Marseille: The Olympic flame will make its first stop on the 2024 Paris Olympic Torch Relay in Marseille, France in April 2024, organisers announced on Friday.
Following its lighting in Olympia, the ancient site of the Olympic Games, the torch will be taken to Marseille in the south of France on the Belem, a beautiful three-masted schooner that first set sail in 1896. It is the last of the big French ships of the nineteenth century still in circulation, and it will connect Athens and Marseille, two magnificent towns with a long shared history. The Olympic torch relay will then begin its long journey to the Paris 2024 opening ceremony, which is scheduled to take place on July 26 in 2024 in France's capital. The Torch Relay route will be revealed in May 2023.
"This important event will give people a taste of the spirit of the Games that will be seen in Marseille in the summer when 800 athletes will be welcomed, 10 sailing events and 10 football matches will take place," said Tony Estanguet, President of Paris 2024 as quoted by Olympics.com.
The Olympic Torch Relay is a symbol of peace, solidarity, and camaraderie between people and is one of the major traditions of any Olympic Games. The torch carries a sacred fire that was lighted with the sun's rays in a ceremony commemorating the Ancient Olympic Games on the site of Ancient Olympia.
Thousands of torchbearers will then take the flame to the host city, where it will be lit in the Olympic cauldron at the Opening Ceremony to officially declare the Games open.
This journey will begin next year in Marseille, a city inextricably tied with Greece that will host a number of Paris 2024 sporting events.