World Arc 2014: international sailing boats make a port of call in Réunion

Having left Saint Lucia on 11 January, the sailing boats of the international World Arc rally drew in alongside the Le Port marina on Friday 24 October 2014. The 21 luxury yachts are docked for a week - a chance for the sailors to step foot on the solid land of Réunion.

From 24 October to 1st November 2014, Réunion Island is hosting the World Arc Sailing, for the fourth year. Organised for the ninth year, this international sailing boat rally comprises 21 yachts which are currently stopping over for the week at Le Port, Réunion.

The World Arc sailing boats docked in the Le Port marina

A real round-the-world adventure, the World Arc rally is held over more than fifteen months, covering 26,000 nautical miles (48,152 km). The event comprises 21 prestigious skiffs, single-hulled vessels and catamarans of between 12 and 18 metres, with 77 participants of 17 different nationalities on board - France, United States, Spain, Ireland, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Canada, United Kingdom, Norway, Australia, Guernsey, Slovakia, and so on. From Saint Lucia, via the Marquesas Islands, Australia, Bali and Réunion, the world tour of these international luxury yachts will come to an end in March 2015.

The official reception of the World Arc crews

Réunion Island Tourism (IRT) is partner to this event once again, alongside the Tourist Office of the West, the Regional Tourism Federation (FRT), the city of Le Port and the Grand Port Maritime de La Réunion (GPMDLR). The Dodo Palmé diving centre welcomed the sailors upon their arrival on Friday 24 October 2014. The sailors were given an exceptional reception with exotic touches, where they were given the opportunity to taste both Réunion gastronomy through the Le Dodo Gourmand menu, and local musical traditions, with the folk group Les Mascareignes.

The folk group Les Mascareignes

Made in Réunion appetisers

The Le Dodo Gourmand buffet

In his speech, the president of the IRT Patrick Serveaux said that a coach day trip was in store for the seventy participants from Sunday 26 October 2014 - a chance to visit the island and to get to know its residents and its natural and cultural heritage. In addition to this day, excursions, activities and other tourism products can be booked on site, with the FRT, by these alternative cruise passengers.

The president of the IRT, Patrick Serveaux, and Paul Tetlow, World Arc organiser

For the IRT, the objective is to give these travellers the opportunity to discover Réunion, so that they become real advocates of the destination. The World Arc stopover in Réunion is also an excellent communication channel which gives the island strong visibility on the world map. This event, which is followed all over the world, should be set up as an annual fixture as of next year.

It should be noted that the public has free access to Le Port marina to admire the boats from the quay until Saturday 1st November 2014, when the sailing boats will go back to sea. After Réunion Island, the yachts will sail towards South Africa, where they will spend Christmas and New Year.

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