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Viking Baldur and Viking  Magni are slated for launch in late August and September 2013 respectively  and will sail on the 15-day Grand European Tour from Amsterdam to Budapest.

Viking Baldur will also sail on an eight-day Rhine Getaway  from Amsterdam to Basel and Viking Magni on an eight-day Danube Waltz voyage from Passau to Budapest.

Accommodating 190-passengers  in 95 staterooms, the move will ensure Viking River Cruises has the youngest  and largest river cruise fleet in the world.

“As river cruising is a  growing as a popular holiday option in Australia and New Zealand, Viking River  Cruises has been growing both as a fleet and in bookings,” Viking River Cruises  managing director Teresia Fors told e-Travel Blackboard.

“Hence, the need for more  ships and more dates across the popular itineraries in Europe, which has been  received by the Australian and New Zealand markets in a promising way.”

Viking Longships feature the  largest river cruise suites in Europe and are environmentally aware with  onboard solar panels, organic herb gardens and energy efficient hybrid engines  that reduce vibrations for smoother sailing.

2014 will see eight more  Longships launched, bringing the total fleet expansion to 24 in a three-year  period – an unprecedented amount in the cruise industry.

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Words: Natalie Aroyan