Viking adds two new Longships to the fleet in 2021, for a total of 55. One of the new ships is Egdir, named for an Old Norse mythological creature, said to herd the giantess who inhabit the woods of Jarnvior raising monstrous wolves. Star Wars fans may recognize the name used for an Ithorian character (you know, the dudes with two wide-set black eyes atop their necks?) who appears in multiple scenes in Star Wars Resistance.
Egdir mirrors the sleek look and feel of her sister ships, but with a more eco-friendly propulsion system, consisting of a hybrid combination of electric and diesel engine power. The ship caters to an active group of guests in the 55-70 age range, seeking an experiential and inclusive European vacation, focused on the culture, food, and beverages of the regions visited by the ship. Maximum capacity is 190 passengers.
Viking River cruises include one shore excursion in each port, typically an overview-style tour of the destination. These tours may be walking excursions or done by coach, and usually include architectural and historically significant points of interest. Optional shore excursions are also offered in some ports. Think wine tastings, cooking classes, hikes, bicycle tours, or explorations of nearby cultural attractions.
On board Viking's longships, the vibe is casual, with the passengers historically hailing from North America. During the day, attire is all about what is comfortable on extended walking and motorcoach tours. Many passengers change to slightly dressier attire for dinner, without rising to the level of "formal."
The Restaurant (Middle Deck) is the main dining room on all Viking Longships, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. Open seating is the standard during all meals, on a first-come first-serve basis. Viking chefs make an effort to include local flavors, particularly during lunch and dinner.
The Aquavit Terrace (Upper Deck) serves as an alternate dining venue, typically featuring a lighter fare, or special event meals like hamburger cookouts at lunch. In the evenings, Aquavit transforms into a more formal space serving from an alternate menu. Dining in Aquavit is included in the cruise fare, but reservations may be needed.
Throughout the cruise, beer, wine and soft drinks are served during lunch and dinner at no additional charge. The beverage list reflects the local availability and changes as the cruise progresses. Viking offers a Silver Spirits beverage package upgrade that includes premium beers and wines and bar drinks during all bar hours.
Egdir has 95 cabins, with eight categories to choose from. Twenty-five riverview staterooms measuring 150 square feet have portholes that do not open. Twenty-two French balcony staterooms measure 135 square feet, and 39 Veranda staterooms measure 205 square feet and offer a step-out balcony. There are nine suites total, including seven Veranda suites that offer both a French balcony and a step-out balcony. The Verandah Suites measure 275 square feet. Two rear-facing Explorer suites measure 445 square feet and offer wrap-around balconies. Additionally, Explorer suites include perks like laundry, a fully stocked (and included) minibar as well as the Silver Spirits beverage package.
All cabins are well-designed with enough closet and drawer space for two passengers. Viking provides an above average number of electrical outlets and charging ports for devices. Small refrigerators and safes are standard in all cabins. Drinking water is refreshed daily.
Viking excels at bathroom design with features like heated floors, anti-fog mirrors and plenty of shelf space.
The top deck is a place for relaxation, sightseeing and activities between port explorations. You can expect lounge chairs for both sunbathers and shade seekers, a walking track, deck games like chess and shuffleboard, as well as a putting area and herb garden.
Entertainment in the lounge (Upper Deck) is often of the cultural variety, with local entertainers brought on board as the cruise progresses. A keyboardist provides music for evening game nights, dancing, and speakers. Daytime activities when the ship is underway often include cooking classes or even expert guides explaining the scenery as the ship sails.