It was smooth sailing for Galileo Galilei until the early 1970s, when skyrocketing fuel prices, a sagging global economy, airline competition, and dwindling Australian immigration combined to make her a very unprofitable vessel. She was pulled off her Australian run in April 1977. By October 1977 a refitted Galileo Galilei was back at sea in her new role as a cruise ship. Profits continued to be elusive, however, and she was laid up again in September 1979.
In 1983 Galileo Galilei was rescued by Chandris Group. Once again refitted, and now simply named Galileo (goodbye, “Galilei”), the ship returned to cruising for Chandris Fantasy Cruises. She continued cruising for the next 16 years for Chandris Fantasy Cruises, then Celebrity Cruises and, finally, Sun Cruises (as Sun Vista).
In 1999 an engine room fire snuffed out the ship’s life. All 1,090 passengers and crew were safely evacuated, but the stylish little liner, which helped so many people find a new life on a new continent, fell under the waves in the Strait of Malacca on 21 May 1999.
To continue, click the NEXT button on the top of this page.