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  • Writer's pictureJason Leppert

Ceremonial Cruising: Port and Ship Plaque Exchanges

Have you ever roamed the halls of a cruise ship to discover a wall, or more likely walls, plastered with beautiful plaques? Well, those are ceremonial pieces signifying an inaugural exchange between the cruise ship and a port-of-call or another vessel, and as I witnessed onboard Viking Ocean Cruises’ latest Viking Sea, such events are quite special.

I had the chance to sail on the brand new ship as it visited Norway for the very first time with Torstein Hagen, the chairman and CEO of the line, and attended several plaque exchanges including the one in the port of Bodo (pictured above). There, captain Gulleik Svalastog met with naval and cultural ambassadors of the destination as he presented a metallic crest representing the Viking Sea. And in exchange, the port presented a wooden panel commemorating the June 12, 2016 call.

Traditionally, such plaques are displayed somewhere onboard. I have seen them displayed more privately on navigation bridges or more tucked away in corridors lower in the ship

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