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April 16: Tallinn – Vanalinn 1

I spent the rest of the time we had in Tallinn exploring Vanalinn and particularly Toompea.

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This is a dramatically limestony cliff by the highway just on the other (south) side of KUMU from the entrance, whither we had climbed down from the museum hill to catch a bus back to the city center.

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In town, a circular tower peeking out from an otherwise normal block. I wonder what the story is.

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The sliced-up masonry panel on this building is pretty cool; it's much more interesting than the accompanying copper siding.

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Peering into the pastel distance.

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A restaurant with a quite amusing name, Olde Hansa, and ren-faire sensibilities.

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I like landmark buildings where, like Raekoda (the Town Hall) here, the proportions and shapes are a little bit weird or off (in this case, the rocket-like verticality), because they can make a powerful, iconic imprint on the memory to a much greater degree than more moderate buildings.

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I also really enjoy the variety of brackets and little windows in the façade of this building; they're like a composition of tattoos and piercings.

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Cookies & cream pidge.

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An arcade of the town hall on the edge of Raekoja plats (Town Hall Square), the heart of Vanalinn.

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Generously rounded corner of the building right next to the town hall.

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At Niguliste kirik (St. Nicholas' Church), a pleasant medley of chapels, rather like Riddarholmskyrkan.

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Making our way up into Toompea.

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Emerging at Aleksander Nevski katedraal (Alexander Nevsky Cathedral), the Russian Orthodox cathedral.

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It's bubbling over!

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The also highly ornate portal. There was a service happening inside, which we watched for a few minutes, but understandably photography was not permitted. The priests intoning and burning incense in the middle of the crowd of worshippers had a powerful effect on me, especially in the impressive surroundings and with the late sunlight coming in.

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Just below the cathedral, a nice sign of spring, plus an interesting complex of walls.

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The spire of Niguliste kirik visible just a little ways away.

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Highly palimpsestuous.

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This is Taani kuninga aed (the Garden of the Danish King), on the side of Toompea, commemorating the legendary divine reception by medieval Danish warriors of their flag, the white cross on a red background, in battle at Tallinn.

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Interesting irregular cobbling.

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The Danish King himself!

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It's helpful of the stone path to direct a confused descender of the stairs on through the tunnel.

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You can almost hear the flutter echo just looking at this.

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Niguliste kirik, looming.

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The storied old walls of the church's nave.

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Quite a contrast of textures.