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Kalamaja - Wooden houses & Bohemian charm

 
25.02.2014

Architecture and history buffs or anyone who wants to get the feel for the grittier edge of Tallinn’s art scene should pay a visit to Kalamaja, one of the so-called wooden architecture areas and home of the biggest sea centre the Seaplane Harbour
This quiet neighbourhood has long been known for its colourful hodgepodge of old fashioned, working class houses. Throughout most of Tallinn’s history Kalamaja served as the town’s main fishing harbour. In fact, “Kalamaja” literally means "fish house" in Estonian, and starting from the 14th century the area was traditionally dominated by fishermen, fishmongers and boat wrights. Everything changed in 1870, however, when Tallinn was connected to St. Petersburg by railroad. Suddenly enormous factories started to sprout up in this part of town, and they brought with them an influx of thousands of new workers. 

The wooden houses built to accommodate these workers became Kalamaja's architectural legacy and are now what gives neighbourhood its unforgettable charm. The most architecturally unique of these are called “Tallinn Houses”. Built in the 1920s and 30s, these two to three-storey apartment houses are made of two symmetrical wooden wings separated by a stone central staircase. There are about 500 of these in the city today.
Recently it has also taken on a Bohemian atmosphere, becoming the residence of choice for young, creative types. 
Visitors will also notice that some of the Kalamaja’s old industrial infrastructure is still intact and operating. The Estonia Piano Factory (Kungla 41) for example, is renowned for producing some of the world’s best grand pianos. Many factory buildings, however, have now been converted for other uses, like providing space for the city’s cutting edge art scene. 

Take a look at Kalamaja's restaurantscafes and bars from here. 

 
 
   
Balti Jaam Market

Balti Jaam Market

Kalamaja
A true bargain-hunter's paradise, this sprawling market behind the train station sells just about everything.
Kopli 1, Tallinn
+372 641 3436
jaama.turg@mail.ee
Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia

Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia

Kalamaja
Põhja pst 35, Tallinn
+372 508 4570
info@ekkm.ee
www.ekkm.ee
Energy Discovery Centre

Energy Discovery Centre

Kalamaja
With over 130 new, interactive, hands-on exhibits, this museum is a mad scientist's dream come true.
Põhja pst 29, 10415 Tallinn
+372 620 9020
info@energiakeskus.ee
www.energiakeskus.ee
Estonian Design House

Estonian Design House

Kalamaja
The Design House is the place to view the best creations by local designers and make some worthy purchases.
Kalasadama 8, Tallinn
+372 5800 4036
showroom@estoniandesignhouse.ee
www.estoniandesignhouse.ee
Kalamaja Children's Museum Miiamilla

Kalamaja Children's Museum Miiamilla

Kalamaja
This little museum is home to all sorts of dolls, teddy bears and other toys, from folk dolls to Teletubbies.
Kotzebue 16, Tallinn
+372 641 3491
laste@linnamuuseum.ee
www.linnamuuseum.ee/lastemuuseum
Kalamaja Park

Kalamaja Park

Kalamaja
This former burial ground is now a park featuring tall trees, pathways, children’s play areas and a historic bell tower.
Tööstuse, Kungla; Kungla 63, Tallinn


Kalaturg (Fish market)

Kalaturg (Fish market)

Kalamaja
Operating every Saturday morning, this market specialises in fish produce caught in local waters or grown by local fishermen.
Kalaranna 1, 10415 Tallinn


www.tallinnaturud.ee/kalaturg/asukoht-kontakt/
Kalju Baptist Church

Kalju Baptist Church

Kalamaja
The only remaining church in the Kalamaja district, Kalju was the very first place of worship for Tallinn's Baptists.
Kalju 1, Tallinn
+372 5622 0110

www.kalju.ee/
Kalma sauna

Kalma sauna

Kalamaja
The architect of this 1928 grand Neoclassical sauna complex with Art Deco elements is Aleksander Vladovski. 
Vana-Kalamaja 9a, Tallinn
+3726 271 811

www.kalmasaun.ee/
Kultuurikatel

Kultuurikatel

Kalamaja
Põhja pst. 27 A, Tallinn
+372 5620 1115
info@kultuurikatel.ee
kultuurikatel.ee
Lennusadam (Seaplane Harbour)

Lennusadam (Seaplane Harbour)

Kalamaja
The unforgettable Seaplane Harbour is home to a super-modern maritime and military museum, complete with historic ships to tour.
Vesilennuki 6, 10415 Tallinn
+372 6200 545
booking@lennusadam.eu
www.lennusadam.eu

Noblessner Foundry

Kalamaja
This reclaimed industrial building is located at the Noblessner Harbour, not far from the newly-redeveloped Old Seaplane Harbour. With its excellent seaside location, it has turned out to be a fantastic venue for hosting festivals like the Maritime ...
Tööstuse 48, Tallinn


Patarei Prison and Sea Fortress

Patarei Prison and Sea Fortress

Kalamaja
The imposing, seaside complex is both an architectural monument and a place to see the grim realities of Soviet prison life.
Kalaranna 2, Tallinn
+372 55046 536
info@patarei.org
patarei.org/et/tegevused/vanglamuuseum
Salme Cultural Centre

Salme Cultural Centre

Kalamaja
Following the Stalinist architectural style, the cultural centre was built in 1965. 
Salme 12, 10413 Tallinn
+372 641 6425
info@salme.ee
www.salme.ee
Telliskivi Creative City

Telliskivi Creative City

Kalamaja
Telliskivi Creative City is a new, artist-friendly complex that has become a popular hangout for shoppers and restaurant-goers.
Telliskivi 60a, 10412 Tallinn
+372 504 7353
info@telliskivi.eu
telliskivi.eu/en/
 
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