Location: Otepää (Estonia)
Otepää World Cup in cross-country skiing is taking place for the 14th time this year and it attracts friends of winter sports to the winter capital Otepää on 02-03 February 2018, so they could take part in the largest winter sports event in Estonia. On Saturday, 18 February, the sprint in free technique will take place. On Sunday, 19 February, one of the Estonians’ favourites, women’s 10 km and men’s 15 km mass start in classic technique, which includes the legendary Tehvandi ascent, will take place. The World Cup traditionally begins on Friday night at the Tehvandi Sports Centre stadium, where a ski show and a sprint competition of the maintenance teams will be held.
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Take the opportunity to discover the South of Estonia. Southern Estonia’s idyllic hilly landscape, the area around Haanja, Otepää and Karula, features rounded hills and river valleys in the country’s most extensive upland region, alternating with blue lakes and dotted with castles, manor houses and ancient villages. The most scenic valley in the Haanja area is Ööbikuorg (‘Nightingale Valley’). In the spring this natural echo chamber comes to life with the incessant calls of nightingales. The same county is the site of Estonia’s deepest lake, Rõuge Suurjärv. Small in size, but with a depth of 38 metres. Estonia’s biggest tree, the Tamme-Lauri oak, grows in Urvaste. Estimated to be 680 years old, the giant’s trunk measures about 8.5 metres in circumference. It takes six adults to join hands around the tree. The beautiful late 19th century castle of Sangaste is considered one of Estonia’s most elegant manors and is similar in style to Britain’s Windsor Castle. The majestic mansion consists of 1.5 million locally made bricks and now houses a hotel. In the same county is found the mausoleum of military leader Barclay de Tolly, a famous figure from the Napoleonic Wars, which emanates an atmosphere of royalty, and Taagepera castle, Estonia’s most outstanding piece of Art Nouveau architecture. Back to South to Karula National P rk, Estonia’s smallest national park. It’s a region of fens, lakes, bogs, meadows, flora and fauna, offering a choice of hiking trails. Information can be found at the Ahijärv visitor centre.