A two hour drive away from Tallinn, is the summer capital of Estonia: Pärnu. It’s a small seaside spa town that is full of fabulous villas and derelict shacks.
This was purely a family trip and the main reason we chose Pärnu was the waterpark. We stayed at the Tervise Paradiis which is close to the stunning beach, has swimming pools and offers spa treatments. My nieces and nephews are really into swimming at the moment, so Pärnu was the perfect choice for this. We were there for four days which was enough time to enjoy the town, the hotel and waterpark, the city centre and the beach.
The long sandy beach was a jogger’s dream and the perfect place to build sand castles and to find seashells. You can either walk on the beach admiring the smooth sand or the paved boulevard. The weather was too cold for a swim, but we dared to dip our toes in it. Just keep an eye on those magpies…
Pärnu’s city centre is small, but only a short walking distance or a cheap-ish taxi ride from our hotel. There aren’t many non-souvenir shops on the main street, but it is a perfect place to enjoy the cheap cafes.
If you are interested in shopping more than just souvenirs, head to Port Arthur.The second floor’s Mohito made a serious dent in my travel budget.
Pärnu offers all types of spa treatment. I ended up trying chocolate massage and underwater massage (the latter turned out to be a form of torture because you basically lie in a tub and this woman uses a pressure washer on you!). The treatmens are cheaper in Estonia, but I have been really unlucky with the customer service over the years. I have been treated as a nuisance instead of a normal paying customer. Two years ago I had a normal French manicure done in Tallinn and the whole time this woman was fixing my nails, she complained about my nails non-stop and sighed and rolled her eyes a lot. I rather pay more and leave happy. I hope you have better luck if you try any spa treatments in Estonia.