Building a Cruise Ship

Today we went to explore cruise ships, the big ones. At the river Ems in the Northwest of Germany lies one of the biggest shipyards for these kinds of ships. We were curious to see how these huge ships are built.

The Meyer Werft is one of the major German shipyards, headquartered in Papenburg. Founded in 1795 and starting with small wooden vessels, today Meyer Werft is a builder of luxury passenger ships. 700 ships of different types have been built at the yard. Meyer Werft has been owned and managed by the Meyer family for seven generations!

To give you a perspective: the letters are 7 metres high!
The “Dockhalle 2” is the third-largest shipbuilding hall and the building with the fifth-largest usable space in the world. Together with “Dockhalle 1” there is indoor space to build 3 ships at the same time. One ship needs about 3 years of construction before it is finished.
The shipyard works in 3 shifts and is a big employer in this area
Corona procedures
At the moment there are no guided tours to avoid groups …
… but a couple of videos give a good introduction
Projects for the future
Showing the map of the pipe network inside the ship ..
Construction uses of course the latest technologies
Workers of different professions explain their job
Cruise companies all over the world have their ships built here
Huge shipyard hall where the giants are assembled 
Blocks of 4 floors and 40 metres width are pre-assembled (in the front) and then added to the ship (in the back). At the moment the 348 metres long “Odyssey of the Sea” is built for Royal Caribbean International in this hall which will have space for 4200 passengers.
The third ship under construction at the second hall

Due to its upstream location on the river Ems, the giant ships to be delivered have to make a 36 km voyage to the Dollart bay, which attracts thousands of spectators each time. Until the completion of the Ems river barrier in 2002, the journey was only possible at high tides. Every bridge is a challenge, leaving only a small gap at each side. As it is easier to navigate a ship like this backwards, that’s how it travels down the river.


The 140m long swimming part of the “AIDAcosma”, currently under construction at the pier, will be brought back to the hall as soon as the “Odyssey of the Seas” leaves the dock. The nose with 30% of the total length is already assembled in the hall and will then be added.

Finished cruise ship starting its way down the river

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