In the broader context of post-socialist transition and rural decline, we examine the everyday lives of young people in rural Estonia. We focus in particular on key places of belonging for youths and the practices and experiences through which rural young people develop a sense of belonging to their local places. Our aim is to identify links between the everyday context and broader changes influencing young rural lives in Estonia. The findings indicate that in contrast to the mostly negative portrait that the statistics paint of rural Estonia, a focus on the everyday level reveals significant places and practices which can provide encouraging and supportive bases for young people to negotiate and respond to global changes. In addition, the results indicate that it is fruitful to focus on the everyday context, as a more nuanced picture of continuities and discontinuities associated with post-socialist transition may be revealed. (C) 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.