Cruise Line to Sail Through Path Of Solar Eclipse in 2026

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If you missed the solar eclipse on Monday, April 8, 2024, do not fret. You’ll get another opportunity in 2026, and three of Cunard Line’s four ships will be in prime positions for watching the solar event unfold. 

See The 2026 Eclipse From A Cunard Cruise Ship

On Wednesday, August 12, 2026, the world will be treated to another solar eclipse. While Monday’s celestial event was visible throughout the United States, Mexico, and Canada, the path of totality for the eclipse in 2026 will be through Greenland, Iceland, Spain, Russia, and Portugal. 

Stargazers will be excited to learn that three of Cundard’s ships – Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria, and Queen Anne – will be sailing along the path of totality in 2026. Those onboard will get the rare opportunity to witness the solar event from the open ocean, with no buildings or landscapes to obscure views. 

“Cunard is thrilled to offer three remarkable voyages positioned along the path of the 2026 eclipse – two in the Mediterranean and one in Iceland – which will give guests the chance to witness this extraordinary phenomenon from the water, an unforgettable moment observed from the luxurious vantage point of our Queens,” said Katie McAlister, president of Cunard.

The first voyage to embark will be a 14-night transatlantic crossing that sails through Norway and Iceland on Queen Mary 2, the cruise line’s flagship Queen. The 2,691-passenger vessel will embark from Southampton, England, August 4, 2026 – calling on Zeebrugge (Bruges), Belgium; Olden, Norway; Skjolden, Norway; Isafjord, Iceland; and Reykjavik, Iceland, before concluding in New York City on August 18, 2026.

Cunard's Queen Mary 2 Ship
Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 Ship

Next to embark is a 7-night sailing onboard Queen Anne, a 3,000-passenger vessel that will officially enter service on May 3, 2024. The 113,000-gross ton ship will explore Spain and France via a round-trip sailing from Southampton, England, beginning on August 9, 2026. The itinerary calls for stops at Santander, Spain; La Coruna, Spain; Gijon, Spain; and Bordeaux, France. 

Last but not least, Queen Victoria will set sail on a one-way Mediterranean cruise from Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy, to Barcelona, Spain, on August 10, 2026. Over the course of the 7-night voyage, the 2,061-guest ship will call on Tarragona, Spain; Palma De Mallorca, Spain; Villefranche (Nice), France; and Toulon, France.

A Solar Celebration At Sea

While Cunard Line has yet not announced what activities and treats it will offer to celebrate on its Solar Eclipse sailings, the cruise line will certainly make it an experience its passengers won’t soon forget. The UK-based cruise line will likely follow the example set by other cruise lines that went out of their way to commemorate the eclipse on April 8, such as by distributing viewing glasses and hosting themed activities.

For example, Princess Cruises’ Emerald Princess is currently sailing on a 15-night Panama Canal cruise, which embarked from Los Angeles, California, on April 5, 2024. The 3,080 guest-ship sailed through the path of totality and celebrated by bringing experts onboard to talk about the solar phenomena.

Eclipse Glasses
Eclipse Glasses (Photo Credit: Fabian Montano Hernandez / Shutterstock)

Fred Cink, a retired army, naval aviator, and astronomy expert, gave educational lectures about the eclipse, narrated during the eclipse, and led stargazing sessions in the days leading up to the eclipse. 

Read Also: West End Theater Production Debuting on Cunard’s Newest Ship

Of course, the solar eclipse was the main event. The cruise line distributed viewing glasses for eye safety, as well as themed cookies and desserts, and even had a specialty cocktail for guests 21 and older. Later, guests were able to watch a replay of the eclipse on the ship’s giant “Movies Under The Stars” screens and in their staterooms, as well as celebrate as a themed Zodiac party. 

Similar events were hosted on Discovery Princess, as well as on Holland America’s Koningsdam and Zaandamall of which are owned by Carnival Corporation and were sailing in the path of the eclipse. 

Holland America crew members onboard Koningsdam even went live on Facebook for almost an hour to share what a total eclipse looks like at sea. 

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