31st May - 3rd June 2013
The first ever Galway Sea Festival will take place on the June Bank Holiday Weekend – from Friday 31st May to Monday 3rd June 2013. Celebrating Galway’s unique maritime history and culture, beautiful bay and wonderful waterways, this new festival aims to promote Galway as Ireland’s leading Maritime centre to local, national and international visitors alike.
Over 50 activities and events already have been submitted to festival organisers ensuring a jam packed weekend of marine-related and fun activities from Friday 31st May to Monday 3rd June. The festival will comprise four elements including ‘On The Water’ which involve a regatta with up to 150 boats taking part, Galway hookers and traditional boats, excursions and cruises on the bay, canoe polo, as well as opportunities to try out sailing, windsurfing, paddle boarding, kayaking, water polo, and surfing.
There will also be an ‘On The Shore’ element involving a beach safari, beach horse riding, a craft and food fair, a sandcastle competition, a tug-o-war competition and much more. The ‘On Deck’ element includes a guided tour of the RV Celtic Explorer and Irish navy vessal LE Aoife at the docks. There will be a big emphasis on food during the festival and a bay wide Seafood Trail of Galway’s finest seafood restaurants. About Town activities will also include a Music Trail featuring many of Galway’s finest music pubs, special performances by Trad on the Prom in Salthill, Marine-themed Street Theatre in the Latin Quarter, Maritime and Heritage Talks, Looped Waterways Walks and a family area at the Docks with fairground attractions and amusements.
A highlight of the festival weekend will be the Galway Sea Festival Regatta featuring an extensive programme of events from the Galway Bay Sailing Club and including a spectacular Parade of Sail into Galway Harbour on the Friday evening. Also adding local colour on the weekend of the festival will be the Traditional Boat Regatta from Badoiri na Cladaigh featuring special guest the Naomh Barbara (skippered by Steve Mulkerrins who is travelling from Chicago for this special Gathering event).