Kihnu women and motorcycleSource: Silvia Maria Soide

Kihnu island

Kihnu is an ancient island of sailors and fishermen. Its cultural heritage is listed as a UNESCO masterpiece of oral and intangible heritage.

The seventh-largest island in Estonia, Kihnu is home to a close-knit community of about 700 inhabitants, who value old traditions along with their local language and songs. Singing and dancing are integral parts of life for the locals.

Throughout centuries, the men of Kihnu have spent most of their time at sea, while the women have become keepers and carriers of cultural heritage, which includes handicrafts, dances, games and music of the island. To this day, you can see the women of Kihnu riding motorbikes wearing Kihnu homespun striped skirts (called a "Kört" in Estonian).

In order to experience old traditions, it is best to visit Kihnu during folk or church calendar holidays, for example, on Midsummer Day, St. Catherine's Day or during Christmas. 

Kihnu island is accessible by ferry from the mainland between Munalaiu and Kihnu harbour. The ferry called “Virve”, takes both cars and pedestrians. Check schedules and purchase tickets in advance. Alternatively, you can reach Kihnu by bus and ferry from Pärnu; tickets are available online at

Source: Priidu Saart

The Kihnu Museum, which is open to visitors around the year, provides an overview of the history of the island, including the life of the famous captain Kihnu Jõnn. When booked in advance, you can practice handicrafts with true craftsmen or enjoy a concert by a folk band. Visitors are also welcome at the Metsamaa traditional farm, where you can witness the daily life of Kihnu for yourself and watch various films about the island. 

Culture lovers are sure to be delighted by home visits, truck tours, and fishing trips offered in Kihnu. A beautiful view of the entire island, the surrounding islets, where the sea opens up can be seen from the top of the local lighthouse.

A great way to discover more of the island is to take a tour of Kihnu (Kihnu Reesuratas), which takes you through all four villages on the island. This 23-km tour includes sights across the entire island. The tours can be taken both by car or on foot. Another great option for exploring Kihnu is to borrow a bike on the island.

For more information go and visit Kihnu island's official website:

Kihnu's top attractions

Kihnu Travel Wheel Kihnu Reesuratas - official tourist route

Kihnu Travel Wheel is the perfect round route for discovering the cultural and natural sights on Kihnu island

Kihnu Travel Wheel Kihnu Reesuratas - official tourist route

Source: Renee Altrov