Surviving Estonian winter VT volunteers style: Dress like an onion!

Surviving Estonian winter VT volunteers style: Dress like an onion!

Winter in Estonia is rough! Surviving it is not always easy! And when the spring is around the corner, yet still so far, that`s when things might get especially rough! We`ve gathered some tips for surviving Estonian winter from five experts – from VS volunteers who have survived their first winter here.



  • Organize a lot of things with other volunteers or with other people. Do not stay at home all the time, go out (to a museum, a cafe…). This is how to avoid winter depression.
  • Go to sauna a lot, there is a reason why Estonians have it! 
  • Walk fast but be careful with the ice on the roads. 
  • Dress in a lot of clothes, like a onion! 
  • Enjoy the snow!

Giulia and Anja 


  • Always be busy so you do not see the constant darkness. Go home tired, so to go directly to sleep because if you live in a village like mine, where there is nothing, you could go into depression.



  • Warm jacket, good and waterproof shoes, hat, scarf and gloves.
  • You should dress in layers because it is really warm inside houses and you could sweat.
  • When you are ready to go out, it is important to know where you are going before going out (so you don´t have to decide outside in the cold). Always check for the bus times in advance too, so you don´t have to wait for a long time outside.
  • Every time you are in a bus, take off your hat and your scarf.
  • But above all, believe that you can do it, you can survive, just give yourself some time to get used to it!



  • Estonia is a beautiful country, very natural, anchored in a musical and artistic tradition but for me the most important part is feelings. It is difficult to understand if Estonians are happy, angry, sad or loving, the signs rest even. To be better able to understand it, it is essentially necessary to remain discreet, and not to pause with too many questions. When meetings take place, to have a drink, two, maybe four and we might see a smiling Estonian. Then we can dance, sing and drink still. 😉
  • A more quiet and less dangerous method for the liver to have a good Estonian friend who will present you to other people, is not to speak too much. 😉


Arthur has provided photo evidence of surviving the Estonian winter! 🙂

Arthur on the right