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ST. LOUIS â€” Viking on Monday announced it will start bookings for its Mississippi River cruises on April 15, with its Viking Mississippi vessel set to debut in August 2022.
The ship will join American Cruise Lines and the American Queen Steamboat Co. in cruising the upper Mississippi River. Last year American Cruise Lines announced Alton would be its midriver hub for such cruises.
On Monday Viking Chairman Torstein Hagen, in a video on the companyâ€™s new viking.tv online channel, announced the five-deck boats will feature 193 staterooms capable of carrying 386 guests. Scheduled ports of call on the upper Mississippi River include St. Louis and Hannibal in Missouri; Burlington, Dubuque and Davenport in Iowa; LaCrosse, Wisconsin; and Red Wing and St. Paul, Minnesota.
â€śOur guests are curious travelers, and they continue to tell us that the Mississippi is the river they most want to sail with us,â€ť Hagen said. â€śThe Mississippi River is closer to home for many of our guests, and no other waterway has played such an important role in Americaâ€™s history, commerce and culture.â€ť
Currently under construction in Louisiana, the Viking Mississippi will offer staterooms of 268 to 1,024 square feet, each with a private veranda or French balcony, kingsize beds, large flat-screen interactive TVs and 24-hour room service. Each suite will feature two rooms and a full-size veranda off the spacious sitting room.
The ship will contain a restaurant, a two-story Explorersâ€™ Lounge near the bow of the ship, an indoor/outdoor dining venue on the top deck, an Aquavit Terrace on the top deck providing â€śan American barbecue experience,â€ť a Sun Terrace with an Infinity Plunge Pool, and â€śThe Living Room,â€ť an open space designed for socializing, relaxing and entertainment.
Guests can stroll the entire ship outside on Deck 1. Also planned are Destination Performances representing the regionâ€™s music, guest lecturers on the region, and cultural explorations such as a visit to an Iowa farm.
Solar panels, LED lighting, floor-to-ceiling windows that maximize natural light and an energy-efficient hybrid propulsion system make Viking Mississippi â€śthe most environmentally friendly passenger shipâ€ť on the river, according to the company.
Viking plans four Mississippi River cruises in 2022, including an eight-day trip called â€śAmericaâ€™s Heartlandâ€ť from St. Louis to St. Paul and a 15-day excursion called â€śAmericaâ€™s Great Riverâ€ť from New Orleans to St. Paul.