BY TIM HEDGLEY, GROUP TRAVEL EDITOR
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 includeCasablanca, 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 travellers 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:
- Round the Horn: Americas and Antarctica Expedition
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.
- Wonders of Asia and the Pacific Expedition
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.
- Middle East Treasures and Marvels of the Med Expedition
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.
- Capitals of Culture
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.