18-meter-long whale, illuminated jellyfish and giant sea urchins on their way to Derry

An 18-metre-long whale, illuminated jellyfish, and giant sea urchins are making their way to Derry ahead of the Foyle Maritime Festival this year.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 20th June 2022, 6:04 pm

The internationally acclaimed festival makes its highly anticipated return to the banks of the River Foyle this July, alongside the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race fleet, and punters can look forward to an awe-inspiring display of light, sound, and performance, as well as a thrilling explosion of fireworks across the River Foyle.

Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to attend the festival, with the landmark event set to take place from July 20-24, following a three-year hiatus. Visitors from across the world will descend on Ireland’s only Walled City for a programme packed with entertainment, activities, and interactive events.

The theme for this year’s festival is ‘What Lies Beneath’, which focuses on the natural beauty of our oceans, rivers and lakes, and the responsibility we have to protect this aquatic wonderland by shining a light on critical environmental issues and the impact of climate change.

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The Foyle Maritime Festival is fast-approaching and Loughs Agency is proud to be supporting such a high-profile event with a series of water-based and land activities. Photo: Derry City and Strabane District Council.

The Queen’s Quay will be transformed into a hub of maritime magic, with various water activities, boat tours, food trails, workshops and live music planned for the influx of excited visitors.

Loughs Agency will have a visible presence during the festivities, with a special marine-themed zone dedicated to educating and informing people of their duties through an immersive VR Experience and an Interactive Trailer complete with a life size basking shark and touch tank.

Sharon McMahon, Loughs Agency CEO, says the organisation is delighted to be involved in the festival’s return. She said: “The Foyle Maritime Festival is one of the region’s most celebrated events, providing us with a major platform to promote the importance of biodiversity and marine tourism in the catchment.

“We are thrilled to be able to showcase our fantastic Interactive Trailer and VR Experience, and we are very much looking forward to assisting with a range of on-water activities such as kayaking and paddle boarding. In light of the fact we haven’t had a Foyle Maritime Festival for four years, this year’s iteration is set up to be a memorable one for Lough Foyle and the region as a whole.”

Credit: Derry City and Strabane District Council

This five-day event will transform the Foyle riverfront into an international marina as the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race is welcomed back for a fifth time.

Now in its twelfth edition, this remarkable race is taken on by ordinary people who are pushed to their limits to achieve the extraordinary. Consisting of a gruelling 40,000 nautical mile race around the world on a 70-foot racing yacht, visiting fifteen ports over six continents in eleven months, the Clipper Race is an endurance test like no other. The fleet is expected to arrive at the Maiden City from July 14 onwards.

The 2022 Festival promises to captivate visitors with a wide range of interactive, family friendly events. From water-based activities and live music to guest speakers and workshops the 2022 Foyle Maritime Festival’s return to the water will be unmatched.

Loughs Agency proudly supports the Foyle Maritime Festival in partnership with Derry City and Strabane District Council, Visit Derry and Tourism NI.