Tallinn is an ever-changing city, where new places keep popping up every day, all filled with youthful energy. At the same time, the old town with its narrow streets is perfect for lovers of romance. In the light of this mixture of old and new, of romance and modernity, you have every right to wonder what a typical date in Tallinn would look like. One thing is certain, expect the unexpected!

Photo: aitor (CC-BY-SA)
A refreshing way to end a date

E&M: How do young people meet?

As in most other places, the most typical way of meeting new people is through common friends. You'll start speaking to someone at a party, maybe hook up with them and, if all goes well, exchange numbers, text a bit, meet at another party and then go on a date, even though "real" dates are quite rare.

The important thing to keep in mind is that as Tallinn, and Estonia in general, is so small you never really meet somebody new. You always have at least 20 friends in common. This means that you might end up going on a date with the best friend of the guy that you went on a date with the previous day. So prepare yourself to face a possibly embarrassing situation or learn to embrace the situation with an ironic smile, as most Tallinners do.

E&M: What do people do and where do they go on a date?

Having dinner is common. You can invite the person over and cook something, drink wine and watch a movie together. Although it's cheap and relaxed, it's quite intimate for a first date, so it's more likely that you go out to eat. A few good places to go to are fashionable SfäärLeib and Moon. You can also go to one of the cosy romantic cafés in the old town, like chocolaterie Chez Pierre or Kehrwieder, and drink one of their chocolaty love poisons. After dinner, go to the rooftop cinema to watch old classics, art house and European films, while slowly moving closer together as the evening gets colder. There are also several concerts, dance and theatre spectacles taking place in the city that might be worth visiting.

"You always have at least 20 friends in common. You might end up going on a date with the best friend of the guy you dated yesterday"

If you are adventurous and feel that the night is still young, you'll probably meet up with mutual friends and go out for some drinks or to a party. Popular places include Hell Hunt, which is known for its house beer and cider and a very lively terrace, and Noku, which is popular with the in-crowd. But there are always new places opening up so it's worth taking a stroll and looking for the place with the right vibe – there's something to everyone's liking. You might continue the night at one of the clubs Von Krahl, Balou, Hollywood or Club Privé where you can kiss your date quietly, when no-one seems to look. In the end, if you're still not tired, take a bottle of wine (or some gin and tonic) to the seaside and watch the sunrise followed by some skinny-dipping... 

"Take some gin and tonic to the seaside and watch the sunrise, followed by some skinny-dipping..."

E&M: Do you go home with your date?

You might, but you might not. It depends how the evening goes and what you expect from the other person. If you really like the other person, you probably won't. A true gentleman often walks a lady home or to her transport and then gives her a goodnight kiss.

E&M: How do you know there will be a second date?

You'll receive a text message or a phone call the next day.

IN -1116 DAYS