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Maritime Forum

Boat Race (Level 2 – Experienced skipper)

Discover activities organized across Europe for European Maritime Day in my Country and gain advanced skills in using the European Atlas of the Seas by participating in a virtual boat race that will take you from Finland to Italy with multiple...


Note for teachersThis activity will allow students to explore the European Atlas of the Seas’ map layer showing 2022 European Maritime Day in My Country events by navigating virtually from the Baltic Sea to the Adriatic Sea! Through a diversity of hints and questions provided in this boat race guide, using geographical coordinates and the Atlas‘ measure tool to calculate distances, students will progressively discover many events taking place across the European sea basins and sail closer and closer to the race’s finish line where a surprise awaits them! The boat race is a fun interactive way to find out about European Maritime Day in My Country events and to learn how to use the European Atlas of the Seas. This boat race (Level 2 – Experienced skippers) is aimed at skippers who are already familiar with the European Atlas of the Seas and the use of geographical coordinates to find locations on a map. Not yet an experienced skipper in the Atlas? Become one with the other boat race (Level 1 – New skipper)! Please note that boat race (Level 1) and boat race (Level 2) include common elements (e.g., starting point of the race and some stopovers). Boat race (Level 2) comprises additional stopovers as well as more diverse and complex hints.Competences developed with this activity: advanced use of digital maps, digital literacy, geographic information analysis

Before you start …

Do you know all the tools that are available in the European Atlas of the Seas? Do you know how to activate the measure tool in advanced features? Do you remember how to open several map layers to combine them into a new map? Before you focus on the preparation of the race, watch the video tutorial, have a look at the interactive help tool within the Atlas that will show you the tools you can use during the boat race and review the information below on the measure tool!


Preparing for the race

What do you already know about boat racing? Have you heard about the Vendée Globe and the Route du Rhum for example? Do you know skippers who have participated in these boat races? Share your experience with the class.

Did you know that one of the European Atlas of the Seas Ambassador participated in the Vendée Globe in 2020? Find out who he is and learn from his experience at sea by opening the map layer on European Atlas of the Seas Ambassadors. How will you find him amongst the 24 Ambassadors? He is the Ambassador for the Finnish language. Did you find him? What is his main message about the ocean?

A boat race must always be well prepared. Safety is essential at sea and you must not forget anything before leaving! Some key steps are listed below.

  1. Make sure all skippers are well trained, up to date on all safety training and well informed of the navigation route and race rules;
  2. Prepare the boat: verify and test all equipment carefully;
  3. Load and store supplies (e.g., food, gear, spares) you will need during the race;
  4. Check communication and navigation tools; and
  5. Check the weather and always plan ahead.

As this is a virtual race, here is how you can prepare for the race:

  1. Open the map layers showing 2022 European Maritime Day (EMD) in My Country events, the country borders and the sea names. The three map layers should overlap each other. You can check this by clicking on the layers’ icon. You can drag and drop the different layers to change the order. Make sure that the top layer is the one showing the EMD In My Country events so that you can see them better. Zoom in on a region and then zoom out. Click on a starfish representing an event to read the description of the event in the window that will open.
  2. Find a name for your virtual boat. You can take part in the race in teams or solo.
  3. Check that your Internet connection is stable.

Setting Sail

Skippers must read maps and know about the compass directions. Are you good at this? Remember that on the maps you will find the north at the top, the south at the bottom, the west to the left and the east to the right.

On your marks …. Go!

Step 1: Your first challenge is to find out where the boat race starts! Find the location of the two most northern events. In which country is it located? Who is organizing these two events?


Step 2: Navigate south in the Baltic Sea towards the German coast. What is the title of the event that was organised there on 24 June 2022?

Step 3: Now, navigate west, along the coasts of Denmark and into the North Sea. Stop by the most northern event in the North Sea. When is this event taking place?


Step 4: Continue into the North Atlantic Ocean and sail to the following location (activate the measure tool to find this location and deactivate the tool when you have arrived).

Latitude 53.28 Degrees / Longitude -9.21 Degrees

What country are you in? Click on the starfish. Four events have been organised there. Who organised the event ‘3EMD – Secrets of the sea’?

Step 5: Continue your journey into the Celtic Sea until you reach the French coast. What event was organised there on 26 September 2022?


Step 6: Head south to the northern coast of Spain at a distance of 300 nautical miles from the previous stopover. What is the name of the Bay you have reached? You will see three groups of events. Click on the group in the middle. Find the event organised by Asociacion Economica Navigatio. When was it organised? Click on the website address to learn about the Coastal Code they have developed. The website is available in English and in Spanish. Click on ‘Coastal Code’. Which three concepts form the basis of the Coastal Code?

Step 7: Navigate towards the south of Portugal. Zoom in to better see the events organised in Portugal. Sail to the following location:

Latitude 37.14 Degrees / Longitude -7.64 Degrees

What is the title of the event organised by Tavira Ciência Viva Science Centre on 20 May 2022?


Step 8: Sail further south towards de Strait of Gibraltar and into the Mediterranean Sea. Sail along the Spanish coast until you reach the Balearic Islands. Two events have been organised there. When did the Clean Boating event take place?

Step 9: Your next stopover is on an island country located south of Italy at a distance of 596 nautical miles from the previous stopover. Have you found it? Click on the group of events. Click on the arrow in the window describing the events to see all of the events organized on the island. The fifth event is a boat tour with a marine biologist. Who is it organized by?


Step 10: Sail towards the Adriatic Sea and find the events organised at the following location in Croatia.

Latitude 44.55 Degrees / Longitude 14.47 Degrees. On which date was World Sea Turtle Day celebrated?

Step 11: Navigate across the Adriatic Sea towards the Italian coast. Stay south of the Natura 2000 site Adriatico settentrionale – Emilia-Romagna. Many events are organized there! You have almost reached the final destination of the race. Close the map layers with the Sea Names. Zoom in on the city where you see most events.


Zoom in twice. Walk towards the following location:

Latitude: 44.42 Degrees / Longitude: 12.20 Degrees

Deactivate the measure tool. Click on the starfish again.


Welcome in Ravenna! You have just passed the finish line!

While you are in Italy, meet the Italian members of the EU4Ocean Coalition! Open the map layers of the three EU4Ocean Communities – the EU4Ocean Platform, the Young Ocean Advocates and the Network of European Blue Schools as well as country borders.

  • Which Platform member organization on the Adriatic coast focuses on diving safety? Hint - they are located at the following geographical coordinates:

    Latitude: 42.68 Longitude: 14.07

  • Which Young Ocean Advocates could tell you about the River Cleaner project which aims to prevent marine plastics pollution by intercepting plastic litter in rivers? Hint: The project is located on the Mediterranean coast. Note that if several EU4Ocean Coalition members are located very close to each other, the pieces of the puzzle that represent them may overlap. Use the arrow in the window that opens with information on the members to see all of them.

  • How many European Blue Schools are there in Italy? Click on the pieces of the puzzle representing the schools to learn more about them. In the window that will open, click on the name of the project to see what students have been working on. Would you like your school to join the Network of European Blue Schools? Read how you can apply online!

We hope you have enjoyed the journey! To learn more about the ocean and seas, we invite you to learn about the other events shown in the map. By clicking on each starfish, you can access the websites related to the events or the organisers of the events. Have fun!