A fleet of glorious ships will parade across the waters of San Diego Bay for the annual Festival of Sail this holiday weekend, with midday sails and cannon battles galore.
Vessels will fill the waters of the North Embarcadero area for the Maritime Museum of San Diego's famous festival -- the largest tall ship event of its kind on the West Coast. The event kicked off Thursday with a parade of ships; it continues Friday at 12 p.m., and runs through Labor Day.
The majestic fleet of tall ships saluted the start of the 4-day Festival of Sail launching from the dock at the Maritime Museum, lead by San Salvador -- a replica of Juan Cabrillo's 16th-century galleon. The ships made their way to north end of Shelter Island, then into the San Diego Harbor, gliding along Harbor Island, Seaport Village and the Coronado Bridge.
On Friday, the festival will bring together aspiring sailors and seasoned ship veterans for an exciting day of nautical action. The jam-packed agenda includes thrilling demonstrations, family-friendly activities, beer gardens and a chance to explore inside all the magnificent ships.
On-the-water adventures include mid-day sails, twilight cruises, swift boat cruises, bay cruises aboard the 1914 pilot boat and 1800s-themed mock cannon battles.
The event will include the display of more than 20 tall ships and other fascinating vessels including the 139-foot "America," the 145-foot "Californian" and San Diego's iconic, 278-foot "Star of India," the oldest active sailing ship in the world.
Other cool sights include an actual Soviet-era B-39 submarine, designed to track U.S. and NATO warships, and the 1898 Steam Ferryboat "Berkeley," a National Historic Landmark that operated for 60 years on the San Francisco Bay.
Purchase tickets online for the Festival of Sail at $11 per person. Additional water adventures and boat activities are available as well for additional fees. A free street fair area is open to the general public.
Parking is available at 1355 N. Harbor Drive and at 610 W. Ash Street, according to the museum.
For more details, visit the event website.