57 Interesting Facts About Estonia

Last updated on January 6th, 2018

Facts about Estonia’s religion, culture, history, technology, people, economy, and flag.

27. Almost 19% of the Estonians are unemployed.

28. Estonian population is declining. It has a birth rate of 10.51 births per 1,000 population.

29. The flag of Estonia contains three colors: blue, black and white. Blue represents – faith, loyalty and devotion; black symbolizes – dark past and suffering, the soil of the country; and white denotes the quest to strive towards virtue and enlightenment.

30. It is interesting for the kids to note that Estonia has also been described as one of the most internet-focused countries in Europe.

31. Café culture is quite popular in the country. Cafes can be found in almost every corner and street across the country. The cafes in the country are small, cozy and provide a home-like feeling to its customers.

32. Estonia is a developed country with a high-income economy and high standard of living.

33. During your visit to Estonia, do not be amazed to find internet access even in the woods. Remember, we told you that Estonia is an internet-focused country.

34. Estonian schools are connected to the Internet. The Internet is everywhere in the country!

35. It is also the first country in the world to have used internet for political voting. The Estonian parliamentary elections were conducted online in 2007 for the first time in the world.

36. Estonia has a literacy rate of 99.8%, which makes it rank second in the world for that matter.

37. They host a wife-carrying competition every year. Many European countries participate in this event. The male contestants have to carry their female counterparts and run through the obstacle course in the least possible time.

wife-carrying competition Estonia
Competitors during the wife-carrying competition, Estonia. Image credit – sixfiftyml.com

38. Radiocarbon dating suggests that “the Pulli settlement”, the oldest settlement in Estonia, was settled around 11,000 years ago.

39. One-fifth of the mainland area of Estonia is covered with Bogs and Mires.

40. If you want to greet someone in Estonia with a “Hello”, you had say them “tere”. It means Hello in Estonian.

41. Folk song lovers, please pay attention to this fact. Estonia has the highest collection of written folk songs in the world – 133,000.

42. Estonia does not accept dual citizenship.

43. Estonia has one of the highest rates of mobile phone ownership per capita. With a mobile phone, you could pay for virtually anything. Free Wi-Fi is also available across the country.

44. Drink and drive is not permissible in Estonia. They have zero tolerance for such offenders. The takeaway time for alcoholic beverages in shops is restricted to 10 pm.

45. The capital of Estonia–Tallinn–is voted as the best protected and intact medieval city in Europe.

46. You can also have a good chance to travel on ice roads if you visit the country during winters. Ice roads are formed between the mainland and the islands when the Baltic Sea freezes during winters.

47. Pay attention bird watchers, here is something of interest for you. Estonia sees millions of migratory birds. At least 380 species of birds are spotted in Estonia annually. The bird watching season begins in early March in the country.

48. And the country is among the top three bird watching destinations in Europe for the number of species spotted here.

Tallinn Town Hall Square
Tallinn Town Hall Square – As a square it plays an important role today as well – in summer it is filled with outdoor cafes, plays host to the Old Town Days and other medieval festivals, is a venue for open-air concerts and fairs and more. In winter it becomes a magical Christmas market, the centrepiece of which is a towering spruce tree. Image credit – Jorge Lascar

Estonia facts for kids

49. Lake Peipsi is Estonia’s largest lake and Europe’s fourth largest freshwater lake.

50. Prior to 1921, Estonia was also spelled as “Esthonia”. Noticed the difference in the spelling?

51. The capital city has an area of approximately 159 sq km.

52. The Estonian territory consists of a mainland and islands and islets in the Baltic Sea.

53. The country was once ruled by the Danish, the Swedish, the Germans and the Russians.

54. In the area, Estonia is about twice the size of New Jersey.

55. It has a total 657 kilometers of land boundaries.

56. It is a democratic parliamentary republic.

57. Estonians celebrate their independence twice a year. Once on 24th of February and the other on 20th of August.

Estonia – country at a glance

Independence20 August 1991 (declared); 6 September 1991 (recognized by the Soviet Union)
Capital CityTallinna
Largest CityTallinna
Total area45,228 sq km
Population1,251,581 (July 2017 est.)
DemonymEstonian
Official LanguageEstonian
BordersLatvia, Russia and Finland.
Suffrage18 years of age; universal; age 16 for local elections
CurrencyEuro (€) (EUR)
ReligionLutheran Church (majorly a non-religious nation)
Life expectancy76.7 Years (2016)
Life expectancy at birth indicates the number of years a newborn infant would live if prevailing patterns of mortality at the time of its birth were to stay the same throughout its life.
Climatemaritime; wet, moderate winters, cool summers
Terrainmarshy, lowlands; flat in the north, hilly in the south
Natural resourcesoil shale, peat, rare earth elements, phosphorite, clay, limestone, sand, dolomite, arable land, sea mud
Agricultural land22.2%
Birth rate10.1 births/1,000 population (2017 est.)
Death rate12.6 deaths/1,000 population (2017 est.)
Sex ratio0.88 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
National symbolsbarn swallow, cornflower
National anthem"Mu isamaa, mu onn ja room" (My Native Land, My Pride and Joy)
Government typeparliamentary republic
PresidentKersti Kaljulaid
Prime MinisterJüri Ratas
National colorsblue, black, white
National holidayIndependence Day, 24 February (1918); note - 24 February 1918 was the date Estonia declared its independence from Soviet Russia and established its statehood; 20 August 1991 was the date it declared its independence from the Soviet Union
Industriesfood, engineering, electronics, wood and wood products, textiles; information technology, telecommunications
Exports$13.24 billion (2016 est.)
machinery and electrical equipment 34%, food products and beverages 9%, mineral fuels 9%, wood and wood products 10%, metals 7%, furniture 9%, vehicles and parts 6%, chemicals 5% (2015 est.)
Imports$15 billion (2016 est.)
machinery and electrical equipment 28 %, mineral fuels 11%, food and food products 10%, vehicles 9%, chemical products 8%, metals 8% (2015 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP)$29,500 (2016 est.)
Time ZoneIST (UTC+05:30)
Internet country code:.ee
Calling Code+372
Drives on theRight
Data sourcesCIA, Wikipedia
Table last updatedSeptember 7, 2017