Sat. Jun 22nd, 2024

Ahoy, young explorers! You are ready to go on an incredible journey to the past to learn more about Viking longships. These ancient vessels played a key role in the Vikings’ successes as traders, explorers, and fearless warriors. This educational piece will uncover some fascinating facts about Viking longships that transport you to an exciting world of adventure.

Viking Longships Were Ingeniously Design

Viking longships were famous for their design. They could sail quickly on the open seas or navigate even shallow rivers. These longships were slender and long, making them suitable for raids and trading voyages. The shallow-drafted vessels had a shallow hull, which enabled them to travel in waters as little as a meter deep.

Viking Longships Are Built With a Distinct Form

Viking longships were known for their unique shape. These longships had a bow in front and a stern at the back that curled upwards. This often culminated with carved dragon or serpent heads. These dragon’s heads were ornaments and protected the ship against sea monsters and bad spirits.

They were Lightweight and Fast

Viking longships reached impressive speeds due to their lightweight. This made them the perfect choice for sudden attacks or quick escapes in battles and raids. The narrow, longships design also reduced water resistance, increasing their speed.

Viking Longships Are Made of wood

Viking ships were usually constructed of oak. It was a sturdy material that was easily available in the Viking regions. The wooden planks were expertly nailed together, and the flexible design allowed for the ship to handle North Atlantic rough seas.

The Crew Included Skilled Sailing Sailors

A Viking longship consisted of warriors as well as skilled sailors. The sailors operated and navigated their ships while the warriors fought if required. The teamwork was critical on these ships to ensure successful missions and safe navigation.

Viking Longships Use both Oars & Sails

Viking longships, also known as Viking sloops, were multi-purpose vessels. They could be rowed or sailed. These vessels had a simple mast and large square sails, which were great for catching wind when traveling long distances. When the wind is calm or precise maneuvering is required, the crew can row the vessel using long oars.

The Steering System was Clever

Viking longships are equipped with an unusual steering system known as side rudders or steering boards. The system made it possible to move the ship easily on the water by changing the direction in which the rudder was pointed. The Vikings used this innovation to guide their ships with precision.

Vikings Sail to the Farthest Reaches of the World

Viking longships are not limited to Scandinavian waterways. These intrepid navigators explored the seas and reached as far as North America, the Mediterranean, and the Middle East. Their ships connected different cultures and traded goods from far-off lands.


Viking longships exhibited true engineering feats. They allowed the Vikings to explore distant lands efficiently, trade, and carry out raids. Their sleek design, clever construction, and skilled crews made them legendary vessels in their time. These ships have captured our imaginations for centuries and are a testament to the Viking’s prowess in seafaring and warfare. So the next time you hear of these incredible longships, think about the Viking Age and its adventurous spirit.