It is always a thrill to attend Metal festivals, but to get up close and personal with living legends is another dimension of thrills, and this is what you will experience if you ever thought of attending the biggest Heavy Metal Cruise in the world. (Scroll Down For Photo Gallery)

 The 5th edition of the 70000 Tons of Metal cruise sailed on Thursday, January 22nd from Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale – Florida to Ocho Rios – Jamaica, and returned on Monday, January 26th.

There have been various pre-parties, at Miami Beach, Hollywood Beach, and the pirates’ pre-cruise party, where everybody got dressed as a pirate in a ship that went to the “Pirate Republic Bar”.

 60 bands and 3000 metal heads for the first time on a new ship, Royal Caribbean’s Liberty of the Seas, which is a much bigger vessel than the previous one,Majesty of the Seas.

 The ship is huge and has lots of facilities: Flowrider surf simulator, rock-climbing wall, ice-skating rink, mini-golf course, basketball court, boxing ring, Vegas-style casino, water park, four stages,The Platinum Theatre, the Egyptian-themed SPHINX Lounge, the indoor stage STUDIO B, and the pool deck stage surrounded by several bars and pools.

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Prior to the departure, a wedding took place on a little bridge atthe Solarium front of the ship.The bridewalked in a beautiful black wedding dress down the aisle by “Jason Keyser”,the vocalist of the bandOrigin.All the bridesmaids and groomsmen were also in black.It was an epic ceremony away from all typical weddings where the couple decided to celebrate it with their metal family.

The lineup included many big names: “Amorphis”, “Annihilator”, “Apocalyptica”, “Arch Enemy”, “Behemoth”, “Blind Guardian”, “Cannibal Corpse”, “Destruction”,“Grave Digger”, “Soulfly”, “Therion”, “Venom”, etc.

The band “Origin” announced that there will be a pillow fight during one of their two sets.They ordered fans to forget about a mosh pit and start a huge pillow fight.Some metal heads carried their pillows from the cabins and headed to the venue in their pajamas. It was hilarious!

 “Threshold”, these guys are completely underrated, and their singer is one of the best persons I’ve seen on a stage.

 “God Dethroned” announced their return to the most Metal cruise ever! They wanted their first shows to be where they played their last ones three years ago, a rebirth and a reunion for the band.

“Michael Schenker’s Temple of Rock”delivered a great show.Unfortunately, I only got to see their first set in the Platinum.They got the whole place singing ‘Rock You Like A Hurricane’.

“Amorphis” played some of their old death metal songs with harsh vocals than with clean.They put on a hell of an energetic show.

“Venom” played with borrowed instruments from “Arch Enemy” as their equipment was misplaced by the airline company.

On the third day, thousands of metalheads arrived to Ocho Rios, Jamaica, where sailors went to swim with dolphins and hike Dunn’s River Falls with their favorite bands.

The pool area was fully packed during one of the main activities on the cruise,The BellyFlop contest,where a number of people,mostly of the larger physical build,took turns to attempt to create the largest splash possible.

On the last day, the organizer of the event announced that this year, metal fans from 70 nations were represented on 70000 Tons of Metal.He said in his short speech: “You are the United Nations of heavy metal – thank you!”

Next year, the cruise will take place most likely the first week of February.People started preparing and sending their wish lists.The destination is not announced yet, but who cares, we all can’t wait.