Beautiful Bordeaux on the west coast of France is welcoming Tall Ships from around the world for the grand finale of the Three Festivals Tall Ships Regatta 2018 (14 – 18 June), as part of its 20th anniversary celebrations of the regions world famous wine festival, Bordeaux Fête le Vin.
The event will be a perfect finale to the Three Festivals Tall Ships Regatta – starting in Liverpool, UK racing to Dublin, Ireland and then racing from Dublin to Bordeaux. This vibrant capital of south-west France hasn’t hosted a Tall Ships event since 1990 and is excited to see some of the fleet return to their cultured shores.
The event will take place across five days in the ‘Port of Moon’ and is dedicated to Bordeaux’s wines. Visitors will be invited to taste the region’s wines, and to talk about them with their producers and wine merchants. Eighty appellations will be represented in pop-up wine bars set up along a three-kilometre wine trail on the banks of the famous Garonne River. They will include some of the world’s most famous names – such as Pauillac, Margaux, Saint-Estèphe and Saint-Julien
The Bordeaux Fête Le Vin Village will be open from Thursday 14 to Sunday 17 June from 10.30am to midnight (last tastings at 11.30pm) and Monday 18 June from 10am to 6pm. There will be a big firework show over the Garonne River every night from Thursday to Sunday. Entry to the village is free and open to everyone.
Some 800,000 visitors are expected to attend the event which will also offer them the opportunity to explore on board the Tall Ships and there will be lots of entertainment on offer with concerts and firework displays every night, exhibitions, a food village and visits to châteaux.
Whilst the wine and the river are the twin glories of Bordeaux’s heritage, the city offers a vibrant culture and historical architecture and in 2007 half of the city (18 square km) was listed as a UNESCO world heritage site and is the largest urban area to receive this accolade. It was also featured in Lonely Planet’s guide as the best place to visit in 2017.
About the ships
Over 25 vessels are expected to be at the event, including a number of the majestic Class A Tall Ships.
These include Atyla (Vanuatu) and Morgenster (Netherlands) – just two of eight Tall Ships who have taken on the challenge of racing. The race to Bordeaux, is the second and final race of the Regatta and starts from the south-east coast of the Republic of Ireland. It provides 10 days of racing 470 nautical miles across the Irish and Celtic Seas before entering the historic Bay of Biscay to cross the finish line, when they will make their way up the Gironde Estuary.
Entries are still coming in, but already eight different nationalities are being represented by the fleet.
Paul Bishop, Race Director, Sail Training International said:
“Bordeaux is going to be a very special grand finale to this Regatta, for many reasons. The wine festival is world class and the Tall Ships will provide a maritime spectacle and family fun atmosphere. Free public access ensures visitors can get up close and personal to the fleet and be participants in the event.
“But, more importantly, the whole event is organised to support youth development, outdoor adventure and challenge at sea – so as well as being a wonderful wine festival, we also see it as an international festival of youth. International friendship and understanding is at the core of the event.”
SHIPS: Entries for vessels thinking of take part in the race are still open to all classes – vessel entry forms can be found here.
TRAINEES: Berths are available for all ages of trainee, looking for a truly unique adventure, providing they are over the age of 15. To find out more visit the event page here – all bookings must be made directly with the ships.