By Mike Coleman
When executives at Cunard Line promise you the world, they mean it. Â¨Â¨The company is sending its two liners – Queen Mary 2 (QM2) and her sistership Queen Elizabeth 2 (QE2) – on simultaneous world voyages in 2007, each with a different itinerary.
QM2, the largest, longest, tallest, widest and most expensive passenger liner ever built, will be embarking on her first world cruise in 2007 while the QE2, arguably the most famous and fastest passenger liner in the world, will be circumnavigating the world for her 25th time.
The Queen Mary 2 World Cruise will visit the world’s major cities and capitals. The QE2 Silver Jubilee World Cruise will visit many of the world’s most famous cities, plus smaller destinations.
Both ships will actually meet during their respective journeys. A Meeting of the Queens will take place in Fort Lauderdale, Jan. 10, 2007, and in Sydney Harbor, Feb. 20, 2007. It will be the first time two Cunard Queens have been in Sydney simultaneously since Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth regularly met there in 1941 and 1942 as part of their wartime duties.
QM2 is scheduled to depart Fort Lauderdale Jan. 10, 2007 and is expected to call on 17 countries. From Fort Lauderdale she will circle South America before making maiden calls in San Francisco, Auckland, Sydney, Hong Kong, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Cochin, Dubai and Alexandria. QM2 will arrive in her homeport of Southampton, March 26, before sailing back to Fort Lauderdale.
The most experienced world voyager afloat, QE2 meanwhile is expected to depart Southampton Jan. 2 and return on April 21. The voyage will include 40 ports in 25 countries – a mix of famous cities and interesting islands including New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Hawaii, Tahiti, Auckland, Wellington, Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Papua New Guinea, Yokohama, Osaka, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, India, the Seychelles, Durban and Cape Town. Overnight calls will be made at Sydney, Hong Kong, Bangkok and Cape Town.
Complete itineraries and fares will be announced by Cunard soon.
The year 2007 will mark the 85th anniversary of the first world cruise, in 1922-1923, by Cunard’s Laconia.