Visiting a cruise ship while it's under construction is an experience both exhilarating and confounding. It's the first because, if you love ships as much as we do, it's the ultimate behind-the-scenes tour in how a vessel gets built (something of a combination between a Lego project and sheer technology, with a little dose of artistry thrown in). Shipyard tours can also be completely overwhelming. Unless you're visiting a cruise ship that's literally in the last week or so of the project, it doesn't much resemble anything
it will ultimately turn out to be.
Among those twisted hunks of steel and welders wielding fiery tongs, you'll find no creature comforts of any kind (working onboard an unfinished ship in Germany, Finland or Italy in winter is just freezing, and, in many cases, elevators aren't operational).
Still, it's an experience not to miss if you have the chance. We hope our recent visit, in late March, to Princess' Royal Princess
at Fincantieri's Monfalcone (near Italy's Trieste), a little over two months from delivery, will give you new insights into this evolutionary cruise ship.