Southampton docks are in full swing preparation mode as the coastal city gets ready to welcome Oasis of the Seas, the largest cruise ship on the planet. The 1187 foot mega liner is scheduled to cruise into the Southampton’s City Cruise Terminal on Wednesday October 15th, to the expected tune of thousands of well-wishers!
Southampton ticks Oasis off its bucket list
This is the ship’s first call to Southampton since a fleeting visit in November 2009 to let 300 construction workers disembark whilst on route to USA. While the docks have welcomed ships from all corners of the world, Oasis is a huge 40% larger than any other cruise vessel to dock in British waters. Accommodation is spread across 16 passenger decks, with the entire vessel measuring in at over four football pitches long and almost six London busses in width!
Unparalleled at-sea luxury
For the past few months, Oasis of the Seas has been undergoing a maritime makeover at Rotterdam’s well known Keppel Verolme shipyard. The revamp saw the 225,282-tonne vessel undergo a series of upgrades and enhancements which keep her at the top of her game.
The ship is still capable of carrying 6,296 passengers, with Royal Caribbean expecting every berth to be filled when Oasis returns to the seas. On-board passengers will be able to explore seven distinct neighbourhoods, each with its own unique theme. Central Park is bigger, better and greener than ever, home to an impressive 12,175 plants, some measuring over 24 feet high. The handcrafted carousel is the jewel of the Boardwalk while the all new Rising Tide bar allows guests to sip their cocktails while slowly ascending and descending across three decks. An 82 foot zip line is an at-sea first and thrill seeking passengers can take advantage of not one but two FlowRider surf simulators.
A day of British celebrations
Since her maiden voyage in 2009, Oasis of the Seas has been based in her home port of Port Everglades, Florida. The scheduled stop at Southampton’s Western Docks is a one day only event which will see her pick up passengers bound for the USA. Oasis will then begin her transatlantic crossing, bound for the USA. Brits are incredibly excited to welcome Royal Caribbean’s pride and joy into their homeland, with rumours flying around that there will be free bacon butties for the Mayflower Park crowds awaiting her arrival.
An Royal Caribbean spokesperson maintains, “Royal Caribbean International will be providing complimentary tea, coffee, bacon sandwiches (or a vegetarian option) to everyone who heads down to Mayflower Park on Wednesday between 8.30am and 10.30am, subject to availability, so head down early to avoid disappointment.”
As well as hosting the world’s biggest cruise ship, Southampton’s Western Docks will also be welcoming MSC Magnifica to 106 berth.P&O’s Azura will sail into the Ocean Terminal while the Eastern Docks will be graced by Saga Sapphire in 38/9 berth. Looks like it’s going to be a busy day for Southampton!
Images via Royal Caribbean Press Center