Premier Denis NapthineWelcome to vibrant Geelong, the proud host of the Festival of Sails incorporating the Melges 24 World Championships 2014.

The Festival of Sails first took place in 1844 and has now grown into one of the largest sailing regattas in the Southern Hemisphere. Over 400 yachts and 4300 competitors, ranging from international Olympians to amateur sailors, annually hoist their sails in Corio Bay. The 2014 festival will be bigger than ever, featuring the Melges 24 World Championship, the first time the event has been held in the Southern Hemisphere.

The Festival of Sails has positioned itself as a key part of Geelong’s Australia Day celebrations. For those not competing on the water, the Geelong Waterfront promises plenty of action with fireworks, fine food and wine, boat trade shows, live music and entertaining stage performances.

As Victoria’s longest running sporting event, the Festival of Sails is one of the reasons why Victoria is Australia’s sporting capital. The Victorian Government is proud to support events such as the Festival of Sails as they provide memorable sporting highlights and provide an opportunity for the community to be involved in local events. They also showcase Victoria’s unique towns and cities, breathtaking scenery and the warm hospitality our State has to offer.

I encourage visitors to stay and discover the Great Ocean Road, witness the rugged splendour of Victoria’s renowned Twelve Apostles, visit ancient rainforests in the Great Otway National Park and enjoy the nearby Bellarine Peninsula food and wine region.

On behalf of the Victorian Government I welcome you to our picturesque Geelong waterfront to enjoy all the world-class sailing action, and fun activities on and off the water, at the 2014 Festival of Sails.

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The Hon Dr Denis Napthine MP

Premier