Photo Courtesy of Viking Cruises
Luxury river cruise specialists, Viking Cruises, announced they will launch their first cruise liner, making the company's debut into ocean cruises. The new product line, which will feature destination-focused cruises, will begin in May 2015 on its first ocean liner, the Viking Star. The new vessel, which is classified as a small ship, will offer accommodations for up to 928 passengers with five levels of staterooms.
Reservations are now being accepted for is maiden oceanic cruises. This is the firm’s first new cruise line offering in nearly ten years. Voyages will include excursions in Scandinavia and the Baltic and in the Western and Eastern Mediterranean.
Viking also announced that a second ocean liner will be delivered in 2016 and will be considering adding four additional ocean vessels to its fleet. Its river cruises also are being increased, as 10 ships were added in March, and a dozen more are planned to launch in 2014.
“It is our view that in the race to build bigger ships, many cruise lines have lost sight of the destinations to which they sail," said Torstein Hagen, chairman of Viking Cruises. "With our new ocean cruises, we are applying the same principles behind our award-winning river cruises to our itinerary and ship design; privileged-access excursions; and on-board experiences to make destinations the true focus."
Viking reached out to its existing passengers to determine what was most important to travelers when vacationing on a cruise ship. By doing so, the firm believes it will be able to add more value for its customers on both the river and on the upcoming ocean cruises.