Special Events

Tall Ships

Richmond is a Port of Call for the World's Classic Tall Ships

Maritime Heritage
A century ago, the biggest and fastest sailing ships from all over the world came to Steveston's bustling Cannery Row in Richmond to load much desired cargos of Pacific salmon for international markets. Today, Richmond's Steveston Harbour remains Western Canada's largest commercial fishing port. It is also home to several significant maritime heritage sites, including two national historic sites, the Gulf of Georgia Cannery, and the Britannia Heritage Shipyard Park.

The City of Richmond celebrates its maritime heritage, through a number of special events, including visits by some of the world's great tall ships, festivals and maritime heritage restoration and preservation projects and programs.

Tall Ships Richmond 2011
The proposed Tall Ships Richmond festival planned for June 3 to 7, 2011 is deferred until 2014. 

In its place for 2011, a maritime festival season will run throughout the summer and include visits by a selection of tall ships:

Tall Ships Festival 2002
Crowd Gathering at the Tall Ships FestivalIn 2002, the Tall Ships from around the world returned to historic Steveston for Richmond Tall Ships 2002, a five-day celebration of maritime history and culture. An estimated 400,000 people turned out to greet a majestic fleet of Tall Ships from Europe, Asia and the Americas visiting Richmond from August 8 to 12, 2002. The Tall Ships were the centrepiece of a major, maritime-themed festival featuring fun and affordable activities for the entire family.

The City's success in staging the festival was recognized through a number of awards including the Port of the Year Award from the American Sail Training Association, Tourism BC's 2003 award for Best Tourism Marketing Campaign and the 2002 Gateway Award from Tourism Richmond.

Kaiwo Maru Visits Richmond in 2004
The tall ships returned to the shores of Richmond again in the summer of 2004 . Japans Kaiwo Maru, translated as the King of the Ocean, one of the world's largest tall ships at a length of 110.9 metres (361-feet), made a four-day visit to Richmond in July, 2004. The Kaiwa Maru's visit thrilled enthusiastic crowds who lined up for free public tours and an awe-inspiring demonstration of the crew's sail rigging skills.

SV Concordia Visits Britannia Shipyard
July and August, 2004 also featured a visit to Richmond by the SV Concordia, a well-loved tall ship, that spends 10 months of the year sailing the seven seas, while offering sail training to high school students. The 57-metre (188-foot) Concordia spent three weeks based at Richmond's Britannia Heritage Shipyard. Hundreds of youths and other sailing fans were able to take part in hand-on day sails, for a once in a lifetime experience of helping to sail a magnificent tall ship.

Maritime Festival

The inaugural Richmond Maritime Festival was launched in August, 2004 at Britannia Heritage Shipyards. A tribute to wooden boats and other classic ships, the event featured displays of unique and historic vessels, entertainment maritime-related displays and activities.  The Festival is planned to be an annual celebration of maritime heritage.

More to Come
Additional visits by Tall Ships and other special maritime events are currently being planned. For more information contact the Britannia Heritage Shipyard at 604-718-8050 or britannia@richmond.ca.
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