Palmse is probably the most grandiose and well-known manor in Estonia. It was originally established by the Cistercian convent of Tallinn, but owned by von der Pahlen family over two centuries, from 1676 to 1922.

The mansion is one of the few Swedish main houses and its building was started under the design stewardship of Jakob Stael von Holstein in 1679. The present form of the building stems from rebuilding in 1782 to 1785. Before 1850, the Ilumäe chapel, located four kilometres away, corn-garner, distillery with a high chimney, horse barn, carriage house and shelter were built.

Next to the pond a pillared rotunda and bathing house were constructed (which at the moment is a café). The Pahlen family was highly respected by the nobility and farmers alike. Carl Magnus von der Pahlen was a militarist and took part in the wars against Napoleon. Between 1830 and 1845 he was the Governor General of Estonia, Liivimaa and Kuramaa. On a more local level, he oversaw the construction of Painet farmhouses with chimneys, like those in Palmse, seen in only a few places in Estonia.

Today, Palmse is one of the manors which receives the highest number of visitors. There is a museum in the mansion and the Lahemaa National Park’s visitors centre is located in the barn. The former distillery was converted into a hotel in 1995. A walk in the park within the beautiful surroundings is good for the body and soul.

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Address

Palmse küla, Vihula, Estonia
See all sites in Vihula

Details

Founded: 1782-1785
Category: Palaces, manors and town halls in Estonia
Historical period: Part of the Russian Empire (Estonia)

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Jan Lawson (2 years ago)
Rustic place to stay with small rooms in nice gardens. Beware the biting insects even with windows closed
Thomas Ploner (2 years ago)
Beautiful barock castle (with stables, pavilions etc etc) surrounded by gardens and forrest in the Lahemaa national park. Nice indoors and great short hiking paths nearby. I honestly liked this one way more than the bigger ones in the baltic states - it's more calm and there's nature nearby. I would recommend you to go to the "breast Pavillon" as it is a stunning lookout point over the woods and lakes. The next must have seen part is the Smith in the castle gardens. He's a very kind man showing you his astonishing collection of arms from different time periods (no separate entrance fee, but a small tip is adequate). Parking lot nearby, free of charge.
Anton Shevyrin (2 years ago)
Beatiful manor. Quite expensive tickets, but area is large.
Olavi Laitala (2 years ago)
Very impressive show of old days glory. Beautiful interior, nice park.
Martin Dziedzic (2 years ago)
Beautiful palace and magnificent garden. Great for families. Very quiet and relaxing place.
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