Tall Ships Races make their return to Finland in 2024

Turku, Mariehamn and Helsinki have been selected as host ports in 2024 for the annual sailing competition.

Tall Ships Races was last hosted in Turku in 2017. Image: AOP

Sailing competition series Tall Ships Races makes its way to Finland once again in 2024, it was announced on Wednesday. The host ports for the Tall Ships Races in Finland are Turku, Mariehamn and Helsinki.

The announcement was made by the city of Rauma, which did not get the hosting gig it had wished for.

Turku will mark the start and finish port of the competition series, but, in actuality, the start and finish line will be in open waters near Utö. The ships can be seen in Turku from 18 to 21 July, in Helsinki from 4 to 7 July and in Mariehamn from 24 to 27 July 2024.

"I am thrilled that Turku will once again have the opportunity to host this wonderful maritime event after last summer's cancellation. We can take advantage of the preparations we had made earlier, so we are already well on our way," said Turku Mayor Minna Arve in a press release.

The Tall Ships Races, which were set to take place in Turku and Mariehamn in the summer of 2021, were cancelled due to the Covid pandemic. The cities chosen for the 2024 races are the ones that were due to host the 2021 regatta, which also include Klaipeda in Lithuania, Szczecin in Poland and Tallinn in Estonia.

Turku has been the host port of the Tall Ships Races in 1996, 2003, 2009 and 2017. Helsinki, on the other hand, has been the destination port of the Tall Ships Races in 1972, 1988, 2000 and most recently in 2013.

Tall Ships Races is a large sailing competition held, on average, every four years on the Baltic Sea. The event is expected to attract around a hundred entrants and attracts about half a million spectators in each host city.

The event is organised by the non-profit organisation Sail Training International (STI). STI's main focus is on youth work and promoting the cooperation of young people, regardless of nationality, cultural background, religion or social background.