Academic Heritage Day for all members of the university

On 17 November, all members of the University of Tartu are welcome to celebrate the European Academic Heritage Day. The University of Tartu as well as the University of Tartu Natural History Museum and Botanical Garden introduce the university’s unique and rich academic heritage through the theme of this year’s Academic Heritage Day – University Heritage at War. All the activities are free for the employees of the University of Tartu and their family members as well as for the students of the University of Tartu. Other visitors may take part of the event with a museum ticket.

The University of Tartu Museum in the historic Cathedral (Lossi 25) offers an extraordinary opportunity to visit the museum’s repositories that are usually closed to the public. The 30-minute tours take place at 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. You need to register for the tour by phone +372 737 5674 or email The tours are only in Estonian.

An hour-long tour in the exhibition hall brings attention to the impact of wars on the university and points out exhibits that are directly or indirectly connected to wars. A tour in English takes place at 4 p.m. and in Estonian at 5 p.m.

A collection of gifts to the university and its rector, University of Tartu themed items, awards from sports competitions and numerous other exhibits are introduced at 6 p.m. The tour is only in Estonian.

At 6 p.m., Eiki Berg, professor of International Relations Theory, talks about self-determination of nations, nation states in today’s world, their strengths and weaknesses. The presentation is in Estonian.

At 7 p.m. you can challenge yourself with a quiz about the history of the university. The size of the team is limited to 5 members. There are prizes as well! The quiz is only in Estonian.

Children are welcome to the Crazy Scientist’s Office which is open all night.

A public observation night takes place in the Old Observatory (Lossi 40) from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m. to look at Venus and the Moon. If the sky is cloudy, then planetarium shows take place every hour on the hour. The shows are only in Estonian, however, everyone is welcome to the observation night!

The University of Tartu Art Museum (Ülikooli 18) also offers exclusive tours into their repositories. The 30-minute tours take place at 12 p.m. and 3 p.m. You need to register for the tour by phone +372 737 5384 or email The tours are only in Estonian.

The art museum offers 30-minute tours in the Egyptian-themed exhibition Journey to the Orient and also bring attention to the exhibits that were evacuated during the World War I. A tour in Estonian takes place at 4.30 p.m. and in English at 6.30 p.m.

At 5 p.m. and 7 p.m., the museum presents the first and second part of the documentary Ancient Egypt: Life and Death in the Valley of the Kings. The film night is supported by VIASAT.

Children can play the floor game, draw and make handcrafted items throughout the night.

At 4 p.m., the University of Tartu Natural History Museum (Vanemuise 46) invites the university’s international employees and their family members to an hour-long tour in the museum’s new permanent exhibition Earth.Life.Story. You need to register for the tour by phone +372 737 6076 or email

At 5.30 p.m., the curator of exhibitions Inge Kukk and the curator of zoological collections Andrei Miljutin give a short presentation on the Umsiedlung (resettlement) of the Germans in 1939 and on the collections that the university received during the time. Visitors can also look at the osteological, i.e. the bones collection of professor A. Rosenberg.

At 7 p.m., in the dimly-lit museum, the museum guide tells captivating stories about the giraffe that waited for a train in Tartu railway station, the connection between the museum’s bighorn sheep and Lennart Meri, and about the meteor that fell into a pigsty. You need to register for the event by phone +372 737 6076 or email The event is in Estonian.

Botanical Collections in the War, a temporary exhibition, will be on display in the education lab of the University of Tartu Botanical Garden (Lai 38). At 5 p.m., the garden offers a tour in the exhibition and also shows plants that survived the bomb blast in 1943 that destroyed the greenhouses of the botanical garden. The tour is in Estonian.

At 6 p.m., a tour in the herbarium showcases old collections of plants that have survived the war. The tour is in Estonian.

Join us and discover the rare and diverse academic heritage of the University of Tartu!