Papenburg Travel Blog› entry 1 of 1 › view all entries
September 15th, 2007 – by: aloneinthecrowd
The Meyer Werft has been a family-owned company in the sixth generation, with Bernard Meyer at the wheel since 1982. For more than 213 years the shipyard has endeavoured to keep on developing and to be in line with the state-of-the-art. The shipyard is building cruise liners for customers from all over the world like Norwegian Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruise Line, Carnival Cruise Line (AIDA), Star Cruises, Royal Caribbean Cruise Line and the newest Disney Cruise Line. The new cruise ship for Disney, the "Disney Dream", will leave the yard in early 2011. But first "AIDABlu" and "Celebrity Eclipse" will be delivered in spring 2010.
The conveyance of a cruise ship is always a special event in Papenburg. If you look at the map you'll see that Papenburg is located about 100 km inland and all cruise ships must travel through the river Ems to reach the open sea. Thousands of people take place at this event and so did I on September 15, 2007 when the "Norwegian Gem" left Papenburg for its travels around the world.
A dear friend of mine visited me and she never saw a conveyance before and we grapped our bikes to watch the spectacle. You must know that the river Ems is not very deep (pump dredger keep the fairway free of mud) and it's difficult to navigate the huge ship through such a small river. The chance that the ship will stuck in the river is great. We'll have a huge hotel in the river then ;)
I give you some details about the ship, so you can imagine how huge it is. Length: 295 m, Breadth: 33 m, Draught: 8 m, Travel speed: 25 knots, Tonnage: 93,502 gt, Passengers: 2,394, Crew: 1,154.
We found a place at the banks of the river with a view on the ship yard. We could see the ship turning around in the port and leaving it backwards. Driving backwards makes it easier because the new engine technology brings more water under the keel. I'm not a technician, so don't ask me how - lol.
It's very touching when a ship of this size leaves the yard. Thousands of people worked on it for more than a year and it became part of their daily lifes. Better I let the photos tell the story ;)
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