• TRAVEL NOTICE: Learn more about COVID-19
  • Newsletter
  • Write a Review
  • Boards
  • Find a Cruise
  • Reviews
  • Cruise Tips
  • News
  • Deals
You may also like
Dismiss
Saga Cruises' Spirit of Discovery Begins Sea Trials, Starts Journey to Dover
Saga Cruises' Spirit of Discovery Begins Sea Trials, Starts Journey to Dover
Ship Spotting Update: Cruising for a Restart
Saga Cruises' new ship, Spirit of Discovery, at the shipyard. (Photo: Saga Cruises)

Ship Spotting Update: Cruising for a Restart

Ship Spotting Update: Cruising for a Restart
Saga Cruises' new ship, Spirit of Discovery, at the shipyard. (Photo: Saga Cruises)

June 17, 2021

Aaron Saunders
News and Features Editor
  • Facebook
  • Pinterest
  • Twitter

(3:30 p.m. EDT) -- As cruise lines begin to restart around the world for the Summer 2021 season, excitement is in the air as ships start repositioning to their eventual homeports. Even this simple act -- one that would have gone largely unnoticed in the pre-pandemic era -- is cause for a frisson in the digital air aboard Cruise Critic's message boards.

Here are a few noteworthy ship movements this week that are giving cruisers around the world reason to hope for a summer of sailing the seven seas this year.

Serenade of the Seas Heads to Seattle

Serenade of the Seas TA Listings Page Image

Eagle-eyed Cruise Critic members spotted Royal Caribbean's 2003-built Serenade of the Seas pulling up anchor and heading for the Pacific Ocean this week. The Radiance Class ship is destined for Seattle, and is currently at anchor off the Panama Canal, awaiting transit.

Featured Videos

Wonder of the Seas Construction Update: Sea Trials

Wonder of the Seas Construction Update: Sea Trials

Wonder of the Seas Completes Sea Trials

Wonder of the Seas Completes Sea Trials

Here's What It's Like Onboard the First Large Cruise Ship to Alaska in 21 Months

Here's What It's Like Onboard the First Large Cruise Ship to Alaska in 21 Months

Perfect Day at CocoCay: Here's How We Spent 2 DAYS at Royal Caribbean's Private Island

Perfect Day at CocoCay: Here's How We Spent 2 DAYS at Royal Caribbean's Private Island

Freedom of the Seas: What's It Like Onboard a Test Cruise? (Cruise Critic & Royal Caribbean Blog

Freedom of the Seas: What's It Like Onboard a Test Cruise? (Cruise Critic & Royal Caribbean Blog

Live From Adventure of the Seas: What's the Same, What's Different and What's Better?

Live From Adventure of the Seas: What's the Same, What's Different and What's Better?

Here's What We Packed For Our Royal Caribbean Cruise (June 2021)

Here's What We Packed For Our Royal Caribbean Cruise (June 2021)

Celebrity to Restart from U.S. Homeport, PLUS Royal Caribbean Given Green Light for Test Cruises!

Celebrity to Restart from U.S. Homeport, PLUS Royal Caribbean Given Green Light for Test Cruises!

Odyssey of the Seas -- From Steel Cutting to Delivery 2021

Odyssey of the Seas -- From Steel Cutting to Delivery 2021

Video Of Odyssey Of The Seas Conveyance March 2021

Video Of Odyssey Of The Seas Conveyance March 2021

Royal Caribbean Group Announces E-muster, Keyless Cabin Check-in And Other App Improvements

Royal Caribbean Group Announces E-muster, Keyless Cabin Check-in And Other App Improvements

Royal Caribbean Odyssey Of The Seas Steel Cutting At Meyer Werft

Royal Caribbean Odyssey Of The Seas Steel Cutting At Meyer Werft

Shipyard Tour: Royal Caribbean’s Symphony Of The Seas Gets Its Finishing Touches -- Video

Shipyard Tour: Royal Caribbean’s Symphony Of The Seas Gets Its Finishing Touches -- Video

Harmony Of The Seas Video Tour – Inside Look At One Of Royal Caribbean’s Most Popular Cruise Ships

Harmony Of The Seas Video Tour – Inside Look At One Of Royal Caribbean’s Most Popular Cruise Ships

Symphony Of The Seas Video Tour

Symphony Of The Seas Video Tour

Royal Caribbean’s Spectrum Of The Seas Celebrates Keel Laying

Royal Caribbean’s Spectrum Of The Seas Celebrates Keel Laying

Sea Beyond: An Innovative Cruise Experience By Royal Caribbean

Sea Beyond: An Innovative Cruise Experience By Royal Caribbean

Sneak Peak At Symphony Of The Seas

Sneak Peak At Symphony Of The Seas

What’s Your Size? Royal Caribbean's Oasis Class Vs. Majesty Of The Seas - Video

What’s Your Size? Royal Caribbean's Oasis Class Vs. Majesty Of The Seas - Video

Royal Caribbean's Oasis Of The Seas Photo Tour

Royal Caribbean's Oasis Of The Seas Photo Tour

Spectrum Of The Seas Steel Cutting At Meyer Werft

Spectrum Of The Seas Steel Cutting At Meyer Werft

Royal Caribbean's Enchantment Of The Seas Highlights

Royal Caribbean's Enchantment Of The Seas Highlights

Photo Tour of Regal Princess

Photo Tour of Regal Princess

Harvest Caye Cruise Port Video Tour

Harvest Caye Cruise Port Video Tour

Carnival Corporation Introduces the Ocean Medallion at CES

Carnival Corporation Introduces the Ocean Medallion at CES

Photo Tour of Royal Caribbean's Allure Of The Seas

Photo Tour of Royal Caribbean's Allure Of The Seas

What It Means To Be Loyal To Royal

What It Means To Be Loyal To Royal

7 Can’t-Miss Experiences on Allure Of The Seas

7 Can’t-Miss Experiences on Allure Of The Seas

Video Tour of Allure Of The Seas' Bars

Video Tour of Allure Of The Seas' Bars

Harmony Of The Seas Youth Place

Harmony Of The Seas Youth Place

Harmony Of The Seas Pool And Sports Zone

Harmony Of The Seas Pool And Sports Zone

Harmony Of The Seas Central Park On Royal Caribbean International

Harmony Of The Seas Central Park On Royal Caribbean International

Harmony Of The Seas Boardwalk

Harmony Of The Seas Boardwalk

Harmony Of The Seas Royal Promenade

Harmony Of The Seas Royal Promenade

Harmony Of The Seas Entertainment Place

Harmony Of The Seas Entertainment Place

Harmony Of The Seas Vitality Spa And Fitness Center

Harmony Of The Seas Vitality Spa And Fitness Center

Perfect Storm Water Slides On Harmony Of The Seas

Perfect Storm Water Slides On Harmony Of The Seas

Cruise Critic Tours Harmony Of The Seas

Cruise Critic Tours Harmony Of The Seas

Harmony Of The Seas Cabins - Video Tour - Cruise Critic

Harmony Of The Seas Cabins - Video Tour - Cruise Critic

Cruise Critic Tours Harmony Of The Seas

Cruise Critic Tours Harmony Of The Seas

Greased Lightnin': Royal Caribbean Brings Another Broadway Hit

Greased Lightnin': Royal Caribbean Brings Another Broadway Hit

Plunging Into Adventure On The Tallest Slide At Sea: Royal Caribbean Reveals 10-Story Ultimate Abyss

Plunging Into Adventure On The Tallest Slide At Sea: Royal Caribbean Reveals 10-Story Ultimate Abyss

Cruise Critic Flowrider On Royal Caribbean's Freedom Of The Seas

Cruise Critic Flowrider On Royal Caribbean's Freedom Of The Seas

Cruise Critic Tours Anthem of the Seas

Cruise Critic Tours Anthem of the Seas

Anthem Of The Seas Welcomes Gigi The Giraffe

Anthem Of The Seas Welcomes Gigi The Giraffe

Gavin Macleod - Capt. Stubing On "The Love Boat" -- Cruise Critic Interview (2013)

Gavin Macleod - Capt. Stubing On "The Love Boat" -- Cruise Critic Interview (2013)

Oasis Of The Seas Flowrider - Cruise Critic Goes Surfing

Oasis Of The Seas Flowrider - Cruise Critic Goes Surfing

Oasis Of The Seas Royal Promenade (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Royal Promenade (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Jazz On 4 Performance

Oasis Of The Seas Jazz On 4 Performance

Oasis Of The Seas Royal Promenade Parade (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Royal Promenade Parade (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Carousel In Action (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Carousel In Action (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Ship Tour -- Main Dining Room (2009)

Oasis Of The Seas Ship Tour -- Main Dining Room (2009)

Serenade of the Seas enters service from Seattle to Alaska on July 17, becoming the first big-ship to return to the region since the fall of 2019 -- and cruisers are excited.

"Next stop: Colon, Panama," writes tree_skier. "Seattle WA here we come!"

"Awesome news!!" writes allieic95. "Can't wait. We are booked on Serenade's second sailing."

"We aren't even sailing on Serenade until next summer, but this still is exciting to see! Any step towards cruising is a good thing in my eyes!" writes erinsmom03.

Saga Embarks on Sea Trials

Saga Cruises' new ship, Spirit of Discovery, at the shipyard. (Photo: Saga Cruises)

On the other side of the world, UK-based Saga was readying its own fleet for re-entry into service, performing sea trials aboard Spirit of Discovery off the coast of England.

Under the command of Captain Darin Bowland (of ex-Holland America Line and Royal Caribbean fame), Spirit of Discovery is operating a six-day technical shakedown cruise in advance of its first departure with passengers on June 27.

As Captain Bowland explains on his blog on Saga's website, the voyage is designed to ensure Spirit of Discovery is ready for its first passengers to embark -- and its first true sailing -- in 15 months.

"A long layup period is not optimal for a ship like Discovery and now it’s time to get the ship operational again," writes Captain Bowland. "A 4-hour transit down the famous River Thames and then we will exercise the ship in a designated area, away from other traffic."

Spirit of Discovery returns to service for fully vaccinated UK residents this month. Sister-ship Spirit of Adventure -- which never officially entered passenger service owing to the coronavirus pandemic -- follows shortly thereafter.

Regal Princess Arrives in Southampton

Regal Princess (Photo: Princess Cruises)

Residents on England's south coast seem to be having all the fun this week, with new ships arriving into Southampton to prepare for their return to service on domestic UK cruises for local residents.

This week's noteworthy arrival into Southampton was Regal Princess. Princess Cruises' second Royal Class ship sailed up the Solent and into the historic port city this week, coming alongside Carnival's Ocean Terminal in the morning hours.

The ship will sail in and out of Southampton -- and come alongside at various terminals in the city -- until its first revenue cruise with passengers, set to depart on July 31, 2021. The ship will perform a series of 14 voyages for UK passengers, and will range from three to seven nights in duration.

"She docked this morning, I am beyond excited, just 46 days until our section cruise on her," writes windsurferfirst.

"Not sailing until 1st September, but nice to know she’s arrived safely," writes favouriteplaces.

Regal Princess fans who aren't even booked on these initial UK sailings were glad to see the ship preparing to re-enter active service.

"We just booked for April to the Mediterranean and it’s nice to see her coming back online," writes jimbob70.

How was this article?

Featured News

1
Silversea Cruises Debuts Full-Ship Spa Program Otium: Exclusive First Look
5
Viking to Launch New Oceangoing Cruise Ship, Viking Saturn, In 2023
Want to cruise smarter?
Get expert advice, insider tips and more.
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.