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The Tall Ships Races 2020

Race statistics

Start date 02/07/20
Legs 3
Races 2
Nautical miles 1900

We’re excited to return to the Iberian Peninsula for the Tall Ships Races 2020. The last visit by the Tall Ships in our Diamond Anniversary year, 2016, was a huge success and we’re sure 2020 will be too…

The event will be the perfect mixture of old friends and new horizons with Lisbon, Portugal, Cádiz, Spain, and A Coruña, Spain boasting a total of 22 Tall Ships Races and Regattas between them and Dunkirk, France, hosting for the first time. As you might expect, they’re all eager to welcome the international fleet to their shores.

“The 2020 Tall Ships race series should offer the fleet a good balance of exciting racing and enjoyable and relaxing visits to the host ports and cruise-in-company harbours.

Race 1 from Lisbon, Portugal, to Cádiz, Spain, is 250 nautical miles around Cape St Vincent with the prevailing winds. Race 2 will be a 120 mile leg from Cádiz to a finish line off the 15th century historic nautical school of Sagres which should offer some interesting strategic racing along the Algarve coast.

“The 400 mile cruise-in-company onto A Coruña, Spain, will take in some of the most beautiful ports in Portugal and Spain where there will be a good opportunity for the crews to relax and meet up on an informal basis. Race 3 will be the longest leg, and potentially most challenging, and will be 660 miles from A Coruña to Dunkirk, France, across the Bay of Biscay.

“I would encourage any young person between 15 and 25 with a sense of adventure to sign up for any of the legs in the Tall Ships Races 2020. Whether you have no sailing experience or you are experienced it will be a terrific opportunity.”

Paul Bishop, Head of Race Directorate, Sail Training International


Spirited Lisbon welcomes the fleet of the Tall Ships Races for the eighth time in 2020 and will provide the perfect backdrop to open the festivities.


As the oldest continuously inhabited city in southern Spain (and one of the oldest in south-west Europe), charming Cádiz boasts history, energy and enthusiasm.


Located in northern Spain, A Coruña is a busy, bustling port. It’s located on a promontory in the entrance of an estuary in a large gulf on the Atlantic Ocean. It’s the richest region and economic engine of Galicia – an autonomous community in north-west Spain.

Dunkirk, France

The Tall Ships Races 2020 will mark the first time that Dunkirk has hosted a Tall Ships event, and we can’t wait to visit this coastal Commune which brings together history, natural beauty and contemporary art.