Viking unveils Bermuda home port itinerary
Viking Ocean Cruises appears to have become the second cruise line to plan to use Bermuda as a home port with cruises which will take passengers out into the Atlantic Ocean and into the island’s three ports.
Viking’s website is promoting six eight-day cruises between June 15 and July 20 starting at $1,799 per person with a $599 airfare.
The itinerary has the Viking Orion spending the first two days in Hamilton before cruising the Atlantic Ocean on day three, visiting St George’s for two days and going out to sea again before calling on Dockyard for a day before returning to Hamilton.
In a press release, Viking said that it had been working closely with officials in the UK, Bermuda and Iceland for months, adding that these destinations were chosen specifically because of their popularity among Viking guests, as well as their commitment to welcoming Viking ships, offering enriching experiences and reviving the travel industry in their respective countries.
Torstein Hagen, chairman of Viking, said: "We applaud the governments of the United Kingdom, Bermuda and Iceland for their collaboration and support in restarting the cruise industry safely.
"No other travel company has implemented the same science-led approach that includes a vaccination requirement for all guests, plus frequent non-invasive saliva PCR testing among all guests and crew. Therefore, we believe there will be no safer way to travel the world than on a Viking voyage.
“We look forward to welcoming guests back on board — and welcoming them back to the world."
The Bermuda Escape cruise is described as: “Discover the colonial history and natural beauty of the subtropical island of Bermuda. Explore the cobblestone streets and colourful facades of St. George’s, the oldest settlement in the New World and a Unesco World Heritage Site.
“Enjoy a sunset cruise by catamaran as you trace the shores of Bermuda’s stunning bays. Play a round of golf, or relax and soak up the sun on the pink sands of one of Bermuda’s renowned beaches.”
Viking also said passengers would experience Viking’s Covid-19 health and safety programme.
The statement said: “Grounded in scientific research, the Viking Health & Safety Program was developed in partnership with an international team of medical advisors, including Raquel C Bono, MD, Viking's chief health officer. Dr Bono is a board-certified trauma surgeon and retired Vice Admiral of the United States Navy Medical Corps—and recently led Washington State's medical and healthcare systems response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Utilising a full-scale laboratory installed on every Viking ocean ship, all guests and crew will receive quick and easy non-invasive saliva PCR tests at embarkation and frequently throughout the itinerary.
“New air purification technology has also been installed on all Viking ships, which have always featured independent air handling units for all guest staterooms. And additional health checks, sanitization and physical distancing measures will provide further protection for Viking guests and crew at all points of the journey.
“A complete overview of the Viking Health & Safety Program can be found at: www.viking.com/health-safety.”
The Viking Orion carries a maximum of 930 passengers and was launched in 2018 as the fifth of Viking’s ocean-going cruise liners. The 745-foot ship also sails to Alaska and throughout Australasia and the Pacific. it has an outer space theme and boasts a planetarium.
Last month, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines announced its Vision of the Seas would be home porting in Bermuda and would make 12 voyages to the Bahamas and back from June 26.