Country Holidays
SIF

Silver Suitcase Tours

The tours are self-drive tours through pleasant Baltic countryside featuring cultural monuments from various centuries and scenic views. Ancient manor houses, medieval castles, churches are combined with local traditions, crafts, excellent food and national parks with many walking and nature observation possibilities. 

When you have booked the tour -you will receive vouchers for all reservations (accommodation, car hire, some tickets etc.) as well as a very detailed route description with maps. You also benefit from 24h help line while on the tour. 

What are the individual tours?
Overview Tour details
N/A
12 days
Total distance driving 747 km
Estonia, Latvia, Russian Federation
from 695 EUR / pers

Castles and Manors from Riga to St. Petersburg

The tour starts in Riga with its attractive Old Town and elegant Art Nouveau district. Then it goes through Gauja National Park with the medieval castles of Turaida, Sigulda and Krimulda, all with great views to the valley below. Next visit is in romantic Bīriņi Manor surrounded by a large park and lake. Next, visit the oldest remaining wooden baroque manor at Ungurmuiža followed by the mighty Livonian Order castles ruins and New Castle at Cēsis Old Town. Your next visit is elegant neo-baroque Dikļi manor with antique furniture and fireplaces. Across to Estonia, stop at Sangaste manor built in the historicism style and then Otepää hill fort which shows that a sophisticted society was active in the area before the 7th century. Explore Tartu, where the first Baltic university is located, and the old observatory on the top of the Toomemägi hill. Further on the route passes Alatsikivi manor with a beautiful park and stops at Rakvere castle ruins, a popular outdoor performance venue. Lahemaa Park contains several German manors at Kolga, Sagadi and Vihula. Sagadi manor house is now a forest museum. 19th century Palmse Manor is famous and one of the most atttractive baroque manors in Estonia surrouded by a large park and pond system. Stay in Tallinn with its compact, picturesque Old Town then take a ferry to Helsinki. There is time to explore the city centre before catching an overnight ferry to St. Petersburg. The former Russian capital's main attractions are its historic centre and Winter Palace, the Hermitge and St. Isaaac's Cathedral, among others. But we also recommend you have an excursion just outtside the city to grand Petrodvorets with a spectacular fountain cascade in the summer as well as Pushkin and Pavlosk Palaces, both of which have outstanding formal parks.

Castles and manors Active season months1-12
N/A
8 days
Total distance driving 1073 km, walking 12 km
Latvia, Lithuania
from 350 EUR / pers

Along the shores of the Baltic states to the Curonian Spit

This tour has a very summery feel since it never wanders too far from the sea. Latvian sea resort Jurmala attracts with characteristic wooden cottages from the 19th century, Dzintari concert hall and a lively beach. Cape Kolka is located in Slitere National Park which also includes the traditional villages of the smallest ethnic group in the world, the Livs. Enjoy empty beaches and locally smoked fish. Ventspils is an immaculately maintained town with a medieval castle and well equipped beach. Pavilosta is Latvia's unofficial windsurfing capital, while Palanga in Lithuania has an excellent amber museum. Lithuania's pearl is the Curonian Spit and its lagoon which attracts with its vast sand dunes and Nida, a charming village with a Thomas Mann Museum. Back in Latvia, Liepaja is an exciting city with a historic quarter, beach, lively restaurants and clubs and a distinctive millitary heritage in the form of former naval forts and a military zone. Kuldiga is loved by artists due to its picturesque little cobbled streets with wooden houses and the Europe's widdest waterfall on the Venta river.

By the sea Active season months5-9
N/A
14 days
Total distance driving 1796 km
Latvia, Lithuania
from 560 EUR / pers

Along the Baltic National Parks - Latvia and Lithuania

A panoramic tour of Lithuania and Latvia with highlights of nature experiences in the National parks and nature reserves. A variety of landscapes, nature attraction sites, birds and wild animals, forests and seashore. The tour also offers some cultural and historical insights.

Baltic States are lucky to have plenty of untouched natural territories. During the Cambrian, Silurian and Devonian eras, the territory of the current Baltic States was often covered by seawater, which is why there are places where lots of geological evidence can be found about these periods in history.  These are manifested not just in fossils and various geological objects, but also in the unique landscape. For example, The Gauja River basin is an outstanding locations for Devonian cliffs and caves. Other interesting elements of the terrain relate to the development of the Baltic Sea in the past – the Baltic Ice Sea and the Littorine Sea. That is well presented at he landscape of hillocks and valleys in the Slītere National Park. Many forests  and bogs have remained virtually untouched as biotopes here.  The Ķemeri, Slītere national parks were all established to protect wetlands. Rivers in the Baltic States have not been straightened and dense areas of buildings are not common.  There are two “lands of lakes” in the Baltic States – Latgale and Augštaitija. The Baltic States are at the crossroads of the living areas of many different plants and animals, and that is why “northern,” “southern,” “western” and “eastern” species can all be found here. Some national parks have been established to protect distinctive local cultural heritage.

N/A
6 days
Total distance driving 1195 km, walking 8 km
Estonia, Finland, Latvia

Explore the countryside of the Baltic Sea

The tour introduces a variety of attractions and values outside big cities revealing the true character of the countries. Visitors will experience the beauty of nature in national parks, charming ambience of rural manors, visit traditional rural farms and skilful traditional artisans and craftsmen.

National park Local lifestyle
N/A
17 days
Total distance driving 2515 km
Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania
from 750 EUR / pers

Baltic Country Life

The tour introduces modern day life in rural Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania and includes visits to small farms raising livestock and producing delicious foods, and to ethnographic villages preserving the traditional lifestyle in a contemporary environment. The tour also involves sites of historical and cultural interest.

The tour gives a look beyond the usual tourism sites to get to know the three Baltic states more deeply. It starts in the historic Latvian capital, Riga, followed by the Gauja National Park with its castles, manors and walking trails. Climb the tower of medieval Turaida Castle for amazing views over the valley and visit the ancient jewellery master in the castle of the charming town of Cesis. 

Across the border in Estonia, walk streets with elegant villas at Parnu sea resort before catching a ferry to Saaremma island. Ethnographic Koguva village, ancient churches and windmills are typical of the island, as is an embroidering tradition. Then it's off to Tallinn with its medieval Old Town and to the rocky landscapes of Lahemaa National Park with fishing villages and manors. Try Estonian national dishes at the pub in Altja. Driving back, stop at the university town of Tartu. In Latvia again, visit goat farms and a traditional black bread bakery. Then the tour heads towards the west coast with the cities of Liepaja and, across the border in Lithunaia, Klaipeda. Next is the incredible Curonian Spit. Before Vilnius, take a detour to Grutas Park with its bizarre Soviet statuary. Finish the journey at picturesque Trakai Castle in Lithuania and Rundale Palace in Latvia.

Local lifestyle Active season months4-10
N/A
7 days
Total distance driving 774 km
Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Russian Federation

Castles' and manors' road

The tour provides an insight into history of the countries through experience of castles and manor houses, starting from massive medieval stone walls through to exquisite Baroque and Art Nouveau masterpieces. The route weaves through two national parks - the Gauja National Park in Latvia and the Lahemaa National Park in Estonia. You will see the most beautiful highlands of the Baltic States, as well as the impressive seashore in Northern Estonia. You will spend time in enchanting small Baltic towns and visit important centres of culture and history, including Tartu and the two capital cities – Riga and Tallinn. Accommodations is organized at baronial estates and castles where ever it is possible. An optional day cruise to St. Petersburg adds the link to Russia and demonstrates the greatest pearls of architecture.

 

 

National park Castles and manors

Project is co-financed by the European Union and Society Integration Foundation

The sole responsibility of this publication lies with the author. The European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein