Built in Pasaia, the San Juan whaling ship is an example of the first transoceanic ships that set sail from the Basque Country to Newfoundland. It reflects the splender and worldwide domination of the Basque maritime industry. It sank off the coast of Canada in Red Bay in 1565.
Drawing that represents fitting the keel in the 16th century.
Over 400 years later the Canadian archaeological team from Parks Canada found the wreck and investigated it in an underwater excavation that was exemplary for the maritime archaeological world. After studying it for more than thirty years, this is the best known 16th century ship and has become an icon symbolising UNESCO Underwater Cultural Heritage.
With its keel out of the water, being measured and analysed by archaeologists from Parcs Canada.
The Nao San Juan was rebuilt in Pasaia within the Donostia/San Sebastián European Capital of Culture 2016 and backed by the Canadian Government. Just as it joined Europe with North America in the 16th century, the Nao San Juan will allow these two countries to sail into the future together working from their joint past.