Over 800 years ago Riga was founded thanks to its favourable location for berthing of tall ships that delivered exotic spices, fine textiles, metal and other goods for further trade, but for selling in Europe and other countries of the world shipped grain, fur, wax and other goods. The views over the port and sails for centuries have been integral part of the city panorama – berths along Daugava run deep into the city and were always in full swing – loading and unloading goods, making deals. The effervescent crowd through the pubs and stores filled with seamen and merchants flew into the old city making it live, active and interesting.
The sailing event will bring back these ancient feelings, which is one of its aims. Origin of "The Tall Ships Races" dates back to 1956, when sailing enthusiasts came to a conclusion that tall ships have irreversibly yielded to the modern ships and in honour to the tall ships organised a regatta from England to Portugal with the largest remaining tall ships from the whole world.
Since then the sailing event has visited many European and world ports and one of its main tasks is to train and educate young seamen in sailing, wherewith a strong rule is that half of each crew must be at the age between 15 to 25 years.
For four days inhabitants and guests of Riga will have an opportunity to see the ships, talk to the crews, and enjoy the magnificent Parade of Sail and other surprises from the ship crews and the city of Riga.
"The Tall Ships Races 2013" will commence in Arhus, Denmark from the 4th to the 7th of July. From Arhus, the fleet will race to Helsinki, Finland and will reach the port on 17th of July.
The Tall Ships will depart Helsinki on 20th of July to cruise in company to Riga, Latvia.
Riga will host the Tall Ships Races fleet from July 25 - 28. This spectacular event will finish with parade of sail on Sunday, 28th of July when the fleet will leave Riga port to race to Szczecin, Poland.
The final port of call Szczecin will host the Tall Ship Races from August 3-6.