Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Tall Ships Festival in Waterford, Ireland

Leave the present day behind and experience the thrill of the open water as you take part in the Tall Ships Festival this summer in Waterford, Ireland. There’s beauty in a mass of sails and rigging, the sight of 50 ships sailing into the Irish port will stir your maritime soul. One of the most thrilling and colorful events in the world, Waterford is expecting to host 50 majestic Tall ships, 1500 sailing trainees and an anticipated 500,000 maritime, music and festival fans on the quays of Ireland’s oldest city.

The history of the Tall ships race goes back over 50 years. The first race was held in 1956 between Torquay, Devon and Lisbon. 20 of the world’s remaining large sailing ships participated in what was meant to be a last farewell to the era of the great sailing ships. The Tall ships race attracted so much public interest that the race organizers founded the Sail Training International Association to direct the planning of future events. The Tall Ships Races have occurred annually throughout the world since. From the Baltic to the Mediterranean, the races are planned four years in advance to ensure a carefully selected route, enabling visits to different sea areas around Europe.

Come and explore the majesty and wonder of tall ships through the smells, sounds and sights of real working tall ships. Thursday June 30 through July 3 will be four fays of festival fun with an array of activities. The Tall Ships Race will be celebrated with a festival program capturing the very best of Irish and international acts including street theater, fireworks, music and food. With up to 500,000 visitors anticipated in Waterford and along the Suir Estuary to watch the Tall Ships come into port, it is easy to see why this is expected to be the biggest event in Ireland in 2011.

Waterford is no stranger to maritime history, as it was founded by Viking adventurers almost 1100 years ago. With great sailing ships docking in the port for over a thousand years, it is no wonder the city in bygone centuries earned the title ‘Waterford of the Shippes.’ Let us leave our present day lives behind and see what folks would have seen a hundred years ago as they stood in the same place.

Unable to make it to Waterford for the Tall Ships Festival? Here are the rest of the stops in this years race:

Race One starts in Waterford (Ireland) (Thursday 30 June - Sunday 3 July) to Greenock (Scotland) (Saturday 9 July - Tuesday 12 July).
Cruise in company to Lerwick (Shetland) (Thursday 21 July - Sunday 24 July).
Race Two from Shetland to Stavanger (Norway) (Thursday 28 July - Sun 31 July).
Race Three is from Stavanger to Halmstad (Sweden) (Friday 5 August - Monday 8 August).

Or start planning your European Vacation for next year:

Race One starts in Saint Malo (France) (Thursday 5 July to Sunday 8 July) to Lisbon (Portugal) (Saturday 19 July to Sun 22 July).
Race Two is from Lisbon to Cadiz (Spain) (Thursday 26 July to Sunday 29 July).
Cruise in company to A Coruña (Spain) (Friday 10 August to Monday 13 August).
Race Three from A Coruña to Dublin (Ireland) (Thursday 23 August to Sunday 26 August).

Leave the present day behind and experience the thrill of the open water as you take part in the Tall Ships Festival this summer in Waterford, Ireland with Celtic Tours. Let us help you arrange your self-drive tour of Ireland today. Or you might be interested in arranging a group trip for the 2012 Tall Ships Festival in Dublin.

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