Village of Light

It’s always Christmas in Tartu! And spring!

With the help of supporters full of ideas, the Village of Light on Town Hall Square has once again expanded during the summer drought and awaits tartuvians and city guests to enjoy the holidays from 28 November to 9 January.

By the beginning of the Advent season, the much loved village of glass pavilions will rise on Town Hall Square, allowing you to pass time, stay outdoors and frolic around for the duration of the winter holidays. Returning to the Village of Light will be coffee and gingerbread vendors, sleigh rides and ponies, Christmas City Tartu`s classics – a straw pavilion –, an animated film pavilion, fire cauldrons and wooden animal merry-go-rounds for children.

Christmas City Tartu also believes it is high time to combat ignorance surrounding fish. As such two aquariums will be built on Town Hall Square in cooperation with the EEC Limnology Centre and their lovely staff. In the heart of the city, several familiar types of fish will start swimming around – pikes, perches and more. Specifically those we might be semi-acquainted with, because how many of us, grown-ups or children, can recognise the fish living in Estonian rivers and lakes? For this reason, for almost a month and a half, you can watch an educational and beautiful “fish film” peacefully running on its own fish time in the aquariums in the heart of the city and learn the faces of the fish by heart.

Among the new friends of the Christmas City is also theatre artist Laura Pählapuu, who spent much time carving this summer. With the help of a wonderful doll house pavilion created by her, you can enter a winter fairy tale and even stay a while…

For years, Christmas City Tartu has not been happy with ice cream sales numbers in winter. We know children who think that winter is the best season to eat ice cream also aren’t happy. If such a simple thing doesn’t cross your mind, it is because ice cream doesn’t melt in winter! We are helpless against this logic and since Science Theatre KVARK will assist in setting up the ice cream pavilion, it is certain that after visiting this pavilion the ice cream won’t be the only thing you’ll be talking about.

The Tartu Observatory will be making an invaluable and shining contribution to Town Hall Square this winter. In one of the glass pavilions of Christmas City Tartu, a Mars rover will start to roam, which can be built by anyone who wishes to have one riding in their own gardens for the summer. In the film pavilion, it will be possible to admire the never-cloudy starry sky created by the observatory.

You can also stop by the mirror pavilion of infinity created by designer and artist Martin Rästa, where you can take a break from your thoughts and explore the environment created by young creative space researchers of the Tartu branch of the School of Architecture.

An ATM which issues (Christmas) poems instead of euros will also start operating on Town Hall Square. If there is any place where such things can happen, it is the UNESCO literary cities, to which Tartu also belongs.

Let us not forget that, this year, you can come ice skating on the Town Hall Square until end February. The ice rink around the Kissing Students fountain is nearly 1000 square metres in size and opens from 28 November. Now you can skate – which happens to be one of the most romantic and fun form of wintry pastime in the world – right under the stars and light chains covering the sky of the most important square of Tartu.