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Detailed Itinerary

NOTE: Things are bound to change here and there.

Please be ready to be flexible as is always necessary when traveling.



About half our group is flying together from Seattle to Riga. The details below are for them, others will meet in Riga and can skip to the afternoon of Friday, June 28th.


10:45am  Arrive at SeaTac and meet group in front of the Lufthansa airline check-in counters. Check luggage as a group and then proceed through security.

12:45pm  Meet at gate as a group to prepare for boarding

1:45 Depart on Lufthansa Flight #491 non-stop to Frankfurt.


FRIDAY, JUNE 28, 2019 - GATHERING DAY (AM information is for group flight travelers)

8:45am  Land in Frankfurt (local time), meet group directly outside the arrival gate. We will go together to the connecting gate and determine how much (if any) time there is for dispersing. Likely none!

9:05 Meet as group to prepare for boarding

10:05 Depart Frankfurt on Lufthansa Flight #890 non-stop to Riga, Latvia

1:50pm Group flight arrives in Riga (local time). Meet at baggage claim and go through customs. Wait until all travelers are through customs and present with baggage before departing to transfer to the hotel via public transit. 

3:30 Group travelers arrive at Rixwell Konventa Sēta hotel, rendezvous with travelers from other routes* and begin check-in process.

         Address: Kalēju iela 9/11, Centra rajons, Rīga, LV-1050, Latvia. 

         Phone:  +371 60008700 


4:30 Walking tour: liberty monument, canal, opera, Dome Square.

7:00 Welcome dinner at the Folkklubs Ala Pagrabs restaurant. (Peldu iela 19, Pagrabstāvs, This meal is a part of your tour package and is paid for except for drinks.

8:30 Return to hotel and evening on your own. Get a good night sleep! This will help you adjust to the time change and we have a lot ahead of us!

NOTES: it is our goal to stay awake until after dinner. Helps the jet lag! Those arriving after 8:30 will need to find dinner on their own and be in touch with Jennifer Rodgers when they arrive. 



8:00am Complimentary continental breakfast at hotel

9:00 Meet in hotel lobby for walking tour: farmers market, river walk, library, art nouveau area, Old Town, city hall, WWII Museum.

11:30 Lunch and shopping on your own (remember the famous Latvian amber and linens!) Remember to buy snacks and water for travelling tomorrow.

3:30 Return to hotel and change into concert attire

4:15 Meet in lobby to walk to Riga Technical University for rehearsal (Kalķu iela (Kalku St) 1, Strēlnieku laukums, big brown building  next to the Riga Municipality).Ivars Cinkuss will meet us at 4:30 to walk over.

5:00 Rehearsal

6:00 Walk to St. Peters Skārņu St. 19. to continue rehearsal and figure out concert logistics.

7:00 Concert hosted by Ivars Cinkuss followed by celebration with host choir. Location TBD, but you should be able to visit the hotel to change into more casual attire (and spare your concert attire for the long haul!) 



NOTE: This is a crowded and unpredictable day. Be prepared with water and snacks with you and stay close!

7:00am Complimentary continental breakfast at hotel (bring luggage down with you)

7:45 Check out of hotel, board bus and load luggage. 

8:00 Depart Riga, stopping on our way out of town to take a group photo at Liberty Monument and then to see the new Latvian Song Celebration Grounds Mežaparks on our way to the Turaida Castle.

10:15 Arrive Turaida Castle (group admission will be paid by Dr. Boers before we unload). Unguided exploration of the museum and grounds.

11:30 Load buses and depart for Dikļi. 

12:30pm Arrive in Dikli for lunch, hosted by the municipality. 

1:15 Rehearse for afternoon concert at church adjacent to school

2:15  Arrive Dikļi Palace hotel. Check-in to hotel and quick changeinto concert attire.

         Address:  Dikļi Parish, Kocēni Municipality, LV-4223

         Phone:     +371 64207480


2:50 Meet in lobby in concert attire with music, folders, water, with you, ready to load buses.

3:00 Depart for concert venue

3:30 UW Tour Choir Concert

5:00  Song Festival Celebration with Latvian Choirs (155thanniversary of Latvian Song Festival) 

7:00  Return to Dikļi Palace for group dinner followed by celebration party with all festival choirs. You will be able to change attire in your rooms, but your attendance at the celebration is not optional. 



9:00am Complimentary continental breakfast at hotel (be packed before coming down)

9:45 Check out of hotel, board bus and load luggage.

10:00 Depart Dikļi 

11:00  Arrive in Valka (on the Latvian side of the border) and visit the Cimze Memorial Museum and his grave.  This town is recognized as the birthplace of the Latvian and Estonian song festival tradition where Jānis Cimze taught choral singing to the founders of the movement. Singing around Cimze’s grave is traditional for native choirs.

12:20pm Board the bus for a short hop across the border to Valga and have lunch in Estonia

1:30 Depart for Tartu, visiting some notable country sites along the way.

4:30 Arrive at Tartu hotel and check-in.

Hotel:                Art Hotel Pallas

Address:            Rīga 4, 51004 Tartu, Estonia 

Phone:              +372 7301200


5:30 Meet in hotel lobby for walking tour of the University District, hosted by the University

7:00 Dinner and evening on your own.


9:00am Complimentary continental breakfast at hotel

9:45 Meet in the lobby

10:00 Depart for the Estonian National museum

12:00pm Lunch at the museum cafeteria

1:45 Meet at the museum entrance to load bus

2:00 Bus back to hotel and have a few afternoon hours on your own

5:15 Meet in the hotel lobby in concert attire with music, folders, water, etc.

5:30 Walk to concert venue at the University of Tartu Aula (Great Hall/Assembly Hall).

Address:  Ülikooli tänav 18, Tartu.

7:00 Concert performance

8:30 Return to hotel and evening on your own



8:00am Complimentary continental breakfast at hotel (be packed before coming down)

8:45 Check out of hotel, board bus and load luggage.

9:00 Depart for Tallinn

11:30 Stop at a market/grocery store for lunch supplies and eat on the bus during a driving tour of Tallinn and the Song Celebration grounds.

1:00pm Arrive at the Arvo Pärt Centre

2:15 Meet at the Centre entrance to load bus and depart for Tallinn

3:00 Arrive at Tallinn hotel and check-in. Be sure to thoroughly check the bus as this is the last time we will be with traveling with it. And be sure to thank our driver! A base tip for him/her of 1 EUR/day per person will be paid from tour funds. You are welcome to tip additionally if you wish.

Hotel:              Hotel L'Ermitage

Address:          Toompuiestee 19, Tallinn, Estonia

Phone:             +372 6996400


4:00 Meet in hotel lobby for walking tour of Old Town – our home for the next 5 days.

7:00 Dinner on your own. 



AM Breakfast and the morning are on your own or in groups. Venture out on foot to explore castles, churches, town squares, museums and gardens. Perhaps lunch around the town square at one of the cafes or poke around in the National Library or Archives. Your song festival wrist band gives you free use of the Tallinn public transit from July 2-7.

3:30pm Return to hotel to change

4:00 Meet in the hotel lobby in concert attire with music/folders/water

4:15 Walk to concert venue at the renowned House of the Black Heads. Address: Pikk 26, 10133 Tallinn.

5:00 Warm-up, rehearse and set concert logistics

7:00 Friendship Concert performance Pueri Gaudentes (Prague Boys Choir)

Post-Concert  Possible socializing



NOTE: Non-singing travelers have this day entirely free. You will likely not be able to access the Festival Grounds without a ticket and so may not be able to accompany the Festival Choir.

AM Breakfast and morning on your own or in groups. 

11:30am Meet in hotel lobby with your song books, water, and snacks to travel to the day of Song Festival rehearsals. This is the day to wear your gold Festival Choir t-shirt so that we can find each other in the crowd! Remember that we are one half of the Washington Festival Chorus with the Symphony Tacoma Voices. They will be with us for the festival and also wearing gold shirts. Get to know some of them!

11:45 Public transit to Song Festival grounds and get oriented for rehearsal. Soup and bread lunch will be provided on the festival grounds.

1:30pm Line-up and go onstage

2:10 Rehearse sections of Kannel; Emakeelelaul; Isamaale; Ära mind lahti lase

3:25 Rehearse sections of Kuulajale; Tuljak; Üksi pole keeg;, Ilus oled, isamaa; Igaviku tuules; Ta lendab mesipuu poole

5:10 Run-through of second set from above

5:50 Dinner break (soup and bread provide by the Festival). During this break, it will likely not be reasonable to get back into town. There will be other choirs rehearsing, plenty of people out on the lawn, and there also reportedly a nice path to walk out to the water and around the grounds. We will establish a meeting/hang-out place for the UW and STV choirs.

8:30 Meet together to head to the line-up location

9:00 Line-up and go onstage

9:35 Run-through Kannel, Emakeelelaul, Isamaale, and Ära mind lahti lase

10:10 Return to hotel



NOTE: we will learn more about the logistics of this day once we are in Tallinn. Details of the procession and the lining up for the opening concert are TBD.

AM Breakfast and lunch on your own or in groups. 

12:30pm Groups may meet at hotel to go over to see the start of the parade.

1:00 The Song Festival Parade begins at the with a fire ceremony at the St. John’s Church Pärnu monument

4:00 Meet in hotel lobby in concert attire with good walking shoes, your Song Book, snacks/water, rain or sun gear and any personal/medical needs. We will go together to the parade gathering for foreign groups.

4:30 Our part of the parade begins by gathering at Vabaduse väljak (Freedom Square). We will walk the 5 kilometers to the Song Festival grounds with our banner. Greeting onlookers and receiving flowers. The procession and waiting for the procession will take a very long time. Be prepared for lots of standing.

7:00 Opening ceremonies. We sing the first three songs and the rest of the concert are various select choirs. At the end everyone sings "Üksi ei ole keegi" from audience and stage.

8:00 Dinner at the Song Festival grounds after we leave the stage (soup and bread provided by the festival, more available to purchase at food stands – have Euros available)



NOTE: Details of our onstage time and lining up are TBD. Our section of songs (the Segakoor or mixed choir) are at the end of the 4-5 hour concert.

AM Breakfast and morning on your own or in groups. 

TBD Meet in hotel lobby in concert attire your Song Book, and water to travel to the Song Festival Grounds. We will establish a meeting place and time at the grounds once we know our specific logistics.

2:00pm Song Festival Concerts begin

7:00 Approximate time of concert end. Meet at designated location and travel together to our own closing celebration. 3.8 km walk or take one of three buses (51, 44, or 35) to the Pronski stop and then either walk or take the #3 bus to Randla. Here is a map of the route from Festival Grounds to Korsten to our Hotel.

8:00  Arrive at Korsten restaurant, one of the new wave of Estonian cuisine restaurants.  for our closing meal and celebration together. (Address: Põhja pst 27a, Tallinn. Website: This meal is a part of your tour package and except for drinks.



6:00am Helsinki travelers (all those on the group flight plus those who arranged for ferry tickets) meet in the lobby with luggage to check-out and walk or transport to the Ferry terminal.

6:45 Arrive at ferry terminal and board

8:00 Ferry departs for Helsinki, Finland. A gathering place on board the ferry will be determined. We may have to go through customs/border crossing procedures.

10:30 Arrive in Helsinki. Disembark as a group and make our way to the Scandic Grand Marina hotel which is adjacent to the ferry terminal and where most are staying this evening. If we cannot arrange for early check-in, we should be able to leave luggage at the hotel. 

Hotel:              Scandic Grand Marina

Address:          Katajanokanlaituri 7 00160 Helsinki, Finland

Phone:             +358 916661


Afternoon The afternoon and evening are on your own in Helsinki. 

9:00 Check-in with Helsinki tour leaders (Anna Frisch, Gerrit Scheepers, Jenna Bellavia, Will Schlott) and either sleep for a few hours or decide to stay up together. Please do NOT be out on the town on your own late this night.

IMPORTANT NOTE: group flight travelers will be going to the Helsinki airport by shuttle at 3:00AM. You must check in with the designated student tour leaders by 9:00 pm and be mindful of this schedule as you enjoy your time.



3:00AM Group flight (and those coordinating) meet in hotel lobby with luggage for airport shuttle

3:15 Depart hotel for Helsinki airport

4:00 Arrive airport and proceed to the Lufthansa airline check-in counters. Check luggage as a group and then proceed through security

5:15 Meet at gate as a group to prepare for boarding

6:15 Depart on Lufthansa Flight #855 non-stop to Frankfurt

7:55 Land in Frankfurt (local time), meet group directly outside the arrival gate and go together to connecting gate

9:45 Meet as group at gate to prepare for boarding

10:45 Depart Frankfurt on Lufthansa Flight #490 non-stop to Seattle

11:55 (still AM!) Group flight arrives in Seattle (local time). Travel arrangements from here on your own

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