Viking‘s newest ocean ship – the 930-guest Viking Neptune – was floated out from the Ancona shipyard of Fincantieri last week. It was the first time the vessel had touched water.
Set to debut in November 2022, Viking Neptune will spend her maiden season sailing itineraries in the Mediterranean before embarking on the company’s 2023/2024 Viking World Cruise, a journey from Fort Lauderdale to London that spans 138 days, 28 countries and 57 ports, including Australia and New Zealand.
“It is always a special day when a new ship meets water for the first time, and we look forward to welcoming guests on board the Viking Neptune this Autumn. Together with Fincantieri we have built the world’s most elegant vessels, which truly allow our guests to explore the world in comfort,” said Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking.
“We are marking several milestones in 2022, including our 25th anniversary and the 10th year since starting our ocean project. With the arrival of the Viking Neptune and her identical sister ship, the Viking Mars, this year – along with the debut of our two new expedition ships and new river ships – we are proud to firmly establish Viking as the leading small ship travel company.”
The float out of Viking Neptune began at approximately 11am local time when a member of the Viking team cut a cord that signalled water to begin flowing into the ship’s building dock. Following a two-day process that will set Viking Neptune afloat, she will then be moved to a nearby outfitting dock for final construction and interior build-out.
Viking’s ocean ships have a gross tonnage of 47,800 tons, with 465 staterooms. Viking Neptune is the eighth vessel in the ocean fleet, joining identical sister ships, which includes Viking Star, Viking Sea, Viking Sky, Viking Orion, Viking Jupiter and Viking Venus. Viking Mars will be delivered in May 2022; Viking Saturn will be delivered in early 2023.
Meanwhile, Viking’s first expedition ship, Viking Octantis, is scheduled to operate her maiden voyage this coming weekend from Buenos Aires to Antarctica.
Delivered to the cruise line on 22 December at Fincantieri’s VARD shipyard Søviknes, Norway, Viking Octantis, is currently en-route to South America for her inaugural sailing on 23 January 2022.
Following her first-ever deployment to Antarctica, Viking Octantis will be officially named in New York City in April 2022. The ship’s godmother will be, Liv Arnesen, the famed explorer and educator. The ship then position to the Great Lakes, for a series of voyages during spring and summer. A second, identical sister ship, Viking Polaris, joins the fleet in August 2022 for journeys to the Arctic and Antarctica.