With cruises suspended, it has created a big question — what do you do with all those cruise ships while they wait for sailing to return?
Many of them are simply biding their time. From Miami and the Bahamas to Europe to the Philippines and points in between, dozens and dozens of ships are holding position out at sea, with occasional trips into port before heading back out to sea.
Others — including vessels from Carnival — have literally sailed across the globe to help get crew members back to their home countries. For instance, the Carnival Liberty, which normally sails Caribbean trips from Port Canaveral, is currently off the coast of Sri Lanka.
In other words, cruise ships are spread around the globe, and some are in places where they normally don’t travel.
That got us wondering… where can you find the world’s largest ships right now?
These massive ships may not have passengers on them, but they still have crew and have to figure out a place to call home while they wait for the ok to sail again.
We are able to tell the current position of the world’s largest cruise ships thanks to a ship-tracking website CruiseMapper.com. It offers the location and track of ships around the world. All maps and position information below come from CruiseMapper.
Below you’ll find the positions of the ten biggest cruise liners in the world as of right now.
Symphony of the Seas
Royal Caribbean’s newest ship is also the largest in the world. Symphony of the Seas comes in at more than 228,000 gross tons (for comparison, the Titanic was only 46,000 gross tons) and can carry nearly 7,000 passengers. At this time, however, it’s carrying no passengers.
Currently the ship is sitting just off of CocoCay, Royal Caribbean’s private island in the Bahamas. The ship has the Grandeur of the Seas to keep her company. Symphony of the Seas is slated to return to sailing in mid-September from Miami.
Harmony of the Seas
Completed in 2016, Harmony of the Seas is a sister ship to the Symphony of the Seas and is part of the fleet’s Oasis-class lineup. The ship is just slightly smaller, coming in at 226,000 gross tons.
Harmony of the Seas is sitting in port in Barbados, where a group of several other Royal Caribbean and Celebrity ships are hanging out just offshore.
Oasis of the Seas
The namesake of the Oasis-class ships from Royal Caribbean, which are the largest in the world, Oasis of the Seas garnered in a new era of mega-ships when it was launched in 2009.
Today it is docked at Royal Caribbean’s flagship Terminal A at the Port of Miami, along with several other Royal Caribbean and Norwegian vessels. In September the ship is scheduled to sail from Cape Liberty in New York.
Allure of the Seas
Allure of the Seas is the fourth-largest cruise ship in the world. While it can be considered the same size as the other Oasis-class ships like the Symphony, Harmony, and Oasis, it’s actually slightly smaller than those at “just” 225,000 gross tons.
Right now the massive vessel is shown to be sitting in port in Cadiz, Spain. It is scheduled to return to sailing in September, on trips from Barcelona.
Costa Cruises is under the Carnival Corporation family of cruise lines, and they operate the fifth-largest ship in the world. The Costa Smeralda (which translates to “Emerald” from Italian to English), comes in at 185,000 gross tons. That’s big, but noticeably smaller than the 225,000+ tons of Royal Caribbean’s largest ships.
Currently the Smeralda is joined by a number of other ships from several lines, docked in Marseille, France, on the country’s southern coast. Its first cruise is scheduled for August 1, departing from Savona, Italy.
Perhaps the most unique livery of any cruise ship, it’s hard to miss the enormous eyes and mouth painted on the hull of the AIDAnova. The ship was built in 2018 and at 183,000+ gross tons, she is the sixth-largest in the world. She can also carry more than 6,500 passengers.
Right now the ship is located off the coast of Tenerife in the Canary Islands, which are just off the western coast of Africa.
The largest ship in MSC’s fleet is the Grandiosa, which launched in 2019 and comes in at more than 181,000 gross tons. The ship is so large it can carry more than 6,700 passengers at full capacity.
Currently the ship is sitting in port in Civitavecchia on the western coast of Italy. The port is considered a gateway for passengers to visit Rome. The Grandiosa is scheduled to begin sailing on August 1 from Marseille, France on trips around the Mediterranean.
MSC’s Meraviglia (“Wonder” in Italian) has homeported in Miami for a time, and right now you’ll find it nearby. The ship is off of Ocean Cay, MSC’s private island in the Bahamas. There it is joined by the MSC’s Preziosa and the MSC Seaside.
A sister to the Meraviglia, the MSC Bellissima (Italian for “gorgeous”) was built in 2019. The ship comes in at more than 171,000 gross tons and can carry more than 5,600 passengers at full capacity.
Right now the Bellissima is shown in port in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. MSC’s website shows its next journey is slated for August 13, sailing from Shanghai, China.
Spectrum of the Seas
Royal Caribbean’s Spectrum of the Seas ranks as the tenth-largest cruise ship in the world at 169,379 tons — putting it just 250 tons larger than Norwegian Encore. The ship was actually sailing trips from China when the pandemic broke out. It’s now scheduled to start sailing again from Shanghai again in August.
Currently the ship is sailing off the coast of China in the East China Sea, near Japan and Taiwan.