Viking Cruises Marks Summer Equinox With Christening of Third Ocean Ship in Norway
Viking Cruises officially christened its third ocean ship, Viking Sky®, during a public celebration in Tromsø, Norway. The festive event was marked by a coordinated water cannon salute from traditional Norwegian redningsskøyten boats, music from local bands, and flag-waving Tromsø residents.
Viking is the leader in river and small ship ocean cruising and its newest ship Viking Sky features 465 ultramodern cabins that accommodate 930 passengers. It is the third of eight ocean cruise ships currently planned for the fleet founded by Chairman Torstein Hagen in 1997.
“This is a special time of year in Norway – these are the days of the midnight sun and the perfect backdrop for a celebration. All of our ships proudly carry the Norwegian flag, and it is an especially proud day to officially welcome our new ship in Tromsø, the Arctic capital of the world,” said Chairman Hagen.
Tromsø is a key port of call on Viking’s popular, “Into the Midnight Sun,” itinerary, which sails between Bergen and London.
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Immediately following the christening, Viking Sky set sail from Tromsø with a convoy of small boats and fishing vessels to mark the summer equinox in Nordkapp (North Cape). Onboard the ship, guests were treated to a special christening dinner with Norwegian delicacies and musical performances by Lisa Stokke, Tor Jaran Apold, and Mari Boine.
The vessel will now spend the summer season sailing Viking’s popular itineraries in Scandinavia and the Baltic.
Today’s celebratory christening was also a family affair. Marit Barstad, sister of Chairman Hagen, served as ceremonial godmother and offered a blessing of good fortune and safe sailing for Viking’s latest cutting-edge addition.
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During the christening, ceremony homage was paid to the Norwegian heritage of both the company and its godmother. Viking Sky was lovingly christened with a bottle of Gammel Opland aquavit, which is from the same county in Norway where Torstein and Marit’s mother, Ragnhild, was born.
Gammel Opland was Ragnhild’s favorite brand of aquavit, and Viking Sky’s Norwegian deli was named in honor of her.
Like its sister ships, Viking Sky was designed for discerning travelers with interests in history, art, music, and cuisine. Chairman Hagen describes the preeminent cruise line as, “the thinking person’s cruise.”
Viking Sky highlights include five stateroom categories, starting with the 270 square foot Veranda Stateroom, as well as 14 Explorer Suites, which are two-room suites ranging from 757 to 1,163 square feet. The latter offers sweeping views from wraparound private verandas, as well as the most amenities and privileges of any category onboard.
Guests can choose from two pools, including a first-of-its-kind glass-backed Infinity Pool. The ship features a LivNordic Spa as well as a Snow Grotto in which guests are treated to a delightful scene of falling snowflakes that gently descend from the ceiling above.
All Viking ships are small in order to get guests closer to their destination, with more time in port and more overnights. “Vikings were explorers, and our ships are built with their spirit of exploration in mind,” said Chairman Hagen. “We design every aspect of our ships and cruises so that our guests can spend more time immersed in their destination. Scandinavia is Viking territory, but as we continue to expand our fleet, we also look forward to introducing new travelers to the Viking way of travel around the world.”