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Viking Polaris Review

Viking Polaris
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About

Passengers 378
Crew 260
Passenger to Crew 1.45:1
Launched 2022
Shore Excursions 0
Aaron Saunders
Cruise Critic Contributor

Viking Polaris Overview

The second of two brand-new ships geared for expedition cruising, Viking Polaris combines some of the best-loved features of Viking Cruises' oceangoing ships with the rugged adventure of a proper polar ice class expedition vessel.

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After the debut of Viking Octantis in early 2022, Viking Polaris will debut in the Far Arctic, sailing expedition voyages from Tromso, Norway, to Arctic Svalbard and back beginning in the summer of 2022.

Slightly smaller than Viking's existing oceangoing ships like Viking Star, Viking Polaris offers six passenger decks spread across an overall length of 672 feet. Viking Star measures 745 feet in length and carries 930 passengers. Viking Polaris carries a fraction of that: just 378 passengers served by a crew of 260.

Viking Polaris offers a high passenger-to-space ratio of 79.76, on-par with many ultraluxury cruise lines. It will also offer a passenger-to-crew ratio of 1.66.

Viking has taken care to bring some of its most popular features from its existing oceangoing ships over to Viking Polaris and its sister, Viking Octantis. These include the popular forward-facing Explorers' Lounge, the Aquavit Bar and Viking's warm and inviting Living Room concept that forms the backbone of the central lobby and atrium area on Viking's ocean ships.

Viking Polaris will also have a dedicated library, though it's no stretch to imagine that a large portion of the ship will offer books on topics like exploration in keeping with the precedent set on existing ocean ships.

The ship will also feature onboard swimming pools, a spa and fitness center, and outdoor deck spaces that include a bow viewing area.

The cruise line will reveal more details about Viking Polaris and Viking Octantis, as well as Viking Expeditions, in mid-January 2020.

Dining

Although exact dining details have yet to be revealed, early indications are that Viking Polaris will have four separate dining venues. These include the casual World Cafe buffet; the menu-driven Restaurant offering breakfast, lunch and dinner; the Italian-themed specialty restaurant Manfredi's; and Mamsen's, featuring a list of Nordic and Scandinavian dishes culled from the cookbook of Chairman Torstein Hagen's own mother, affectionately referred to as "Mamsen."

Viking Polaris should be in keeping with Viking's existing policies, which currently offer beer, wine and soft drinks complimentary with lunch and dinner, and no additional fees to dine in Manfredi's.

It is not yet known whether Viking Polaris will offer room service.

Cabins

Viking Polaris will feature 189 cabins, all of which will offer ocean views and their own private balcony.

The bulk of the accommodations onboard will be made up of the 269-square-foot Nordic Balcony and Deluxe Nordic Balcony cabins. A total of 138 of these two categories will be featured onboard.

Moving up in size, 20 Nordic Penthouse Suites will offer 334 square feet of living space.

Among the top accommodations aboard Viking Polaris will be the 26 Nordic Junior Suites measuring  square feet of living space and the four Explorer Suites that range between 657 and 667 square feet.

Much like Viking's existing ocean fleet, a single Owner's Suite will represent the largest accommodation onboard, measuring 1,448 square feet.

Viking has yet to reveal exact room features, amenities and decor.

Top-Deck Attractions

Top-deck attractions for Viking Polaris are still unknown at this moment, though early indications point to a decent amount of open deck space.

Entertainment

Full entertainment options for Viking Polaris are still pending, but as an expedition ship it is likely that onboard lectures and informative daily briefings will be offered.

Itineraries

Viking Polaris will offer voyages to the Arctic from Tromso, Norway, beginning in the summer of 2022.