I’m going to go out on a limb and say, those of us who live and breathe motorcycles generally like to take our vacations on two wheels. Some of the best vacations I’ve ever had have been rides to far-off places. I’ve flown to Europe and the UK to borrow or rent a bike to ride on the “wrong” side of the road, up mountains, and around countries where I don’t speak the language. I love that sort of thing.
But what I have never done, is thought that a great idea for a vacation would be a biker cosplay cruise.
That might be a bit harsh, but that was the first thought that popped into my head when I received an email advertising the “High Seas Rally.” Not that there’s anything wrong with cosplay for cosplay’s sake.
Surely, though, with this kind of marketing the cruise company plans to sail everyone to an island where there are motorcycles available to ride. How cool would it be to ride in the Bahamas one day, and the Dominican Republic the next? Can I roll my bike up the gang-plank and park it in my room? Are the rentals prearranged if I can’t ride to Florida in time? What kind of bikes are they offering?
Alas, friends, there are no motorcycles involved. You cannot bring your bike on the boat. There are apparently rental motorcycles available in “some of” the ports of call. The Bahamas are lousy with scooters, maybe those count? Regardless, you have to make all your own accommodations there.
Billed as “the world’s only motorcycle rally on a cruise ship” this event is missing the one thing that makes a motorcycle rally, a motorcycle rally: the motorcycles. The “High Seas Rally is everything you love about a motorcycle rally,” the website exclaims. Know what I like about motorcycle rallies? Riding there, the coffee I don’t have to make in the morning, and riding around every day.
“High Seas Rally has combined the best of a land-based biker rally with the best of a world-class cruise while getting rid of the parts of each that take away the fun…” like those pesky bikes you have to ride and maintain. Ugh, riding motorcycles on vacation, can you imagine?
But wait there’s more! Instead of a traditional cruise Formal Night, it’s leather night. You can’t bring your bike but you can sure dress up like a biker. Or, I mean, there’s no actual description, so Leather Night could be your opportunity to show off your favorite … um … new outfit. Also, and I am not kidding here, there’s a lot of actual pirate-themed dressup going on in the photos.
Here’s what would be better: let us ride our motorcycles onto the boat. Make it a dirtbike rally. Sail us to islands that have dirt riding, or dirt tracks. Give us dual-sport ride maps at each stop. Set up a station with parking and a hose on the boat, so we can wash off the mud before the next stop. Set us up with mechanics and how-to sessions instead of “performances.” How cool would that be?
A ship full of three thousand “bikers” with no bikes, and an open bar? Hard pass. At least Royal Caribbean is requiring proof of vaccination for all cruise participants, though, which is more than most other biker rallies can claim.