(PRESS RELEASE)_Los Angeles (May 24, 2021) – Viking® (www.viking.com) announced today that it will expand its presence in the Mediterranean this summer, adding a third ship to sail roundtrip voyages from the Maltese capital city of Valletta—a cultural UNESCO World Heritage Site. Offered as part of Viking’s Welcome Back collection, Viking Star® will now join sister ships Viking Venus® and Viking Sea® and will sail a new 11-day itinerary, Malta & the Western Mediterranean.
With the addition of this new voyage, vaccinated guests now have three new options for experiencing the Mediterranean between July and early October 2021. Guests on the Malta & the Western Mediterranean itinerary will overnight in Valletta and then sail to Sicily, Italy and Spain, calling in Messina, Naples (Pompeii), Civitavecchia (Rome), Livorno (Florence/Pisa), Genoa and Barcelona, before returning to Valletta. Those on the Malta & Adriatic Jewels itinerary will overnight in Valletta and then sail to Montenegro and Croatia, calling in Kotor, Dubrovnik, Split, Zadar and Šibenik, before returning to the Maltese archipelago, with a stop on Gozo Island and finally back to Valletta. And guests on the Malta & Greek Isles Discovery itinerary will also overnight in Valletta and then sail to Greece, calling in Kalamata, Athens, Santorini, Rhodes and Souda Bay, before returning to Valletta.
“Once again we thank the government of Malta for being such a supportive destination partner as we begin welcoming guests back on board for ocean voyages,” said Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking. “Malta’s central position in the Mediterranean, as well as its historic sites and many cultural experiences, make it is an ideal destination for travelers who want to explore the Mediterranean from the comfort of a Viking vessel. We are pleased with the response we have received thus far, and we look forward to introducing even more guests to this fantastic European country.”
Today’s news follows Viking’s recent announcements of initial Welcome Back ocean voyages in England, Iceland, Bermuda and the Mediterranean, beginning in May 2021—as well as the restart of European river operations beginning in July 2021. Just last week, Viking named its newest ocean ship, Viking Venus®, and she is currently sailing in England with guests.
Those who sail these new voyages will also experience Viking’s industry-leading health and safety program. Grounded in scientific research, the Viking Health & Safety Program was developed in partnership with an international team of medical advisors, including Raquel C. Bono, M.D., 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 most recently led Washington State’s medical and healthcare systems response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Utilizing a full-scale laboratory installed on every Viking ocean ship, all guests and crew will receive daily quick and easy non-invasive saliva PCR tests. 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.
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