Royal Caribbean announced today that its newest (and largest) ship — Wonder of the Seas — will make its global debut sailing from Fort Lauderdale beginning in March 2022.
Wonder of the Seas is the latest iteration of Royal Caribbean’s Oasis-class vessels, a group of ships first launched more than a decade ago with Oasis of the Seas. Since that time no other cruise line has built cruise ships even close to the size of these vessels.
Wonder will come in at nearly 237,000 gross tons when completed. That puts it even bigger than the current largest ship sailing, Symphony of the Seas, at 228,000 gross tons.
All told the ship measures 1,188 feet long, has 18 decks, is 210 feet wide, and can carry nearly 7,000 guests at total occupancy.
Currently, four of the five largest cruise ships sailing in the world belong to Royal Caribbean. Starting early next year with Wonder’s debut, the cruise line will boast all five of the largest ships on the planet.
Classic and New Features for Passengers
Like other Oasis-class vessels, Wonder of the Seas will have a number of features that have become well-known.
With the “split” design that’s unique to the ships, Wonder will feature Central Park (with more than 20,000 live plants), the Boardwalk, multiple pools, AquaTheater, the zipline, Ultimate Abyss, and the Solarium. We’ve spoken highly of the experience aboard Oasis-class ships, and Wonder looks to continue the same sort of experience that’s simply above what most other ships can provide.
But the new vessel will also feature some new tweaks not found on sister ships like Symphony, Allure, Harmony, or Oasis of the Seas.
First is a new Suite Class Neighborhood, with an exclusive sun deck, pool and bar for guests staying in suites. There’s also a new feature at the back of the ship — Wonder Playscape — which is an outdoor areas for kids with climbing walls, slides, and games. Wonder will also feature The Vue, a bar that is cantilevered so that it provides ocean views above the pool deck.
Transition from China to Florida/Europe
As with the entire industry during the past year-and-a-half, Wonder of the Seas hasn’t been immune to schedule changes and updates.
Up until now the ship was planned to debut and sail from China — offering 4 to 9-night trips from Shanghai and Hong Kong. In fact, trips were even open for booking.
Now that’s changed. Instead of China, Wonder will sail from Fort Lauderdale on trips to the Caribbean starting March 4, 2022. It will only be in Florida for couple of months before the ship will head across the Atlantic, sailing during the summer season from Barcelona and Rome.
“The momentum taking off across bookings and our returning ships in the U.S. and Europe is significant. With half of our fleet sailing again, we are encouraged by what we’re seeing. These regions are in the position to welcome a brand-new, innovative ship like Wonder of the Seas,” said Michael Bayley, Royal Caribbean International CEO, said of the newly announced schedule.
Trips aboard Wonder of the Seas from Fort Lauderdale are open for booking now, according to Royal Caribbean. However, we were not able to find available bookings on the website just yet. European trips are planned to open for booking on September 22.
Beyond next summer, there are some sailings listed from Hong Kong in late 2022 on Royal Caribbean’s website. This seems to point to the possibility that after Europe, the world’s largest ship might transition to Asia as was originally planned.