My first impressions of Pärnu

I arrived in Parnu in mid-September, 2015. And that was the first mistake – I believe I came too late.  Too late to see crowded Parnu as the summer capital of Estonia and too late to enjoy swimming in the Baltic sea. I did not, however, come too late to appreciate the late summer. And what a beautiful one it was… 🙂

I knew just a little bit about the city and college. And I have to admit that it was frightening – coming to a place which is not home, not yet at least. I quickly found myself surrounded by people with similar feelings. We grew into Parnu as time went by. And although it has only been two months into my stay, I feel comfortable.

It took me some time to discover all that Parnu has to offer. Of course, the first place I befriended was the sea. No wonder Spa & Wellness program is conducted right here! And I don’t just mean the spas and the beach. I mean, above all, the tranquillity of Parnu. Some might say it’s ‘boring.’ But here I am – having lived 5 years in Warsaw – not really missing the two-million-population of the city. I can hear myself breathe here. Literally.

As for the city itself, I believe Mahedik was my first tiny love. Offering beautifully served meals prepared with local ingredients, it had to be a hit for a spa & wellness person. Then, I wondered around and –with some help from other spa & wellness students – I discovered Supelsaksad. And then MUM. I have to say that it is really easy to learn how to enjoy food in any of the above-mentioned 🙂

With the environment just right, and some places to enjoy good food, I needed to look for spa and work-out opportunities. Some of the students decided to join dance classes. For me, it has always been aqua aerobic. Not speaking Estonian (which is not really a big problem here!), I decided to buy a monthly card and attend water classes with locals. It’s sometimes funny when I move my right leg, even though the teacher says left… This is exactly why learning at least some basic words in Estonian is a must. The college offers Estonian language classes and they are quite fun. No, really!

As for the program itself, I am enjoying every waking moment of it. Who would have thought… I even like going to classes. J That’s a good start. Apart from regular classes, we have spa visits and guest lectures and I feel really encouraged to enter the spa & wellness world.

Marta Mazur-Malek
Exchange student in Pärnu college