History of Tara

The heroine of Tara

After having been imagined by Jean-Louis Etienne and then led by the great sailor Sir Peter Blake, it is under the impulse of the French designer Agnès Troublé, known as agnès b., and her son Étienne Bourgois that the unusual schooner has continued its journey since 2003.

When they decided to take the schooner over, their intention was to extend the work of Sir Peter Blake for the benefit of the protection of the ocean. Tara, designed to navigate in the polar regions, set out for the first time in the ice in 2004 with an expedition to Greenland and then carried out an Arctic drift in 2006.

With the strength of a collective experience made of rich encounters and unchanging friendships, the adventure of the Tara Ocean Foundation began, carried by a passionate and committed team on land and at sea, and mobilized by an incredible desire to serve the science of the Ocean and to share it with as many people as possible.

  • 2 Masts on the schooner Tara
  • 500,000 km already covered and it’s not finished yet!
  • 36 metres long
  • – 41°C the lowest temperature to which
    the schooner was exposed
© Fondation Tara Océan


A floating laboratory

  • Lenght

    36 metres

  • Mast

    27 metres

  • Crew

    12 people

  • Width

    12 people

  • Draught

    3,50 metres

  • Deadweight tonnage

    130 tonnes

  • Sails

    400 square metres

  • Thickness of the hull

    4.5 centimetres

  • Desalinator

    300 litres/hour

  • Sleeping accommodation


  • Autonomy

    500 nautical milles

  • Flag


The expeditions of the schooner


Current expedition

Better understanding the invisible life of the ocean

Having identified, studied and decoded all the inner workings of the ocean, this new mission decided to take a global approach and treat the ocean ecosystem as a whole. To do that, we needed to get back to basics, to the most important actor present in every aspect of this ecosystem: the microbiome.

What else?


Tara Arctic

A high-risk 18-month expedition drifting with the sea ice on the edge of the North Pole to see the effects of climate change.

Tara Arctic

2006 – 2008


Tara Oceans

An expedition to the heart of the biodiversity of the planktonic world, with the Ocean under the microscope.

Tara Oceans

2009 – 2013

Analysis in progress

Microbiomes Mission

Unravel the mysteries of the first actor present in all facets of ocean biodiversity, its fundamental basis: the microbiome.

Microbiomes Mission

2020 – 2022

Fighting to protect marine biodiversity from pollution

How can we reduce pollution in the ocean?


Discover our history and our commitments

Our partners

Major partner