From 2 to 5 July 2015 tall ships from across the globe will anchor in Belfast for the start of The Tall Ships Races 2015.
Organised by Sail Training International, The Tall Ships Races will be welcomed by the annual Lidl Belfast Titanic Maritime Festival. This is the third time that Belfast has hosted the races, having previously welcomed the ships in 1991 and 2009.
Both previous visits were incredibly popular; in 2009 around 800,000 spectators came to the four-day event, when a flotilla of 40 ships berthed along the city's quays.
In 2015 the event is expected to attract 500,000 people, with another 500,000 watching the ships arrive and leave along the Northern Ireland and Irish coasts. The ships will be berthed in and around Belfast Harbour and the Titanic Quarter area.
Belfast Tall Ships 2015 Ltd has been set up to manage the event, with funding from Belfast City Council, the Northern Ireland Tourist Board, Belfast Harbour and the Department of Social Development.How many ships are expected?
In 2009 over 40 vessels were welcomed and the 2015 event promises to be even bigger! Up to 80 Tall Ships are expected in Belfast from Thursday 2 July to Sunday 5 July for the Tall Ships Races 2015.
A number of ships have already been signed up for the race, including some Class A vessels. A Class A is an all square rigged vessel or a vessel over 40 metres in length regardless of rig.
View the vessel entry list
For information on vessels, visit http://www.sailtraininginternational.org/
Which ports will the Tall Ships visit after Belfast?
After the Tall Ships leave Belfast on 5 July, they will visit the following ports:
Aalesund, Norway 15 - 18 July
Kristiansand, Norway 25 - 28 July
Aalborg, Denmark 1 - 4 August
Take a look at the video below for a summary of the 2009 event and what to expect in 2015.