The amazing P&O and Cunard cruise ships leaving Southampton including Britannia and Queen Mary 2

A number of luxury cruise liners are listed in the Port of Southampton this week. For all the boat-watching enthusiasts, we’ve listed when they’re ready to go below.

Hardly a day goes by without an incredible ship being sighted in the ports of Southampton and Portsmouth. From the Royal Navy’s HMS Queen Elizabeth to Virgin Voyages’ Valiant Lady, it’s undeniable that the best of the best can be seen in our county.

As summer approaches, the days will get longer and longer. While for some this may mean great evening walks, for others it means a better chance of spotting some amazing ships in the Solent.

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This week there will be at least six amazing cruise ships arriving and departing from Southampton to take passengers on vacations to remember. From P&O Cruises to Cunard, a number of operators often send their top ships to the Hampshire town.

Expected sailing movements at Southampton are published in advance – although they are subject to change. HampshireLive reviewed shipping movements this week, and the following ships will arrive or depart this week.


All Ventura fans will be delighted to hear that she will be at Southampton twice this week. She will leave town on Tuesday (May 3) at 5 p.m. for Amsterdam, but is due back on Saturday (May 7).

Part of the P&O Cruises fleet, Ventura can often be spotted in the Solent as she regularly visits the town. She began service in April 2008 and was built by Fincantieri at their shipyard in Monfalcone, Italy.

It has a capacity of 3,078 guests and 1,205 crew members, measures 291.40 m, 116,017 tons and has 14 guest decks. She is due to arrive in Southampton on Thursday October 14 and is expected to depart the same day.


Britannia, a P&O cruise liner, will depart on Tuesday May 3. The luxury cruise liner sets sail for Funchal in Madeira.

Britannia was appointed by Her Majesty The Queen and entered service in March 2015. She is 330m, 143,000 tonnes and has 13 guest decks.


Owned and operated by Fred Olsen Cruise Lines, Bolette is the fourth and final ship in the Rotterdam class. It can travel at high speed, has an elegant interior and has 690 cabins.

According to maritime movements, she will arrive on Wednesday (May 4) and leave the same day at 5.30 p.m.


Aurora is P&O Cruise’s smallest ship – but that doesn’t make it any less impressive. She will leave Thursday (May 5) at 5 p.m.

At the heart of the ship is an atrium that spans four decks and features a 35-foot sculpture designed by artist John Mills. Aurora has a normal operating capacity of 1,874 guests and 850 crew – it’s an adults-only cruise liner. She entered service in April 2000, is 270 m long, weighs 76,152 tons and has nine guest decks.


P&O’s newest cruise ship will also be in Southampton this weekend. Iona is due to arrive in Southampton on Saturday May 7 and is expected to depart the same day.

This cruise ship was built in 2020 and can accommodate 5,200 guests, plus 1,800 crew. She measures at 344 m, 184,700 tons and has a total of 15 guest decks.

Queen Mary 2

Cunard’s flagship liner, the Queen Mary 2, is due to leave Southampton this week. It is 1,132 feet long and can accommodate 2,691 guests, plus 1,250 crew.

On board are a luxurious spa, exciting entertainment venues and an extensive library. There are also 15 restaurants and bars, five swimming pools, a casino, a ballroom, a theater and even a planetarium.

According to maritime movements, she will arrive and depart on Sunday (May 8). The timetables have not yet been communicated.

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