Estonia is covered with these (sometimes huge) boulders.
Called 'glacial erratics', they are rocks moved during the Ice Age far from their point of origin, their sides worn smooth by the crushing weight of the ice. As the ice melted and the glaciers retreated, these rocks were left dotted about the countryside all over Europe (Stonehenge is partially built from glacial erratics).
I loved seeing them in Estonia. Because it is so flat, and because the ppopulation is small, many more of them remain where they were originally deposited.
There are several to be seen at Altja. Knowing how these huge boulders arrived makes them more interesting to the casual viewer, I think.
I noticed these all over the place, and it took me ages to work out what they were.
At first I thought they were air-raid shelters (because they look very much like the UK type of WWll air-raid shelter). But then the chimney gave it away, and I realised.
Of course you needed to smoke your fish (and maybe your meat too), in order to preserve it for the winter.
And of course every house would therefore need its own smoke-house nearby.
And of course smoking your own fish/meat would still be just as popular.
A lovely little walk, past restored houses and the old net sheds.
You'll see flowers if it's the right time of year, and maybe swans on the sea.
Lovely views across the bays when you arrive at the water's edge.
No professional fishermen live in this former fishermen's village any more. Most houses have been sold to families in Tallinn and elsewhere who use then as summer homes. Having a summer house to spend their vacation in is an essential part of Estonian lifestyle.
The village has a number of old fishermen's houses that have been well restored. All houses, also the new ones, are built of wood.
Note the typical fences, which consist of two rows of poles with slanting sticks leaning between them.
A mwalk along the sea shore is a must. Already in a short hike you can experience some different stretches of coastline and enjoy views over the bays.
From the village pub and the parking lot, follow the road to the next bend, then take the path straight on. The path is wide enough for cars within the village, then it turns into a narrower hiking trail that takes you to the tip of the peninsula where the old fishermen's sheds are. Further along you reach the prettiest part of the shore with lots of round granite erratics dotted on the beach and in the shallow water. By crossing the suspension bridge across a stream you can continue to the beach. All this is hardly half an hour's walk, including stops to take photos.
Altja's "miniature Golden Gate" is a pedestrian bridge across a stream. It must be crossed to arrive at the beach in the next bay. The bridge does not look too trustworthy but it carried us safely. However, I would not want to be on it with more than two or three people at a time. And yes, it does sway.
Don't know why, or who, or what it is.
But it is rather a good piece of carving, and very 'northern European' with its antlers .... a horned god, indeed.
Spot it sitting under the eaves of a house on the left as you walk down the 'main street' towards the sea.
The air in this part of Estonia is clean, that much is indicated by the amount of lichen growing on trees, rocks, house roofs.
I particularly liked the lichen on the thatch of the netsheds. It may not be a good thing, in that it probably helps to destroy the thatch eventually, but its grey-greeness added extra interest to the roof's appearance.
A row of four old wooden sheds is located at the tip of the peninsula. These buildings have never been meant as houses for people to live in. They were used by the fishermen to dry their nets in.