Things to know

Lifestyle

The life-style of Estonians is directly linked to the character of Estonians, the weather and different seasons. In winter Estonians tend to be more home- and work-centred, while summer is a time for active open-air activities and vacations in the countryside. In recent years Estonia has developed an excellent infrastructure of cultural, social and sporting facilities. Throughout the year there is a wide range of activities and events striving to meet and even exceed expectations of local inhabitants and their international guests. Since the regaining of independence and the rise of the living standard, there are more opportunities to travel and Estonians eagerly seize chances to see the world.

Greeting and kissing

On first encounter, foreigners may be surprised to find that approaching Estonians with warm hugs and kisses has just the opposite effect from creating an open and friendly atmosphere. Most of them at that awkward moment think – just a hand-shake would have been enough…Estonians do not tend to go to extremes with emotionality and sentimentality: opening up and trusting others on a personal level takes longer than with some other nationalities. But foreigners are advised to be patient in order to find an easy-going and fun conversation partner, a generous host and a faithful friend, who will give his or her warm hug only to special people at special moments.

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