Red Corner: Hammered in Tallinn

Looking for a good time?

The newest hot party spot in Europe, according to the New York Times, is none other than Tallinn.

That’s Tallinn, Estonia for those of you rusty on your old Soviet geography.

Formerly a reluctant republic of the Soviet Union, Estonia is now its own country. This is good news for party-goers across Europe. Due to its convenient location just across the gulf from Finland, Estonia is an easy place for Europeans to sneak away for a weekend of drinking and debauchery. And, since this is Eastern Europe we’re talking about, it is extraordinarily cheap to do so as well.

But Tallinn is far more than a cheap place to drink alcohol. It has become the place to drink alcohol. Countless bars, clubs, and restaurants have sprung up throughout the city catering to boatloads of visiting Finns and planeloads of bachelor parties from England. A travel agency called “Tallinn Pissup” arranges many of these trips; a popular tour book called “A Hedonist’s Guide to Tallinn” tells them where to go.

This certainly sounds like a far different Tallinn than I witnessed in 1992. I’m sure its new status as “party capital” hasn’t affected the beautiful Old Town and wonderful architecture which abounds in this ancient city. I just have a feeling people aren’t noticing it is as much any more.