Tartu Warnings and Dangers
Reviews from VirtualTourist Members
Where not to be
2) Stay away from dark alleys and the wooden district next to downtown during the late evening hours. Tartu can be pretty dangerous from 8 pm to 1 am, especially around the bars and the infamous liquor store at Herne street (one of the few places to sell alcohol at night). Agressive, drunk and loud people are not uncommon and should be avoided. Also, you may get out of very hairy situations if you carry a pack of cigarettes. Even if you don't smoke, a cigarette may save your hide in many cases.Also, stay away from parking lots during night, since gangs of aggressive youngsters tend to congregate there and hang out next to their old BMWs.Thankfully, police patrols on foot do patrol the downtown area, but mostly the Townhall Square (which used to be one of the most dangerous places at night).
Tips from a local
Some tips from a frank and sincere local who loves his hometown, but is well aware of the dark sides.1) You may encounter difficult treatment if you have dark skin. There is a gang of neonazis that roam the downtown area in summer and they love hurling insults at black people. Also, please note that in the Estonian language, the word used is "neeger" which is obviously very similar to a very offensive word in English. HOWEVER, it is not loaded in Estonian so people will use it without malice!
Some problems with racism
Tartu has had some problems with wannabe natzi youngsters who concentrate their energy on making people who look different (coloured people mainly) not so welcome. But it is usually limited to name-calling and insults and there are not that many cases of such abuse any more. Just try to ignore these gangs since they do, by no means, represent the opinion of the majority and they are just expressing their own ignorance and arrogance.
Reviews and photos of Tartu warnings and dangers posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Tartu sightseeing.