Viking has reached a major milestone with the float out of its newest river ship, Viking Aton. The river cruise ship has been built entirely in Egypt and is designed to be used exclusively on the river Nile.
The milestone means that the vessel has touched water for the first time and is now moving into the final stages of construction, such as interior outfitting.
With a debut set for August 2023, Viking Aton will sail a 12-day Pharaohs & Pyramids itinerary, which includes three days in Cairo and eight days onboard. The cruise ship is the third of six river ships that Viking is building for cruising the River Nile.
Viking Celebrates Viking Aton Float Out Ceremony
Viking’s newest river ship reached a significant milestone on April 4, 2023, as the cruise line’s third purpose-built Nile river ship floated out at the Massara shipyard in Cairo, Egypt. Viking Chairman Torstein Hagen and Sayed Farouk, Chairman of The Arab Contractors and owner of the shipyard, initiated the ceremony by lowering the ship-lift of the yard.
Viking Aton will move to a nearby outfitting dock for final construction and interior outfitting.
“We are pleased with the continued strong interest for our Nile River voyages. Our guests are curious explorers, and Egypt remains a destination of great interest for its many cultural treasures,” said Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking.
“We are proud to be the only western company to build, own and operate ships on the Nile, and with the float out of the Viking Aton, we look forward to welcoming more guests to experience this fantastic region.”
Viking Aton, which features an elegant Scandinavian design, will accommodate 82 guests in 41 staterooms. Although entirely constructed in Egypt and purpose-built for sailing the river Nile, she shares familiar aspects with other Viking ships, such as a distinctive square bow and an Aquavit Terrace.
Viking Aton will join the Viking Osiris and Viking Ra in the company’s Egypt fleet. Viking plans to have six ships sailing the Nile by 2025, with the Viking Hathor and Viking Sobek already under construction for delivery in 2024 and 2025 at the Massara shipyard.
Viking continues to be one of the fastest-growing privately-owned cruise operators in the world. The cruise line recently launched two expedition cruise ships, a Mississippi River cruise ship, two ocean-going ships, and several river cruise ships in Europe. The cruise line also experienced its strongest booking month in history during the first month of the year.
Comprehensive Egyptian Journey for Guests
Once Viking Aton sets sail in August, she will be operating a part of the 12-day Pharaohs & Pyramids itinerary Viking offers. During a three-night stay in Cairo, guests can visit sites such as the Great Pyramids of Giza, the Necropolis of Sakkara, the Mosque of Muhammad Ali, or the Grand Egyptian Museum.
The journey continues with a flight to Luxor, where guests will board the Viking Aton for an eight-day roundtrip cruise on the Nile River.
Highlights of the cruise include visits to the Temples of Luxor, the tomb of Nefertari in the Valley of the Queens, the tomb of Tutankhamun in the Valley of the Kings, and excursions to various temple complexes. The trip concludes with a flight back to Cairo for a final night in the Egyptian capital.
Guests who want to experience everything there is to know about Egypt can make their trip even longer. Viking also offers pre- and post-extensions that access various archives and exhibits.
The five-day British Collections of Ancient Egypt extension begins in London, featuring private visits to the Egyptian Collection at the British Museum and five more museums and institutions in the UK.