Royal Caribbean’s 274-Night “Ultimate World Cruise” Sets Sail This Weekend

On Sunday, December 10, the “most epic world cruise ever to set sail” departs on the start of a massive 274-night journey from Miami. Dubbed the “Ultimate World Cruise” by Royal Caribbean, the trip was first announced more than two years ago. 

Royal Caribbean ship at sea
Royal Caribbean’s 274-night “Ultimate World Cruise” aboard Serenade of the Seas was first announced in 2021. It departs Miami on December 10, 2023.

While around-the-world cruises are more common than you likely think, this trip is significant even among world sailings. First, to our knowledge, this is the first time that Royal Caribbean has offered this sort of global cruise. But more than that, it’s also arguably the most extensive global cruise that’s ever been created. (You can see our past features on the trip here and here.)

Already mentioned was the 274-night length, which comes out to roughly nine months of sailing. The trip departs December 10 and won’t conclude until September 10, 2024.

More than just a long vacation, however, it’s the route and destinations that make this cruise stand out. It will visit more than 60 countries and every continent, including Antarctica. The route will also visit many of the most famous cultural spots on the planet.

This includes Mexico to see Chichen Itza, Rio de Janeiro to see Christ the Redeemer, Lima for Machu Picchu, the Great Barrier Reef, Great Wall of China, the Pyramids of Giza, the Colosseum, and more.

It short, it’s a chance to see the entire world in one single cruise.

Shorter Cruise Segments Also Available

Of course, not everyone can sail around the world for nine months. That’s why in addition to the total cruise, Royal Caribbean is offering four smaller segments, with one focused on the Americas, one on Asia, then the Middle East and Mediterranean, and finally Europe to North America. These shorter segments range from 63 to 87 nights.

All guests on the segments or the total cruise will also receive a beverage package, wi-fi, gratuities, and laundry service to make things more comfortable during the journey.

Just how popular is this cruise? Back in late 2021 when the trip was first announced, Royal Caribbean shared that within one week of opening, the trip was already 70% booked.

The Ultimate World Cruise sails aboard Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas. The ship was launched in 2003 and holds about 2,100 passengers at double occupancy. At just 90,000 gross tons, it’s one of the fleet’s smaller ships.

And while it’s likely too short notice for you to book your spot on the entire 274-day cruise, it’s interesting to note that prices started at $59,999 (plus nearly $4,700 in taxes, fees, and port expenses) per person for an interior cabin. Balcony cabins started at around $83,000 per person:

Shorter segments are still available starting for about $14,000 per person for an interior cabin. You should be sure of your decision to sail, however, because the fares are non-refundable.

There’s no doubt that this cruise isn’t for everyone. But for those that have the time, money, and ability to sail long-term on a cruise ship, it promises to be the trip of a lifetime.

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