Kassari is actually an island that was joined to Hiiumaa in the 18th century by a land bridge. There are now two roads that take you on to Kassari. The island has pleasant scenery and nature. It has plentiful birdlife, especially geese and swans and is also noted for its unspoilt junipers. Kassari comes under protection as a natural reserve as well as a bird sanctuary.
Something that surprised me was the size of the snails, the biggest that I have seen.
You can even enjoy the island by horse (see website).Related to:
- Horse Riding
Saaretirp is one of those little wonders of nature. It is a spit of land/rock heading out to sea for a few kilometres. You feel that you are walking out into the jaws of the sea.
Legend has it that it was a failed attempt by the giant Leiger to build a bridge to Saaremaa so that his brother Suur Toll could come to visit. Unfortunately the sea and elements defeated the giant who had to give up the endeavour.
The idea of a Hiiumaa-Saaremaa bridge is still alive today!Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
The hill of the crosses - Ristimägi
Ristimägi is probably one of the most often-visited sites in Hiiumaa. It is a reminder of the island's long-lasting historical ties with Sweden which ended tragically in 1781. Before this fateful year there were about two thousand Swedish people living on the island, who were later deported. A farmer who lived in this area at the time the Swedes were deported placed a small wooden cross on the spot where this last church service was held. Later, visitors also placed hand-made crosses on this spot and it became a tradition for first-time visitors to the island to make a cross out of sticks that they would find lying around the site. Now there are thousands of these crosses along the path leading into the forest. You too are encouraged to make a cross out of natural materials and add to this memorial.
Local legend tells a completely different story about the origin of this tradition. Long ago, a wedding party was traveling along the road from Kärdla and met another wedding party coming from the opposite direction. The road was too narrow for them to pass each other and each refused to give way. Discussion soon gave way to argument and then a fight broke out among the participants in the weddings. In the resulting chaos, the groom of one wedding party and the bride of the other were killed. After the fighting stopped, the people realized what a terrible thing they had done and were overcome with remorse. They all decided that the best way to put this sad event behind them would be for the surviving groom and surviving bride to be married, thus proving that love triumphs over all.
Ristimägi (Hill of Crosses)
Everybody who visits this place may make a cross in memory of the Swedes of Hiiumaa. The cross should be made of local natural material without damaging nature. The person who makes a cross this way is believed to have good luck in the future.
This the eldest lighthouse in Baltics and one of the three eldest of the world. It looks very strange, different from usual lighthouses. Be attentive - inside very rapid stairs in the start.Related to:
- Family Travel
- Road Trip
This lighthouse is in the north of the island. The view from it is so beautiful. This place was a strategical point for Soviet army. 500 m far from the coastline are military forts.Related to:
- Family Travel
- Road Trip
The Tahkuna lighthouse has been continously serving as a navigational beacon here for over 100 years. It was built in Paris in 1874 and stands over 40 meters tall.
This place has been an popular place for tourists for many years. The peninsula is heavily forested with junipers and there are many secluded places next to the sea to camp, swim or just relax.Related to:
Depending on the lighthouse you'll probably be able to negotiate with the lighthouse keeper and he'll let you up to the top where you can get a wonderful view on the sea and the landscape around you.
Visiting the lighthouses
Hiiuma is the second biggest island of Estonia. There are many interesting and famous lighthouses here. This one is designed by the Alexendre-Gustave Eiffel ;)Related to:
- National/State Park
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