(9:15 a.m. EDT) -- With Norwegian Spirit's departure Saturday on a 12-day voyage from Papeete to Honolulu, Norwegian Cruise Line's 17-vessel fleet has fully returned to service.
The 2,000-passenger vessel's return to the seas comes just two days after Norwegian Sun's reappearance following a two-year hiatus. The ship kicked off its summer program in Alaska and Canada with a five-night roundtrip voyage out of Seattle.
"This is an incredibly important day in our history and a defining moment for our future," said Harry Sommer, president and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line. "We are moving full speed ahead, having already welcomed more than half a million guests."
On the horizon, NCL's latest newbuild, Norwegian Prima, will embark on its maiden voyage with a 10-night Amsterdam to Copenhagen itinerary September 3.
"Welcoming our guests and crew onboard has been one of the most memorable moments of my over 30-year career," NCL President and CEO Harry Sommer said at the time.
Less than a month later, NCL's newest and largest vessel, Norwegian Encore, set sail from Seattle on August 7, while Norwegian Gem kickstarted operations out of Miami on August 15 on its way to the Eastern and Western Caribbean.
September 2021 saw a trio of vessels return to service, with Norwegian Epic and sister ships Norwegian Getaway and Norwegian Breakaway sailing on September 5, 13 and 26, respectively. Epic and Getaway sailed the Mediterranean, while Breakaway welcomed guests from New York to Bermuda. A month later, Norwegian Bliss sailed out of the Port of Los Angeles on October 24 on a voyage to the Mexican Riviera.
On November 13, Norwegian Escape became the first of the brand's Breakaway Plus Class of ships to return to service by embarking on an Eastern Caribbean voyage out of Port Canaveral. A week later, Norwegian Joy welcomed guests in PortMiami for a seven-day roundtrip Caribbean voyage.
The cruise line capped off 2021 with a couple of December returns. Norwegian Dawn
sailed out of Tampa to the Southern Caribbean on December 8, and Norwegian Pearl embarked on a Panama Canal voyage out of Miami on December 23.
This year, NCL's parade of returning ships resumed on March 2, with Norwegian Sky sailing out of PortMiami to the Eastern Caribbean. Norwegian Jewel followed on March 29 with a Panama Canal voyage out of Panama City.
Back in the Mediterranean, Norwegian Star sailed out of Barcelona on April 3, while halfway, across the world, Pride of America resumed operations in Hawaii on April 9, and where Cruise Critic joined the sailing.