Pärnu, Estonia – How was it for a family holiday?

I wrote you about our summer holiday plans here. As it turned out we ended up traveling in Finland and also went to Pärnu, Estonia by car for a couple of days.

We stayed there for only three nights since we thought it would be a tiny village with not much to do but if we went there again we would stay a full week. Not only because there is lots to do but also because when you get this caravan (family of five) all packed up and moving it would be worth to make the most of it and stay a couple more nights.

About Pärnu

Pärnu is the fourth largest city in Estonia with the total population of 40 000 inhabitants. It’s located in the southwestern part of Estonia little over 100 kilometers from the capitol, Tallinn. Pärnu is famous for being a rehabilitation and holiday resort and most of the tourist are Finns, Swedes and Russians.


Getting there

From Helsinki with a ferry and then drive. If you are feeling more adventurous or if don’t have children it’s also easy to reach by bus from Tallinn.

The ferry itself was part of the fun! Driving in there was exciting but the ferry has great facilities for families. We took the newest ferry Tallink Megastar that has started to operate only this year. It has good shopping facilities “largest mall on the Baltic Sea” and the children’s playroom was very good! It has surveillance cameras in there so parents can sit outside and monitor their kids from tv screens. Our son ran there first thing when we got to the ferry, got new friends and we could hardly get him out of there to drink or eat.

At the harbor we had gotten a “family”-tag to our windscreen and could skip the lines, made it to the front in the ferry (which meant that we got out fast) and they left us enough space to be able to move around with our twin stroller. If you are nervous about travelling by ferry, don’t be! They have organized it very well for families.


This is already from the Pärnu beach.

Where to stay?

Everyone said that Pärnu is so small village that all hotels are close to the center. Well.. it’s not that tiny. Our hotel was quite far away. The hotel itself was not bad. Our room was two floors which was beautiful but not the most practical solutions with children.

There are many hotels with spas and waterparks. Also Air bnb might be a good solution. If I went again I would look at them. During the holiday season Pärnu is quite expensive and it’s not easy to find good price-quality ratio in hotels.


Cows between the hotel called Tervise Paradiis and the sea.

What to do?

This was the surprising part! We thought that ok they have the beach and then they have waterparks and spas.

But the whole beach boulevard was filled with activities. Nothing spectacular, to be honest, but all in the same area and on holiday we had time to try it all. They had very nice playgrounds for children, mini golf, tivoli, carousel, bouncing castles, pedal go carts and more. With only three days we only got to the beach and this beach boulevard area and visited the Pärnu center. The beach itself was amazing by the way! The water was shallow and warm and perfect for small children. We were also lucky with weather. Sunny and warm weather every day. We could have spent every day at the beach.

If we’d had more time I would have liked to take a boat ride, visit an alpaca farm and go to Estonia’s largest theme park Lottemaa.


To eat?

This one I really don’t know. With the the older boy we have gone to the restaurants since he was two months old but with twins it feels stressful. That’s why we got our meals to go and ate at the parks which they have many and they are beautiful!

This was a stress-free solution which is always good on holidays.


Best in Pärnu?

It felt like a true summer city. People walked around in beach wear holding their swim rings. They were in a relaxed holiday mood. No one had to hurry anywhere. This was a location I could see myself going back to.

Have a lovely week end!

Mannamaria 

4 thoughts on “Pärnu, Estonia – How was it for a family holiday?

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