15th August – Last day in Estonia

16 Aug

We reluctantly left the lake in the morning and headed back to Voru to see if we could find somewhere to buy a green card for Russia, as our insurance will not cover us at all and we need at least 3rd party to satisfy the police if we get stopped on the way. We could not find a company that would do it unless the car is Estonian registered. We gave up in the end, as we had heard that we could get it somewhere on the Russian border. The countryside down to the border crossing at Koidula is rolling hills and forest and we were surprised how empty it seemed. I suppose with only 1.34 million inhabitants (800 k of which live in and around Tallin) it should not be a surprise. Lots of houses were deserted, but still looked pretty with the flowers still growing around the windows.

On the other hand there were also a lot of old factories that are no longer working. There are very few jobs outside tourism in southern Estonia.

Next stop was some sandstone caves at Piusa. We did not go in the caves themselves but liked the playpark equipment …. typically nice woodwork.

Later we headed to a small village called Matsui just about one km from the border. We slept there (sort of) as there was lots of noise made by locals importing/dropping off cheap diesel right through the night. The diesel is around half the price of the diesel in the Baltic states and so some of the car owners increase the size of their fuel tanks and make up to three trips a day over the border to collect. It is gathered together and sold on for a profit. Good for the people doing it but bad for the queues at the border.

The next post will explain the border process and will describe our first day in Russia, which due to our host Olga, was great!

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