The famous sandy Pärnu Beach, which feels like a city inside a city in summer, is just a 15-minute walk from the centre. Tens of thousands of sub-worshippers and swimmers may visit the beach every day in summer. Pärnu Beach is also particularly suitable for families with children as the water is shallow and warms quickly in the sun. Pärnu Beach has fun attractions for kids, swings, surfing equipment rental, mini golf, lots of ice cream and other refreshments. Romantics love the Pärnu Beach Promenade all through the year.
It is the only gate of the former town wall dating from the 17th century that has been preserved in the Baltic countries. It marks the beginning of the postal road from Pärnu to Tallinn and was built during the Swedish period. Up to 1710, it was called Carl Gustav’s (or King’s) Gate. There was a bridge across the moat from the gate to the postal road that headed to a ferry by Ringi St. and from there via Vana-Pärnu to Tallinn. The medieval fortification system of Pärnu was almost fully destroyed in the preceding Livonian War. The author is probably Erik Dahlberg, who built the similar King’s Gates and bastions in Narva and Riga as well. In the 19th century, after the military fortification was removed, it was decided that the gate building along with two bastions and the moat should be retained.
Now visitors are welcome to walk through the monumental Baroque gate and marvel at the beautiful beach district of Pärnu.
This was a trip that I took a while back so the name of this place I no longer know, but the town is small and if you find yourself there you will have no problem finding it. There is a hotel that has a small indoor water park, bowling ally, ping pong table, and restaurant. This place was a great find for us while we where there because it was in the dead of winter and there was nothing to do outside other then freeze. The water park and bowling ally where open pretty late which was good because nothing else in town was.
The only other thing we found to do during the week was play cards at a small casino, so nothing else to exciting going on there. The clubs are open for the weekends but not Sunday.
On the beach you can hire sunloungers for 40EEK, there are lockers available (40EEK for the day) and there are public toilets as well....theres no loo roll inside so ask the lady sitting next to the lockers for some.
There's also a lot of little bars and cafes along the beach where you can escape the sun for a beer and a plate of chips.
The staff speak good English and can provide maps, bus schedules, directions etc. Visit as soon as you can to pick up the free guide books which let you know what exhibitions are on in the galleries, what events are on at the night clubs etc.
This is a great way to spend a rainy afternoon. A tini basement plays home to allsorts of creepy crawlies including snakes, lizards, turantulars and cockroaches. Theres also a cage full of mice but I suspect they are dinner for the many big pythons!!
Most of the animals are rescued, including a crocodile.
You may also notice that many of the enclosures don't have locks on them...clearly snakes haven't learned how to open sliding doors and Estonian children are trustworthy.
What looks like an easy kid-friendly game of mini golf is surprisingly difficult. We instigated a maximum attempts rule, which came in handy when some of us would clearly need 50,000 attempts on some of the holes, which might hold up the other players somewhat.
These are places all the way along the beach, they're great fun but make your biceps hurt like crazy after only a few seconds.
We spent ages working out who could bouce the highest, stay on longest etc etc
Just by the mud baths near the beach bikes are for hire. From 1/2 hour to a whole day, take your pick. We cycled along the coast and then around town too, all on well maintained cycle paths.
For 200 Krooni I had a modern bike for one hour - excellent!
There is no point in coming to Pärnu and then not going to the beach. The beach is the whoile essence of the city - without it there wouldn't be so many people coming to spend their vacation in this nice resort town during the summer. The beach is really quite nice with different activities and shows available for the people.
But since the beach is the main attraction in Pärnu, the city is at it's best in the summer.
Actually there is of course more than one beach - more secluded and wild beaches away from the one inside the city, so if you are tired of the crowds and the noise and need some quiet time, just go to one of the many beaches outside the city limits.
The beach; no wonder Pärnu is called 'Riviera of the North' – the beach offers private spots as well, since it’s so long and wide. You have to walk 200 metres before the water is high enough for swimming :)
You will be able to see Parnu not as a tourist staying at a resort but more as a local. You will eventually reach very picturesque points just outside the town near a spit of sand - one of the typically Baltic natural features.
Though it's in need of an update, this museum gives a very thorough overview of Pärnu City and County history from the mid-Stone Age through knights, farmers and folk costumes, looms and skirts, up to the city's incarnation as beach resort in the 1930s. Text is in Estonian and Russian.
Though the name evokes cute, fuzzy creatures that kids would love to pet, the Mini Zoo is in reality a reptile house full of fat pythons and venomous vipers, and even has a pair of confiscated Nile crocodiles. Those fuzzy creatures will be their dinner. Anyone squeamish about reptiles should definitely stay away.
St John's Church (1609) was taken by the Russian garrison in 1714, but the Empress Elizabeth ordered a new church constructed with roubles from the treasury. The church, 1744 - 1747, took the Empress's name. The copper rooster has been roosting atop the steeple since 1747.