LOS ANGELES, Oct. 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Currently celebrating the biggest year in its history, Viking Cruises® (www.vikingcruises.com) has again been named "Best River Cruise Line" in Cruise Critic's® 6th Annual Editors' Picks Awards, both in the U.S. and the U.K. Recognized for its expansive fleet of new ships and the number of choices it can offer guests around the world, Viking® was selected by Cruise Critic's international team of editors.
"To again receive Cruise Critic's top award for a river cruise line is a wonderful testament to the entire Viking team," said Viking Chairman Torstein Hagen. "We have worked incredibly hard to build experiences and ships that help our guests explore new destinations in comfort. Yes, we are the biggest river cruise line, but we will also always strive to the best— and having the editorial staff of Cruise Critic acknowledge Viking as such is the capstone of a remarkable year."
"Viking Cruises is on the most aggressive new build kick in the industry," said Carolyn Spencer Brown, Editor-in-Chief of Cruise Critic. "Numbers mean options — and from itineraries to sail dates, the largest river cruise line in the world allows you to create the cruise you want."
Founded in 1997, Viking was established with four Russian river cruise vessels and a company name to honor the Vikings who first traveled by longship to explore Russia's waterways. Today, Viking owns and operates the world's largest fleet of river vessels – 35 – and this honor from Cruise Critic comes amid unprecedented levels of consumer interest in river cruising. In March of this year, Viking set a world record with the christening of 10 new Viking Longships® — a class of ships that was named "Best New River Ships" in the 2012 Cruise Critic's Editors' Picks. Viking's 2013 season is now 96 percent sold out, and the company is more than 53 percent sold out for 2014 – a year that will also see the launch of 14 additional Viking Longships.
Since entering the North American market in 2000, Viking has continued to set industry standards with best-in-class river cruise ships, award-winning service, outstanding quality and all-inclusive itineraries offered at a competitive price. With a focus on crafting itineraries for guests who have an interest in art, culture, history and exploration, Viking's acclaimed Culture Curriculum spans all manner of activities — from things like onboard glassblowing demonstrations to traditional dance performances — bringing to life every facet of the destination. The industry leader, Viking is the only river cruise company to operate in Europe, Russia, Ukraine, China, Southeast Asia and Egypt.
Because Viking is the largest river cruise line, the size of its fleet allows it to offer the widest array of choices for guests — from sailing and stateroom options to the ability to tailor every aspect of their trip. Flexible scheduling options allow guests to sightsee at their own pace. Comprehensive guided tours are included each day for those who want to immerse themselves in culture and history, and Viking's onboard Program Directors can provide all the information and maps guests need to explore port cities independently. Additionally, Viking's complimentary onboard Concierge Service is an industry exclusive and allows guests an unmatched level of vacation personalization. With a vast network of contacts and an intimate understanding of each port city, Viking Concierges can reserve a table at the best restaurant, recommend specialty shops, order theater tickets and even arrange for a private guide and car service.
In 2015, Viking will bring the principles of its award-winning river cruises to the sea, with the launch of its new ocean cruises. Developed from the ground up to return the focus of cruising to the destination, Viking's ocean cruises will begin sailing in May 2015 with its first vessel — the 930-passenger all-veranda Viking Star — embarking on maiden voyages in Scandinavia and the Baltic; and the Mediterranean.
For more information, visit www.vikingcruises.com, watch one of Viking's many original videos or contact firstname.lastname@example.org. For additional booking details, contact Viking Cruises toll-free at 1-877-66VIKING (1-877-668-4546).
About Viking Cruises
Viking Cruises offers destination-centric river and ocean cruising designed for experienced travelers with an interest in geography, culture and history. Featuring onboard cultural enrichment and included shore excursions, Viking's journeys are competitively priced for genuine value. Debuting its maiden season of ocean cruising in 2015, the sophisticated state-of-the-art Viking Star will host 930 guests on itineraries in Scandinavia and the Baltic; and the Western and Eastern Mediterranean. As the world's leading river cruise line, since its 1997 inception the company has grown to a fleet of 35 river vessels (in 2013) offering scenic cruising along the rivers of Europe, Russia, Ukraine, China, Southeast Asia and Egypt. Viking has been honored multiple times in Travel + Leisure's "World's Best" Awards and Conde Nast Traveler's "Gold List" as well as recognized by the editors of Cruise Critic as the "Best River Cruise Line" in 2013, with the entire Viking Longships fleet being named "Best New River Ships of 2012" in the website's Editors' Picks Awards. The travel trade has ranked Viking as the "Best River Cruise Line" by Travel Weekly, Recommend and Travel Agent magazines, "Best Cruise Line for Luxury River Cruises" at the Luxury Travel Advisor Awards of Excellence and as "Best Overall Cruise Line for River Cruising" and "Best River Cruise Line for Travel Agent Support" in TravelAge West's WAVE Awards. For additional information, contact Viking Cruises at 1‑855‑8-VIKING (1‑855‑884‑5464) or visit www.vikingcruises.com. To join the Viking Cruises communities online, visit www.facebook.com/vikingcruises, www.facebook.com/vikingoceans and www.facebook.com/vikingrivercruises.
Edelman for Viking Cruises
SOURCE Viking Cruises