A Spiritual and Cultural-Historical Journey
from Pirita to Vana-Vastseliina

Pilgrim’s route

From Mosina Watermill to Vapramäe, the Grand Postal Road

Coming from the Mosina Mill, we turn left (where stays the same Mosina Mill signpost) and we are again on Vellavere–Tõravere Road. To the left of us is a Farm, called by a beautiful name – Uue-Vabaduse (New Freedom) and on the right side is the Pääsukese (Swallow) Farm.


The road goes through to the Vissi Forest. Soon will be a curve and the Pärnõie Farm. The former Tõravere Taverns building has become a nice farmhouse.   


In the same neighborhood with the old tavern is a Tõravere Watermill, but the Mill is privately owned and hidden behind a high fence. You can take a look to the Mill a bit later, when we are on the Grand Postal Road’s old bridge, which acrossing the Elva River.
The first notice of the Tõravere Mill dates back to 1582. Somewhere here in Tõravere Village, next to the mill and tavern was took place one of the battles of the Livonian War (1558–83).

Going further, we reach the Tartu–Valga Highway with heavy traffic. Now we cross the road and we are on the former Grand Postal Road, which was an important Russian Tsar’s Empire Postal Road, connecting St. Petersburg with Narva, Tartu and Riga.


Along the highway, there was after every 20–25 verst a Postal Station and before the Postal Stations there were taverns, where the travelers got eat and sleep. The road marked with striped milestones had to be so wide, that 2 carryalls could run alongside next to each other. In the current Elva Area was the Uderna Postal Station, which, however, ceased its activities with the start of rail traffic. By the same Grand Postal Road has also walked the great Estonian poet Kristjan Jaak Peterson (1801–1822).


       THE SONG

       When I left from Tartu to Riga
       to see my parents;
       this song is made
       in the Tuule Tavern.
       Goodbye now, my Country!
       I’m not walking now,
       in your birch forest,
       where flowers are blooming
       and singing birds
       in beautifully tree shade.
       I’m sitting often
       quietly on the creek’s shore;
       thinking of you,
       my dear parents!
       Your gray head
       still comes to mind,
       when the day is blossoming,
       when the day’s eye goes down
       in the arms of the Great Creator, –
       Dear God!
       Mother, brother and sister,
       I come to you now!
       Farewell, our Country,
       a day seems to me more beautiful
       in the dear Parents’ House.

The big hawks swing over the head, we walk along the Grand Postal Road to the Vapramäe Nature House. Unfortunately, the door is closed, it turns out that you have to notice for advance.

The Vapramäe Nature House’s phone is +372 525 4172, email address: info@vapramaja.ee

Daila Aas, 2018