Kieler Woche or Kiel Regatta

Source: By RThiele – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

Summer is the perfect time to hang out and to do lots of fun activities with friends and family. For Germans spending the summer with outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, or going for a walk (spazieren gehen) is among their most favorite activities. A must do activity while spending summer in Germany is visiting the beach and sunbathing.

Does that sound too ordinary? Are you looking for a more thrilling experience during summer in Germany? If you answer with yes, it is time for you to pack your luggage, travel to the capital of Schleswig-Holstein and register your boat to compete in the largest sailing event in the world, titled Kieler Woche or Kiel Regatta.

Source: By Andrea Malz – Own work, Public Domain

The Kieler Woche has a long tradition. It was first held in 1882 and until today it is still running annually during the last week in June. Rather than being just a sailing competition, this event offers live music, countless food stalls near the water and playgrounds for kids. The competition attracts 5,000 sailors, 2,000 ships, and about three million visitors every year.

Source: Sailing Competition, CC BY-SA 3.0

Before the official opening of the competition is rung in on the preceding Saturday by events such as Glasen and the Holstenbummel, on the Friday before the “Soundcheck” already marks the unofficial start of the event. The “Soundcheck” is a music festival across all the stages within the city, which comprises more than 300 concerts. You can listen to various music from international stars, newcomers and locals. In addition, for you who bring your children, do not worry. There is a large variety of entertainment and activities for them such as painting, playing, or watching a Punch and Judy Show. They also have their own musical entertainment on open-air stages and performances by children’s singers.

Source: Children playground, CC BY-SA 3.0

Source: Kieler Woche Concert, By BarbaraV – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

At the Kieler Woche you can not only witness the competitions, but also the largest ship convention in Germany, called Tall Ships Parade (Windjammerparade). This parade is usually held before the closing day of the Kieler Woche. It is able to attract more than 100 traditional ships and hundreds of yachts. The unique and spectacular parade draws people from all over the world who don’t want to miss it. The Kieler Woche is closed with a cabaret show and an International Balloon Sail that displays a colorful nightglow in the sky, before a music-synchronised firework brings the event to a picturesque end.

Who would have thought that of all things the biggest sailing competition is located in Germany? Probably you didn’t, right? So don’t miss out on this truly fantastic event next time you are in Germany during summer time.

Source: Windjammerparade, By I, VollwertBIT, CC BY-SA 2.5