Welcoming 12 New Viking River Cruise Ships in Amsterdam
For the past three years, I’ve traveled to Europe every March to witness something very special: the launch of the newest batch of Viking Longship river cruise vessels from Viking River Cruises. This year will be no exception, as we travel to Amsterdam, Netherlands during the week of March 22, 2015 to witness the christening of the next 12 Viking Longships to hit the waterways of Europe.
Looking back on it, it’s hard to believe that in 2012, the first four Viking Longships ships were christened in the port of Amsterdam. The christening of four ships in of itself seemed like some kind of fanciful pipe-dream at the time; a feat never before accomplished. Back then, I glowingly wrote that Viking was embarking on a “massive newbuid order that will see twelve of these new “Longships” added to the feet by 2014.”
Twelve. Oh, how wrong we all were.
In actuality, demand far outstripped supply for the new Viking Longships, and Viking was forced to add new Longships as quickly as Rostock-based shipbuilder Neptun Werft could churn them out. A banner hung across the Passenger Terminal Amsterdam in 2012 proclaimed that, The Future of River Cruising is Here.
Click here to read our Live Voyage Reports from past Viking Longships Christening Ceremonies:
As it turned out, 2012 was a major turning point for both Viking River Cruises and the river cruise industry in general. Viking’s massive Longship newbuild program brought river cruising recognition to a greater segment of the population in North America. Their innovative partnership with PBS as a sponsor for MASTERPIECE (and, accordingly, the wildly-popular Downton Abbey) only furthered Viking’s brand recognition and continued to hammer home the benefits of river cruising.
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