Thank you for joining us at Rotterdam

The Global Mercy® welcomed thousands of visitors to Come On Board in Rotterdam for two weeks. This one-time global event offered an exclusive look inside the hospital ship, allowing guests to experience life on board, from the operating theaters to the crew cabins.

A total of 11,000 people from over 100 countries visited the ship both virtually and physically during this special event in March. Some guests included international patron HRH The Princess Royal from the UK, a delegation of African leaders, and world-renowned Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli.

On dedicated maritime and medical days, hundreds of professionals gathered on board to network, celebrate the newly built ship, and learn about the mission of Mercy Ships. Former Mercy Ships volunteers were also invited to visit, many of them traveling to Rotterdam from their home countries worldwide.

“Thank you to the Dutch people for such a warm welcome during this first public opening of the Global Mercy in Rotterdam,” said Mercy Ships CEO Gert van de Weerdhof. “Truly, Mercy Ships has been embraced here in Europe, and we will continue on our journey with our ships, strengthened by so much support as we prepare to serve the people of Africa.”

You can view images from the ship’s departure here.

Come On Board – Virtually

Even though the physical event has ended, there is still a fantastic range of digital experiences to explore. You can Come On Board the Global Mercy from your own home by taking a virtual tour. 

For two weeks, the Global Mercy Experience has offered visitors a unique opportunity to be immersed in the stories of patients and medical volunteers, jump into life on board, and learn all about the surgeries and training that Mercy Ships provides. The virtual tour offers an equally compelling exploration of the ship, complete with a tour guide and subtitles in English, French, German, or Dutch. This in-depth virtual tour has now been recorded for you to watch at your leisure.

If you prefer to explore yourself, Mercy Ships invites you into a very special interactive 3D space. From your own screen, experience the Global Mercy for yourself. Click through at your own pace, spending time in the areas that interest you the most, from the hospital wards to the crew cabins. Hear stories of hope and healing from patients, family members, crew, and partners of Mercy Ships.

The type of technology you are using may impact your tour experience. For optimal viewing, please use a desktop and not a mobile device.

The Journey Ahead

The Global Mercy has sailed away from Rotterdam and is docked in Tenerife. Here, she continues to undergo outfitting to prepare the ship for service in Africa. 

In May, she’ll set sail on her maiden voyage to Africa. In February, the Africa Mercy arrived in Senegal, and her crew soon began providing surgeries. The Global Mercy will join her to support that surgical work and training in partnership with the people of Senegal.

Learn more about our fleet of hospital ships that help bring hope and healing to those in need at