Royal Caribbean is launching what it says is the world's longest cruise. It lasts 274 days, and prices start at $61,000.

  • Royal Caribbean is launching a 274-night Ultimate World Cruise, with prices starting at $61,000.
  • The cruise would visit 65 countries, including Brazil, China, and Morocco.
  • The inaugural cruise is scheduled to depart from Miami on December 10, 2023.

Insider Today

Royal Caribbean is launching a 274-night cruise around the world to set sail in 2023.

Prices start at $61,000 per person.

In a press release on Wednesday, the cruise line said it was "the longest and most comprehensive world cruise out there."

The company said the Ultimate World Cruise, set to depart from Miami, would visit more than 150 destinations in 65 countries on all seven continents.

Royal Caribbean said stops would include Casablanca in Morocco; the Great Barrier Reef in Australia; Antarctica; Brazil, where passengers can see the Christ the Redeemer statue on New Year's Eve; and Beijing.

The cruise starts at $61,000 per person

The inaugural cruise is scheduled to depart from Miami on December 10, 2023, and return on September 10, 2024.

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Passengers would travel on the Serenade of the Seas , which has 13 decks and a mini-golf course, an arcade, a rock-climbing wall, a pool, a theater, and a spa. The ship can accommodate almost 2,500 passengers and more than 800 crew members, Royal Caribbean said.

Prices start at $61,000 for a person in an interior stateroom, rising to $65,000 for an oceanview stateroom and $79,000 for a balcony stateroom. A stay in a junior suite starts at $112,000 per person.

Royal Caribbean said passengers would get a 10% discount if they pay in full by January 6, 2023.

The pandemic ground world travel to a halt last year, and cruise lines' revenue plummeted . Carnival Cruises said in June 2020 that it would sell six cruise ships after posting a $4.4 billion loss.

With the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines, the industry has rebounded .

"Now more than ever, people have resolved to travel the world and make up for lost time," Michael Bayley, the president and CEO of Royal Caribbean, said in the press release.

The Ultimate World Cruise is split into four legs: the Americas and Antarctica, Asia and the Pacific, the Middle East and the Mediterranean, and northern Europe. Passengers can book them individually rather than opting for the full nine-month trip.

Bookings opened on Wednesday for Royal Caribbean's loyalty-program members at the diamond level or above and will open on October 27 for all other passengers, the company said.

Royal Caribbean said it would announce prices for the four individual legs of the trip when bookings for them open in December.

Watch: The world's largest cruise ship just landed in Miami — here's what it's like on board

rcl world cruise cost

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rcl world cruise cost

Press Releases

Royal caribbean introduces ultimate world tour, the farthest-reaching cruise to all seven continents.

MIAMI, Oct. 20, 2021* – Adventurers seeking to travel far and wide can now set off on a world tour of their own. Royal Caribbean International is raising the bar for world cruises with the debut of the inaugural Ultimate World Cruise , an epic 274-night adventure that visits all seven continents , more than 150 destinations in 65 countries and 11 great wonders of the world . This rich, immersive experience on Serenade of the Seas is the longest and most comprehensive world cruise out there, sailing roundtrip from Miami on Dec. 10, 2023 and through Sept. 10, 2024. Bookings for the full Ultimate World Cruise can be made by phone starting today , with an exclusive one-week window through Oct. 26 for Royal Caribbean’s Crown & Anchor Society Diamond status members and above.

Travelers will sail to 57 destinations new to the cruise line and exclusive to the cruise itself. Highlights include Casablanca, Morocco; Qaqortoq, Greenland; and Shimizu, Japan – the gateway to Mount Fuji. Guests can delve deep into many of the world’s breathtaking wonders, from Peru’s Machu Picchu to the Taj Mahal in India, and experience distinct cultures and picturesque shores at every corner of the world all in one spectacular adventure – only on Royal Caribbean.

“This is the world cruise of world cruises,” said Michael Bayley, president and CEO, Royal Caribbean International “Now more than ever, people have resolved to travel the world and make up for lost time. Royal Caribbean is making that a reality with the ultimate vacation that welcomes those seeking adventure and exploration to taste, dance and dream with us around the world. To travelers asking themselves where they should go next, we say everywhere.”

Guests ready to traverse the world can book the full Ultimate World Cruise today or choose from any of the four expeditions that will offer a wide range of destinations as soon as December 2021 – the Americas, Asia-Pacific, the Mediterranean and Northern Europe:

  • Ultimate Americas Dec. 10, 2023 - Feb. 11, 2024 – Three continents, 36 destinations, four wonders The once-in-a-lifetime journey begins in Miami, the cruise capital of the world, and sets course for postcard-perfect Caribbean destinations – like the ABC islands (Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao) – before heading to glacier-studded Antarctica and around Cape Horn. Travelers can take in four of the world’s stunning wonders along the way in Central and South America, including Chichen Itza in Cozumel, Mexico; the largest art deco sculpture in the world, Christ the Redeemer , in Rio de Janeiro – where they’ll celebrate New Year’s Eve – and the largest waterfall system on the planet, Iguazu Falls near Buenos Aires, Argentina. One of the most iconic symbols of ancient Inca civilization and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Machu Picchu , awaits in Peru, while sunshine and glamour will welcome guests in Los Angeles.
  • Ultimate Asia-Pacific Feb. 11 - May 9, 2024 – Three continents, 40 destinations, three wonders Guests will venture miles from the ordinary in Oceania, Asia and beyond on the cruise’s next showstopping leg. They can discover the beauty and adventure throughout the Hawaiian Islands’ world-renowned mountainous landscapes and black sand beaches before sailing south to Moorea and Tahiti, French Polynesia, for sapphire blue skies and crystal-clear waters. The thrills continue with an exploration of New Zealand, before a deep-dive into Australia’s Great Barrier Reef – the only living thing on the planet that’s visible from space. Pristine natural beauty in Bali, Indonesia, is soon followed by two of the most iconic manmade world wonders, the Great Wall of China and India’s Taj Mahal , and gems of the South Pacific – from Vietnam to Malaysia. Rounding out the expedition are endless possibilities in Japan, with unparalleled culture in Tokyo, street food in Osaka and the tropical beaches of Okinawa.
  • Ultimate Middle East and Med May 9 - July 10, 2024 – Three continents, 44 destinations, four wonders This expedition begins in glamorous Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and brings many of history’s greatest mysteries, myths and legends to life. Adventurers can uncover ancient sites and more world wonders from the times of emperors and pharaohs, like Jordan’s lost city of Petra , the Pyramids of Giza in Egypt, Temple of Artemis in Ephesus, Turkey, and the Colosseum in Rome. There are also less-traveled places to explore, such as Greece’s Olympia, once a sanctuary site to honor Zeus and the location of the first Olympic games. The journey only continues to even more destinations known for their storied history — like Split, Croatia, and Cannes and Provence in France.
  • Ultimate Europe and Beyond July 10 - Sept. 10, 2024 – Three continents, 40 destinations The final leg of the Ultimate World Cruise is an immersive, cultural experience that begins in the Mediterranean and heads north. At travelers’ fingertips is the opportunity to discover Barcelona’s brilliant architecture, including Antoni Gaudi’s famed Sagrada Familia and whimsical Park Guell , and savor new flavors across continents — such as an indulgent lunch in a Parisian bistro and a dinner of tagine and mint tea in Morocco. Museums, theaters and galleries line the streets of St. Petersburg, Russia, while larger-than-life fjords await in Norway. Guests can reflect on their epic voyage in the geothermal waters of the Blue Lagoon in Iceland before visiting New York on their way back to Miami.

Globetrotters will explore the world in style on board Serenade , thanks to Royal Caribbean’s award-winning experiences and amenities. And adventurers can stay close to the action with the ship’s acres of glass, which offer panoramic views, as they cruise from one destination, continent and world wonder to the next. From start to finish, guests who book the full Ultimate World Cruise can expect a seamless, world-class travel experience that includes business class airfare, premium transportation as well as an evening of festivities and accommodations at a five-star hotel before setting sail. Plus, Crown & Anchor Society Platinum status members and above will receive a bonus Seven New World Wonders shore excursion package in addition to other perks, including a Deluxe Beverage package, VOOM Wi-Fi, laundry service and more.

Bookings for the entire Ultimate World Cruise open today for Diamond and above Crown & Anchor Society members. Guests interested in booking can call Royal Caribbean’s dedicated line for the Ultimate World Cruise at 800-423-2100 (US toll free) or their travel advisor.

About Royal Caribbean International Royal Caribbean International has been delivering innovation at sea for more than 50 years. Each successive class of ships is an architectural marvel featuring the latest technology and guest experiences for today’s adventurous traveller. The cruise line continues to revolutionize vacations with itineraries to more than 270 destinations in 72 countries on six continents, including Royal Caribbean’s private island destination in The Bahamas,  Perfect Day at CocoCay,  the first in the Perfect Day Island Collection. Royal Caribbean has also been voted “Best Cruise Line Overall” for 18 consecutive years in the  Travel Weekly  Readers’ Choice Awards.

Media can stay up to date by following  @RoyalCaribPR on Twitter and visiting RoyalCaribbeanPressCenter.com. For additional information or to make reservations, vacationers can call their travel advisor; visit RoyalCaribbean.com; or call (800) ROYAL-CARIBBEAN.

Royal Caribbean International is applying the recommendations of its  Healthy Sail Panel  of public health and scientific experts to provide a safer and healthier cruise vacation on all of its sailings. Health and safety protocols, regional travel restrictions and clearance to visit ports of call, are subject to change based on ongoing evaluation, public health standards, and government requirements. U.S. cruises and guests: For more information on the latest health and travel alerts, U.S. government travel advisories, please visit  www.royalcaribbean.com/cruise-ships/itinerary-updates  or consult travel advisories, warnings or recommendations relating to cruise travel on applicable government websites.

*February 2022 update

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October 2021 – Adventurers seeking to travel far and wide can set off on Serenade of the Seas for a world tour on Royal Caribbean International’s first-ever Ultimate World Cruise. Sailing from Miami on Dec. 10, 2023, the farthest-reaching cruise invites travelers to visit 11 wonders of the world and 150-plus destinations in 65 countries on all seven continents.

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The Ultimate Voyage: How Much Does A World Cruise ACTUALLY Cost

Embarking on a world cruise is akin to stepping into a realm of unparalleled adventure and luxury, often considered the zenith of seafaring voyages.

These grand expeditions, while not always encircling the globe completely, offer an extensive journey through multiple continents, inviting travelers to immerse themselves in a tapestry of global cultures and breathtaking vistas—all from the comfort of a floating haven.

However, the allure of navigating the world’s waters from port to exotic port does come with a notable price tag.

As we delve into the world of these majestic journeys, we’ll uncover what it truly costs to set sail on such a dream voyage and the myriad of options available for those yearning to turn this dream into their reality.

Table of Contents

How Much Does A World Cruise Cost?

The cost of a world cruise varies significantly depending on the cruise line, length of the journey, and the type of accommodations chosen. Prices can start from around $14,719 and soar up to $105,500 per person, based on double occupancy, excluding taxes and port fees .

This wide range reflects the diverse range of itineraries, services, and levels of luxury available to travelers seeking to circumnavigate the globe by sea.

rcl world cruise cost

Factors Affecting Price

The cost of a world cruise is influenced by several key factors, each contributing to the overall pricing structure and offering potential passengers a range of choices to suit their budget and preferences.

Duration is a primary factor; longer cruises, often extending up to six months or more, naturally incur a higher cost due to the extended provision of accommodation, meals, and onboard amenities.

The length of the journey directly correlates with the price, as a more extended cruise offers a more comprehensive exploration of the world but requires a greater financial commitment.

Another critical factor is the choice of cruise line and the type of stateroom selected. Luxury cruise lines, known for their exceptional service, exquisite dining options, and spacious accommodations, command higher prices.

Within each cruise, the selection of staterooms—from interior cabins to lavish suites with ocean views or balconies—also plays a significant role in pricing.

Suites, offering enhanced comfort and amenities, are priced at the premium end of the spectrum.

Additionally, what’s included in the cruise fare varies by company; some cruises are more inclusive, covering extras like shore excursions, Wi-Fi, drinks, and specialty dining, which can offer added value and affect the overall cost perception.

The itinerary itself, including the number and type of ports visited, can also impact the cost. Cruises that include more exclusive or remote destinations often have a higher price due to the logistical costs associated with such ports.

Moreover, the timing of the cruise—whether it falls in peak travel seasons or off-peak times—can influence pricing, with peak season voyages typically being more expensive.

Together, these factors combine to shape the cost of a world cruise, offering a spectrum of pricing that accommodates a range of travel budgets and preferences, making the dream of circumnavigating the globe accessible to a diverse array of travelers.

How Long Does A World Cruise Take?

The duration of a world cruise can vary widely, typically ranging from about 100 to 180 days, although some exceptional itineraries extend even longer. These extensive voyages are designed to offer an in-depth exploration of multiple continents and oceans, visiting dozens of ports across the globe.

The specific length of a world cruise depends on the cruise line, the itinerary’s complexity, and the number of destinations included, allowing travelers to experience a comprehensive journey around the world.

Serenade of the Seas with glaciers in the background

What Is The Best World Cruise?

The “best” around-the-world cruise is subjective and depends on individual preferences, including the level of luxury, range of destinations, and onboard amenities desired. Some travelers might prefer the comprehensive itineraries and inclusive luxuries offered by lines like Regent Seven Seas or Silversea, known for their ultra-luxury experiences.

Others may opt for cruises offered by Viking or Oceania, which are celebrated for their cultural enrichment and extensive port visits.

Ultimately, the best cruise is one that aligns with your travel style, budget, and the regions of the world you’re most eager to explore.

How many countries does a world cruise visit?

The number of countries a world cruise visits can vary significantly depending on the itinerary and the cruise line. Typically, a world cruise can cover anywhere from 20 to 40 or more countries, offering a wide array of cultural experiences, landscapes, and climates.

These itineraries are meticulously planned to include a mix of popular destinations and hidden gems across different continents, providing an extensive exploration of the globe.

The exact number of countries visited allows passengers to immerse themselves in a diverse range of cultures and environments, making each world cruise a unique and enriching experience.

Can you book segments of a world cruise or do you have to do the whole thing?

Yes, you can book segments of a world cruise instead of committing to the entire journey. Many cruise lines offer this flexibility, allowing passengers to experience a portion of the cruise that interests them the most, both in terms of destinations and duration.

These segments can range from a few weeks to over a month, providing a taste of the world cruise experience without the extensive time and financial commitment of the full voyage.

This option caters to travelers with limited time or those who wish to focus on specific regions, making world cruising accessible to a broader audience.

Viking Neptune

Can you get off a cruise to tour for a few days and rejoin the ship in its next port?

Yes, it’s possible to disembark from a cruise ship to explore a destination for a few days and then rejoin the ship at its next port of call. This arrangement, often referred to as a “port visit” or “shore excursion,” requires careful planning and coordination with the cruise line.

Passengers must inform the cruise line of their plans in advance and ensure they meet the ship at the agreed-upon time and location.

It’s also important to be aware of any visa requirements or travel restrictions for the destinations you plan to visit. While not all cruise lines may offer this flexibility, many do accommodate such requests to enhance the passenger experience.

What To Consider Before Going On A World Cruise?

Embarking on a world cruise is a significant investment, not just financially but also in terms of time and preparation. Before setting sail on this monumental journey, several factors require careful consideration to ensure the experience aligns with your expectations and desires.

One of the foremost considerations is the itinerary. A world cruise offers an opportunity to explore numerous countries and cultures, so it’s essential to choose a voyage that visits destinations you’re genuinely interested in.

You’ll want to consider the duration of the cruise and how it fits with your lifestyle and commitments, as these journeys can last several months. Budget plays a critical role in planning for a world cruise.

Beyond the initial cost of the cruise, which can vary widely based on the cruise line and type of accommodation, potential travelers should account for additional expenses such as shore excursions, onboard spending, and travel insurance.

Some cruises are more inclusive, covering gratuities, drinks, and even flights, which can provide better value.

Evaluating what’s included in the fare versus what will be paid out of pocket can help in selecting a cruise that matches your financial comfort level.

Another vital aspect to ponder is the living conditions aboard the ship. The size and type of your stateroom, the amenities offered onboard, and the ship’s overall environment will significantly impact your daily life during the cruise.

For such an extended period at sea, comfort, and personal space become paramount. Therefore, deciding whether to splurge on a larger room with a view or balcony might enhance your experience. Additionally, understanding the ship’s facilities, dining options, and entertainment can help set the right expectations.

Lastly, consider the social and physical aspects of a world cruise. The demographic of fellow passengers, the opportunity for social interaction, and the type of activities and excursions offered should align with your social preferences and physical capabilities.

Furthermore, staying healthy and active is crucial, so investigate the ship’s medical facilities and wellness options, including fitness centers, pools, and recreational activities.

By thoroughly considering these elements, travelers can embark on a world cruise that not only meets but exceeds their dream vacation criteria, ensuring an unforgettable global adventure.

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Everything You Need To Know About Royal Caribbean's Ultimate World Cruise

160 destinations, 65 countries, seven continents, 11 World Wonders, 274 nights, and one of a kind: this is the cruise to end all cruises.

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Royal Caribbean Continues To Be The Ultimate World Cruise

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What is the royal caribbean ultimate world cruise, where will the world cruise go, how much is the royal caribbean ultimate world cruise, other options for world cruises.

  • Royal Caribbean's Ultimate World Cruise is a once-in-a-lifetime trip that takes travelers on a nine-month journey across all seven continents, visiting 65 countries, 11 World Wonders, and 150 ports of call. It offers unparalleled luxury and the opportunity to customize the itinerary.
  • The Ultimate World Cruise is divided into four segments, each exploring different regions of the world. Guests can choose to embark on one or more segments, allowing them to experience the highlights of each continent and immerse themselves in distinct world cultures.
  • The price of the Ultimate World Cruise varies depending on the room style, ranging from $59,999 for an Interior Stateroom to $760,000 for a Royal Suite. Guests can also choose to book individual segments of the cruise at a lesser cost. Additional fees, taxes, and port expenses apply. Other cruise lines also offer world cruises with immersive itineraries and diverse destinations.

This is it - the penultimate answer to every traveler's desires, calling those whose long-held dream is to dedicate several months to travel the planet, experiencing the top sights and sounds across this good gracious earth. As one of the best cruise lines dominating the travel industry , Royal Caribbean's Ultimate World Cruise is the first of its kind; it takes globetrotters across the world on their Serenade of the Seas ship - a luxury vessel with a capacity of 2,466, comprising every modern comfort and amenity adventurer could ever crave on a once-in-a-lifetime trip across each continent.

Here, readers get an exciting insight into what might just be the most incredible experience to ever be offered to mere mortals - specifically, those with a pretty penny to burn. As the first time something so spectacular like this has ever been revealed, it's safe to say this: everyone's excited. Travelers can also explore the world with the Royal Caribbean by embarking on their other outstanding cruises .

Here Are The Seven Modern Wonders Of The World For 2023

Update: 2023/08/08 13:34 est by luana ferreira.

The Royal Caribbean's Ultimate World Cruise has brought the definition of World Cruise to a whole new level. However, travelers can still find cruises that demand less time to explore the world. This list was updated to include more options for world cruises.

The lucky travelers who'll get to relish this unparalleled luxury exploration of planet Earth will spend a grand total of 274 nights with like-minded globetrotters, savoring iconic global highlights and mesmerizing discoveries across all seven continents. Never before offered, the Royal Caribbean Ultimate World Cruise sets sail on December 10, 2023, from Miami, Florida, returning once again from whence it departed nine months later on September 10, 2024. On four individual segments compiled into one mind-boggling trip, guests will visit 65 countries, seven continents, over 11 World Wonders, and 150 ports of call on this unrivaled venture around the world - one that truly is the be-all and end-all to beat all cruises.

Incredibly, what makes this jaunt around Earth even more remarkable is its flexibility. Should devoting a whole nine months traversing the continents be a bit too much to do on one trip, guests can pick and choose which sections of the world tour they prefer the most, allowing them to completely customize this overly bucket-list-worthy escapade to see the very best parts of the planet they wish to visit the most.

Travelers can select any of the four immersive, carefully curated Ultimate World Cruise segments of 60 plus nights instead of the entire month-to-month adventure on board, each connecting them with distinct world cultures, the most legendary landscapes, and a handful of World Wonders, all showcasing the unlimited creations and capacities of both Mother Nature and humankind alike.

Cruise Trip: Should You Work With A Travel Agent Or Book Directly?

What world wonders there are to see on the world cruise.

Visiting the Wonders of the World isn't so expensive if visitors plan to visit them in different travels, but they can see everything during this cruise. The Royal Caribbean Ultimate World Cruise doesn't do anything by halves. With no less than 11 Wonders of the World on the itinerary, guests get the amazing opportunity to experience firsthand:

  • Chichen Itza, Mexico
  • Christ the Redeemer, Brazil
  • Iguazu Falls, Brazil/Argentina
  • Machu Picchu, Peru
  • The Great Barrier Reef, Australia
  • The Great Wall of China, China
  • The Taj Mahal, India
  • Petra, Jordan
  • Pyramids of Giza, Egypt
  • Temple of Artemis, Turkey
  • The Colosseum, Italy

The massive nine-month trek across the world's oceans is split into four segments, which each feature the most outstanding attractions and destinations of every continent. A breakdown of the cruise's sections is as follows:

The Ultimate Americas Cruise

  • From December 10, 2022, to February 11, 2023
  • 36 Destinations

The first segment of the world cruise starts in Miami, taking travelers to witness standout scenes of the Americas. From pristine Caribbean shores - such as the ABC Islands - to wildlife-watching the likes of penguins, sea lions, and whales in the glacier-filled Antarctica area of Cape Horn, the diversity involved in this section is truly show-stopping. Guests will also encounter World Wonders in South America, including extraordinary natural phenomena and magnificent man-made marvels, like Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, the world's largest waterfall system of Iguazú Falls near Buenos Aires, the biggest Art Deco sculpture in the world, and the mighty Machu Picchu - the most symbolic remnant of Peru’s ancient Inca heritage . After these sensational sights, guests will then sail up to the Yucatàn Peninsula to bear witness to secluded coves and rugged rock formations along Land’s End in Cabo San Lucas, after which they'll go on to discover enchanting Ensenada.

The Ultimate Asia Pacific Cruise

  • From February 11, 2023, to May 9, 2023
  • 40 Destinations

This legacy at sea sends voyagers on the mesmeric paths of Australia and Asia, exploring Hawaii all the way to the crystalline, warm waters of Moorea and Tahiti in paradisiacal French Polynesia. Guests will also venture off to discover the kaleidoscopic marine realm bustling on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, savor unspoiled natural scenery in Bali, and experience in person one of the most iconic human-made World Wonders - the Great Wall of China. What's more, they'll get to visit the futuristic city of Tokyo and its culture-rich, brightly lit urban sprawls, as well as take in what could easily be described as one of the most breathtaking buildings on the planet: India's stunning and highly elaborate Taj Mahal.

Related: 10 Most Affordable Cruises For 2022, Ranked By Cost

The Ultimate Middle East & Med Cruise

  • From May 9, 2023, to July 10, 2023
  • 44 Destinations

Be it basking in the glitz and glamour of Dubai or soaking up the World Wonders crafted by ancient civilizations headed by historic pharaohs and emperors - such as The Pyramids of Giza in Egypt - this segment is for those who've dreamed of experiencing the most recognizable and indeed the most beautiful landmarks in the Middle East. Not least, this section also grants travelers many of the most revered attractions and pre-historic ruins across both the Mediterranean and Aegean seas, including the Acropolis in Athens, the Temple of Artemis in Ephesus, and even the impressive Colosseum in Rome.

Furthermore, the ship will sail to lesser-visited Greek ports a little more off the traditional tourist trail, like Olympia, the exact place where the first Olympic Games took place, and also the sanctuary site to honor the ancient Greek God - Zeus. If none of these destinations and world marvels quite do it for travelers, perhaps checking out many more wonderful European sites steeped in history and stories of the past might make this section of the cruise all the more appealing, with the city of Split in Croatia , Beautiful Barcelona in Spain, and the dazzling French duos of Provence and Cannes all on the roster.

10 Epic Day Trips You Can Take From Split, Croatia

Ultimate europe & beyond.

  • From July 10, 2023, to September 10, 2023

The last leg of the Ultimate World Cruise entails an experience-laden cultural exploration setting sail in the Med, from where the ship heads north. From beautiful Barcelona and its gorgeous architecture, including Gaudi’s Sagrada Família, to the culinary delights and sublime sights in Morocco, this section is an indulgent treat to both the eyes and tongue. Beautifully blending the warmer European destinations with those in its chillier parts, the trip also incorporates the majestic fjords in Norway and biking through the captivating capital of Denmark - Copenhagen.

Next up, the final natural marvel on the menu is akin to an alien planet - the geothermal seawater at Iceland's The Blue Lagoon, which is followed by a much-loved city destination - New York. Last but not least, the journey is perfected by a visit to Perfect Day at CocoCay - Royal Caribbean's private island exclusive to its guests - before heading back to Miami to end what will have been the most life-changing adventure any human might ever take that's not in space.

Tour The World On A Luxury Air Cruise For As Much As $160,000

Naturally, with what may be the most intensive exploration of the planet, the total for tickets to Royal Caribbean’s Ultimate World Cruise isn't for the faint of heart. Five unique room styles are up for grabs, each with varying price tags, which, for the whole nine-month jaunt around the globe, are as follows:

  • Interior Stateroom: from $59,999 per person
  • Ocean View Stateroom: from $64,999 per person
  • Balcony Stateroom: from $82,949 per person
  • Junior Suites: from $117,599 per person
  • Royal Suite – $760,000 per person

In addition to these cabin prices, guests will have taxes, port expenses, and fees on top to pay, which are around $4,667 per person. They can also have a 10% discount by paying in full.

Those who prefer to book one or more of each segment of the world cruise can do so for a lesser sum, with each room price for every journey section being as follows:

Ultimate Americas Cruise - 64 Nights

  • Interior Stateroom: $13,399
  • Ocean View Stateroom: $14,799
  • Balcony Stateroom: $18,899

Ultimate Asia Pacific Cruise - 87 Nights

  • Interior Stateroom: $17,999
  • Ocean View Stateroom: $19,599
  • Balcony Stateroom: $25,099

Ultimate Middle East & Med Cruise - 63 Nights

  • Interior Stateroom: $14,899
  • Balcony Stateroom: $20,799

Ultimate Europe & Beyond Cruise - 63 Nights

  • Interior Stateroom: $14,299
  • Ocean View Stateroom: $15,299
  • Balcony Stateroom: $19,799

Cruise Cabins: A Helpful Hack Guide For This Small Space

Not for the light-hearted traveler, the Royal Caribbean Ultimate World Cruise is a feat like no other ever brought to the travel sector before. Be it the whole nine-month-long getaway traversing the planet's entirety while witnessing and experiencing every spectacular sight, sound, and scene on both the natural and human-made stage or one or more of the fantastic, thoughtfully planned cruise segments covering the best highlights of each corner of the globe, this is one heck of a trip discerning explorers simply do not want to miss - but it isn't cheap, so now's the time to start saving.

While Royal Caribbean's Ultimate World Cruise has the ultimate itinerary, other cruise lines are famous for their world cruises. They allow travelers to embark on extended voyages that span continents and explore a diverse range of destinations.

  • Cunard Line: Cunard's Queen Mary 2 and Queen Elizabeth are known for their world cruises, offering luxurious experiences and immersive itineraries that can last several months.
  • Holland America Line: Holland America's Grand World Voyage is a popular option, featuring a global circumnavigation with enriching onboard programs and diverse destinations.
  • Princess Cruises: Princess Cruises offers world cruises on ships like Pacific Princess, offering a mix of exotic ports and cultural experiences.
  • Oceania Cruises: Oceania's world cruises focus on unique and in-depth explorations, often visiting off-the-beaten-path destinations.
  • Silversea Cruises: Silversea's world cruises offer all-inclusive luxury experiences aboard smaller ships, allowing personalized service and access to unique ports.
  • MSC Cruises: MSC offers longer itineraries that explore multiple continents, allowing travelers to experience diverse cultures.

clock This article was published more than  2 years ago

For $61,000, you can take Royal Caribbean’s 274-night cruise around the world

The Ultimate World Cruise will visit more than 150 destinations

rcl world cruise cost

Cruise-lovers yearning to return to the open seas, this news is for you: Royal Caribbean International announced its inaugural 274-day Ultimate World Cruise will set sail in 2023.

The more than 150-destination itinerary aboard the Serenade of the Seas starts in Miami and includes visits to every continent, 65 countries and 11 world wonders . It will cost you $61,000 for an interior state room, all the way up to $112,000 for a junior suite.

The cruise will sail from Dec. 10, 2023, to Sept. 10, 2024. Bookings can be made by phone now.

The journey includes opportunities to see just about every iconic tourist draw on the planet. Mount Fuji, the Taj Mahal, the Great Barrier Reef, Chichen Itza, Machu Picchu, the Blue Lagoon and the Great Wall of China. If you can think of it, it’s probably on the list.

The star of the show are obviously the ports of call, but what about the ship you will be living on for 274 nights? According to Cruise Critic , Serenade of the Seas is a midsize vessel that can carry 2,100-passengers and nearly 900 crew members.

Peak Caribbean cruise season is coming. Here’s what to know before getting on board.

The ship’s website promises a lot to do, which is important considering world cruise guests will be spending a lot of time on board.

Many amenities are ones you may expect, such as a theater, a spa and a fitness center. Then there are the ones you might not, including mini golf, rock climbing and singalong parties. There’s a nightclub where guests can go to “dance, chill or be noticed,” a card room and a game show. Travelers can attend guest lectures and take classes on cupcake-making, scrapbooking, dancing, sushi and foreign languages, among others.

On Royal Caribbean’s Facebook post announcing the world cruise , fans celebrated the news but lamented the cost.

“Lord, let me run grab a lottery ticket real quick!” Rebecca Taylor Little commented.

“Sounds absolutely wonderful! It breaks my heart that I’ll probably never be able to experience it,” Trisha O’Neill commented. “Why are all the cool itineraries reserved for only the rich?”

Covid will find its way onto cruises. The critical thing is what happens next.

A number of companies have reintroduced world cruises after a pandemic hiatus, and they, too, are not cheap.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ 143-night world cruise, priced from $78,000 to $209,000, departs on Jan. 7, 2023. Oceania Cruises’ 2023 “Around The World In 180 Days” voyage sold out in a single day when bookings (starting at $41,600) went live on Jan. 27, 2021. Silversea also sold out its 2023 world cruise in a day , with fares ranging from $74,000 to $278,000 per person.

As the cruise industry recovers from billions of dollars in losses, most are operating with new covid protocols in place to avoid onboard outbreaks. On Royal Caribbean cruises leaving from the U.S. and various other international ports, all passengers 12 and older must be vaccinated . All passengers must present negative tests before boarding and can expect indoor mask mandates

While the delta variant surge appeared to impact cruise sales over the summer, it seems customers don’t need much convincing to sign up for sailings again. Carnival announced last month that the company’s “cumulative advanced bookings for the second half of 2022 are ahead of a very strong 2019.” Data from Expedia Group’s Expedia Cruises 2021 Virtual Conference comparing the first quarters of 2021 to 2019 shows the average length of cruise bookings has increased, as has the average spend per cabin.

“People love cruising and people are tired of boredom,” Vicky Freed, Royal Caribbean International’s senior vice president of sales, trade support and service, told The Washington Post in August. “People are saying ‘I want to go out’ and they’re spending more on vacations now because they have vacation dollars saved up from 2020 and possibly 2021.”

More cruise news

Living at sea: Travelers on a 9-month world cruise are going viral on social media. For some travelers, not even nine months was enough time on a ship; they sold cars, moved out of their homes and prepared to set sail for three years . That plan fell apart, but a 3.5-year version is waiting in the wings.

Passengers beware: It’s not all buffets and dance contests. Crime data reported by cruise lines show that the number of sex crimes has increased compared to previous years. And though man-overboard cases are rare, they are usually deadly .

The more you know: If you’re cruise-curious, here are six tips from a newcomer. Remember that in most cases, extra fees and add-ons will increase the seemingly cheap price of a sailing. And if you happen to get sick , know what to expect on board.

rcl world cruise cost

12 epic around-the-world cruises that will check off all your bucket list travel destinations

Janice Wald Henderson

Imagine the joys of traveling seamlessly from one bucket list country to another without packing and unpacking, switching hotels, boarding countless flights or even doing laundry.

Think it's a fantasy? It's actually a world cruise, the nirvana of many ocean-going devotees. As a bonus, most of these around-the-world voyages include enviable perks, like pre-cruise hotel stays, alcohol, shipboard credit, exclusive-access shore excursions — and, yes, laundry service.

Retired, taking a job hiatus or working remotely? A world cruise is a safe, easy and exhilarating way to score a global adventure beyond compare. You might even make new lifelong friends sharing similar interests.

For cruise news, reviews and tips, sign up for TPG's cruise newsletter .

So, pull out your travel wish list and find an itinerary for those coveted destinations.

Here, you can learn more about what's involved in an around-the-world cruise and drool over 12 terrific choices across a range of fares for an incredible monthslong voyage at sea.

What is a world cruise?

Never mind the moniker, a world cruise may visit several continents but not circumnavigate the globe. Cruise lines usually designate one ship (a few offer two) to sail about 100 days or longer — some even sail more than 200 days — without repeating ports.

World cruises traditionally start in January and end around April or May. They sail round-trip from one American city, such as San Francisco or Miami, or offer a choice of starting points on both coasts, making access easy.

What to know about world cruises

With so few world cruises available, book far in advance. Bookings open roughly two years in advance, and some small-ship cruises sell out within hours. You'll need the extra time to make arrangements to leave your home for months. For that reason, this story will focus on 2025 world cruises.

Related: Hot cruises you'll need to book at least 1 year in advance — maybe even 2!

Around-the-world cruise cost

Such lengthy sailings cost plenty. The bigger ship lines offer the lowest fares, although extra fees for what's not included (such as shore excursions and alcohol) can add up quickly. If contemplating a big-ship voyage, read the inclusions carefully, as they vary among lines.

Luxury vessels bundle many costly amenities into the fare, like business- or first-class plane tickets and luxury hotel stays, and charge the most. They also deliver fine dining, pampering service, glam surroundings and impressive special events. (Silversea Cruises has previously rented out an entire island to entertain its world cruise guests.)

Thus, expect considerable price differences. Count on spending about $20,000 per person minimum to score an entry-level accommodation on the bigger ships and approximately $80,000 to $90,000 per person for an ultraluxury vessel.

Note that for the poshest lines, "entry-level" may mean a spacious, elegant suite with a veranda. For other lines, the most basic cabin is a small, windowless room.

Read on to discover where you can sail to in 2025 on a world cruise.

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World Voyage

Thanks to an overwhelming response to its 2024 world cruise (which is currently waitlisted), Azamara announced itineraries for both 2025 and 2026, both aboard the 684-passenger Azamara Onward.

Azamara Onward is the newest ship to join the Miami-based line's four-vessel fleet. The ship's size provides an intimate experience and allows it to call on small towns bigger ships can't access.

For 2025, the 155-night, 37-country voyage begins in San Diego and ends in Southampton, England, with visits to exciting locales in French Polynesia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Italy, France and others.

Along the way, world cruisers can sample authentic Hawaiian cuisine; explore the unspoiled beaches and the lush rainforest on Stewart Island, New Zealand; and visit the world's largest Buddhist temple in Indonesia.

The itinerary will include a pre-sailing welcome party, exclusive cultural events, concierge service and other upscale perks.

The 2026 world cruise sets sail from Miami and concludes in Barcelona. The itinerary for this 155-night expedition features some of the world's most iconic landmarks and sites.

Cruisers will have the opportunity to explore the great pyramid of Kukulcan and other ancient Mayan sites in Chichen Itza, Mexico; wander among Rio de Janeiro's architectural gems and experience the awe of Iguazu Falls in Brazil; sample Peruvian cuisine and soak in the landscape of Machu Picchu in Cusco; scale the Great Wall of China; and enjoy other bucket-list worthy adventures.

The 2025 world cruise departs Jan. 6, 2025. Prices start from $89,001 per person.

The 2026 world cruise departs Jan. 6, 2026. Prices start from $85,141 per person.

rcl world cruise cost

World Cruise

If luxury and unparalleled personal service are important to you, consider Crystal 's 2025 world cruise aboard Crystal Serenity .

The beloved upscale line went bankrupt and stopped sailing in 2022. However, luxury tour operator Abercrombie & Kent acquired it and brought it back to life with a $150 million glow-up, starting with 740-passenger Crystal Serenity.

With newly renovated expansive suites, an array of social areas and nearly one staff member per guest, Crystal Serenity offers ultimate comfort, quality and personalization. Every cabin comes with a butler ready to assist with reservations, laundry and any other needs you have during your global odyssey.

Beginning in Fort Lauderdale and concluding in Barcelona, the sailing spans 123 nights with visits to 31 countries. The cruise kicks off with a welcome celebration, and guests can enjoy themed onboard and shoreside events and gala dinners throughout the sailing.

Exciting destinations along the way include Belize, Honduras, Argentina, Chile, South Africa, the Seychelles, Sri Lanka, Egypt and Jordan. Passengers can get a close-up look at Argentine tango through performances, enjoy street food in Sri Lanka's capital city and celebrate like a Greek god on Mount Olympus, among other events.

Custom excursions and pre- and post-cruise tours organized by Abercrombie & Kent are available along the way (for an additional cost).

Departs Jan. 7, 2025. Prices start from $66,200 per person.

Cunard Line

rcl world cruise cost

Be among the first to explore the world aboard Queen Anne, the line's first new ship in 12 years. Scheduled to launch in May 2024, the 2,996-passenger ship will take over Cunard 's world cruise duties in January 2025.

Queen Anne's maiden World Voyage in 2025 will span 111 nights, beginning and ending in Hamburg, Germany. Along the way, guests can explore historic churches in the Old Town of Lubeck, Germany, a UNESCO World Heritage site; visit the historic city of Antigua, Guatemala's original capital; and indulge in retail therapy in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia's bustling shopping hub.

Passengers will enjoy spectacular new elements on this ship. The vessel's main pool area, The Pavilion, is topped with a gorgeous retractable glass roof that will act as a showpiece and also a functional structure to keep poolgoers dry on rainy days.

If you're seeking the most luxurious accommodations and exclusive experiences on board, book Princess or Queens Grill suites. Fares include outstanding amenities such as private dining rooms, coffee and specialty tea service, priority boarding, and a private outdoor lounge area.

Queens Grill suite passengers receive butler service, too. However, many lovely inclusions, such as white-gloved servers presenting complimentary daily tea, are available for all guests.

Departs Jan. 7, 2025. Prices start from $17,799 per person.

Holland America

rcl world cruise cost

Grand World Voyage

Holland America 's 124-day Grand World Voyage on the 1,964-passenger Zuiderdam cruises round-trip from Fort Lauderdale. The enticing itinerary ventures far from Florida to must-visit cities such as Tokyo, Mumbai, Singapore and Istanbul. The ship will also traverse the Panama Canal.

Many included overnights allow opportunities to dive deep into local cultures and experiences. Spend extra time in Kobe, Japan; Hong Kong and Shanghai, China; and Singapore. As a bonus, Zuiderdam will take guests to incredibly remote locales, such as the Amazon.

On board, relish music venues like Billboard Onboard and BBC Earth in Concert, where a live orchestra plays before a huge backdrop of spectacular wildlife footage. Step One Dance Company presents works by noted choreographers. Count on a buzzy casino, fine dining at specialty restaurants and a professionally staffed fitness center.

Departs Jan. 4, 2025. Prices start from $24,999 per person.

Related: A beginners guide to picking a cruise line

MSC Cruises

rcl world cruise cost

MSC Cruises is doing something a little different with its 2025 world cruise. It's offering a choice of four embarkation ports — Rome and Genoa in Italy; Marseille, France; and Barcelona. Passengers will return to the same port they left from.

The 2,550-passenger MSC Magnifica is the home base for the 116-night journey. The itinerary features port calls at 50 destinations across 21 countries in the Mediterranean, South America, the South Pacific, Australia and Asia. Among the cities you'll explore are Puerto Madryn, Argentina; Rio de Janeiro; Casablanca, Morocco; Colombo, Sri Lanka; Phuket, Thailand; Broome, Australia; and Auckland.

Spend your port days ogling at Genoa's majestic Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint Lawrence and Doge's Palace; exploring the peaceful mountaintop monastery in Montserrat, Spain; and wandering through the restored ceremonial village of Orongo, Rapa Nui (Easter Island), a World Heritage Site.

Departs Jan. 4, 5, 6 and 7, 2025 (depending on your embarkation port). Prices start from $14,469 per person.

Oceania Cruises

rcl world cruise cost

Around the World Cruise

The lovely 656-passenger Insignia sails a whopping 200 days from Miami to New York for Oceania Cruises ' 2025 world cruise. It might seem a long way away, but inside cabins and some suites are already waitlisted for the sailing.

Prepare to tear up any bucket list on a cruise this long. The ship begins in the balmy Caribbean islands, ventures to the Brazilian Amazon, explores more of South America and then heads off to Africa and Asia. Australia and New Zealand, Hawaii and Latin America round out the itinerary before Insignia circles back to the Caribbean (different ports on this end) and sails triumphantly back to Miami.

Oceania Cruises is renowned for fine dining. Expect to eat and drink exceptionally well on board.

Departs Jan. 5, 2025. Prices start from $54,099 per person.

Princess Cruises

rcl world cruise cost

Princess Cruises promises an unforgettable journey on its 116-day world cruise sailing from Fort Lauderdale (or Los Angeles, as an alternative embarkation port) on the 2,200-passenger Island Princess.

This ship delivers many onboard activities like cooking and dance classes, trivia contests, enrichment programs and games of basketball, volleyball and tennis on the sports court. A putting green ensures golf games stay sharp.

You can also expect outdoor movies, original musical productions and onboard wellness features such as a spa and fitness center.

World cruisers can visit 26 countries with 51 destinations across six continents; the exciting port of call include Lisbon; Bali; Naples, Italy; Milan; and Haifa, Israel. With late-night stays in 11 ports of call and a Dubai overnight, you can relish multiple opportunities to wine, dine and enjoy the nightlife ashore.

For 2025, Princess offers two 116-day world cruise itinerary options on Island Princess, one round-trip from Fort Lauderdale and the other round-trip from Los Angeles.

From Fort Lauderdale: Departs Jan. 5, 2025. Prices start from $16,225 per person.

From Los Angeles: Departs Jan. 20, 2025. Prices start from $16,298 per person.

Related: Big vs. small cruise ships: Which will I like better?

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

rcl world cruise cost

Navigate the World

World cruises prove perpetually popular on this ultraluxe line. They often sell out in the blink of an eye.

Availability is limited on the 2025 150-night world cruise on the 700-passenger Seven Seas Mariner, sailing round-trip from Miami to San Francisco. This itinerary includes cruising in Antarctica, the Chilean fjords, French Polynesia, Taipei and Bali.

Perhaps because its 2025 sailing is nearly sold out, Regent Seven Seas Cruises is one of the first cruise lines to announce its 2026 world voyage, also on Seven Seas Mariner.

This journey will be the line's longest, sailing for 154 nights and visiting 77 ports in 41 countries across six continents. The itinerary includes three new ports of call for Regent, including Lifou Island and Mare of the Loyalty Islands in the New Caledonia archipelago. Count on visiting 47 UNESCO World Heritage sites, including Australia's Great Barrier Reef and Robben Island in South Africa.

For all its around-the-world cruises, Regent piles on primo inclusions — first-class flights, unlimited shore excursions, luggage service, an open bar and a visa package are among countless amenities.

The 2025 world cruise departs Jan. 7, 2025. Prices start from $87,999 per person.

The 2026 world cruise departs Jan. 10, 2026. Prices start from $94,999 per person.

Related: The 9 best luxury cruise lines for elegance and exclusivity

rcl world cruise cost

Grand Africa Voyage

Wander the majestic Grandmaster's Palace in Malta. Snorkel the pristine waters along the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt. Ogle the tropical beauty of the 115-island archipelago of the Seychelles. Soak up the beauty of Cape Town from atop Table Mountain.

You'll find many pinch-me moments on Seabourn 's 90-day, 26-country Grand Africa cruise in late 2024 and early 2025. It takes place onboard the 450-passenger all-suite Seabourn Sojourn and sails round-trip from Barcelona. (The line is not currently offering a more traditional world cruise in 2025.)

On the ultraluxurious vessel, you can expect exclusive VIP celebrations, like a Caviar in the Surf party. (Note that complimentary Champagne and caviar flow freely on board, too, adding to the happy vibe.)

There's much to love about Seabourn Sojourn. Its intimate size allows truly personalized service from a polished, attentive crew. Seabourn Square, a living room-like venue, is a magnet for affable passengers who quickly make new friends. Count on superb dining and 24-hour room service among a slew of upscale amenities.

Departs Nov. 30, 2024. Prices start from $38,999 per person.

Related: 7 extremely decadent things you can do on a luxury cruise vacation

Silversea Cruises

rcl world cruise cost

Controtempo

Silversea Cruises ' 2025 world cruise aboard the ultraluxurious, 596-passenger Silver Dawn looks amazing. The around-the-world cruise is designed to visit far-flung and more remote ports, often out of season, to avoid the touristy crowds.

This 136-day voyage sails from Tokyo to New York and explores 59 ports in 30 countries. Count on visiting enchanting cities, including Istanbul, Naples and Stockholm. Wonderfully remote ports, like Cochin, India; Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; and Nuuk, Greenland, tempt travelers to come aboard for the long haul.

Silversea's world cruises are known for showcasing exceptional special-access events, and this sailing is no different. On this cruise, applause goes to a private tour of Cairo's 500-room Abdeen Palace and an inimitable evening at Versailles in lavish Marie Antoinette style (pre-guillotine, of course).

Silver Dawn is a wowser with a game-changer spa , all-suite accommodations, tux-clad butlers for all passengers and complimentary caviar service anytime, anywhere. Expect many fare inclusions, such as business-class flights, shore excursions and private transfers.

Controtempo departs Jan. 13, 2025. Prices start from $81,900 per person.

The Three Oceans

Silversea recently announced a new 80-destination world cruise for 2027, also aboard Silver Dawn.

Departing from Los Angeles for a 149-night voyage, the ship will visit 35 countries and five continents before ending in Copenhagen. The itinerary features 80 port calls, more than any sailing in Silversea's history, and it will also include 20 new destinations for the line.

Passengers can enjoy extended time in select ports with 11 overnight calls in Honolulu; Cairns, Australia; Colombo, Sri Lanka; Cape Town, South Africa; and Bordeaux, France, among others.

The Three Oceans cruise departs Jan. 8, 2027. Prices will be available beginning from June 10, 2024.

rcl world cruise cost

Viking World Voyage II

Imagine the joy of ticking many bucket list boxes on Viking World Voyage II, Viking 's 163-day world cruise on board the 930-passenger Viking Sky in 2025. Book quickly; availability is extremely limited, with many suites and penthouses already sold out.

The Los Angeles-to-New York voyage visits 29 countries and 78 ports.

Palm-tree ports are plentiful, including Moorea, French Polynesia; Bay of Islands, New Zealand; and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. You'll cross many seas, such as the Tasman, Arafura and Arabian, and take your pick of a plethora of possible excursions, including a visit to a Balinese Hindu temple in Indonesia and a tour of the ancient Elephanta Caves in India. You can pretty much do it all on this world cruise.

Departs Jan. 5, 2025. Prices start from $74,995 per person.

Planning a cruise? Start with these stories:

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  • A beginners guide to picking a cruise line
  • The 8 worst cabin locations on any cruise ship
  • The ultimate guide to what to pack for a cruise
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The Alternative to Huge Cruises? 3 Masts, 28 Sails and Wind Power.

We checked out the 136-passenger Sea Cloud Spirit on a Mediterranean cruise. In this era of gargantuan ships, its elegant clipper design, wooden decks and relatively small size stands out.

rcl world cruise cost

By Ceylan Yeğinsu

From the bridge of the three-masted windjammer, the Sea Cloud Spirit , the captain called out the words we’d all been waiting for.

“Let’s set the sails!” he cried, after turning off the engines, while maneuvering to maintain an optimum angle for his 18 deckhands to climb into the shrouds and unfurl the ship’s 44,132 square feet of sails by hand.

Like acrobats, the crew scurried up the masts to the upper topgallant sails that rose nearly 200 feet above us. The ship’s captain, Vukota Stojanovic, later insisted that none of it was for show. “Whenever there is an opportunity to sail, we sail,” he said.

rcl world cruise cost

For the next hour, the crew hauled the ropes until the 28 sails were billowing in the wind, propelling the 452-foot-long ship — the world’s largest passenger sailing vessel on which the sails are raised by hand — toward its first port of call, Portofino, Italy.

At a time when cruise lines are packing their ever-more-gargantuan ships with water parks and basketball courts, the 136-passenger Sea Cloud Spirit, with its old-fashioned clipper design and wooden decks, stands out. It is the newest ship from the Hamburg-based Sea Cloud Cruises , and while it is the company’s biggest, Sea Cloud said it wanted to leave space for passengers to connect to the surrounding elements.

“Wherever you are on the ship, it feels like you are sitting on the water,” said Amelia Dominick, 71, a retired real estate agent from Cologne, Germany, who was on her third cruise onboard the Sea Cloud Spirit.

I had arrived for a four-night “taster sailing” from Nice, France, to the Ligurian region of Italy, designed to entice passengers to sign up for a longer cruise. Here’s what I found.

The ship and cabins

The Spirit has many comforts and luxuries, including a fitness center, library, hair salon and a spa with a Finnish sauna that overlooks the sea. The deck layouts are spacious, with nooks carved out for privacy and relaxation.

Sixty-nine spacious cabins have windows that open onto the sea. My room, a junior suite on the third deck, had two large arched windows, mahogany tables, a balcony and a comfortable couch and armchair. The marble bathroom was lavish, with a gold-plated sink and large jetted bathtub.

The elegant interior design is inspired by the original Sea Cloud, built in 1931 for Marjorie Merriweather Post, the American heiress of the General Foods Corporation, with glossy wooden panels and gold trimmings. The Sea Cloud was the largest private sailing yacht in the world before Post handed it over to the U.S. Navy for use as a weather-reporting vessel during World War II. The four-mast, 64-passenger ship has since been restored to its former glory and will sail across the Aegean and Adriatic this summer.

rcl world cruise cost

The experience felt authentic — even before the sails were set — with a detailed safety drill. On most cruises, the drill entails a safety video and signing in at an assembly point. But here, passengers put on their life jackets and walked through emergency scenarios that included rationing food supplies and fishing from the lifeboat.

Each day, the sails were set, even during heavy rain and wind speeds over 30 knots. Guests wanting to participate in the rigging are usually invited to do so, but the weather conditions made it too risky for this sailing.

“It was amazing to watch the work go into putting the sails up and down and to experience the wind power pulling the ship so fast without the engines,” said Malte Rahnenfuehrer, a 50-year-old psychologist from Zurich, who was traveling with his partner and two children.

A man with dark hair wears navy blue and white clothing as the captain of a large windjammer sailing vessel. He stands on deck, a walkie-talkie-like device in his hand, beneath the ropes and riggings of the vessel's sails.

The captain

It is rare for cruise passengers to see the ship’s captain after the initial welcome drinks or gala dinner. But Capt. Vukota Stojanovic was omnipresent throughout the cruise, from setting sails to lifeguarding to mingling with guests.

Originally from Montenegro, Captain Stojanovic piloted container ships for years. When he was asked to consider helming the original Sea Cloud nearly 10 years ago, he hesitated because he had no experience sailing. Even after he learned the ropes — and there are 340 ropes (known as running rigging) on the vessel — he was unsure. “I grew to love the sailings, the boats, the crew the lifestyle, but I still felt I belonged on container ships,” he said. “It would be a big adjustment, especially because I would have to shave every day,” he joked.

Eventually, he accepted the opportunity and worked tirelessly to learn how to sail and operate the ship. Today, he keeps an “open bridge” policy, allowing passengers to visit the control room, even when he is wrestling with the wind.

“The crew and the passengers are all part of the experience, and I like to meet people and receive their feedback,” Captain Stojanovic said.

Environment

Sea Cloud Cruises aspires to take a “gentle” approach, using wind power to drive its ships wherever possible, even if that means changing course for optimal weather conditions. When sailing is not possible, the Spirit has two diesel-electric engines that run on low-sulfur marine diesel fuel. The company is also working with ports that have shore power capabilities to plug into the local electric power.

Onboard, there is an emphasis on reusable bottles and paper straws, and crew members separate solid waste to be compacted and removed when in port.

Excursions and Activities

We made stops in Portofino, San Remo, Italy, and St.-Tropez, France, anchoring offshore and getting to land by tender — a contrast to the big cruise ships with their loud horns and thick plumes of exhaust spewing from their funnels.

For passengers wanting to take a dip (there is no pool), the crew marked an area in the water with floats and an inflatable slide. The water was frigid, but many passengers took the plunge from the swimming deck. Guests could also take “Zodiac Safaris” around the ship to get views of the vessel from the water.

rcl world cruise cost

Excursions ranged from food and wine tours to e-biking and beach trips. In Portofino, passengers were free to explore the sights independently, including the Castello Brown Fortress and the lighthouse on Punta del Capo rock. There was ample time to eat meals on shore as the ship did not depart until 11 p.m. Over the summer, the Sea Cloud Spirit will sail to Spain, Portugal, France and the Azores, among other destinations. On Nov. 11, she will depart for St. Maarten in the Caribbean for the winter.

Wherever the vessel goes, said Mirell Reyes, president of Sea Cloud Cruise for North America, the company tries to “stay away from the crowds and ports where big cruise ships spit out 6,000 passengers.”

Summer prices, which include food and beverages, range from $3,995 for a four-night sailing in a superior cabin to $9,420 for a veranda suite. Seven-night sailings cost between $6,995 and $16,495.

Follow New York Times Travel on Instagram and sign up for our weekly Travel Dispatch newsletter to get expert tips on traveling smarter and inspiration for your next vacation. Dreaming up a future getaway or just armchair traveling? Check out our 52 Places to Go in 2024 .

Ceylan Yeginsu is a travel reporter for The Times who frequently writes about the cruise industry and Europe, where she is based. More about Ceylan Yeğinsu

Come Sail Away

Love them or hate them, cruises can provide a unique perspective on travel..

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Th ree-Year Cruise, Unraveled:  The Life at Sea cruise was supposed to be the ultimate bucket-list experience : 382 port calls over 1,095 days. Here’s why  those who signed up are seeking fraud charges  instead.

TikTok’s Favorite New ‘Reality Show’:  People on social media have turned the unwitting passengers of a nine-month world cruise  into  “cast members”  overnight.

Dipping Their Toes: Younger generations of travelers are venturing onto ships for the first time . Many are saving money.

Cult Cruisers: These devoted cruise fanatics, most of them retirees, have one main goal: to almost never touch dry land .

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5 Ways to Use Your Onboard Credit

By Evelyn Uslar-Pietri  | Published on May 31, 2024

You’ve booked a cruise sailing from Sydney or Brisbane on Quantum Class favourites Ovation of the Seas® , Quantum of the Seas® or Anthem of the Seas® or the amped up Voyager of the Seas® and, in the process, you may have earned onboard credits (OBCs). But, as promising as they sound, they are also somewhat shrouded in mystery. Specifically, how do you access these OBCs – and once you’ve laid hands on them, what exactly can you use them for?

You will conveniently find your OBCs in your online account, which can be accessed at sign in , so you can book in the Cruise Planner before you board. Alternatively, you will find them on your Seapass® card, the personal onboard expense account you’ll use for all your onboard expenditures. When you make a purchase or pay for a service on your cruise, the onboard credits are applied. No fuss, no muss.

Now for the fun part: discovering the best ways to spend your bonus money (OR OBCs! Although many dining venues, activities and entertainment are included in your fare, Royal Caribbean® ships also offer exceptional speciality experiences - temptations you can wholeheartedly embrace with your budget-stretching OBCs!

Speciality Dining

Anthem of the Seas Izumi Sushi Chef

Foodies take note: you’re boarding one of the hottest food scenes found at sea! With scrumptious palate-pleasing options around every corner, the greatest difficulty is deciding what you want to eat! Does homemade linguine – perfectly al dente and tossed with garlicky prawns – sound like a ticket to paradise? Then head over to Jamie’s Italian by Jamie Oliver, a Tuscan-inspired eatery led by one of Britain’s most famous chefs.

Or are you in an Asian vein, craving melt-in-your-mouth sushi and a bowl of fragrant yaki udon? Look no further than Izumi Japanese Cuisine , where every swoon-worthy taste transports you to the Far East. Classic American steakhouse fare at Chops Grille℠, fantastical whimsy at Wonderland Imaginative Cuisine , the crown of gastronomy at Chef’s Table – a kaleidoscope of delicious flavours awaits you. And the best part? Your onboard credits can take a big bite out of the tab, or even eat the whole thing up!

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Onboard Entertainment and Activities

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When you book a cruise on Royal Caribbean, you can rightfully expect it to be packed with every kind of top-notch adventure. From the chart-topping Broadway show, We Will Rock You on Anthem of the Seas®, multimedia production shows and the thrilling ice skating show on Voyager of the Seas® to toe-tapping live music and parties the whole family can get in on. Movie nights, game shows and wow-worthy activities, like the FlowRider® surf simulator, bumper cars at SeaPlex® on Quantum Class ships or The Perfect Storm℠ waterslide duo on Voyager of the Seas®. There’s so much to discover that you could keep your crew busy 24/7 and not run out of things to do!

Fortunately, almost everything is included in your cruise, with a small handful of exceptions. Games at the Royal Caribbean Arcade have an associated fee, as do certain games at SeaPlex . Your OBCs will also come in handy on skydiving simulator, RipCord® by iFLY® and  North Star®, the Guinness Book World Record holder for tallest viewing deck on a cruise ship. With its glass-enclosed capsule rising a staggering 100 metres above sea level, you are afforded 360° views of the surrounding world. These incur a cost when the ship is at sea and are worth every single OBC, in our humble opinion!

Have you ever been curious about what goes on behind-the-scenes on one of the largest cruise ships at sea? Then hop on an All Access Tour where you’ll get a first-hand peek of the Bridge, Engine Control Room and other inner workings.

If you are particularly interested in the epicurean side of things, the Sip Tour Brunch may be your special jam (Okay. No more puns)! Led by the Chef, you’ll roam the galley gleaning its secrets before tucking into a mouth-watering brunch paired with unlimited sparkling wine. Whether you choose to book through the Cruise Planner before you board or wait until you are onboard, cheers to OBCs well spent!

SPA AND Shopping

Kate Spade Purses

Shopping and OBCs are an inspired natural pairing, much like tea and biscuits. After all, what could be more satisfying than – quite literally – freely indulging yourself? Onboard Royal Caribbean, shopping is not only duty-free but you’ll discover a superb array of stores offering fine jewellery, Swiss timepieces, designer apparel and other enticements.

While the kiddos are enjoying their dedicated complimentary programs at Adventure Ocean , you may want to plan a few hours of much-deserved me-time, beelining for the spa. An oasis of relaxation and renewal, the spa offers massages, facials and medi-spa treatments, as well as complete hair and nail services. Put your OBCs to work in the name of beauty, and walk out feeling on top of the world.

Quality “me-time” can also be about perfecting skills or picking up new ones at a class: life-defining abilities such as crafting swans out of towels or turning a napkin into the perfect place setting are free. While decorating decadent cupcakes or attending a scrapbooking class may incur a small charge for materials – which your helpful OBCs will be happy to cover!

Shore excursions and More

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A significant benefit of booking a Royal Caribbean cruise is that young seafarers have their own programmes, led by thoroughly screened and trained staff. Fusing fun and education, the award-winning Adventure Ocean, is designed for 3-11 year-olds. Although included in your fare, fees apply after 10 pm. Since there is also a cost associated with our Royal Babies & Tots programme  for 6-36 month olds, your OBCs can be put to excellent use with child-care.

You can even use them for shore excursions. Take your adventure underwater and discover a whole world that’s teeming with life in the South Pacific or lace up your hiking boots and discover the natural beauty of New Zealand. For professional photo packages, internet access and other onboard expenses, your OBCs can also be readily applied.

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Written By EVELYN USLAR-PIETRI

Evelyn's passion for exploring the world, combined with her unforgettable travels onboard Royal Caribbean, shine through in her pieces for the cruise line. She also writes for Roar Media--a full-stack marketing agency based in Miami, Florida--as well as other travel and lifestyle-related brands.

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Three oceans in 149 days: Silversea's new world cruise features its most destinations ever

rcl world cruise cost

Silversea Cruises is known for epic globe-spanning itineraries. But the luxury line’s 2027 world cruise will take guests to more destinations than ever.

The voyage will feature highlights of the Pacific, Indian and Atlantic oceans over about five months. Passengers will visit 80 destinations – many of which the line has not previously included on a world cruise – in 35 countries.

“Calling in more destinations than any voyage in Silversea’s history, we proudly unveil The Three Oceans World Cruise 2027, which broadens our industry-leading offering of extended voyages,” the line’s president, Bert Hernandez, said in a news release . “Traveling aboard Silver Dawn, one of the smallest ships to embark on a World Cruise, our guests will venture off the beaten path to 80 destinations on five continents over 149 days, with the longest stays in port of any World Cruise.”

When is Silversea’s 2027 world cruise?

The cruise will depart on Jan. 8, 2027, from Los Angeles. Silver Dawn, which can accommodate 596 guests, will end the voyage on June 7 in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Where will the cruise sail?

Passengers will first spend 46 days sailing from Los Angeles to Brisbane, Australia, stopping in ports like Hilo and Kahului in Hawaii, Moorea and Bora Bora in French Polynesia and more along the way.

“As well as having the opportunity to visit the UNESCO-listed Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, guests will enjoy a bespoke World Cruise event on this beautiful archipelago, honoring ancient Polynesian seafarers at a sunset ho'olaule'a in Honolulu, with traditional fare, tropical libations, and a night of stargazing,” Silversea said in the release.

From Brisbane, the ship will head to Cape Town, South Africa. The ship will visit destinations like Singapore and the Maldives before guests spend a week on a “deep dive” into South Africa. On the final leg of the journey, passengers will explore other parts of Africa and the Mediterranean on their way to Northern Europe.

Other programming includes safari experiences, an overland trip to southern Africa’s Victoria Falls and a night of music at St. Anne’s Cathedral in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The itinerary features 11 overnight stops in ports such as Cairns, Australia; Colombo, Sri Lanka; and Bordeaux, France, as well.

Short vs. long cruises: Which one is right for you?

How much does the cruise cost?

Pricing info will be available on June 10. Silversea’s 2026 world cruise – which will sail for 140 days, also on Silver Dawn – currently starts at just under $89,000 per person based on double occupancy.

The cruise will be available for presale to members of Silversea’s Venetian Society loyalty program on June 20. Bookings will open for the general public on June 27. Passengers will receive perks like laundry service, spa treatments and more.

Nathan Diller is a consumer travel reporter for USA TODAY based in Nashville, Tennessee. You can reach him at [email protected].

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Passenger dies after jumping off world’s largest cruise ship as it sets sail from Florida

The passenger was pronounced deceased sometime after he was found and bought back to the giant vessel, article bookmarked.

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A passenger has died after jumping overboard from the world ’s largest cruise ship after it set sail from Florida .

The male passenger, who has not been identified, reportedly jumped, according to the New York Post , from the 20-deck high Icon of the Seas after it left a Florida port on Sunday to embark on a seven-day cruise around the Caribbean , first stopping in Honduras.

The Coast Guard , who said they did not have much involvement in the incident beyond assisting in the search for the man, told the New York Post that “the cruise ship deployed one of their rescue boats, located the man, and brought him back aboard”.

The man has since been “pronounced deceased,” the Coast Guard added.

The incident occurred on the Icon of the Seas, a 1,196ft-long and 20-deck high cruise ship,

The world’s largest cruise experience was approximately 300 miles away from PortMiami, and around 30 to 40 miles north of Santa Lucia, Cuba, at the time of the incident, which occurred in the morning, according to Cruise Hive.

The Royal Caribbean, which operates the Icon of the Seas along with other groundbreakingly large cruise ships, told the outlet in a statement that their ship’s crew immediately notified the Coast Guard in the US and “launched a search and rescue operation”.

“Our care team is actively providing support and assistance to the guest’s loved ones during this difficult time,” the cruise company added. “For the privacy of the guest and their family, we have no additional details to share.“

The ship, which holds way over 5,000 guests and only made its maiden voyage in January of this year, had embarked on the cruise on Saturday, but after the incident on Sunday, the cruise halted and stayed put for around two hours while the search continued, the outlet said.

The ship cost approximately $2bn to build

According to CruiseMapper tracking data, the Icon of the Seas is due to reach the port of Costa Maya, Mexico by noon on Tuesday.

The incident comes over a month after a similar tragedy on another Royal Caribbean cruise ship, the Liberty of the Seas when a 20-year-old man identified as Levion Parker is thought to have gone overboard during a trip around the Bahamas.

The cruise line immediately launched a search and rescue mission along with the US Coast Guard, but it was suspended after five days due to not being able to find him.

However, the cruise company has also witnessed some successful rescues in recent months, such as being able to recover a passenger who fell overboard from the Symphony of the Seas back in October.

The cruise, which had just left Barcelona at the time, said the guest was successfully brought back on board after falling shortly after it left the port.

The Independent has contacted Royal Caribbean for comment.

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COMMENTS

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