Budapest
Courtesy of: Wikipedia
BARCELONA, Spain, July 19. KOREA and Hungary will host the 2019 and 2021 FINA aquatics world championships, respectively, as announced by FINA earlier today.

Gwangju, a landlocked city in the southern portion of South Korea with a population of nearly 1.5 million, will bring the summer championships back to Asia in 2019 after the continent last hosted in 2011 in Shanghai, China. It will be the first time Korea has hosted an aquatics world championships, including the biennial short course swimming meet held in even-numbered years. The city is about 170 miles south of Seoul, the host of the 1988 Olympics and birthplace of Olympic champion Tae-Hwan Park. The organizers are set to introduce a state-of-the-art aquatics facility to the city that will host most of the competition. Like Kazan, the host of the 2015 world championships, Gwangju will host the World University Games before the world championships.

Budapest, which will host the 2021 worlds, has plenty of experience with hosting major aquatics championships, hosting the European swimming championships four times since the first edition in 1926. Like Gwangju, the city's bid organizers impressed FINA with a plan to build a new aquatic center by the time they host the meet. Katinka Hosszu attended the announcement to help put a famous face to Hungary's bid and has said she plans to compete at the 2021 world championships in her home country.


Budapest's next turn at hosting a major international swimming event will be the 2017 world junior championships.

Other countries that wanted to host either the 2019 or 2021 meets included Azerbaijan and the United Arab Emirates.

"Those were top-level presentations, led by two personalities from Korea and Hungary," said FINA President Julio Maglione. "The FINA World Championships in 2019 and 2021 will be two significant milestones in the FINA history, and we are sure that in both cases the venues, the competition and the enthusiasm of the people in Gwangju and Budapest will greatly enhance our Aquatic Festival".