After centuries of Danish, Swedish, German, and Russian rule, Estonia attained independence in 1918. Forcibly incorporated into the USSR in 1940, it regained its freedom in 1991, with the collapse of the Soviet Union. Since the last Russian troops left in 1994, Estonia has been free to promote economic and political ties with Western Europe. It joined both NATO and the EU in the spring of 2004.
Eastern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and Gulf of Finland, between Latvia and Russia.
total: 45,226 sq km
land: 43,211 sq km
water: 2,015 sq km
also includes 1,520 islands in the Baltic Sea.
maritime, wet, moderate winters, cool summers
marshy, lowlands; flat in the north, hilly in the south
lowest point: Baltic Sea 0 m
highest point: Suur Munamagi 318 m
Evangelical Lutheran 13.6%, Orthodox 12.8%, other Christian (including Methodist, Seventh-Day Adventist, Roman Catholic, Pentecostal) 1.4%, unaffiliated 34.1%, other and unspecified 32%, none 6.1%
Estonian (official) 67.3%, Russian 29.7%, other 2.3%, unknown 0.7%