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‘Stad Amsterdam’ Is Out the Gate and Now Bound for Hawaii

The damp arrival of the Stad Amsterdam on March 6 was a sharp contrast to the brilliant sunshine of her breezy departure on Sunday morning. The San Francisco fireboat escorted her from the Bay Bridge to the Golden Gate Bridge as she motored upwind around Alcatraz toward Angel Island to follow the outbound shipping lane, and to get a better angle for those big, square sails in the northwesterly breeze coming over the headlands. It was a tight course requiring auxiliary power to keep her bow pointed toward the open ocean against the flood.

Stad Amsterdam
The Dutch tall ship Stad Amsterdam makes its way through San Francisco Bay followed by the fireboat St. Francis in this view from Sausalito on Sunday, March 24. The ship is sailing for Honolulu and then Tokyo, continuing on its world tour.
© 2024 Eric Risberg
Stad Amsterdam makes its way past the San Francisco skyline.
© 2024 Eric Risberg

We were hoping to see all 31 sails set, but brisk headwinds made that difficult to accomplish. Watching her exit had us imagining the challenges faced by 19th-century clipper ships that had to leave the Bay against headwinds, without auxiliary power. Maneuvering a ship that doesn’t go to weather well and is slow to turn, while at the whim of the wind and current, must have been a nerve-wracking experience. We’ve often found ourselves in tricky situations with a much simpler and more nimble boat.

Stad Amsterdam
The Matthew Turner and the Stad Amsterdam crossed tacks outside the Gate.
© 2024 John

The Bay Area’s tall ship, the Matthew Turner, was also up early with sails set for the Stad Amsterdam sendoff. The steel-hulled Stad Amsterdam was launched in 2000, while the wooden-hulled, Sausalito-built Matthew Turner was launched in spring 2017. They both were built by dreamers with a vision to preserve maritime heritage, while using the ships to give youth an opportunity to learn the lessons of the sea and explore opportunities for a more sustainable future.

Stad Amsterdam
The Stad Amsterdam leading the Matthew Turner out of the Bay.
© 2024 John
Stad Amsterdam
She was close-hauled as she left the Golden Gate behind.
© 2024 Latitude 38 Media LLC / John
Stad Amsterdam
Getting a clipper ship out the Gate in the days without auxiliary power and with a hungover, shanghaied crew must have required lots of skill, and a good dose of luck.
© 2024 Latitude 38 Media LLC / John
Stad Amsterdam
Stad Amsterdam heads out to sea.
© 2024 Latitude 38 Media LLC / John
Stad Amsterdam
Finally out and soon to be on her course for Hawaii.
© 2024 Latitude 38 Media LLC / John
Stad Amsterdam heads South.
The Stad Amsterdam’s tracker shows her diving south of the Pacific Cup rhumb line on her way to Hawaii. She’s traveling at just over 7 knots and is due in Hawaii on April 8.
© 2024 Stad Amsterdam

The ship has a long way to go before they get back home to Amsterdam, where they plan to join SAIL Amsterdam 2025. The event expects 800 ships and 2.3 million visitors to the 10th annual tall ship festival, which coincides with the 750th anniversary of Amsterdam as the capital of the Netherlands.

While you’re unlikely to find a tall ship in our Classy Classifieds, you can browse for a smaller, new-to-you boat, or sell your current boat by listing here.


  1. vkapur-1590 3 months ago

    Bon voyage ! And come back again :^)

  2. Lisa H 3 months ago

    Gorgeous photos!

  3. Curt Taras 3 months ago

    We saw Stad Amsterdam docked under the Bay Bridge and then sail under the Golden Gate from Aquatic Cove. Was the ship open for touring?

  4. Joseph DiMatteo 3 months ago

    It was great seeing Stad Amsterdam on our recent trip to the Bay Area from our boat in Mexico. We hope to do a leg on her this fall after we park Triumph in Ensenada prior to our own Hawaii passage.

  5. Rich 3 months ago

    Will it be open for tours and/or a sail when she gets to Hawaii?

  6. Steven 3 months ago

    Thanks for bringing this beautiful vessel to light. And thanks to the dreamers, volunteers, donors, captains and crew that built brigantine Matthew Turner to keep maritime heritage alive on the Bay.

  7. Sydney Doherty 3 months ago

    Bon Voyage! And cheers to my brother-in-law Michael Rodgers who’s on board. -Sydney Doherty

  8. Roby doherty 3 months ago

    Tacoma will be cheering. Roby

  9. Frank Dunlevy 3 months ago

    I was a member of a Racing Crew from the Storm Trysail Yacht Club that chartered the Stad in 2005 and raced her across the Atlantic in the Rolex Challenge Cup. We did not win, but had a great time, she is a beauty. When it’s blowing 30+ and she has all her sails up and your trucking 16Knt’s through 25 foot seas she is a sight to behold!!

  10. Nan 3 months ago

    Sail fast sail safe! Have a wonderful experience

  11. Sven Hayden 3 months ago

    There is no further arrangement pressed for time than forging ahead in Maritime, I ought to claim irons in Latitude of the breadth to gain entry aboard further insight on tabloids similar with publication than stage a requiem from the hinterland, however permission to find berths a mizzen freeboard abeam had not accrual to reach the admiral nor quartermaster in shipboard credentials for addressing documentation in findings observation and leave for Nippon yeomanry, cum July casts sail proviso port au Honolulu, maybe, I stand accountable nevertheless, TWIC LONGSHORE [NOS] Stevedore, notwithstanding.

    • John Arndt 3 months ago

      It’s an interesting perspective, though we’re at a bit of a loss as to how the boatswain’s mate should reply to this nautical word salad.

    • Monica Grant 3 months ago

      I wish we had a like-button here. 😄

  12. Ulli Stahlmann 3 months ago

    So beautiful!

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