Along the trade routes of East and West, the small country of Estonia has a dynamic past. Tallinn, the capital, offers a unique juxtaposition of old and new with one of the most intact medieval old towns in Europe, relics of its very recent Soviet ruled past, and a new, modern business center. Often referred to as e-Estonia, Estonia is leading the way as a digital society, and Tallinn is filled with co-working spaces and entrepreneurs. Tallinn provides a fascinating look at how a society can be transformed and launched into the future at a rapid rate to be on the leading edge of technology and innovation to support society.
Under Soviet rule until 1991, some accommodations in Tallinn still have a communist era feel, including the Hotel Viru which has a museum dedicated to showing the KBG’s spy tactics and presence in the hotel during Soviet occupation. However, new life is being infused into the destination and its accommodations through modern renovations of existing properties and new hotel development.
Access to Tallinn is typically via connecting flight, still with few direct options from the U.S.. Tallinn is also a short 2 hour ferry ride from Helsinki, Finland, and a combination of these two destinations would make for an interesting academic program.