From Riga to Tallinn – A Baltic States Rail Adventure

From Riga to Tallinn A Baltic States Rail Adventure

The cheapest way to travel from Riga to Tallinn is by bus. Usually, 26 buses depart Riga daily for the 173 mile (279 km) journey.

Several bus companies operate this route including FlixBus, Ecolines and Lux Express. Prices are generally cheaper when booked further in advance or on weekends.


Riga is a bustling city in the heart of Latvia. Visitors can explore historical landmarks like the Freedom Monument, a symbol of the Latvian War of Independence. In addition, the city boasts a diverse selection of natural attractions like the Botanical Gardens of the University of Latvia, which is home to more than six thousand different plants. Traveling from Riga to Tallinn is easy with well-scheduled flights by Air Baltic and bus service by Lux Express.

If you’re planning to take a bus trip from Riga to Tallinn, make sure to book your ticket in advance. It’s generally cheaper to purchase your tickets 1 day in advance of the trip than on the day of departure.

Buses from Riga to Tallinn are available daily, and the journey takes about 4 hours and 30 minutes. Depending on the time of year, prices for this route can vary significantly. If you’re planning a trip, it’s best to book your bus tickets in advance to ensure that you get the best deal and avoid overcrowded buses.

The bus ride from Riga to Tallinn is an inexpensive and comfortable option for travelers on a budget. Many companies offer a range of services, including comfortable seats, free Wi-Fi, and onboard snacks. The majority of buses are direct, and they depart from Riga’s Pragas iela or Juglas iela station and arrive at Tallinn’s Autobussijaam Lastekodu tn 46 bus station.

To save money on your trip, book your ticket through a website such as Omio, which allows you to compare prices and schedules for bus tickets from Riga to Tallinn. You can also check out the reviews of other passengers to help you make an informed decision about which type of bus to ride.

Unlike flights and trains, buses are relatively inexpensive ways to travel between cities in Europe. Plus, the bus is a great way to meet fellow travelers and connect with locals. Plus, you can enjoy the scenery on your journey. The Baltic states offer everything from stunning natural landscapes and UNESCO World Heritage Sites to unique cuisines and traditions. This adventure is perfect for adventurous souls who want to discover a new side of Europe.


One of the most popular routes in the Baltics is a trip from Tallinn to Riga via Kaunas. This is because the hotels are located in the city center, transfers at the beginning and end of the program are included in the price and qualified guides will make your tour unforgettable. Moreover, the bus movement is comfortable and there are plenty of stops for you to take a break.

For those who prefer not to spend a lot of time on trains, it is possible to travel between Tallinn and Riga by plane. The local airline company AirBaltic offers cheap tickets and regular flights. However, flying isn’t as enjoyable as traveling by train and you miss out on the stunning scenery.

Another option is the Tallinn to Vilnius train, which runs daily and takes just under four hours. It runs through Estonian and Latvian countryside, making it a pleasant alternative to the bus. The only downside is that it requires a stop at the border town of Valga, where you have to switch trains and the transit time can be quite long.

A new rail line called the Rail Baltica will eventually connect all three countries with a connection to Poland and Germany. It will also bring an improvement to travel times between the capital cities of the Baltic states. However, this is a project with many challenges, and it could be a decade before the first trains run between Tallinn and Vilnius.

The main line will start outside of Riga at the Ulemiste station, with services stopping in Parnu and at Riga International Airport before crossing the border into Lithuania. From there, the track will continue to a new station in Kaunas, where it will split. Some services will run to a new station in Panevys, while others will head to Riga or even Warsaw.

The new line will be a game-changer for tourists in the region, as it will provide faster, more reliable connections between the three Baltic states and beyond. Besides speeding up travel, it will also boost economic development and create more jobs. According to a study by Ernst & Young, the measurable socio-economic benefits of the Rail Baltica Global Project are estimated at EUR 16.2 billion.


The Baltic states are the perfect destination for those seeking pristine experiences and unique impressions. They are home to vibrant ancient traditions and new economies embracing the modern. The best way to discover the Baltic countries is to join a private tour. However, it is also possible to explore the cities of Riga, Kaunas and Tallinn on your own. The new high-speed train route connecting the three Baltic capitals makes travelling by rail easy and enjoyable.

Kristiina tries to ignore the fact that the bus she is sitting in will take eighteen hours before it gets to Tallinn. She has paid ten euros extra for business class, which gives her a bigger seat and more space. Nevertheless, she is not particularly excited about the journey.

A direct Vilnius-Riga route was agreed upon by the transport ministers of the three Baltic states in October and will be extended to include Tallinn in the future. The new service, operated by RB Rail, will run four times a day, reducing travel time between the three Baltic capitals to just over three hours.

In addition, RB Rail is committed to environmental sustainability, and the line will be designed to minimize the impact on protected areas, such as Natura 2000 sites. It will also use the latest technologies to reduce energy consumption and emissions.

Once the route is complete, it will be possible to travel from Warsaw via Kaunas or Vilnius to Helsinki in Finland. Ultimately, the train can also connect to other destinations in Scandinavia. In 2026, the distance between Warsaw and Tallinn will be covered in just over three hours.

Taking a ferry from Tallinn to Riga is a scenic and relaxing option. The trip can be easily combined with a visit to other destinations in the Baltics and beyond, such as Helsinki and Stockholm.

A short flight with AirBaltic between the two capitals is an alternative to a long bus ride or a train journey. This option is quicker but will not allow travellers to enjoy the beautiful scenery of the Baltic countryside. Besides, you will have to spend most of your time in the air, which can be tiring after a long day sightseeing in the city.


Tallinn’s UNESCO-listed medieval Old Town is one of the best-preserved Hanseatic centers in Europe, its fairytale streets lined with Gothic towers and elegant merchant houses. Begin your explorations in the Town Hall Square, where charming pastel buildings line a cobbled plaza buzzing with outdoor cafe seating and stalls during summer and hosting an atmospheric Christmas market in winter. Strolling the streets, you’ll discover a number of historic sites such as Toompea Castle (built in the 9th century) and the soaring Alexander Nevsky Cathedral.

Nearby, the Museum of Occupations and Freedom recounts Estonia’s experiences under Soviet, Nazi, and Russian occupation. The onsite suitcase display is a reminder of the many who fled their homes to escape repression and search for a new life in the West.

You can fly between Riga and Tallinn with AirBaltic four times a day. The flight takes around 4 hours and costs from 26 USD. The bus ride is also possible, taking 4 hours and costing from 16 USD for Lux Express and 8 USD for Simple Express coaches.

On the way to Tallinn, stop in Tartu, a university city that’s quieter when students have gone home for the summer. It’s one of 28 UNESCO Literature Cities and boasts a beautiful castle-like cathedral, as well as an intriguing Military Museum that traces the country’s struggle for independence.

In the evening, a cocktail bar in the heart of Old Town serves up a selection of tempting martinis and vodkas to sample as you gaze out over the square’s clay-tiled rooftops and cobbled streets. Alternatively, venture to the top of the city’s 314-meter-high TV tower and soak in sensational panoramas from its open viewing platform, or braver souls can try to walk on the glass floor attached to a safety harness!

In 2023, the Rail Baltic project will connect Tallinn to Riga and Kaunas via Lithuania’s border with Poland. The high-speed link will bring the three Baltic states closer to the rest of Europe and make traveling between them an easier, more comfortable experience. This will significantly cut travel times, which can currently be up to 4 hours or more.

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