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Thursday, June 23, 2016


The largest ship ever built is always debatable, depending on the overall length, deadweight tonnage and gross tonnage.  Here is one comparison showing Knock Nevis, a supertanker built in 1979 by Sumitomo Heavy Industries, as the biggest, sometimes also known as the Oppama, Jahire Viking, Happy Giant, Seawise Giant and Mont:

In 2009, then called the Mont, she was intentionally beached in India for demolition, and was the biggest oil tanker ever built.  However, the Prelude FLNG is 1601 feet long, 243 feet wide, 260,000 tons of steel and 600,000 tons (five times that of the largest aircraft carrier) in operation,was built in South Korea in 2013, and is Shell's floating liquified natural gas (FLNG) facility:

The largest container ship is the MV CSCL Globe, built in 2014 in South Korea, 1312 feet long and 194 feet wide, with a gross weight of 187,540 tons and a top speed of 22 knots.  It can hold 19,000 20-foot containers.

Of course, ships (the red Prelude) are not particularly large compared to buildings:

But this blog site is most interested in cruise ships.  With a maiden cruise only last month, the Royal Caribbean's Harmony of the Seas is now the largest, replacing its sister, Allure of the Seas.  Details:
  • Both ships have 
    • 20 dining venues
    • 12 bars
    • surf simulators
    • 16 passenger decks
  • Harmony
    • has 15 cabins for solo cruisers
    • leans towards Sandra Dee versus ABBA songs on the Allure, and has molecular gastronomy
    • built in France (Allure in Finland)
    • 226,963 gross tonnage (Allure = 225,262)
    • 1182 feet long (Allure = 1187)
    • 217 feet wide (Allure = 198)
    • max speed greater than 25 knots (29 MPH); Allure at 22.6 knots
    • 6780 passengers (Allure = 6296)
    • crew of 2300 (Allure has more, 2384)
Unfortunately, no Royal Caribbean ship has a complete global itinerary.
Cruise Critic provides a guide for those considering a world journey on a ship.  In short (cost for 2018):
  • Cunard Line (112 days, Queen Elizabeth, $21,8848, and 134 days, Queen Mary 2, $25,798) is grand, formal and mostly British.
  • Saga Cruises is also British, and you need to be at least 40, with a companion at least 50.
  • Princess (2018 not settled, but will come through Honolulu) and Holland America (113 days, ms Amsterdam, $17,499) are more affordable, giving good value.
  • Regent Seven Seas (137 days, Seven Seas Navigator, $61,999--departs Los Angeles, first stop Hawaii) and Crystal are at the luxury class and mid-sized, but Crystal does go around the world.  The Crystal Serenity and Crystal Symphony combined, 129 days, switching ships in Sydney, costs $56,805--but does not circumnavigate Planet Earth.
  • Costa Cruises have a European flair for reasonable prices.
  • Small luxury lines like Silversea (121 days, Silver Whisper, $57,750) are expensive and pamper.
  • Book when first available--18 moths before departure--to obtain the best cabins.
  • Get a balcony to escape from others.
  • Lower rooms in the center are more stable in a storm.
  • Be careful with whom you room.
  • Early on, make friends with officers and the Maitre d'.
There is, too, MS The World, a ship (644 feet long with 12 decks), now 13 years old, which constantly roams around the globe, an itinerary decided by residents.  There are 165 units and a buy-in cost around $2 million, plus an annual maintenance fee of from $60,000 to $270,000.

The Seasteading Institute facilitates the establishment of autonomous, mobile communities on seaborne platforms operating in international waters.  Here is my talk at one of their gatherings.

So, anyway, I'm still exploring options regarding my 2018 Global Cruise.  A small list of potential cabinmates is forming.  There has been some progress.


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