tallinn-Tabivere and 20 km easy evening ride to camping place)
If you arrive to Tallinn and want to use your first day for riding then this option is good for you.
First you can check all you equipment and bike, buy some stuff to the road and take a afternoon train to Tabivere. When you arrive there you will also have one shop nearby and about 8 different RMK camping places in 20 kilometer range. Then you can settle in, make a camp fire and make an early start in the morning. (From map check camping places near day 1)
ELISTVERE / TARTU / PANGODI RMK / 66 KM
If you follow our map then you’ll have plenty of time to hang out in Tartu. It’s an university town and one of the coolest town in South Estonia! There’s a beautiful old town with lots of cafes and bars around. Also nice wooden house district (Karlova) and bohemian vibes. After Tartu you’ll have about 20 km gravel road to Pangodi lake and the camping place.
COOP is a company which owns many small shops in villages and towns. They’re good because most of the shops are opened every day. On their website you can check the times tables, just enter the shop name to search bar.
In South-Estonia there are 27 “National Geographic Yellow Windows”, you can take this map for your guide.
Humana is the second hand clothes store chain around Estonia, if you want to look sexy in the woods then pass by.
PANGODI / OTEPÄÄ / KARULA NATIONAL PARK / 77 KM
During this day you can really feel the Estonian nature around you. Follow our map and you’ll see some really cool and private gravel roads near Otepää. If the weather is warm then prepare to map out all the lakes for swimming. Because even these small pumps that we call hills can be hard sometimes!
You will end up in Karula national park which is the most quiet and private nature park in Estonia. There are no tourist groups and roads are really deep in the forest so you can enjoy real Estonian heritage, the wilderness!
And when it’s pouring rain, the only solution is to drink beer and make dices.
KARULA NATIONAL PARK to SOONTAGA NATURE RESERVE / 60 KM
If you have some extra time to spend then go to Karula and explore around! There are many maps about the trails everywhere. Otherwise you’ll have a nice day at Soontaga nature reserve. There are bits where you’ll have to use the main roads but the traffic there is really low so don’t worry about it. If you arrive there in august (during harvest time) then prepare to race the tractors! But enjoy it, real Estonian countryside is around you.
SOONTAGA RESERVE to VILJANDI TRAIN STATION / 72 KM
During this route you can mostly use a marked bicycle trail near the Lake Võrtsjärv. This trail is signed and helps you to not get lost! TRAIL MAP.
If you ignore this map then you end up on paved road with some annoying trucks passing by. We started from Soontaga and first 10 km was amazing gravel trail to south tip of the lake. After that just follow the bike road signs to Mustla and then you’ll have two options to Viljandi (gravel and paved road). From Viljandi you can catch a train to Tallinn (around 2 hour ride).