The Royal Yacht Britannia Princess Diana greeting her sons, Prince Harry and Prince William, on board © Getty Images Grand staircase © Marc Millar


Britannia was launched from the John Brown & Company shipyard in Clydebank on 16 April, 1953. For over 44 years she served the Royal Family, travelling over one million miles to become the most famous ship in the world. To Her Majesty The Queen, Britannia proved to be the perfect Royal residence for glittering state visits, official receptions, Royal honeymoons and relaxing family holidays. For Great Britain, she was a majestic symbol of the Commonwealth and a proud ambassador. For the Royal Family and dedicated crew of Royal Yachtsmen, she was home.

The construction of HMY Britannia at John Brown’s Shipyard, Clydebank

A ship like no other

Britannia was the only ship in the world whose Captain traditionally was an Admiral. Nowhere on her side will you see her name, yet she is recognised around the world. She was built for the dual role of becoming a hospital ship if needed. 

Special royal residence

Discover what a typical day aboard the Royal Yacht was like for The Queen. With Britannia playing such a major role in The Queen's life, it is clear why the Royal Yacht's decommissioning was so sad for her.

Britannia today

The Royal Yacht Britannia, berthed at Leith, Edinburgh is now a five-star visitor attraction and an exclusive evening events venue. She is now owned by The Royal Yacht Britannia Trust (Registered Charity No SC028070) and all surplus funds go back into her preservation for future generations. Britannia was also named the No. 1 Attraction in the UK in the TripAdvisor Travellers' Choice awards 2014/15.

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Britannia's launch

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