16 Interesting Facts About Estonia

Estonia is often forgotten. But this underrated wonderland is one of Europe's hidden gems.

Estonia, a small but vibrant country located in Northern Europe, is a hidden gem worth exploring.

From its rich cultural heritage to its breathtaking natural landscapes, Estonia offers an array of experiences for travelers from all walks of life.

Let's explore this humble Baltic country with 16 enchanting facts about Estonia you probably didn't know!


1. Estonia is one of the smallest countries in Europe.
Estonia is located in Northern Europe, bordered by Latvia to the south and Russia to the east.
Its population stands at only 1.3 million as of 2021, small even on a global scale, and it has an area of only 17,505 square miles (45,339 square kilometers).

2. Estonia gained its independence from the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.
Estonians celebrate their Independence Day on February 24th.
It first gained independence in 1918, towards the end of the First World War, though this was short-lived as the Soviet Union occupied the country again during WWII.
Throughout its history, Estonia has been ruled by many other countries, including Russia, Sweden, and Denmark.

3. The official language of Estonia is Estonian.
Estonian is closely related to the Finnish language and is also spoken by minority populations in other nearby countries.

4. Estonia is a member of the European Union and NATO.
Being part of these organizations has strengthened Estonia's relations with other countries and provided various opportunities for growth.

5. Estonia ranks among the world's least religious nations.
Of the Estonian population, only around a quarter consider themselves religious, and only 14% consider religion an important part of their lives.

6. Estonia is one of the most digitally advanced societies.
It was the first country to offer e-residency, allowing people from anywhere in the world to establish and manage an Estonian business online.

7. In winter, Estonia can experience temperatures around 20.3°F (-6.5°C) and has records showing nights dropping to -45°F (-46.3°C).

8. More than 50% of Estonia is covered in forest. As a country so densely covered in forests, Estonia is a wonderful home to wildlife.
Around 65 different species of mammals live in the country's woodlands.
These include around 250 wolves, 950 brown bears, 12,000 wild boar, 12,000 moose, and about 130,000 wild goats.

9. Much of Estonia's symbolism relates to its closeness with nature.
One of which is the Cornflower. This symbol is ingrained so deeply in Estonian roots that its flag includes the color "Cornflower Blue" in its trio alongside black and white.
Other symbols include Baltic Herring, their national fish, and Grey Limestone, their national stone.

10. The Estonian flag consists of three horizontal stripes – blue, black, and white.
These colors are symbolic, with blue representing the sky, black representing the soil, and white representing hope and purity.

11. Estonia has 12 UNESCO heritage features.
One of the most notable of these heritage sites is the old historical town of Tallinn, which is now Estonia's capital.

12. Tallinn, Estonia's capital, was granted city rights by the king of Denmark in the 13th century. Since then, even through multiple wars, the Old Town of this capital city has been incredibly well preserved.

13. There are over 2,000 islands in Estonia.
Most are uninhabited, but some have year-round residents, where you can enjoy the local nature and experience traditional Estonian culture.

14. Estonia is known as "the singing nation."

15. Estonians are known for their love of sauna.
Sauna is an important part of Estonian culture, and it is customary to visit a sauna for relaxation and socializing.

16. Estonia is the most northern of the Baltic countries, which makes the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) more likely to be seen here than in its Baltic neighbors.

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