Flyboarding, seafood, sailing and talks from famous wildlife cameraman Doug Allan are among the activities and entertainment announced by SeaFest 2018 organisers. A weekend of seafaring fun for those of all ages is planned for Ireland's largest and most spectacular maritime festival taking place in Galway from 29th June to 1st July.
Now in its fourth year, SeaFest has quickly become one of the most popular summer festivals in Ireland, attracting more than 100,000 visitors in 2017. The national festival aims to create awareness of our maritime heritage and celebrates the amazing ways that our seas and oceans enrich our lives.
Dr Peter Heffernan CEO of the Marine Institute said, "SeaFest 2017 exceeded expectations in terms of attendance and also for raising public awareness of Ireland's marine resources. This year's festival will build on the entertaining and educational experiences offered at the 2017 event to present a packed programme of free family-friendly activities and Galway Harbour will be literally awash with non-stop activities and entertainment for all ages."
Talks from award-winning wildlife cameraman, Doug Allan, will be one of the highlights at this year's festival. Doug Allan is most famous for his work alongside Sir David Attenborough on ground-breaking documentaries such as BBC's Blue Planet and Frozen Planet.
Doug Allan on location in Canadian Arctic. June 2002
Making a welcome return is PowerFly's World Champion Flyboarders who will showcase their awe-inspiring skills up to 15 metres in the air right in the heart of Galway Harbour. The popular kayaking and sailing sessions will also return, with 600 free kayaking sessions available over the weekend, doubling the number of places on offer in 2017. Free try-sailing sessions will also be on offer, thanks to Irish Sailing.
Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM) and Bord Bia will be encouraging visitors to get up-close to live fish and shellfish species and enjoy dynamic exhibits and virtual reality displays explaining how Irish seafood is sustainably caught and farmed. For seafood lovers, some of Ireland's best known chefs and fishmongers will prepare culinary delights using sustainably-sourced produce, highlighting why Galway was selected as the European Region of Gastronomy 2018.
An additional attraction to the BIM and Bord Bia Seafood Experience this year will be Joan Mulloy, a professional sailor and daughter of mussel producer Michael Mulloy of Blackshell Mussels, who is attempting to sail single handed in the famous Vendee Globe race. With the support of BIM, she will be promoting Ireland's connection with the sea and the seafood producers on BIM's Taste the Atlantic – a Seafood Journey trail on the Wild Atlantic Way.
Tours of the Commissioners of Irish Lights vessel the Granuaile, the Marine Institute's research vessel RV Celtic Explorer, and an Irish naval vessel will take place over the weekend. The popular Defence Forces display will return, as well as the RNLI and Irish Coast Guard.
Interactive exhibits and displays, demonstrations, inspiring talks and plenty of workshops and activities for kids are all part of the festival programme.
The support from a wide range of local, regional and national agencies is key to the success of this national maritime festival. SeaFest 2018 has received support from Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM), Bord Bia, Commissioners of Irish Lights, Department of Defence and Defence Forces, Galway City Council, Galway County Council, Galway Harbour Company, Irish Coast Guard, Irish Sailing, Mayo County Council, Marine Institute and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).
SeaFest is a key part of the Government's Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland, Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth (HOOW) and its goal of increasing participation and engagement with the sea. SeaFest is coordinated by the Marine Institute, on behalf of the Marine Coordination Group. For more information, follow SeaFest on Facebook and Twitter and visit https://seafest.ie
SAVE THE DATE:
SeaFest 2018 - Galway
Friday 29th June - Sunday 1st July