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Narva is a unique city, which for centuries has been a border crossing and meeting point for different nations and states. Today you will find different enchanting cultures, both old and new.

History of Narva

A varied military history has marked Narva  it was a fortress town dominated by the Danes, Germans, Swedes, Russians and Estonians. The 14th to 17th-century Germanic Order fortress with bastions and defensive walls and the 15th-century Russian fortress face each other, just an arrow's flight across the river. There is a combination of unique architectural styles from Northern Europe. In 1700, the Battle of Narva started the historic Great Northern War, which changed the fate not only of Narva but all of Europe.


Apart from its military past, Narva has always been a center of international trade. In the Viking Age, the trade route called "The Way from the Varangians to the Greeks" in ancient chronicles began here. Later, Narva was an important staging post on the road from Tallinn to Novgorod. In 1345, the trading settlement received the status of a town. The golden age of Narva was in the 17th century under Swedish rule when the city center’s unique architecture was built. Unique Baroque architectural styles gave Narva the festive appearance of an important town. Unfortunately, after World War II, only a fraction of its former glory remains.

Where is Narva

59°22′33″N 28°11′46″E 

 Narva is a municipality and city in Estonia. It is located in Ida-Viru County, at the easternmost point of Estonia, on the Russian border and on the Narva River, which drains Lake Peipus.

How to Get to Narva

By plane  

There is no airport in Narva. The nearest and main international airport in Estonia is Lennart Meri Tallinn Airport. The airport is located in close proximity to Tallinn city center and is accessible by public transport.

By ferry  

There are quite fast ferries that go from Helsinki to Tallinn, which take about two hours. There are numerous daily departures throughout the year. Then you can travel from Tallinn to Narva by highway E20 or by rail. 

By bus 

There is a fairly good bus service between Tallinn or Tartu and Narva. The journey time is usually around 3 hours and the ticket costs between 7-15 euros. You can look up the timetables and buy tickets online.

By train 

Direct train connection is only possible between Tallinn and Narva – there are no direct trains from Tartu (change trains in Tapa). Travel time is 2 hours and 15 minutes (once daily express) or 2 hours and 45 minutes (regular train) and tickets cost between 11-16 euros. You can check the timetable and buy tickets online. 

Some facts about Narva

  1. From the 5th to the 4th millennium BCE people settled in the area. This is evidenced by the archaeological traces of the Narva culture, which is named after the city.

  2. During the Battle of Narva, almost the entire city was destroyed.
  3. Narva is the third-largest city in Estonia.

  4. In 1991, when Estonia regained its independence, Narva became a border town again. On February 18, 2014, a new border treaty was signed by both countries. The treaty has yet to be ratified by the parliaments of both Russia and Estonia.

  5. Narva is officially divided into 15 districts, which have no administrative functions.

  6. Kreenholmi Stadium is the home of the Meistriliiga football team FC Narva Trans.
  7. Narva is located on the international railway line between Estonia and Russia.

  8. Narva is twinned with: Bălți, Moldova; Barysaw, Belarus; Bel Air, United States; Donetsk, Ukraine; Elbląg, Poland; Gorna Oryahovitsa, Bulgaria; Ivangorod, Russia; Karlskoga, Sweden; Kingiseppsky District, Russia, and many other cities.

  9. In the first-person shooter video game Squad, the Narva map is loosely based on the real city and includes the Narva Castle, the Ivangorod Fortress, and a less similar industrial area to the south of the city.

  10. In 1700, the Battle of Narva started the historic Great Northern War, which changed the destiny of not only Narva but the whole of Europe.

What to Do In Narva


Only 14 kilometers from Narva, on the coast of the Gulf of Finland, lies the small and cozy spa town of Narva-Jõesuu. Since the beginning of the XIX century, it developed into a popular place for the Saint-Petersburg aristocracy. There are now spa middle houses, hotels, cottages here, which offer thousands of visitors a restful and relaxing holiday.

Narva Museum Art Gallery 

The gallery is located in a former 18th-century ammunition depot. The gallery, founded in the 1990s, is the art center of Ida-Viru County. It houses the collection of Russian art donated to the Narva City Museum by the Lavretsov couple, which at the beginning of the 20th century was considered the best collection of a provincial museum in the Baltic countries. 

Narva Castle 

Narva Castle is one of the main attractions of the city. In the seventh decade of the 13th century, the Danes built the castle as a residence for the Danish King'vice-regent. Narva Castle is the most diverse and the best preserved defensive complex in the whole of Estonia. 


Hermann Castle & Ivangorod Fortress

Joaoru Hiking Trail In Narva 

The 1.7-kilometer trail runs along the beautiful island of Joaoru in the middle of the Narva River. The trail winds past Estonia's easternmost point. You can enjoy the nature on the border and the unique view of Narva and Ivangorod castles.

Best Places to Eat in Narva

M.Chagall Restaurant

Chagall Restaurantis a part of the Narva Hotel. It is only 300 meters from the bus station and train station. It is designed in Italian style and is located on the first floor of the building. There is also a lobby bar.The restaurant is the ideal place to spend a romantic evening or have a delicious lunch. It can also be booked for banquets, memorable birthdays, corporate events and more. 

China House  

When you visit the China House, you can feel like you are in China for a while. After you leave the noisy city, you will find yourself in a quiet and peaceful world. The traditional Chinese lanterns, delicious dishes, calm atmosphere and soothing music will make you forget all about your everyday worries.  

German Pub 

This establishment is located in the city center in Fortuna Bastion. It is only 400 meters from the bus station and train station. German Pub welcomes guests in the historic heart of the city near Narva Castle. 

King Restaurant 

King Restaurant is located in the city center, near Narva Castle and its bastions, which were built in the 17th century. The restaurant is also located in a 17th-century building, in a convenient location in the heart of the city. It is only 1.5 kilometers from the bus station and train station. This makes it the perfect place for tourists and businesses alike. 

Where to Stay in Narva

Pansionaat Valentina  

Pansionaat Valentina is near the sandy beach on the Baltic Sea coast in Narva-Jõesuu. It has free Wi-Fi, a sauna and large, green gardens with a tennis court.  

Noorus Spa Hotel 

Noorus Spa Hotel offers a spa center and hot tub. The Spa Hotel is situated in Narva-Jõesuu in the Ida-Virumaa Region. Guests of the hotel can enjoy a drink at the bar, free private parking and free Wi-Fi.

Narva Hotel 

Narva Hotel has its own history. The building was built in 1959 and for more than half a century it has warmly welcomed and accommodated the guests of Narva. In the course of its historical development, the hotel has been modernized several times and remodeled externally. If you visit the hotel today, you will find a harmonious combination of local history and modern technical solutions. 

Central Hotel-Narva 

This hotel is located a 5-minute walk from Narva city center, not far from Narva Hermann Castle. By staying at this accommodation guests will get quick access to Pimeaed Park. The hotel is well connected to many attractions and is 550 feet from the Puskini 23 bus stop.