Viking River Cruises adds ships and itineraries for 2005 season

LOS ANGELES -- Viking River Cruises made a number of changes for its 2005 season, including adding two new ships -- the Viking Century Sky and the Viking Sun -- and six new itineraries in Europe and China. 

Additions include a seven-night Heart of Germany itinerary, which is built around the Christmas markets and includes stops in Cologne, Eltville, Heidelberg, Koblenz, Mainz and Rudesheim. Rates start at $1,499 per person, double.

The rest of the new itineraries are in China. They include the Imperial Jewels of China, which is either nine or ten nights, including three nights in Beijing, one night in Xian and a three- or four-night Yangtze cruise. A longer version of the tour, called Imperial Jewels & Shoppers Paradise, adds a night in Guilin and three nights in Hong Kong. The short version is priced from $1,979 per person, double, while the longer version is priced from $3,179 per person, double.

Chinas Cultural Delights includes three nights in Beijing, one night in Xian and a nine-night Yangtze cruise from Chongqing to Shanghai. A longer version adds a night in Guilin and three in Hong Kong. The itinerary is priced from $2,829 per person, double, for the nine-night version, or from $4,029 per person, double, for the 13-night version.

The new Roof of the World is a 13-night itinerary with three nights in Beijing, one night each in Xian and Chengdu, three in Lhasa, two in Shanghai and a three-night Yangtze cruise. The cruisetour is priced from $3,379 per person, double.

More information is available on Viking Rivers Web site at www.vikingrivercruises.com.

To contact the reporter who wrote this article, send e-mail to David Cogswell at [email protected].

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