FOLLOW IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF THE ALL-AMERICAN & SECREAMING EAGLE PARATROOPERS WHO JUMPED INTO NORMANDY BEFORE D-DAY, WERE PART OF THE LARGEST AIRBORNE OPERATION IN MARKET GARDEN & HAD TO ATTACK INTO THE BATTLEOF THE BULGE TO HALT THE GERMAN BLITZKRIEG!
Note: Plan for 2021 and register By 1 Jan to SAVE $200 to guarantee seeing the most interesting sites in Normandy inaddition to seeing all the famous sites from the Battle of the Bulge & “A Bridge Too Far” too!!
For 2021, MHT is offering our tour that follows units like Easy Company, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment and their “Band of Brothers” legacy as well as a more comprehensive battlefield experience to include the equally epic struggle at Bastogne for the Battle of the Bulge and along “Hell’s Highway” as they jumped into the Netherlands! Recent D-Day tour participants have expressed the desire to see more of the european battlefields and we have answered that call! You can definately pay more and see less with some of our competitors!
Tour Leader: Col Rich Yoder, USMC(Ret), MHT’s WWII European Historian
Join MHT’s Band of Airborne Brothers for 2021! MHT has expanding our traditional D-Day tour to include the World War II Battle of the Bulge in Belgium and Operation Market Garden in the Netherlands. Of all the battles fought by United States in Europe during WWII, these three are considered the most significant.
D-Day - June 6th, 1944. It has been 77 years but few events have galvanized a population and stirred the imagination like D-Day. As dawn broke over the beaches, thousands of real-life “Private Ryans”, British, French, Canadians and Americans, left the relative safety of their landing craft and stormed ashore to begin the Liberation of France. We will be there for the Official June 6th Ceremonies after starting the day on the invasion beaches.
Operation Market Garden (17 to 25 September 1944) was a failed World War II military operation fought in the Netherlands It was the brainchild of Field Marshal Sir Bernard Law Montgomery and strongly supported by Winston Churchill and Franklin Roosevelt. The airborne part of the operation was undertaken by the First Allied Airborne Army with the land operation by XXX Corps of the British Second Army. The objective was to create a 64 mi salient into German territory with a bridgehead over the River Rhine, creating an Allied invasion route into northern Germany. This was to be achieved by seizing a series of nine bridges by three Airborne Divisions with mechanized forces swiftly following over the bridges on “Hell’s Highway.” It failed, however, as faulty intelligence allowed the Germans to hold the last bridge making the operation portrayed in the book and film “A Bridge Too Far” fail to secure a bridgehead over the Rhine.
The Battle of the Bulge (16 December 1944 – 25 January 1945) was the last major German offensive campaign of WWII on the Western Front. It was launched through the densely forested Ardennes region of Wallonia in Belgium, France, and Luxembourg as a last gamble to halt the Allies advance. The surprise attack caught the Allied forces completely off guard. U.S. forces bore the brunt of the attack and incurred their highest casualties for any operation during the war but held the Nazi columns and turned the tide for the invasion of Germany.
Military Historical Tours is proud to offer another in our series of signature European Battlefield Tours. Our tours include exclusive MHT tour booklet & sites other tours bypass. All of these things, along with the most experienced staff of Program Directors, Battlefield Tour Leaders and Historians will combine to make your trip the most enjoyable, relaxing, entertaining and educational experience possible. We welcome your phone calls or e-mails to discuss your tour with one of our Battlefield Specialists. Call us at 703-590-1295 we look forward to hearing from you!
Tour Price: $ TBD*
(BoDO- Based on Double Occupancy)
Single Supplement: $ TBD*
Tour Price Includes:
- 4—Star Hotel Accommodations at CDG, Paris, Bastogne, Caen, Normandy & downtown Paris
- Air-conditioned deluxe motorcoach with onboard restroom
- Meals as indicated in itinerary
- Historical trip information packet, containing maps & other tour information.
- Admission fees to all sites, museums and special attractions listed
- Services of experienced Tour Leader and English-speaking local guides.
Airfare not included: Get your own or Book Optional MHT Air-fare: Round-trip economy or business class airfare from your hometown to Amsterdam and returning from Paris CDG price quoted upon registration!
* - Price based on € conversion rate at final billing
Day 1 – Aug 26 – Departure. Depart your hometown airport for an International Portal for the overnight flight to Amsterdam. Dinner and a continental breakfast served aboard.
Day 2 - Aug 27 - Arrival in Amsterdam. We arrive in Amsterdam this morning. Meet with the tour group at the hotel. The evening is free. Hotel: Holiday Inn Expres Amsterdam - City Hall.
Day 3 - Aug 28 - “A Bridge Too Far” - Arnhem & Nijmegen.
After breakfast, we begin our study of Operation Market Garden, the mistaken attempt by the Allied forces to strike directly for Berlin. Control of the bridges at Eindhoven, Nijmegen and Arnhem was essential for this planned quick strike into Germany. We drive Hell's Highway where the 101st and 82nd Airborne broke through to connect with the British at Arnhem. We visit Nijmegen to see the daring crossing of the Waal River by the 82nd Airborne. From there we proceed to Arnhem where again we cross the "Bridge Too Far" where for three desperate days the British 1st Airborne “Red Devils” under BGen John Frost held it. Afterwards, we finish at the Airborne Museum at Oosterbeek. Hotel: Holiday Inn Expres Arnhem Meals: B - Included. L & D - On Own.
Days 4 - 6 - Aug 29 - 31 Battle of the Bulge. After breakfast, we journey to Bastogne, Belgium, MHT is most fortunate to have as our local guide, Henri Mignon, a retired artillery officer of the Belgian Army. His family used to live in a small village north of Bastogne, in an area reoccupied by the German SS during the Battle of the Bulge. Though only 10 years old, he clearly recalls the hardships of the fighting and especially the day when his father was killed by an artillery round while getting the family water from the farm well. In the three days we are with Henri, we will visit McAuliffe Square with its famous Sherman tank, the Bastogne Historical Center, the "foxholes" of the "Easy Company" (made famous in "Band of Brothers"), the German Cemetery in Recogne, the "Siegfried Line" with its signature "Dragon’s Teeth,” the site of the in-famous "Malmedy Massacre" and one of only 11 German “King” Tiger II tanks remaining in the world. Henri will have special access to the Belgium military base from where General McAuliffe sent his famous reply, “NUTS!” to the German surrender demand 1945. We will investigate the Battle of Hürtgen Forest a series of fierce battles fought from 19 September to 16 December 1944 and was the longest battle on German ground during World War II, and is the longest single battle the U.S. Army has ever fought. The Germans fiercely defended the area because it served as a staging area for their winter offensive Unternehmen: Wacht am Rhein (Battle of the Bulge.) Hotel: Best Western Melba. Meals: B -Included each day. L & D – On Own.
Day 7 - Sep 1 - Drive to Normandy. Today we make the long drive to Normandy. On the way we will stop at the “Armistice Clearing” near Compiegne and a walk through the small museum housing a sister coach to Marshal Foch’s “Surrender Carriage” where WWI essentially ended and where the French capitulated to Hitler in June 1940. In a way, it is the place where WWI ended and WWII began. Hotel: Caen Moderne Caen. Meals: B - Included. L & D - On Own.
Days 8 - 11 - Sep 2 - 5 - Normandy. Our hotel in Caen or Bayeux will be our home base for exploring Normandy. Omaha Beach was the most intensely contested beach on D-Day. It is six miles wide – the largest of all the five beaches. The entire beach was overlooked by cliffs which made attacking the area very difficult. You will walk the sands where the liberation of France began 75 years ago. 29th Infantry Division. Our tour will include the seawall, bunkers, and other German defenses along the beach. The western half of the beach was assigned to the untested US 29th Infantry Division. Vierville Draw where the 29th landed was featured in both "The Longest Day " and "Saving Private Ryan." 1st Infantry Division. The eastern half of the beach was assigned to battle-hardened 1st Infantry Division. The Big Red One stormed ashore and began fighting for its life on a strip of beach near Coleville-sur-Mer that had been marked the "Easy Red" on battle maps. Slowly, spurred by the individual heroism of many individuals, the move inland got underway. Pointe du Hoc. The 2nd Ranger Battalion scaled the 100-foot cliffs to eliminate the German heavy guns that could threaten both Utah and Omaha beaches. At a high cost, they successfully defended against determined German counterattacks for two days. The Pointe du Hoc Ranger Monument was erected by the French to honor the incredible courage of the Rangers. American Airborne Landings. In the early hours of June 6, 1944, the American airborne forces successfully executed some of the most difficult and challenging missions of D-Day. Their objectives were to secure the invasion right flank against German counterattacks and secure the causeways off Utah Beach. 82nd Airborne Divison. Paratroopers of the 82nd were to capture objectives in the area west of the Allied amphibious invasion, specifically the town of Sainte-Mère-Eglise and the La Fière bridge. Ste Mere Eglise. Another site made famous by the film, "The Longest Day." A mannequin of a paratrooper hangs from the church spire. The Airborne Forces Museum has a C-47 troop transport aircraft that flew in the invasion and a rare WACO glider on display. 101st Airborne Division. The 101st Airborne Division's objectives were to secure the four causeway exits behind Utah Beach to ensure the exit route for the 4th Infantry Division from the beach later that morning. Brecourt Manor. The 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment’s assault by Easy Company on the German howitzer battery that was disrupting the exit leading off Utah Beach was immortalized in the series “Band of Brothers”. It is often cited as a classic example of small-unit tactics and leadership in overcoming a larger enemy force. Utah Beach. The westernmost of the five landing beaches. The beach was situated on the east at the edge of a marshland zone which had been flooded by the Germans. Only four causeways could be used to cross this marshland and reach inlands. 4th Infantry Divison. The objective of the 4th, supported by airborne landings of the 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions, was to secure a beachhead on the Cotentin Peninsula. The division only lost 197 men during the day and by the night of the 6th of June, 20,000 men and 1,700 vehicles were ashore. It was for his actions that day that Brigadier General Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., Assistant Division Commander, earned the first Medal of Honor of the division. Utah Beach D-Day Museum. Built on the very beach where the first American troops landed. A restored, original B26 “Marauder” bomber is among the displays. Overlord Museum. This privately-owned museum just outside the Cemetery gate chronicles the period of the Allied landing until the liberation of Paris. The collection was assembled by someone who was both a witness to the conflict and involved in the reconstruction of Normandy. Personal items from individual soldiers and armored fighting vehicles from the six armies in Normandy are presented in set displays showing over 35 vehicles, tanks and guns. La Cambe. At the somber German military cemetery at La Cambe, 21,500 German troops are buried, including Tiger Tank "Ace" Michael Wittmann. The design contrast with the Normandy American Cemetery is striking. Pegasus Bridge and Museum. The bridges across the River Orne and the Caen canal had to be captured and held intact to enable the seaborne reinforcements to cross. The result was textbook example of a successful operation. German Merville Battery. The gun battery had to be put out of action. The 100mm caliber guns could fire down on to Sword Beach and the Allied fleet off the coast. Although successful, it was a nearly disastrous operation. On display is a restored C-47 aircraft from D-day. Sword, Juno, Gold Beaches. Drive along the British and Canadian landing beaches. Contrast the terrain differences between these beaches and Omaha/Utah beaches to be visited later. Arromanches. The remains of one of the two artificial "Mulberry" harbors erected in the landing operation may still be seen. Port-en-Bessin. A picturesque fishing port that was home to one of the 'Pipelines Under the Sea' (PLUTO) pumping stations. Longes-sur-Mer The German coastal defense battery at, probably the best remaining example of such a battery in Normandy. Bayeux. The first city of the Battle of Normandy to be liberated, and on 16 June 1944 General Charles de Gaulle made the first of two major speeches in Bayeux in which he made clear that France sided with the Allies. The buildings in Bayeux were virtually untouched during the Battle of Normandy, the German forces being fully involved in defending Caen from the Allies. Hotel: Caen Moderne. Meals: B-Included each day. L & D - On Own. D - Included last night.
Day 12 - Sep 6 - Paris. We will bid farewell to Normandy and head for Paris. Rouen. The capital of Normandy. What makes this city unique is its incredible Gothic architecture coupled with half-timbered medieval street houses. A stroll through the quaint old streets of Rouen, in Upper Normandy, feels like a walk back in time. Cathédrale Notre-Dame. In the heart of the old town, it is one of the largest and most impressive Gothic cathedrals in France. The cathedral's main structure was built in the 13th century but the building was not completed until the 16th century. Tour du Gros-Horloge (Big Clock Tower). The huge decorative clock dates from 1889 and still serves its timekeeping functions for the city. Joan of Arc. Joan was captured by Anglo-Burgundian forces, tried for witchcraft and heresy and burned at the stake in 1431 in the city square. Hotel: Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel. Meals: B - Included. L & D - On Own.
Day 13 - Sep 7 - Paris. Individual departure for CDG airport for your return flight to the USA, arriving the same day.
"In the Footsteps" WWII Normandy - Battle of the Bulge - Arnhem (26 Aug - 7 Sep 2021)
- Product Code: 2108-EUR-PARA
- Availability: In Stock