Photo: Krõõt Tarkmeel

    Shopping in Tallinn

    Shopping in Tallinn is easy! Most shops in the Old Town and department stores throughout the city are open seven days a week, and major credit cards are widely accepted. 

    In Tallinn, folk traditions exist alongside the contemporary. You can find some of the most amazing art pieces, exclusively made, with traditional skills. The most unique Estonian souvenirs are lovingly-made handicrafts. 

    The broad scope of Estonian design can be seen in small galleries, design boutiques, and fashion stores. You will find many unique, handcrafted pieces from some of the most imaginative designers in Estonia. There is something for everyone: ceramic, textile and fashion, wood and furniture, jewellers and handicraft.

    The best places to find quality fashion, shoes, perfume and the like are the elegant boutiques along Old Town’s Väike-Karja, Suur-Karja and Müürivahe streets, also in Pärnu mnt and Roosikrantsi streets, and the large department stores and malls.

    A required stop on any shopping tour of Tallinn is St. Catherine's Passage. Here in medieval-style workshops run by the Katariina Guild’s artists, onlookers watch as glasswork, ceramics, leather goods, quilts and other items are created right before their eyes.

    Favourite gifts and souvenirs from Estonia

    Difficult to decide which gifts to buy for your friends and family? Handicraft items such as hand-knitted woollen sweaters with traditional Estonian folk patterns, fun felt hats, colorful glassware or kitchen utensils made from juniper wood are always a good choice.

    For something modern, look for Estonian design shops.  Beautiful handmade jewellery, wooden bow ties and watches, felt sleeping masks with wild animal faces, leather  wristbands, wallets and bags are among the products on sale.

    There are CDs of Estonian composers of international acclaim (Veljo Tormis, Arvo Pärt, Eduard Tubin, Erkki-Sven Tüür), and several books about Estonia and Estonians. For kids, there are the charming animated stories of the dog-girl Lotte, Estonia's popular, home-grown cartoon character.

    In case you just need to buy something simple and delicious, look for chocolate and other sweets by the Kalev confectionery. One of their specialities is handpainted marzipan figurines. Besides Kalev, there are also some unique handmade chocolate brands available.

    Handicraft shops

    The most uniquely Estonian souvenirs you can bring home from Tallinn are examples of traditional Estonian handicrafts – beautiful - beautiful, functional items created by hand, following centuries-old methods.

    Knitwear of all types is popular: colourful jumpers, scarves, hats, socks, gloves and mittens can be found in a wide variety of patterns. Linen is also widely sold, as are household items made from leather, stone and wood. Keep a special eye out for kitchen utensils made from sweet-smelling juniper wood.

    Art and design shops

    Even if you're not planning to buy, a visit to these commercial art shops will give you a feel for Estonia's creative trends. Estonia's range of design products, be they in home furnishing, fashion or something more traditional, can be found in shops throughout the city but especially in Telliskivi Creative City - for more information, take a look at the Tallinn design map. Browsing through these shops is not only a great way to get in touch with the nation's design portfolio, it's also a perfect way to find a one-of-a-kind gift or souvenir. 

    Department stores and shopping centres

    Shoppers on the lookout for local and international brands in fashion, shoes, cosmetics, electronics, toys and the like should head to one of the many new department stores in Tallinn - many of them just outside Old Town. Visitors from Western Europe and North America will find many familiar brands and worldwide chain stores. Department stores tend to be open late on weekdays and stay open on Sundays, which is great for those who happen to miss the opening times of smaller shops and boutiques.

    Book shops

    Estonians love to read and you can find many sprawling book shops in Tallinn that you could spend hours in. Two of the largest examples are Rahva Raamat in the Viru Centre, and Apollo in the Solaris Centre. More than just book shops, they also sell music and DVDs, and even have comfy cafés close by. In both Rahva Raamat and Apollo you'll find a good selection of titles in English, as well as literature in German, French, Spanish and Russian. There are also shops like Raamatukoi that offer a variety of second hand and antique books.

    Eco shops and markets

    In Estonia, as in the rest of Europe, consumer demand for natural and eco-friendly products is continuously on the rise. Visitors shopping for organic food and eco-friendly household and beauty products find several shops that meet their needs. Eco-friendly products are also in stock at Tallinn's large, mainstream supermarkets such as Tallinna Kaubamaja, Stockmann, Solaris, Selver, Rimi and Prisma.

    Many of these carry labels, either Estonian or international, marking them as environmentally friendly, produced with a low-energy process or meeting certain quality or fair-trade standards.

    Markets in Tallinn can be fascinating places to shop. Outdoor markets in and around Old Town specialise in souvenirs and handicrafts, such as the knit market along the Town Wall on Müürivahe street or the summer time markets on Town Hall Square. In December, the centre of Old Town becomes home to the world famous Christmas Market, where you can find handicrafts and all sorts of holiday-related products.

    Do-It-Yourself gifts

    Anyone can buy trinkets while travelling, but if you want a souvenir or gift with more meaning and a personal touch, there's nothing quite like making it yourself. Not only will you have the unique experience of learning a new skill and making something with your own two hands, you'll also get an opportunity to spend quality time with family and friends while doing it. The creations you take away will be one-of-a-kind and highly personal, making truly special gifts or mementos.

    Tallinn has a number of workshops that will start you along the road to becoming a master craftsman.

    Vintage shopping

    Tallinn loves vintage as much as any other lively and creative European capital, a consequence of which is that the city offers many lovely, smaller, specialised and second-hand shops and boutiques in an attractive price range.