Not far east of Tartu, an elegant small city with an air of things academic about it, is Lake Peipsi and another world. The Russian border runs down the middle of the lake and the Estonian shore is known for its communities of Old Believers, Orthodox Christians who fled Russia from the late 17th century onwards following persecution when they refused to accept church 'reforms'. Various of their villages and towns lie along the edge of the lake where they could catch fish and grow onions. (A restaurant in Kolkja serves their specialities and even a small book of recipes is available - if you understand Estonian.)
Kallaste has an Old Believers' church which is said to date from the 18th century. At first sight, this looks unlikely but the church is being restored at the moment and parts of the older structure under the more modern are clearly visible at the moment.
There is a small but very interesting museum in the village of Kolkja. (Although it seems little English is spoken, there is plenty of printed information about the Old Believers and their history.) Museums and churches may be open only on request so it might be worth contacting the Kolkja museum on +372 7 453 431 / +372 50 499 908 or, perhaps, the Kallaste Infopunkt at Oja 22, Kallaste, tel/fax 7452 705 / firstname.lastname@example.org (where English is spoken).
Another church from the 18th century, with a large cemetery, can be found at Kasepää, a short distance south of Kolkja. This village also shows a long ribbon of buildings fairly close to the lake shore, typical of the way these settlements developed.
Every year, in the February's last saturday there is Karakatitsa Festival in Kallaste.
What is Karakatitsa ?
Well, it is machine, local people have reconstructed them for snow and icemobiles
to go to icy lake for fishing. Huge wheeles are helping to move safely around ice
and crackes on the ice...Some people have reconstructed them from motorcycles, some
from cars etc.
Every year there is parade of these machines and music is playing and people sell
homemade meat, fish and othere goods in there. They usually have also contest of the
most interesting Karakatitsa.
Look at all photos for different Karakatitsas!
Well, I like to take pictures and consider myself amateur photographeur.
I like to take a pictures of details, windows, doors...whatever makes nice
composition or is interesting in my opinion.
Main income for local's is coming from fishing.
Lake Peipsi offers mainly perch, bream and another fish, which translation I could'nt find from dictionary.
So, they sell them fresh, smoked and dried.
Who is living behind these doors ?
Fondest memory: What family traditions are hidden in these homes ?
Look at all photos !
I like to make pictures of details.
This is a street sign and it's significant because it is still in two language. In estonian and in russian.
These two language street sign should have been changed into estonian only a long time ago.
Võidu street - it means victory street.
Fondest memory: While walking around in old town streets it's very village like feeling in there...and a lot of details to make picture of.
Kallaste is smallest city in Estonia. It has only 1,92 km2 and there is only 1152 people living in there ( calculated in 2006 ).
You can actually devide Kallaste into two - new part ( mostly built during 1970 ) and old part oldest buildings from 18th century.
This time I only wondered around old part of the city.
Fondest memory: It has village atmpshere in the old part of the city.