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Paide Town

Paide, Estonia

Paide town is located right in the centre of Estonia, earning it the nickname of “the Heart of Estonia”. A long historic background, beautiful surroundings, a colourful fair and festival life and an unique relationship with the limestone – come and experience the cosy feel of Paide.

The unique geographical location of Paide means it’s approximately 100km distance to any and all of the major Estonian towns. This is most likely the reason why the German order built their fortress in Paide a few centuries ago: easy and even access to anywhere in Estonia enabled them to keep an eye on everything.

Parts of the original fortress have stood the test of time, fortunately, Paide town was able to restore the eight-sided rampart tower (Paide Vallitorn) completely and now, it’s open to the public. Come and visit the Time Centre Wittenstein (ajakeskus) located in the restored tower and get to know the rich and fascinating history of not only Paide, but the whole of Estonia. Time travelling has been a dream for so many and Wittenstein Time Centre gives you a chance to touch and experience life throughout the centuries.

Paide town was named after the limestone (“paekivi” and “paas” in the Estonian language) and the town celebrates its special relationship with limestone through unique lime stone sculptures:

The best known limestone sculptures in Paide are “hitchhiker” (“hääletaja”) located in the town border; “Limestone Symphony” (Paesümfoonia) on Kitsas street – a tribute to the birth home of composer Arvo Pärt and “Four kings” (“Neli kuningat”) marking the place where four Estonian kings were executed before the historic Jüriöö riot.

A traditional limestone festival takes place every other year in Paide, attracting different sculptors and artists and enriching Paide with new limestone sculptures.

Thanks to its unique location, Paide has always been a popular choice for large fairs and festivals. This is a tradition cherished through centuries, right up to modern times, so when you are planning a trip to Paide, try to combine it with the Jürilaat, fair of the Masters, the Kreisilinna fair, the Christmas fair or The Winds of Times festival.

Visit a fair or festival and if you are lucky, you will meet the “four kings” in person: each year, Paide selects four kings from among its inhabitants to keep the legend of the four Estonian born kings alive.

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