map and disney wish cruise ship
Credit: Cruise Mapper/The Orlando Sentinel/Canva Creation

Disney Wish sails to North Sea to begin seafaring trials

Disney Cruise Line’s newest ship is finally sailing–with the help of two tugboats that are working hard to guide her all the way to the open sea.

Disney Cruise Line Disney Wish

Credit: Disney

The last time a Disney Cruise Line ship made the 20-mile trip down the Ems River toward the North Sea, it was 2012. Yesterday, the Ems River saw Mickey ears once again as the Disney Wish left her birthplace at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, to begin her slow and tedious journey toward the open sea for the first time.

disney wish location on ems river

Credit: CruiseMapper

Disney Cruise Line has a contract with German shipbuilder Meyer Werft, which has built every member of the Disney Cruise Line fleet so far. The shipbuilder is also under contract for two more Disney Triton-class ships to be built in 2024 and 2025, respectively.

disney wish leaves meyer werft shipyard

Credit: The Orlando Sentinel

The Meyer Werft shipyard is located considerably inland. Its location was chosen in 1795 because it offered ships a safe haven from the notoriously angry and stormy North Sea, just 20 miles downriver. The Ems River connects the shipyard to the North Sea, where the Disney Wish will endure her sea trials. Her journey down the river has taken place with the help of two tugboats as the trio moves at a speed of only 2 to 3 knots, and there are 750 people on board the ship.

In some spots along the river, the Disney Wish only had centimeters of clearance.

The journey down the Ems River to the North Sea is called the ship’s conveyance. But before she begins her technical and nautical sea trials, the Disney Wish will get her final outfitting. describes a sea trial as follows:

“A sea trial is one of the final steps in the process of constructing and deploying a new cruise ship. These trials, conducted by the ship’s new captain, are designed to test the major systems of the vessel, often pushing the ship to its maximum limits of speed and steering. 

There may be one or two sea trials scheduled, each lasting between one and four days, depending on how much new technology has been included in the ship’s design. The first in a new class of ships is likely to undergo longer and more rigorous sea trials than subsequent ships in the class.”

RELATED: Disney Cruise Line’s newest ship gets her feet wet for the very first time!

disney wish

Credit: The Orlando Sentinel

The Disney Wish will remain docked in Eemshaven, Netherlands, for her final outfitting, after which she will begin her sea trials. Once she is deemed sea-worthy, Disney Cruise Line will take delivery of the vessel. The Disney Wish is slated to arrive in Port Canaveral in June, but it won’t have its magical maiden voyage until July 14.

RELATED: Set Sail for $44,000! The Disney Wish cruise ship by the numbers

The Disney Wish will take on sailings currently held by the Disney Dream, including three- and four-night voyages to the Bahamas with stops at Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay. The Disney Dream will move to Miami on June 7, 2022, and the Disney Fantasy remains at Port Canaveral for seven-night sailings.

About Becky Burkett

I'm an enthusiastic writer who finds joy in random things like cold weather, snow, "I Love Lucy," "The Andy Griffith Show," journals full of blank paper, countdowns to Christmas, the month of December, "Toy Story," "Sleeping Beauty," my 4 kids, my 4 shih tsus, Disney Parks history, Imagineering and visiting the parks. I think Walt Disney is the standard against which genius should be measured. I love to write about Disney Parks, Disney history, all things Imagineering and PIXAR. I adore the colors, story and art direction of Disney's "Sleeping Beauty" (Team Make it Blue!), and "Toy Story" is life (minus "Toy Story 4"). I believe Walt Disney was so much more than an entertainment and theme park tycoon; I believe he was a savant with a vision for life and how it could be if happiness and kindness are strived for. I love Biergarten at EPCOT and 1900 Park Fare at Disney's Grand Floridian. You can find me croonin' with the birdies at the Enchanted Tiki Room, chillin' on the PeopleMover or hangin' with Woody and the gang at Toy Story Land. I'm always looking for Imagineers in the parks, and I'd rather meet Joe Rohde and Tony Baxter than anyone in Hollywood! Hey, if you dream it, you really can do it!