Today, Viking River Cruises announced its plans to sail along the mighty Mississippi River and operate from docking facilities near the French Quarter in New Orleans—huge news for the river cruise line that specializes in Europe itineraries and for Louisiana’s local economy.
Viking anticipates sailing along the river in late 2017, and plans call for the construction of six new Viking vessels over the next three years, which will be built in the U.S. and crewed by U.S. citizens. Cruise passengers will sail the Mississippi River from New Orleans with stops to St. James, East Baton Rouge and West Feliciana parishes. The ships will continue upriver to Memphis, Tennessee; St. Louis; or St. Paul, Minnesota (depending on the season).
“The Viking team is very proud to partner with the State of Louisiana, and we are grateful for the support of Governor Jindal,” said Viking Cruises Chairman, Torstein Hagen. “We are excited about the prospect of bringing modern river-cruising to the Mississippi, a river that has been traveled by explorers for centuries. We know our passengers will enjoy the rich history, culture and cuisine of all the great cities and towns along the Mississippi River from New Orleans to St. Paul. Together with our U.S. partners, we take great pride in the economic benefit that river-cruising provides to the regions our guests visit, from the shipbuilders to the local businesses.”