Marella Cruise Ships - Meet the Fleet

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Marella cruise ships started their life with Thomson, who first entered the cruise market in 1973. However, due to rising overheads, they decided to end their venture in 1976. Almost 20 years later, Thomson restarted its cruise operations, becoming TUI cruises, before re-branding as ‘Marella Cruises,’ in October 2017.

Older ships like the Spirit, the Majesty, the Dream and the Celebration were eventually retired. This made way for a new generation of Marella cruise ships.

In this post, we introduce the current fleet of Marella cruise ships, which have a total of 5 ships.

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Marella Discovery & Marella Discovery 2 Facts and Figures

Marella Discovery started its life as Royal Caribbean’s Splendour of the Seas and first entered service in 1996. She transitioned to TUI Discovery in June 2016, then to Marella Discovery after the Marella cruise ships rebrand in October 2017.

Marella Discovery 2 started her life as Royal Caribbean’s Legends of the Seas and entered service in 1995. She was named TUI Discovery 2 in early 2017, and then Marella Discovery 2 after the rebrand in October 2017.

The Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France, built these ships. They weigh over 69,000 gross tonnes, are 264 meters long, 32 meters wide, and stand 50 meters high. Power comes courtesy of 5 V12 engines that produce an impressive 15700 horsepower per engine. She has 11 decks and can carry 2076 passengers with a crew of 750.


Marella Discovery Cruise ship Norway videos

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Marella Discovery & Marella Discovery 2 Facilities

Marella Discovery & Marella Discovery 2 are nearly identical sister ships. They feature indoor and outdoor swimming pools, an 800-seat theatre for West End-style shows, a 9-hole mini golf course, and a rock-climbing wall.

Dining options:

On board, there are 8 dining venues including the main dining room 47°, Gallery 47° Italian restaurant, and The Glass House, serving as a deli by day and a tapas bar by night. The Islands buffet offers meals from breakfast to late-night snacks. The poolside Snack Shack serves traditional British fare like fish and chips, burgers, and hot dogs—all included in your cruise fare.

Surf & Turf has a cover charge and specialises in steak and fish. Kora La serves Asian fusion, and The Sushi Bar offers spicy tuna rolls, sashimi, nigiri, and Asian beers.

The ship boasts 8 dining and 7 drinking venues, including the Squid and Anchor, with its specialty Gin and Whisky bar. Entertainment options include a small casino, piano lounge, and an escape room. The stunning 5-story atrium is a highlight and our favorite spot on both Discovery ships

We have cruised on both of these Marella cruise ships, so do check out more information about Marella Discovery and Marella Discovery 2 here.

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Marella Explorer & Marella Explorer 2 Facts and Figures

Marella Explorer began as MV Galaxy, a Century class ship, launched on December 21, 1996. Renamed Celebrity Galaxy in 2008, she later joined TUI cruises in May 2009 as Mein Schiff, meaning My Ship in English. Sailing under the Mein Schiff name until 2018 when she became Marella Explorer.

As with the Discovery ships, Marella Explorer 2 is actually slightly older than Marella Explorer. Starting out life as MV Century in 1995, before becoming Celebrity Century in 2007. An 8-year run came to an end when she became SkySea Golden Era. A joint venture between Royal Caribbean cruise line and Chinese travel firm Ctrip. This partnership lasted for 4 years before becoming Marella Explorer 2 in 2019.

Marella Explorer and Marella Explorer 2 were both constructed in Papenburg, Germany by the Meyer Werft shipyard. As with the Discovery ships, Marella Explorer & Marella Explorer 2 share lots of the same features. Despite being 50 feet shorter and slightly narrower, Marella Explorer 2 is 5000 gross tonnes lighter. It has 3 fewer decks and accommodates 1814 passengers, 110 fewer than Marella Explorer.

Power comes courtesy of 2 MAN 6 cylinder diesel engines and 2 MAN 8 cylinder diesel engines, that provide around 30000 KW of power to its twin propellers.

marella explorer 2

Marella Explorer & Marella Explorer 2 Facilities

Marella Explorer and Marella Explorer 2 share similar entertainment options like nightly shows in the Broadway lounge and live music at Squid and Anchor pub. Indigo bar doubles as a club and casino.

Both ships feature a well-equipped gym, jogging track, mini golf, table tennis, and indoor and outdoor swimming pools.

Dining options:

Dining venues include the main dining room Latitude 53, the Market Place buffet, Vista, Snack Shack. Plus chargeable restaurants, Kora La Asian fusion, Surf and Turf and the Dining Club.

Marella Explorer offers tapas @theMediterranean and Italian @TheMediterranean for lunch and dinner, included in your fare. Umi Sushi serves sushi and Asian dishes for an extra cost.

Marella Explorer 2 also has Nonna’s (Grandma’s) An Italian-themed build-your-own pizza and pasta restaurant, included in your fare. The Beach Cove is included for lunch but has a cover charge for dinner, offering BBQ-inspired dining by the beach. Booking is advisable.

Main differences:

The main difference is that Marella Explorer 2 is adults-only. Unlike Marella Explorer’s Hideout and M Club for kids and teens, Marella Explorer 2 features the 19th Hole, a golf-themed lounge with golf simulators included in your fare. We are sure you will agree that the Marella Explorer sisters really do have something for everyone.

We have also cruised on Marella Explorer 2, and you can more information here.

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Marella Voyager Facts and Figures

Marella Voyager, like Marella Explorer and Marella Explorer 2, is a Century class ship from Papenburg, Germany’s Meyer Werft shipyard. However, that’s where the similarities pretty much end.

Marella Voyager started life as MV Mercury in 1997 and became Celebrity Mercury in 2008. In 2011, she joined the TUI family as Mein Schiff 2, before being renamed Mein Schiff Herz in 2019. Then, in 2023, she became Marella Voyager in 2023under Marella cruise ships.

Marella Voyager weighs over 77,000 gross tonnes and measures 866 feet (264 meters) long and 105 feet (32 meters) wide. It reaches 21.5 knots (24.7 MPH) with MAN B&W engines generating 42,000+ horsepower. There are 13 decks, which can carry 1912 passengers, based on normal occupancy.

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Marella Voyager Facilties

Marella Voyager stands out within the fleet but retains its Marella identity.

Dining options:

New dining options include The Kitchens, a buffet with 8 cuisines, including Indian, Chinese, and Greek. And Abuela’s, which offers Mexican cuisine for lunch and dinner. Platter is a pay-as-you-order tapas venue, open from 3pm to 8pm. And Silver Fork will tempt you with British classics like fish and chips! Returning favourites include; Nonna’s pizza, Latitude 53 and Vista main dining rooms, and the poolside bar, Snack Shack. Specialty restaurants like Kora La and Surf and Turf do have a cover charge. There are a number of bars, including, Squid and Anchor, Flutes, and the Broadway show lounge.

The new Summer House features live entertainment under a retractable roof. And The Arts House hosts arts, crafts, and live entertainment. The Electric Room offers morning yoga and late-night music, including a disco! The Exchange, hidden behind British telephone boxes, requires a secret code, which we think is pretty cool.

We were on Marella Voyager for the maiden cruise and had a fabulous time. Do check out our vlog seriesMarella Voyager Complete Dining Guide and cruise ship review!


As Marella cruise ships continue to evolve, the current fleet is a testament to Marella’s commitment to providing exceptional cruises. Whether you’re seeking family-friendly adventures, or adult-only retreats, Marella cruise ships promise a trip filled with unforgettable memories.

Whichever ship or venue you choose we are sure you will have a fabulous time!


Relevant posts –

Marella Cruises – All Your Frequently Asked Questions Answered

Marella Cruises Dress Codes


Book Your Next All Inclusive Marella Cruise Here

Marella Cruises Book your cruise now


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