Switzerland : Viking Ocean Cruises’ Viking Sun called at the Port of Kiel in Germany’s Schleswig-Holstein region for the first time on 3 July.
Calling during an 11-day Scandinavian cruise from Denmark to the Netherlands, the 930-guest Viking Sun was escorted to Kiel’s Ostseekai Cruise Terminal by a port tug displaying a water fountain. The port’s managing director Dirk Claus boarded the vessel to welcome guests and present her captain, Olav Soevdsnes, with a commemorative plaque to mark the inaugural visit.
Guests were able to enjoy organised city tours in Kiel and the historic Hanse city of Lübeck, trips to Eutin and Gut Panker in Holstein Switzerland, and visits to the seaside spa resort of Laboe.
Viking Sun’s sister ship Viking Sky will make her maiden call in Kiel on 2 October.
“It is an honour that Viking Ocean Cruises has included our port in its route planning for the first time,” said Claus. “The federal state capital Kiel has much to recommend itself to international visitors and is the stepping-off point for day excursions throughout the whole of Schleswig-Holstein.”
Viking Ocean Cruises is the second new customer to call at the port in 2018 – Spanish operator Pullmantur also visited for the first time this year. In total, Kiel expects to host 600,000 cruise passengers during 165 visits by 32 ships in 2018.
“Schleswig-Holstein as a tourist destination is being taken ever more seriously by the international shipping companies,” said Claus. “The port of Kiel will continue to grow in this sector, offering not only its nautical advantages and its modern terminal facilities, but also proximity to points of interest for tourists.”