The largest every cruise ship built for MSC Cruises hast started sea trials today, one of the last major milestones before its maiden voyage.

MSC Meraviglia is currently in the final fitting out phase at the STX France shipyard in St. Nazaire, France. Today, the largest ever vessel built for the cruise line began sea trials off the West coast of France and marks one of the last major hurdles before entering service.

The first Meraviglia-class ship started preparing for its first outing at sea under darkness in the early hours of Thursday morning. Around 7:30 AM the ship then departed the STX France shipyard out to see where some very important testing will take place for four days.

MSC Meraviglia Preparing To Depart Shipyard:

During the Sea trials, the vessel will make sure it is seaworthy and ready for regular service. This would include several maneuvers to make sure the ship can handle itself in all types of conditions. As part of the trials, many technical aspects will be looked at including the propulsion systems. MSC Meraviglia will no doubt test its highest speed out at sea. If all is good the ship will be given the green light for delivery to MSC Cruises.

MSC Meraviglia will finally enter service in June 2017 and will be the biggest and most advanced ship ever built for the cruise to date. At 167,600 tons the ship will spend its inaugural season sailing the Mediterranean and carrying a maximum of 5,700 guests. A second ship in the class named MSC Bellissima will be arriving in 2019.

Take a look at what MSC Meraviglia looks like in this stunning rendering video.