Viking says its foray into ocean cruising is proving to be a success, as its inaugural season sells out eight months before the first ship is scheduled to launch.

According to the line’s managing director Australia and New Zealand Teresia Fors, the first season is fully booked and a quarter of the 2016 inventory has already been sold.

Ms Fors says rooms are selling fast because the ship, Viking Star, and itineraries were based on requests from previous customers.

“We went out and asked past guests:  if we were to create an ocean program, what would you want? What’s missing now? How can we make it better?” she said at the official launch of Viking Ocean Cruises in Sydney.

During conversations, the company found passengers wanted a luxurious ship, and itineraries with new destinations and experiences.

“The ship is beautiful but we’re not there for the sea days,” she explained.

“We’re there to explore the destination and that was the key to what we developed.”

Launching in May next year, Viking Star, is the line’s first of four ocean vessels debuting over the next two years.

Carrying 930-passengers, the ship has an infinity pool at the back; an indoor pool; an Aquavit Terrace where pop up barbeques take place; and an Explorer’s Lounge where guests can enjoy a drink while watching Europe pass by.

Itineraries range from eight- to- 50-day cruises around the Mediterranean, UK and Scandinavia. Among them is a 15-day ‘Viking Homelands’ cruise from Stockholm to Bergen. Guests will visit eight countries, including Finland, Russia, Estonia, the Baltic, Poland, Germany, Denmark and Norway.

Click here for images inside Viking Star.