Club Tallinn: Dance the night away
Club Tallinn is a quite cool discotheque which is mostly pretty crowded. I went there only a few times, because the music was not really my kind (Drum and Bass / HipHop), but I enjoyed the atmosphere, especially in the chill-out areas: sofas, aquariums, an uneven ground, fake trees...
Club Tallinn moves to Estonia's summer capital Pärnu in summertime - therefore there are no events during the summer.
The only thing I ever wondered was the name - why didn't they call it Club Tartu?!?
And why did the Baltic Times vote this club the best night club of the Baltics???
Dress Code: none
Various: Tartu bars
The main drag in Tartu for bars seems to run off the main square and is called Ruutli. I've only been on a Thursday (last night) and things were fairly quiet not just on Ruutli but around the whole city centre. There's a few people eating and sitting around the cafes at the main square and some of the streets around that area. In terms of drinking got a little busier after around 10.30 pm.
It was very much a young crowd. Not exclusively so but the vast majority of people looked like they weren't very far past the legal age to consume alcohol.
One of two people spoke to me during the evening and people seemed pleasant enough. I didn't see any trouble anywhere but that's hardly a surprise with it having been such a low key night.
ZumZum probably is the weirdest bar in Tartu. Looking harmless from the outside, I went in and was... well... surprised. There's a mice cage over the bar. There's a diwan to sit on. There are red plastic pearl curtains nearly everywhere. There are Scottish looking wallpapers. There's artificial grass growing on the shelves. There are green lights in the tables.
Believe me, I was completely sober...
Best to decide for yourselves if you like that place. It's worth a try, but I won't come back!
Dress Code: search your wardrobe for something that goes along well with artificial grass...
Club Ahi: An alternative to Maasikas
Newly opened Ahi, formerly Pattaya, has become the only alternative to Maasikas for women over 23 and men over 27 (no longer kids). It was been redesigned, and FINALLY it occurred to them that in a dance bar, the dance floor is the focus, not the bars. Sometimes they put a stage at one end, which blocks the flow of people around the dance floor, and defeats the purpose of the design, and those marble top tables are costing them a fortune on broken glasses.
Unlike Maasikas, they did not take advantage of the switch to Euros to hike all prices. But if you like a little more space to dance, and do not like too many drunk kids, this is the place to go. It is however, a little larger, so often it is still hard to fill it up.
Dress Code: There is no dress code that I am aware of, but as usual, women dress very sexy and elegant, in short dresses and high heels.
Atlantis: New and improved?
On its 4th incarnation in as many years, the newly renovated Atlantis has missed the mark. They have totally re-designed it, eliminating the "adult" section, which used to have different music, and making it into ONE big room. Despite it being a DANCE bar, they have decided to make the bar the centre of attention. To make it worse, the bar is just too small to handle the crowds, and often people just give up after spending 10 minutes trying to get a drink. Even if you manage to get a bartender's attention, the bar itself is too wide, which makes it impossible to communicate. (I am sure it was all fine during construction, without the music). The dance floor, which ought to be the focus of the nightclub, is on the periphery, against a wall, which makes viewing the action difficult, and eliminates any possible movement around the dance floor. A large area at the other side of the bar is good for talking, but too open, fine when heavily crowded, but conspicuously empty as soon as the crowds dwindle a little. Even on its opening night the place was getting empty by about 3:00 a.m. Lots of pretty girls, who disappear by about 3:00 a.m. and go elsewhere. With the school kids now back in town, it will likely be okay for a while, until the novelty wears off.
Dress Code: No, there is no dress code that I am aware of. Girls wear nice minidresses and high heels, with lots of leg, and guys, well, they are guys.
Atlantis: Unable to keep it up!
A follow-up: despite the impressive start, they have not been able to keep attracting the crowds. Perhaps the place is just too large for the current economy. Also, they have fallen victims to the fallacy of trying to make the DJs the stars of the show, and they have moved them to take the most prominent areas, in front of the dance floors. This might work at big cities with big name DJs, but here nobody really cares. These areas used to be occupied by the best and best looking dancers, who used to rouse the crowds. Now the DJ sections have created several dead ends, which limit the possibilities for interaction. Finally, they have put a curtain on one of the dancing areas to block the view from the exit door. So now you know, if the curtain is down, it means the place is empty, and it is is up, they perhaps it is worth coming in. Until they get their act together (how? I do not know), it might be better to go to Club Tallinn or Illusion if you are under 25, and Maasikas if you are over 25.
Dress Code: None that I am aware of, but miniskirts and short little dresses seem to be popular, just like at any other club in Eastern Europe.
Atlantis: New and improved
I used to think the old Atlantis was one of the best designed clubs I had ever been seen. It different areas with music for kids and for grown-ups, good space for dancing, good areas for viewing, and good areas for talking, with rotating couches and extensive bars. But over the past 2 years they let it run down and the crowds, both kids and adults, were migrating elsewhere.
The new Atlantis (Feb 13 was the re-opening day) are impressive. It has been totally re-designed, and by breaking up the flow of traffic, they have increased the elbow-rubbing coefficient. The dance-floors are no the sole attractions any more. There are more places to make eye contact and start up a chat (preferably in Estonian, of course). The bar area has decreased considerably, which might disappoint those needing quick service, but benefits those that see the act of getting a drink as an opportunity to make a connection.
Now there is also VIP area, definitely an unwelcome sign of pretentiousness that is totally unnecessary. How about those of us who are only IPs?
For now, it is the place to go, but time will tell whether they can keep bringing in the crowds. The price of beer has gone up slightly and is now higher than at the competition, which might be difficult to maintain.
Dress Code: No particular dress code that I am aware of. Perhaps the should.
Rock & Roll (aka Rocki Klubi): Sex, Drugs and Rock'n'Roll (are not found here)
Rock & Roll is Tartu's idea of a rock'n'roll place. Situated in a somewhat dark cellar, this place is decorated with Metallica posters, beer flags, an old grandfather clock, small clay statues, whisky bottles with candles, and so much more. A complete drumset hangs down from the ceiling.
Often, there are live concerts of rock bands, ska bands, blues bands and what have you.
Dress Code: none, but it might pay off to look "rockish"
The Gunpowder Cellar: Atmosphere to spare
The atmosphere in this converted cellar on a cold night is fantastic. The place is usually full of locals, live band (which was very good when I visited) and the food and drink are excellent.
Originally a cellar ordered by Catherine the Great, it was used to store gunpowder - hence the name. It now 'goes off' at nights and the dance floor can be packed.
Locals can buy their own beer mug, which is named and hung up over the bar, until they come in to use it.
A great bar - just wish we had one at home like this !
Dress Code: Tidy casuals are expected.
- Budget Travel
Püssirohu Kelder: warm monday night !!
i arrived at Tartu a monday evening and i had an incredible luck to meet a local in the street who purposed me to follow him and his friends at a pub to eat something. After a moment, we were talking and he said that we should go to Püssirohu Kelder if i want to meet real estonian soul... and i was really impressed to enter in this old cellar ( people said it was the highest pub of Europe.. maybe true!! )
and it was so good to hear and see all these people singing estonian songs and even some international ones.. very excellent atmosphear :) good spirit, relax!! f very different compare to Tallinn night life.
Moreover, beer is quite good here ! :) so just go! :)
Dress Code: you must pay 25 Kr to enter if my memory is good
Club Tallinn: Tallinn in Tartu
Club Tallinn attracts large amounts of Estonian/Tartu citizens with its loud music, multiple rooms (including the chillout room filled with large couches) two bars, and theme nights (though I think the music always sounds the same) It is probably the most popular night club in Tartu. Open Wed. Fri., and Sat. Most nights women get in free before 11.
Illegaard: Sport pub
Somehow this is my favourite pub in Tartu.
If somewhere is football played it can be seen here on screen.
Live music every now and then.
Dress Code: Nothing special required.
- Beer Tasting
Püssirohukelder: The Highest Pub In The World
What is special in this place? It is the highest pub in the world.
An old gun powder cellar which is renovated to be a pub.
Dress Code: Nothing special required.
- Beer Tasting
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