"With its Gothic spires and conical snowy roofs, cosy beer halls and vintage-look bars, Tallinn is one of the ultimate winter cities. After strolling the old town, seeing the atmospheric Dominican monastery and the castle on Toompea hill, visitors can duck into a cool coffee shop (see tourism.tallinn.ee). The skating rink on Harju street is next to St Nicholas' church, and there are illuminated cross-country ski trails at the Pirita Health Track (piritaspordikeskus.ee), 15 minutes outside the city.
• Ryanair flies from Luton, Stansted and Manchester, Brussels Airlines from Edinburgh and Brsitol, FlyBe from East Midlands and easyJet from Gatwick. Returns in February from about £85. Hotel St Petersbourg (+372 6, 286500, hotelstpetersbourg.com, doubles from €110) has fine vodkas and a dining area decked with tapesteries. OldHouse Guesthouse (+372 6 411464, hostels.ee/oldhouse , doubles €30) is cheap and cute"