World’s largest Viking ship will visit The Wharf in October

WASHINGTON — The Norwegian Viking ship Draken Harald Hårfagre will make a pit stop at Southwest D.C.’s the Wharf this fall on its 2018 East Coast tour.

The Wharf confirms the educational vessel will make its Wharf stopover Friday, Oct. 5, through Monday, Oct. 15. The Wharf will have details on activities surrounding the ship’s visit later, a spokesperson said.

In 2016, the Draken crossed the North Atlantic Ocean and visited numerous ports. For its 2018 venture, the Draken will make 16 stopovers across the East Coast, including its venture up the Potomac to The Wharf, as well as stops in Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New York and Maryland that have yet to be determined.

The final tour schedule and all stops will be made public later this spring.

“Each Draken stopover offers a unique, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for visitors to relive history in a way never before experienced,” said Captain Björn Ahlander.

“We offer guests the opportunity to not only marvel at this stunning Viking ship on guided deck tours, but also to interact with the crew while they share their personal experiences of the thrill, fear and exhilaration felt from having relived one of the world’s most mythological sea voyages — the first transatlantic crossing and the Viking discovery of the New World, more than a thousand years ago.”

Its 2016 journey took the world’s largest Viking ship sailing in modern times to the Shetland Islands, Faeroe Islands, Iceland, Greenland, Newfoundland and the St. Lawrence Seaway and Great Lakes, followed by New York City and then Mystic Seaport, in Connecticut, where it has been docked since.

The Draken is crewed by 35 men and women, and anyone looking for an adventure to joining the crew is encouraged to apply for both paid and volunteer crew positions.

The Draken, which includes sails and 25 pairs of oars, is 115 feet long.

The Wharf’s first sizable ship visit came in late April, when the 175-passenger American Constitution cruise ship made a stopover.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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