Thursday, 9 July 2015

Ahoy to the Tall Ships Belfast!

Ahoy there me hearties! Okay, let's just quickly accept the fact this is the perfect post to make pirate puns. I mean, they arrrgh pretty hilarious! (See what I did there eh? eh? I'm sorry.) Last weekend was a very exciting one for the wee city of Belfast in Northern Ireland. As a tiny country that doesn't usually have a place on many maps, it was a delight to many people for us to hold the beginning of the Tall Ship Races 2015. For those of you who aren't familiar with the tall ships, it is a race between many magnificent tall ships and is Europe's largest free family festival. The ships often attract many visitors for obvious reasons but there are many other attractions at the festival too - street performers, carnivals, fireworks, food, drink and crafts. The list goes on. It is an amazing experience for everyone in the family and I am so pleased Belfast got to hold such a stunning event and also proud that the weather managed to actually, for once, keep its water works under reasonable control!


The last time I saw the tall ships was way back in 2009 when I was just ten years old. I lived in England back then and was visiting family in Dublin at the time. Other than shaking hands with a huge built up sailor man with hat and drinking a Capri Sun, the day is pretty much a blur. When I went to Belfast on Friday to see the ships, I don't know what I was expecting... but it definitely was not the huge festival I was met with. I do not remember there being so many crowds and so much stuff to do! It was completely insane and it was pretty much impossible to ride my bike through the crowds. I ended up giving up pretty quickly.

I visited on board an amazing ship called the Equador, which I believe is one of the most popular ships there. It is crazy to think people stay on these ships day and night for months on end. It would be such an amazing experience to just be out at sea with nothing surrounding you but water. I imagine it is a huge roller coaster of a ride with it's ups and downs but one completely worth it with no regrets. I have always dreamed of being a sailor, I just need to get my ship together first. (OHHH! That was a pretty fine pun, I'm not even apologising for that one.) On Sunday, when the ships were setting off to start the race, I was sat in front of a pretty magnificent class a ship called the Gulden Leeuw. This particular vessel was from the Netherlands and I noticed that many of the crew on board were around my age. You could tell by just glancing at their faces that they were simply thrilled for the adventure ahead of them. The vibe they gave off to the crowd was one of excitement and it just made the atmosphere so much more enjoyable. I really hope this particular ship does well in the races and according to the leadership boards they are about 9th overall at the moment, but 3rd in their category. Everyone on board just seemed like they had this team spirit among them and they hadn't even started the races yet! 


Despite the time I wasted pining over the fact I couldn't actually travel on the ships with all of the crews, I did take advantage of the actual festival that although was chaotic and completely overcrowded did have many hidden gems. The Titanic Quarters was completely packed with street performers that were so amusing and talented. I could have sat for days listening to the actors, telling tales of what it was like to be on board the titanic or  laughing at the hilariously inappropriate acrobats. All of this entertainment, including the live music was completely free to watch and enjoy, this includes actually going on board of the ships and having a good little nose! I was also practically rolling in the freebies and food testers. I didn't even need to buy lunch, I just had to hang around the food tent for a good fifteen minutes to get a free three course menu out of testers!
Great Atmosphere!
I find prices at festivals like these to be quite expensive and I tend to avoid actually buying anything. Chances are, if there is a stall I really like, I will see it another day at a different Belfast event when the time eventually comes around. By then, I will have money saved and be ready! However, after walking around the dock market with my mother dearest, we bumped into a lovely lady running a stall called The Scented Thread. Imagine you are at a Lush store but it's much more prettier and daintier - that is this shop. The Scented Thread is run by a lovely woman named Laurie Curran and all the soaps and bath products are completely homemade, skin friendly and SLS free. Even the bags she gave out are completely eco-friendly and support street children in India who have an income by making the newspaper bags. After browsing, we purchased the St Clements Bath Salts and the Creamy Poppy Seed Soap. Both products feel amazing on the skin and smell absolutely delicious, I'm so excited to keep using them! It's quite brilliant what you can find in your local town or city if you just open your eyes and actually see! There are so many quirky and pretty local businesses surrounding you and I urge you to try some of them out! You will be surprised with the amount of amazing unique products that have all along been right at your doorstep!



The Tall Ship Festival was overall a huge success for Belfast and I hope that if you live in Europe you will one day get to have the experience too. I'm hoping that in the future I will be able to be on one of the magnificent ships and actually compete in the races too! But, until that day arrives, I will just have to keep on dreaming!


Til next shore leave, 



39 comments:

  1. What an amazing experience! I really love reading your posts and photos are always so lovely! xxxxx

    www.romantiquely.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I completely adore your blog also and your comments mean so much!

      Delete
  2. Such a great post, seems like you had a wonderful time. Keep blogging, we're loving it!

    ISA Professional

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great Post! Follow each other on GFC, Google+, Twitter, facebook, Instagram and Bloglovin? If yes, follow me and i follow back as soon as i see it. Let me know with a comment on my Blog

    Keep in Touch xx Rabea from germany
    http://www.rabeasbeautytipps.com/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you and Why not? I'd be happy to!

      Delete
  4. This looks like an amazing festival! Nothing beats that festival atmosphere. Lovely post :)

    Charlotte x

    http://the-beauty-lane.blogspot.co.uk/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I couldn't agree more! Thank you very much! x

      Delete
  5. How amazing this must've been. A real adventure ;) I've never heard of this race before but if I ever get a chance to see it... I shan't miss it :) xx Maja
    ❤ http://majasmuffin.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  6. I had no idea you could go see ships like this! It looks amazing :)

    Corinne x
    www.skinnedcartree.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. This sounds like such a wonderful festival! I'd love to see the beautiful ships. I really liked your puns! :D

    http://perlasancheza.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hahaha, I'm glad somebody appreciated my fine work;) x

      Delete
  8. Looks amazing!! I'd definitely want to visit! I love the little soaps too
    Xx

    Lauren | shynature.blogspot.co.uk

    ReplyDelete
  9. Greeting mi hearty!!! Thank ye kindly for your visit to me humble blog and the kind comment! How appropriate you posted this tall ship event! It looks amazing fun and SUCH an experience!!! I'm going on a cruise next Summer which is calling at Belfast, so I hope to be able to have a little wander around this area perhaps!
    The SLS-free products sound great- that is a chief requirement for me when choosing bath products so I will give that website a look!
    Nice to meet you.x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well Hello! Hahaha, Always good to see a friendly face! I love your blog, it's the cutest! And oooh yes, do stop by! Who knows? We could even bump into one another! I hope you enjoy your cruise! xx

      Delete
  10. You can't beat a good ol pirate pun!
    seems like such a cool day, the street performers talking about the titanic sound so interesting!
    xxx
    http://sergeinthecity.blogspot.co.uk/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Titanic was built in Belfast you see, so I suppose to me I'd heard it a thousand times before and didn't fully appreciate it but I still enjoyed it! x

      Delete
  11. aww looks like a really fun sailing trip holly! hope you had a great time :)

    theleeday.com

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wow, looks and sounds so cool I love this post<3 this makes me just want to pack my bags and travel thanks for sharing this is so fun to read:) pleas keep on writing. Do you want to support each other's blog by following each other?:) Please let me know if you do so I can follow you right back x

    kisses

    http://www.theclosetelf.com/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awww thank you & sure! I'd be happy to! x

      Delete
  13. Great post! Must have been an amazing experience <3
    xx Alina
    thelittlediamonds.de

    ReplyDelete
  14. I've never been to Belfast before, looks like you had a great trip though! x http://www.coffeeatmidnight13.blogspot.co.uk/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Belfast is pretty great city! I actually think it's better than Dublin but shh, don't let anyone know I said that! ;) x

      Delete
  15. What an amazing event! The Scented Thread sounds like such a charming stall!

    xx

    ReplyDelete
  16. Great! In Ostend (Belgian Coast) there is something (more or less) similar. The thing I like the most is that you can actually visit the ships.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I imagine it's the same race, I can't remember exactly but I know they were headed to Norway and down the Coast to maybe Belgian! Say Hi for me! ;) x

      Delete
  17. Great blog!
    Would you like to support each other by following each other´s blog? ^_^

    http://omnia-est-vanitas.blogspot.de/

    ReplyDelete
  18. www.jalisasfashionfiles.com

    ReplyDelete