Royal Caribbean's Odyssey of the Seas begins inaugural sailing

31 Jul 2021
Matt Hochberg

At long last, Royal Caribbean's newest cruise ship has begun cruises with passengers onboard.

Odyssey of the Seas is set to depart Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on Saturday to begin her first revenue sailing. 

The 16-deck-high, 1,138-foot-long ship is one of the largest ships in the world, and can accommodate 4,180 passengers.

The cruise industry shutdown greatly impacted Odyssey's timeline for debut, having been delayed in the construction yard and two different inaugural seasons cancelled in Europe.


Nonetheless, Odyssey of the Seas has begun her first sailing and is yet another Royal Caribbean ship that has been able to start up operations this summer.

The new ship sailed a test cruise on July 19 to gain approval by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

Odyssey of the Seas is the second Quantum Ultra Class ship, which is essentially a stretched and enhanced version of the original Quantum Class ships.


While she may not be as large as the Oasis Class ships, she is still packed with plenty for families and guests of all ages to enjoy, including multiple pool areas, an aqua park for kids, sky-diving simulator, surfing simulator, and even bumper cars.

Cabins onboard range from studio staterooms fit for a single traveler to spacious loft suites that span two decks.

Odyssey is the first Quantum Ultra Class ship to cruise from the U.S., which features SeaPlex - the largest indoor and outdoor activity complex at sea - and a vibrant, Caribbean-inspired pool deck.


Just like all Quantum Class ships, Odyssey has four signature activities on its top deck: North Star observational pod, the Ripcord by iFly sky diving simulator, FlowRider surf simulator, and Skypad virtual bungee trampoline experience.

Other fun activities and things to do on Odyssey include:

  • Caribbean-inspired pool deck– Sporting a whole new look across two decks, Odyssey’s two open-air pools, four whirlpools and Splashaway Bay, anchored by a Quantum Ultra Class first – The Lime & Coconut bar – are designed for all travelers to enjoy the sun and stars in style.  
  • SeaPlex – The next-generation of a longtime Quantum Class favorite, this SeaPlex is the largest indoor and outdoor activity center at sea, and debuts this venue’s first Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade.
  • Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar and Teppanyaki – Two Royal Caribbean restaurants new to North America join the varied lineup of dining options on board. The fresh take on the cruise line’s signature trattoria is the first to introduce its new wine bar concept while the other serves up East Asian flavors in the traditional Japanese style for which its named.
  • One-of-a-kind entertainment – In typical Royal Caribbean fashion, Odyssey’s full-scale productions take top billing in teched-out venues such as the Royal Theater and Two70, where immersive technology, unparalleled special effects and world-leading performers and aerialists take the stage alongside six agile Roboscreens for a multidimensional live show.

Odyssey will sail 6- and 8-night Southern and Western Caribbean cruises from Fort Lauderdale.  

Royal Caribbean had originally scheduled Odyssey of the Seas to begin sailings in 2020, but the global health crisis forced that debut to be delayed by a year.

Subsequently, her inaugural season from Rome was cancelled, and instead scheduled to sail from Israel this summer.  Violence in the region forced Royal Caribbean to cancel her entire summer season and the ship was re-scheduled to start sailings from Fort Lauderdale.


More Odyssey of the Seas information

Matt started Royal Caribbean Blog in 2010 as a place to share his passion for all things Royal Caribbean with readers. He oversees all the writers at Royal Caribbean Blog, and writes a great deal of content on a daily basis.  He has become one of the foremost experts on a Royal Caribbean cruise.

Over the years, he has reached Pinnacle Club status with Royal Caribbean's customer loyalty program.

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