. Article available in:Top programme with tall ship parades, tugboat ballet and 300 vessels
The 830th HAMBURG PORT ANNIVERSARY will be a maritime festival of the superlatives, celebrated by the people of Hamburg and their guests from Friday 10 to Sunday 12 May.
The world’s biggest port festival awaits visitors in the unique setting of the Port of Hamburg, with a varied programme for the whole family. Some 300 ships will call on the port, presenting themselves in the very best light – including magnificent tall ships and majestic cruisers, lovingly restored museum ships and maritime service vessels. The event will be celebrated on three days in the areas around Landungsbrücken, in the Speicherstadt (historic warehouse district), HafenCity, the Fish Market and Oevelgönne Museum Harbour.
The classics on the Elbe, from ship parades to tugboat ballet
The traditional starter for the HAMBURG PORT ANNIVERSARY is the International Ecumenical Service held at St. Michael’s church at 12:00 noon. After that, Hamburg Senator Michael Westhagemann, Hamburg’s Minister of Economics, Transport and Innovation, will ring the ship’s bell on the museum ship Rickmer Rickmers to sound the official opening of the maritime event of superlatives. From 14:00 the Grand Arrival Parade will start the three-day festival on and along the River Elbe.
The highlights on the Saturday include the unique Tugboat Ballet and the Big AIDA Firework Display. The port tugboats put on their dance display from 18:30 in front of Landungsbrücken, to the accompaniment of familiar tunes; and the Big AIDA Firework Display will transform the sky over the Port of Hamburg into a sparkling sea of colour from 22:30. The ships will take their leave of Hamburg from 16:00 on the Sunday, with the Grand Departure Parade.
Premiere for Europe’s most advanced firefighting vessel
Between the Arrival and Departure Parades, visitors to the HAMBURG PORT ANNIVERSARY can expect a varied maritime programme and a journey through maritime history. A premiere at the world’s biggest port festival is Hamburg’s new firefighting vessel, Branddirektor Westphal, which has been in service in the Port of Hamburg since the beginning of the year. This 44 metre vessel is Europe’s most advanced firefighting vessel, capable of pumping 120,000 litres of water per minute and spraying the water to a height of 110 metres and a distance of 180 metres. That enables her to extinguish a fire even on the largest container and cruise ships in the world. The Branddirektor Westphal will also participate in the new programme item by the Hamburg fleet from 20:30 on the Friday evening. The subsidiary run by the Hamburg Port Authority is providing an icebreaker at the HAMBURG PORT ANNIVERSARY, a survey vessel with the most advanced measurement systems, a diving support vessel and a coastal patrol vessel operated by the Hamburg Waterways Police on the Lower Elbe and along the German North Sea coast.
Eco-friendly circumnavigation of the world
A futuristic visitor from France will draw the crowds – the Energy Observer, a high-tech catamaran with length overall 30 metres and beam just under 13 metres, powered by renewable energies such as wind, solar and hydrogen. She is an ambassador for climate protection and sustainable technologies. She set off in June 2017 for a six-year odyssey around the world, calling in ports in 50 countries, including this year’s visit to the HAMBURG PORT ANNIVERSARY. The Energy Observer is the first vessel to make her own hydrogen from seawater on a journey around the world, with zero greenhouse gas and particulate emissions. The project has the patronage of French President Emmanuel Macron and is also supported by the EU and UNESCO.
Elbphilharmonie Concerts on Screen
Following the great success of the premiere last year, the “Elbphilharmonie Concerts on Screen” will be back for the 830thHAMBURG PORT ANNIVERSARY, to the delight of classical music lovers. In cooperation with the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg and the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra, live recordings of performances in the Main Hall will be projected onto a big screen on the forecourt of Hamburg’s iconic concert venue.
Greetings from the South of France
The country partner Occitanie/South of France presents the picturesque region of Occitania at Kehrwiederspitze. Occitania is located between the Pyrenees and the Mediterranean Sea, and is not only an attractive tourist destination, but also an important commercial region with the Airbus site in Toulouse. Occitania is also France’s biggest organic farming region, and invites visitors at the HAMBURG PORT ANNIVERSARY to come on a culinary trip to sample the aromas and flavours of the region. Visitors will have opportunities to taste Southern French specialities such as oysters, Armagnac and craft beer, olive oil and aligot, a dish made from cheese blended into mashed potatoes.
A number of event spaces for special programme items and attractions appealing to families with children are located along the banks of the Elbe. Special exhibitions will be put on by museums in the Speicherstadt (the historic warehouse district designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site) and in the modern HafenCity district.
The HAMBURG PORT ANNIVERSARY would like to thank its long-standing principal sponsor AIDA Cruises – their support is essential to make the world’s greatest port festival possible each year, thrilling more than a million visitors from all parts of the world.
Location: • DE - Deutschland Hamburg
Photos / Videos: Hafengeburtstag Hamburg & Hamburg Messe und Congress / Nico Maack
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