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Wintry Hiiumaa hosts pop-up glögg cafes

Glögg cafe in Kärdla, Hiiumaa on Saturday. December 9, 2023.
Glögg cafe in Kärdla, Hiiumaa on Saturday. December 9, 2023. Source: ERR

Saturday marked Hiiumaa's second annual Glögg Cafes Day – with which the Western Estonian island, already known for its summertime pop-up cafe days, hopes to encourage tourists to visit during the off-season too.

This year's Glögg Cafes Day kicked off at Kärdla Central Square, where people could enjoy fresh pancakes, say hello to Santa Claus and grab a mug of hot mulled wine.

In addition to food and drink, many pop-up glögg cafes also provided visitors with entertainment or activities as well, such as Hiiu-dialect crossword puzzles at the Kärdla School cafe.

Hiiumaa's summertime pop-up cafes are already an annual staple. One of the ideas behind the newer Glögg Cafes Day is the hope to show people that the island – Estonia's second largest, after neighboring Saaremaa – is worth visiting in the off-season as well.

"Extending that [tourist] season is indeed one of our goals," acknowledged Hiiumaa Tourism Cluster director Kristel Üksvärav. "There's not enough room for everyone here in July alone, which is our peak season."

Üksvärav noted that this year's visitor numbers have actually indicated higher numbers in May and September as well already, as well as improved results for the island.

From idea through execution, nearly a month of planning went into Merekaru, a pop-up glögg cafe open at Orjaku Harbor on Saturday. Despite being open for one day only, it still offered guests a delightful menu.

"What we've made here are those good, sort of Christmassy baked goods," said Merekaru host Margit Kääramees. "The glögg has to be made from homemade juices, and then we've got grilled lamb sausages coming up, and a pot on the fire with stew going, lamb liver pate sandwiches... All sort of slightly different things."

In all, 23 cafes across Hiiumaa participated in this year's Glögg Cafes Day.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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