Kiel, located about 90 kilometers north of Hamburg is the capital and most populous city in northern Germany. Due to its location, Kiel has become one of the major maritime centres of Germany. The city is known for a variety of international sailing events, including the annual Kiel Week, which is reported to be the biggest sailing event in the world. The Olympic sailing competitions of the 1936 and the 1972 Summer Olympics were held in Kiel.
City Highlights and Observations
We arrived in Kiel during the annual Kiel Week . . . Kiel Woche, this year held June 21 – June 29, 2014. This event is also one of the largest Volksfeste in Germany. Kiel Week usually gathers around 5,000 sailors, 2,000 ships, and about three million visitors each year. We must have gotten there a little too early for the major festivities, because although there were several tall ships docked nearby, we didn’t see any of the racing or other sailing events during our day there. We saw this great event poster everywhere, though!
My friends and I spent the afternoon strolling through Kiel, enjoying a few of the Kiel Week events, including a short concert by a 5-piece section of the US Navy Band and checked out some of the local food vendors and other booths set up for the anticipated crowds later that day.