River Festival: Bordeaux at the heart of the exchanges
This year, the eleventh edition of the Festival of the River will take place in Bordeaux, with the theme of Freedom. For an extended weekend, from Thursday, June 20 to Sunday, June 23, 2019, the world’s largest sailboats will be moored on the Bordeaux docks. On the program: sailing tours, exhibitions, concerts, show, wine tasting and exchange. The Festival of the River is an event that takes place every two years within Bordeaux itself, and it is not to be missed since all the sailboats and crews will then go back to the seas.
A tradition that put the sea in its heart
Every two years, the Festival of the River highlights, for a few days, the welcome of many sailboats from all walks of life. It is an opportunity for the city to party, and to enjoy many events organized especially for these few days: concerts (Odezenne, Arthur H), show (L’Echappée Belle, Group F), but also visit the sailboats present. The city of Bordeaux has already hosted in June 2018 the Dar M-odziey, a Polish sailboat promoting this country on the occasion of the centenary of Polish independence. This year, the two largest sailboats in the world will be there for the Festival of the River. This is the Kruzenshtern (114.5 meters long) and Sedov (117 meters), which can be visited. There will also be the presence of the Skeaf and Expedition 7Continent.
If the Festival of the River is an opportunity to gather the largest foreign sailboats in the city of wine, it is also a way for the city to open up internationally. With the presence of sailboats from other countries, Bordeaux is once again at the heart of the exchanges. This is a real economic advantage for the city which, for a few days, highlights both the historical, social and economic attraction. The presence of sailboats attracts Bordeaux who no longer miss this event. This River Festival is also an opportunity for the city to attract tourists to visit, along with the streets of Bordeaux, the most beautiful boats in the world. And the city doesn’t just invite boats to moor on these beautiful June days. Thus, nearly sixty stops at the port of the Moon are planned this year. They start as early as April, and will continue almost until the end of the year. Bordeaux will host both ships and military ships. Once again, Bordeaux shows its opportunityto be at the heart of international trade. An asset for the city of wine which has long been a crossroads of exchanges and which, in this way, continues to be.
Bordeaux: an ancestral place of passage for boats
However, seeing the largest sailboats meet is not only a pretext for international exchanges and the occupation of the port of the Moon. During these few days in June, many events throughout the River Festival will be organized to animate the city centre. It is above all a way to bring in the inhabitants of Bordeaux but also the tourists. These few days will be an opportunity to exchange around exhibitions, meetings, and more festive moments. This year, the theme of the Festival of the River will be freedom, and is intended to be educational: the ecology of the oceans, an issue of concern, will be at the heart of the exhibitions scheduled during this weekend. Finally, it will be an opportunity for Bordeaux to come together and discover the world in a completely different way. This will allow them to increase their culture in a new way, during a weekend where they will be able to taste many wines for the occasion. Bordeaux remains above all a creator of relationships.
While a third of the sailboats built in Europe are made in France, according to INSEE, many boats pass through our country, and stop there between a few days to a few weeks. In the 19th century, boats were mainly used by men as a means of transport for their goods, passing through the Mediterranean-Atlantic axis. The port of Bordeaux allowed the city to create relations, notably with England and the Nordic countries, where wine was exported. Thanks to its exports, Bordeaux has long supplied Europe: coffee, sugar, cotton… The city became the first French port and the second largest port in the world at the time of Louis XVI. The port of Bordeaux is an old port, located at a crossroads of land, river and sea routes that allows many exchanges.
If Bordeaux is a city at the heart of international exchanges, they take many forms. Through the Festival of the River, the city privileges foreign relations and thus opens itself once again to the world. It is well known that the city pushes tourists to come and visit its places, as it encourages locals to travel the world. It is therefore a real opportunity for Bordeaux to meet for a few days to discover, learn and above all have fun.
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