Javier F. Barrera
Monday, 22 January 2024, 16:45
The Danmark, a naval training ship belonging to the Danish Maritime Authority, made an elegant appearance in the bay of La Herradura on Saturday.
The three-masted ship took locals and visitors to La Herradura by surprise, creating a beautiful image set against the backdrop of Cerro Gordo cliffs.
The Danmark is an old acquaintance of Spanish ports. Being a full-rigged training ship, like the Juan Sebastián Elcano of the Spanish Navy, it regularly tours the Mediterranean and often opens up to the general public when it is in port.
In the last twelve months it has been in the ports of La Coruña and Cartagena, where visitors were able to go on board to see this training ship that is in good condition despite its almost a century of history. On this occasion it had sailed to La Herradura from Porto Grande, Cape Verde.
Danish residents in La Herradura and the surrounding area in particular were pleasantly surprised to see such an iconic ship of their country anchored in the bay.
On Sunday crew members could be seen carrying out rowing exercises alongside the ship.
The Danmark was completed in 1932 and launched in 1933. At its 90 years of age, it is one of the oldest naval training ships still sailing today and even a veteran of World War II, having served with the US Coast Guard after Nazi Germany invaded Denmark.
The ship is 65 metres long and almost ten metres wide with a depth of 5.2 metres. It weighs 790 tonnes and its fitted with a diesel 486 HP engine capable of reaching nine knots.
According to information on the site Foronaval, "During its first decade of life, the brand new Danmark made six training cruises, and was in New York with the Norwegian training ship Christian Radich when the second world war broke out and Denmark was invaded by Hitler's troops. The Danish government ordered the ship not to return to Europe, and later, with the entry of the US into the war, in 1941, it was put at the disposal of the Americans, who immediately assigned it to the training of US Coast Guard cadets and sailors (the USCG), training some 5,000 future naval officers until almost the end of the conflict, when the ship was returned to Denmark.
"The Danmark has continued in its role as a training ship for Danish seafarers from 1946 to the present day, regularly conducting two naval training voyages of five months' duration each.
"In winter it usually sails around the Mediterranean (visiting for example Cartagena and Algeciras, and now La Herradura) and the Canary Islands, then in summer it calls at Plymouth before crossing the Atlantic, reaching the east coast of the United States and the Virgin Islands before returning to its base at Frederickshaven, where the training ship undergoes two months of maintenance before sailing again."
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