As the 100th anniversary of the Titanic disaster approaches next week, events around the world are honoring the people who perished in the tragedy and the survivors alike. Most notably, a cruise with the same number of passengers is retracing the ship's voyage, including a visit to the location where it sank in the North Atlantic.
According to the Associated Press, the 12-night Titanic Memorial Cruise departed yesterday from Southampton, where the the legendary ship left on its maiden voyage.
With 1,309 passengers aboard, the MS Balmoral will follow the same route as the Titanic. Organizers are trying to recreate the onboard experience - minus the disaster—from the food to a live band playing music from that era, in tribute to Titanic's musicians who reportedly played their instruments until the ship sank. Organizers said people from 28 countries have booked passage, including relatives of some of more than 1,500 people who died and the 700 who survived.
Passengers will attend lectures by Titanic experts like Philip Littlejohn, grandson of a survivor. Organizers have set up a memorial service on April 14 at 11:40 pm to mark the moment Titanic hit the iceberg, and later at the exact moment when the ship sank on April 15.
Titanic-philes not onboard the Balmoral can still honor the anniversary with other events. Last month in Belfast, the city where the ship was built, the Titanic Belfast Museum opened. According to the Examiner, On April 14, Virtual Choir 3 will be part of the Titanic 100th Anniversary Commemoration in the city.
Titanic 100 COBH 2012 is a year-long commemoration and tribute to the ship, its people and its last port of call: Cobh.
The Titanic Centennial Memorial Weekend is a 3-day event that begins April 20. The Titanic Centennial Memorial Unveiling and Dedication will take place on April 21, at the Oak Grove Cemetery in Springfield, MA. A memorial service will be held on Sunday, April 22.