Kolu inn

Roadside inn from 19th century

Brought from Kolu village in Kose parish, Harju County. The inn with one stable located on the road from Tallinn to Tartu was built in 1840s. Brought to the museum in 1968. Nowadays it's a perfect place to rest one's feet and taste national dishes.

Manors started building inns on major roads as early as in Middle Ages. They would sell products of their own distilleries and offer night’s lodging and food to travellers. Farmers would listen to news brought by people passing through, engage in trade and hire workers. Most inns were closed down in 1900 after the state had established a monopoly on selling spirits.

1 – dining room, 2 – masters chamber, 3 – behind the counter, 4 – innkepper's dwelling, 5 – hall stove kitchen, 6 – entrance hall, 7, 8 – pantry, 9 – stable (presently party hall)

Did you know?

  • Around 12 million gawns of spirits (a gawn containing 12.3 l) were distilled in the province of Estonia - in Harju, Viru, Järva and Lääne counties – at the end of the 19th century. About a half of the produced spirits was taken to Russia and the rest was sold and drunk in local inns.
  • While the number of parish churches to take care of one’s soul at the end of the 19th century was not much higher than 100, there were around 2,400 inns.
  • A map of Northern Estonia dating back to 1871 shows 52 inns along the road from Tallinn (Reval at the time) to Narva, 18 Inns on the road from Tallinn to Pärnu and 13 inns on the Tallinn-Keila-Haapsalu road.