Viking launched its first U.S. river cruise ship Monday, getting ready for its first voyages on the Mississippi River between New Orleans and Saint Paul this summer.
Built in Louisiana, it is now getting its final fittings and furnishings. Starting in June, it will sail cruises on the upper and lower Mississippi with room for 386 guests in 193 staterooms, all outside.
The Viking Mississippi draws its Scandinavian design cues from Viking's fleet of European river cruisers and its Viking Ocean fleet, adjusted for size and location, including spaces for socializing, casual dining and a plunge pool.
Cruises include, as usual, at least one free shore excursion in each port, all meals, and a variety of enrichment programs including lectures matched to the region the ship is moving through. Food choices also reflect the varying cuisines of the region.