This is how traveling here has been like so far. However, because of COVID-19 and airline restrictions, we cannot make any promises that getting here by plane will be that easy in January. We will make sure to update you again then!
How to get to Tartu
→ Through Tallinn and Rīga. Lennart Meri Tallinn Airport is located just outside the city center of Tallinn, on the road to Tartu. It is comfortable to rent a car, take a bus or Airport Shuffle service. Riga International Airport is connected with Tartu through Lux Express buses.
Ϟ By plane
→ From Helsinki. Tartu is directly accessible by plane via Helsinki. Helsinki-Tartu flights are operated by Finnair 6 days a week. Tickets for the flights to Tartu Airport can only be bought from the Finnair website.
You can get to the city of Tartu from the airport by the Airport shuttle. Check more about the shuttle from Tartaline page.
Ϟ By carTartu is only a pleasant drive away from Tallinn, the capital of Estonia – the 185 km drive takes two hours, while the Latvian capital Riga, is 260 km or three-and-a-half hours to the south-west. Driving here also means you can stop and admire some of Estonia’s prettiest and most interesting sights along the way – for ideas, see Visit Estonia page.
If you're traveling between Riga, Tartu and St. Petersburg, you can plan your trip through Estonia using the Via Hanseatica travel planner. We recommend renting a car if you would like to explore Tartu and South Estonia before or after the festival. Further information about that can be found via Tartu Visitor Centre.
Ϟ By bus→ From Tallinn. Getting to Tartu from Tallinn is super easy by bus which only takes 2.5 hours. Comfortable Lux Express buses depart from Tallinn bus station and from the airport as well every half hour from 6:30AM to 8PM and every hour until 11PM. Find schedules & tickets from tpilet or the Lux Express page.
→ Other cities. You can also get to Tartu by bus from Rīga in Latvia and St. Petersburg, Moscow and Pechory in Russia. Check the schedules & tickets from Lux Express, Eurolines of Ecolines.
Ϟ By train→ From Tallinn. Trains between Tallinn and Tartu run 11 times a day. Fast, comfortable diesel trains take you to your destination in two hours. Check the schedule & tickets from Elron page.
→ Other cities. You can come to Tartu from Rīga by train as well. Schedules & tickets via Pasažieru Vilciens. Another international route is Tallinn-St Petersburg-Moscow, operated by AS GoRail.
The festival venue, UT Sports Hall (Ujula 4) is approximately 1.4 kilometers from the city centre, which is quite easy to reach by foot. However, the distances in a foreign city might seem a bit further than in your home town and it might be cold outside as well. Therefore, we have alternative ways to get to the venue.
Ϟ BusYou can reach basically every part of the city by bus. Bus lines 4 and 8 take you to the festival venue from the city centre (stop Kesklinn I). Line number 25 takes you to the city centre from the train station.
All public transportation is free during the festival period if you're wearing a festival wristband. You'll get your festival wristband when you pick up your badge!
Before and after the festival, tickets can be purchased directly from the bus driver with cash or you can pay for your journey with a contactless bank card at the validators next to the doors. If you expect to be using public transportation frequently during your stay, you can purchase a bus card from R-Kiosks, shopping centres or other selling points. The card costs 2€ and can be topped up at selling points or online. Find more information about the tickets and schedules HERE.
Ϟ TaxiIf it is your first time in Tartu, it is best to take a taxi to get to your final destination in the city. Most taxi drivers speak some English and all taxis are equipped with meters. The easiest way to order a taxi is using the transportation app Bolt, created by an Estonian unicorn. There is no Uber in Tartu.
You can also call a taxi the old-fashioned way – you can find more information about taxi service in Tartu here.
Ϟ BikeYes, you read correctly – bikes in winter. In June 2019, Smart Bike Share system was unveiled in Tartu. The system has 750 bikes in 69 bike share stations across the city. A total of 510 bikes are electric and the remaining 240 are regular bikes. Those 240 regular bikes will be available during winter as well. So, if you're up to an extreme experience (or not so extreme, depends on the weather, of course) you can also come to the venue by bike.
In order to rent a bike, you must have a valid Tartu bus season ticket or you must purchase a bike share membership. You must create a bike share account, either online or via the mobile app (Tartu Smart Bike), and connect it to a credit card. Additional info from City of Tartu page.