More than 130,000 people visited Tallinn Maritime Days last year

Tallinn Maritime Days, held on July 13–15, 2012, attracted more than 130,000 happy visitors with their colorful event selection. A record number of visitors attended the Seaplane hangars as well as Peetri Harbor in Noblessner Quarter that participated in Maritime Days for the first time with a full-length program. Among the most distinguished guests were seaplanes that arrived in Estonia for the first time in 65 years.

The driving force behind the fascination of so many visitors – this regardless of the spouts of rainfall that hit Tallinn during the Maritime Days weekend – was the Seaplane Harbor with its hangars that was featured for the first time as fully complete. As a result of an affordable ticket price, 15,000 visitors enjoyed the hangars in three days, thus achieving the hangars’ absolute record.

All of the programmed events of Maritime Days took place as planned – the weather did not interfere with the arrival of the seaplanes, videomapping at the Admirality Basin of the Passenger Port nor the Sunday evening guerilla cinema at the Mine Harbor. The most popular concerts included Lenna’s Saturday night performance at the Seaplane Harbor, followed by Ultima Thule’s concert at Peetri Harbor in Noblessner Quarter. Considerable crowds gathered to delight in the tug dance show as well as Saturday’s marine rescue demonstration by the Police and Boarder Guard Aviation Group, followed by an opening concert of Maritime Days featuring a joint performance by Jaan Pehk, Chalice, Vaiko Eplik and the Estonian National Youth Symphony Orchestra. The Saturday morning sunrise concert with Mari Kalkun at Tallinn Bay, bicycle treks and excursions as well as boat rides between the three harbors also proved exceedingly popular.

The most glorious foreign guests included four seaplane aircrews from Finland that docked at the Seaplane Harbor during the two days of the festival, exhibited to thousands of curious onlookers. Naturally, the seaplane pilots were surprised to be the recipients of such interest, yet they did understand the excitement of the Estonians – seaplanes were last seen in Estonia 65 years ago.

Located behind KalamajaCemeteryPark between the MineHarbor and the Seaplane Harbor, Noblessner Quarter that is developing from a one-time submarine plant into a modern business and culture district, permanently opened its territory to all visitors during the past Maritime Days. During the maritime festivities, Noblessner’s summer cafe provided refreshments for visitors at the harbor, a design market was set up and DJs took the stage. The penultimate stage of the 55th Moonsund Regatta finished at Peetri Harbor on Friday night. 115 yachts from Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania and Russia docked at the pier to stand wait of the regatta’s last stage at Tallinn Bay on Saturday. On Saturday, Noblessner Quarter was overtaken by concerts: performers included the jazz-rap group Külalised (Visitors) as well as Marten Kuningas & Band; in the fading light of the day, the harbor fell under the spell of Ultima Thule, the number one collective of Estonian rock. The Quarter now welcomes visitors from 9 AM to 11 PM daily. A staircase, descending from the waterfront Culture Kilometer, will soon be finished to facilitate easier assess to the harbor area.

The head of the Tallinn Maritime Days regulatory committee and Vice Mayor Taavi Aas thanked the performers as well as all the visitors for making Maritime Days such a grandiose event for the fifth year in a row. “We’re glad that the Seaplane Harbor is finally finished and Peetri Harbor is continuing its developmental path – once again, all of us in unison have proven that Maritime Days opened the city to the sea. It was nice to see that regardless of the weather, all of the events enjoyed ample participation,” commented Aas. “See you at Tallinn Maritime Days 2013!”

The main organizers of the fifth Tallinn Maritime Days were the City of Tallinn, lead by the Culture and Heritage Department; the Port of Tallinn, and the Estonian Maritime Museum and Estonian Historic Ships Union. Grand sponsors were Viking Line Eesti OÜ and BLRT Grupp; the festival’s cooperation partners were Balbiino, A Le Coq, Clarion Hotel Euroopa, Estonian Yachting Union, Kalev Yach Club, the Jazzkaar festival, Estonian Maritime Administration, Estonian Police and Boarded Guard Board, Estonian Swimming Federation, Noblessner, Alfons Håkans, Information Centre for Sustainable Renovation, the Tango Port Tallinn festival, City Marina and the Museum of Contemporary Art of Estonia.