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Viking’s new Mississippi River cruise ship was floated out of its construction dry dock at Edison Chouest Offshore’s LaShip shipyard in Houma, Louisiana.
The float out is a major milestone in the construction of the Viking Mississippi, which will operate on the Lower and Upper Mississippi River between New Orleans and St. Paul, denoting the beginning of the final stage of construction.
At 450 feet in length and a beam of 75 feet, the vessel will have capacity for 386 guests in 193 all outside staterooms. With its Scandinavian design, the purpose-built ship will be the first truly modern river cruise ship operating in the region. Delivery is planned for later this year.
“It is a proud moment that this new ship has met an American waterway for the first time,” said Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking. “Our guests have long wanted to sail the Mississippi River with Viking, and we very much look forward to welcoming them on board this summer. We are grateful to our American partner, Edison Chouest Offshore, who has helped bring to life our vision of exploring the Mississippi in the ‘Viking way.’”
In keeping with maritime tradition, the ship’s ceremonial godmother, Dionne Chouest, General Counsel of Edison Chouest Offshore, assisted with the float out.
The ship is expected to bring more than 7,500 guests to the region in 2022 and 17,600+ during the first full sailing season in 2023. Currently scheduled ports of call on Viking’s new Mississippi River itineraries comprise seven U.S. states: Louisiana (Baton Rouge, Darrow, New Orleans and St. Francisville); Mississippi (Natchez and Vicksburg); Tennessee (Memphis); Missouri (Hannibal, St. Louis); Iowa (Burlington, Dubuque and Davenport); Wisconsin (La Crosse); and Minnesota (Red Wing, St. Paul).
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