10 Images

A Royal Welcome

Surrounded by small craft, the Queen Mary 2, the largest cruise ship in the world, steams toward its meeting with the Queen Mary in Long Beach Harbor on Thursday. (Bob Chamberlin / LAT)
The Queen Mary 2, which has 17 decks and can carry 2,620 passengers, makes its maiden West Coast visit this week. (Rick Loomis / LAT)
Crowds aboard the QM2 in the foreground and the Queen Mary in the background witness the historic meeting. (Bob Chamberlin / LAT)
The Queen Mary 2, which is 1,132 feet long, leaves Long Beach Harbor after the historic visit. (Bob Chamberlin / LAT)
The QM2, which weighs 151,400 tons, is heavy enough to stir up sediment in Long Beach Harbor. (Bob Chamberlin / LAT)
The QM2, which first sailed in January 2004, on the left, and the QM, whose first trip took place in 1936, on the right. (Rick Loomis / LAT)
The QM awaits the QM2. The dome building once housed Howard Hughes’ Spruce Goose wooden airplane. (Bob Chamberlin / LAT)
After today’s historic visit, the QM2 is heading for Mexico. The ship had taken passengers on a South American cruise. (Bob Chamberlin / LAT)
Part of the crowd of thousands who showed up to watch the big ships stands along the Long Beach shore. (Rick Loomis / LAT)
An onlooker photographs the work of skywriters that welcomed the Queen Mary 2 into the harbor near the Queen Mary. (Francine Orr / LAT)