Foyle Days Festival

A host of events sheduled to celebrate the river and its surroundings

Derry will soon be awash with family fun as the Foyle Days Festival returns to the city on June 12-13. Foyle Days celebrates all that’s good about the river Foyle as the candidate city for City of Culture 2013 prepares for its annual maritime celebrations.

This year sees a visit by a number of tall ships that will berth at Queens Quay, giving everyone the rare opportunity to cross the gangway and visit these fascinating vessels.

Mayor of Derry, Cllr Paul Fleming, said: 'The Foyle Days Festival is a fun filled family event that offers the perfect weekend with something for everyone. As well as having a great time people get to celebrate this city’s impressive maritime history and heritage.'

A massive hit last year which is returning for 2010 is the portable diving pool at Queen’s Quay where City of Derry Sub Aqua Diving Club will offer visitors an opportunity to experience scuba diving in a safe environment. While regular and enduring Festival favourites, the Foyle Paddlers, will offer supervised canoeing.

The Just Kayak Eco Tours is a wonderful opportunity to step on board a Bell Boat at the Pontoon and take an Eco-based tour of the River Foyle, exploring the riverbanks and creeks of the tidal Foyle.

Derry City Council’s Biodiversity team will be on hand with information on the importance of Lough Foyle and River Foyle systems for wildlife. Visitors can learn about local rivers that are internationally important for many different fish, mammal and bird species. Nature trail quizzes and craft activities will be available for children while adults can learn more about Derry’s Local Biodiversity Action Plan.

The Festival will also coincide with the beginning of bike week, and to celebrate that fact visitors can take part in the Slow Bike Race.

To celebrate the city’s maritime history and heritage, Derry City Council invites locals to find out more about the Plantation of Ulster and the part played by the city, its river and its fisheries. Visitors can also take an historical tour of the Ebrington Site and visit the Atlantic Memorial Exhibition and Plantation exhibition in the Workhouse Museum.

Experience a mix of continental and local cuisine and crafts at this year’s walled city market, located at Queen’s Quay from 10am – 5pm each day. Or relax and enjoy the sounds of With The River Sings sound installation and concert produced by the University of Ulster.

Visit the Derry City Council website for more information.