The very first Royal Caribbean vessel to ever grace Australian waters will soon depart on her final voyage out of Queensland. The Legend of the Seas has been part of the Royal Caribbean fleet for 21 years and was offering cruises from Brisbane for the past two seasons, but the venerable vessel will bid farewell to the rest of the fleet on the 20th of February and set sail for Singapore on her way to a new home with Thomson Cruises in the UK.
â€œLegend of the Seas was the first Royal Caribbean ship to ever visit Australia back in 1999, and it is with great sadness we must bid a fond farewell to this Aussie favourite. More than 50,000 Australians have experienced Royal Caribbean's international style of cruising and world-class service onboard Legend these past two years, and we are honoured to be part of her farewell tour,â€ said Adam Armstrong, managing director, Royal Caribbean Australia & NZ.
The Legend was the inaugural ship in the Vision Class - a class of vessel that boasted more glass windows than any other ship at the time, offering cruisers sweeping ocean views. Vision Class vessels also earned the moniker â€˜global roamers' due to their speed and size.
The Legend of the Seas provided a unique opportunity for Queenslanders, as the 70,000 ton ship is the only vessel in the Royal Caribbean fleet capable of making its way up the Brisbane River and docking at Portside Wharf. However, in spite of the Legend's looming absence there's good news on the horizon for Queensland cruisers.
Armstrong said of the state's future cruising prospects, â€œThis is not the end of Royal Caribbean cruising in Queensland. Although we will no longer have a ship home-ported, we will continue to cruise to the sunshine state with Voyager of the Seas, Explorer of the Seas, Radiance of the Seas and Australia's newest and biggest ship Ovation of the Seas, scheduled to make multiple calls this season. Looking ahead, we can't wait to base another ship in Brisbane once the new terminal at Luggage Point is complete.â€
In the meantime, a quick trip down to Sydney may be in order to take advantage of the enticing itineraries that Royal Caribbean is offering via the other Australia-based ships in its fleet.
Whether you're hunting for a tropical South Pacific holiday, a taste of the lush beauty of New Zealand, a journey up past the Great Barrier Reef and on to Southeast Asia, or simply cruises along the Aussie coastline, Royal Caribbean has a voyage that's perfect for you.
If you have fond cruising memories of your time aboard the Legend of the Seas, we'd love to hear your stories and recollections in the comments below.