Welcome to Võru, a distinctive town!
Võru is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful towns in Estonia. The town centre, with its distinctive street pattern and lovely low wooden houses, will enchant you more and more with every step you take. The town's pearl is Lake Tamula with the shore promenade connected to the historical centre of the town through picturesque Katariina Alley. Situated right in the town centre is Võru's oldest and most attractive building: a former landowner's manor that now accommodates a state upper secondary school.
The distinctive character of Võru is emphasised by the town's slogan of Üts ummamuudu liin ("A town unto itself"), which relays a positive and affectionate attitude, values the friendly and open residents of this town, expresses a typical Võru lifestyle, hints at the peculiar local dialect of the Estonian language, the original wooden architecture, the beautiful environment, the predilection for all things that are our own and good, the respect for a culture that focuses on self-identity.
Võru is a paradise for skiers and summer holidaymakers
Võru is the best place for winter and summer holidays. Just an 8-minute drive away from the town centre are the illuminated skiing and running tracks in Kubija and it will take you just 20 minutes of driving to reach the many illuminated skiing tracks in Haanja.
In the summer the great beach of Lake Tamula is a mere 600-900 metres of pleasant walking from any hotel or guesthouse in the area. Tamula Beach is very comfortable, with plenty rest and recreation opportunities for people of all ages: wide sandy spaces, playgrounds for small children, ball courts, open-air fitness zone and so on. You can choose to suntan in the grassy part of the beach and spare yourself any discomfort from sand on your skin and in the towels. Free shower and toilet facilities are available, too. Having had your beach fun, be sure to go for a stroll on the adjacent 800-metre promenade that begins at Tamula Hotel and ends at Roosisaare Bridge with a picturesque view of Võru and the lake. In the vicinity of the bridge you will find an ancient settlement site and a striking sculpture that symbolises the force of life itself. In the summer months you can visit the Tamula Beach Bungalow to relax and listen to good music.
To the equal enjoyment of locals and tourists, there is a Romance Festival in early July, the Võru Folklore Festival in mid-July, the Võru Town Days in August and many other exciting events.
If you want a more serene beach experience, go to tiny Lake Kubija next to the hotel and nature spa of the same name.
Bigger on the inside
Võru's population currently stands at 12,573 people (as of 1 May 2016). Although Võru is hardly a sprawling metropolis even by modest Estonian standards, this town offers enough activities to cater to all tastes. If you are interested in history, you should visit the Fr. R. Kreutzwald Memorial Museum and the Võru County Culture Chamber, which has both a museum and a gallery. If it is culture that tickles your fancy, direct your steps to the Võru Culture House nicknamed Kannel (the harp) as it has a cinema, theatre and concert halls and a town gallery. Live rock music is regularly played at the Õlle 17 Pub while the Spring Café is the jazz venue. For night-time partying go to any or all of these clubs: Club Tartu, Capital, Steding Cellar and Taevas ja Põrgu (Heaven and Hell). There are also plenty of accommodation options for every budget and preference, for instance the Kubija Hotel and Nature Spa, the Georgi Hotel in a historically valuable building incorporating a range of smart solutions, the lovely Mõisa Ait and Ränduri guesthouses, etc.
Sports enthusiasts will not get bored in Võru either, with many ways of pursuing your favourite sport on your own or in competitions because there are numerous skiing, running and roller-skating tracks and sporting facilities in the town and around it.
Võru has an excellent sports centre and several smaller sports bases. You will be hard pressed to come up with a sport that you couldn't pursue around here. Without doubt the most attractive and mass local sports events are the Võhandu 100 Marathon, the Southern Estonia Rally and the Võru Roller. For a good overview of sport events in Võru County visit the website of the county sports association: http://vorumaaspordiliit.ee/.
Various organisations have also duly noted the beauty of the town of Võru. The Tamula Beach Promenade was awarded the "Landscape Architecture Deed of 2009" title by the Estonian Landscape Architects Union. Katariina Alley received recognition from the Communal Economy Association. The building of the state upper secondary school was awarded the "Well Restored Memorial" title by the National Heritage Board. The Kubija Health and Recreation Centre was deemed the best health sports structure of 2014.
You can find out more about different events, eateries and accommodation options in the town of Võru on its official website at www.visitvoru.ee and also at www.visitestonia.com.
It doesn't take long to drive to Võru from main Estonian cities: 3.5 hours from Tallinn, 3 hours from Narva, 2.5 hours from Pärnu, 1.5 hours from Viljandi and a mere hour from Tartu!