Set against the breathtaking backdrop of Ha Long Bay's majestic landscapes, Quang Ninh People’s Committee and Quang Ninh Tourism Department hosted a special Welcome Ceremony for the Clipper Race Crew.

Image: Clipper Race officials and dignitaries at the Welcome Ceremony

The event showcased the rich cultural heritage and warm hospitality that the region is renowned for. Attendees were treated to traditional performances, culinary delights, and in an experience that captured the essence of Ha Long Bay. 

Image: Traditional Dragon dancing at the Welcome Ceremony

The ceremony was hosted by Madam Hanh, Vice Chairwoman of Quang Ninh People’s Committee, Mr Nguyen Ngoc Son, Vice Chairman of Quang Ninh People’s Committee, and Ms Nguyễn Thuỳ Yên, Deputy Director of Quang Ninh Tourism Department, who led the festivities, extending warm greetings to Clipper Race officials, skippers, and crew.

The ceremony took place against the stunning Islands of Ha Long Bay in the background, and as the morning begun, all eyes turned to the stage where the skippers were honoured with floral tributes and a Champagne opening.

As part of the celebrations the crew were treated to traditional Dragon dancers, and drummers.

Image: Skippers on stage receiving their ceremonial flowers from Nadine Harris, Partnerships and Events Manager, and Madam Hanh Vice Chairwoman of Quang Ninh People’s Committee

Madam Hanh expressed her delight in hosting The Clipper Race in Ha Long Bay, underscoring the significance of the race in promoting international cooperation and showcasing the natural splendour of Vietnam's coastal region, followed by Mr. Nguyen Ngoc Son emphasising the importance of maritime tourism in Quang Ninh's economic development and gratitude to the Clipper Race organisers for working with Ha Long Bay as a Host Port.

Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam Skipper Josh Stickland said: “It is such an honour to be here and receive such a warm welcome from Ha Long Bay. I have been waiting a long time to get here, and the welcome from the people has been more than I imagined. The hospitality they have shown us all is really heart warming.

“It is a great to be able to experience the cultural dragon dancing, and sample the local food and beer”.

The ceremony finished in a celebration where the eleven teams were welcomed on stage to receive a flower garland, as a mark of welcome from the Host Port Partners.

Image: Washinton, DC team on stage receiving their flower garlands

The crew continued to bask in the afterglow of this welcoming event, with celebratory beers, and local delights.

Image: Traditional Dragon dancers at the Welcome Ceremony

Image: Crew enjoying the atmosphere

Image: Crew celebrating the culture