Britain's bestselling and most widely respected military historian, Sir Antony Beevor's previous books include Stalingrad (winner of the Samuel Johnson Prize for History and Hawthornden Prize for Literature), Berlin - The Downfall and D-Day - The Battle for Normandy.
Celebrate VE Day with Sir Antony Beevor - NEW DATE
We are delighted to offer a NEW date on this very popular tour.
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This week's 75th anniversary of VE Day is very different to the one that was planned, but you can book for next year to mark the anniversary of when the defeated Nazis finally surrendered, bringing to an end one of the bloodiest conflicts the world has ever known. There are countless tales of heroism and sacrifice from the period, some of which you will hear during this exclusive tour to Northern Europe.
To make your trip even more special, you will be joined by three renowned historians in the shape of Sir Antony Beevor and The Telegraph columnist Simon Heffer. Sir Antony, author of Arnhem: The Battle for the Bridges, 1944, will deliver a private talk and field your questions during an evening in the Dutch town, whose road bridge was the site of fierce fighting during the Battle of Arnhem. Simon will join you for a special dinner in Dunkirk on board the paddle steamer Princess Elizabeth, which played a crucial role in the evacuations. He will also give a private talk and Q&A. Your guide, Michael How, will be with you throughout your trip to provide insight into the places you're visiting and give two evening lectures.
In addition to visiting Arnhem, you will tour the Dunkirk beaches and the Dunkirk War Museum in France, as well as Hartenstein Airborne Museum and Ginkel Heath in the Netherlands. Other highlights include a visit to Pegasus Bridge - one of the first targets in the small hours of Operation Overlord - and trips to Sword and Omaha beaches, including a tour of the German defences. You will see the 11th-century Château de Creully that served as Field Marshal Montgomery's tactical headquarters during the summer of 1944.
On visits to the US military cemetery in Colleville-sur-Mer, the Commonwealth War Cemetery in Bayeux and the Arnhem Oosterbeek British Cemetery, you will have the opportunity to pay your respects to those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.
"I hope you can join me for VE Day in the city to hear about researching this dramatic episode in Second World War history." Antony Beevor
Reasons to book
Private tours of Second World War sites
Lecture by Sir Antony Beevor
Dine on Dunkirk "little boat" with Simon Heffer
Visit to the Dutch town of Arnhem
Your trip is 100% protected
Your expert guides
In a 35-year career in Fleet Street in senior editorial positions, Simon Heffer is now a Telegraph columnist. He read English at Cambridge and took a PhD in Modern History at that university, and has written history books on a wide range of subjects, including the Victorian era and the First World War.
- Exclusive talk and Q&A session with Sir Antony Beevor
- Dinner on Princess Elizabeth in Dunkirk with welcome drink, wine and exclusive talk and Q&A session with Simon Heffer
- Return standard-class Eurostar direct to Rotterdam from St Pancras, returning from Caen via Paris
- Two nights' accommodation on half board basis at the Van der Valk Hotel, Arnhem based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room
- One night's accommodation on bed and breakfast basis at the Borel Hotel, Dunkir based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room
- Two nights' accommodation on bed and breakfast basis at the Mercure Hotel, Caen, based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room
- One dinner at Le Mancel restaurantin Caen on VE Day
- Transfers, full touring itinerary, entrance fees
- Paperback copy of The Second World War by Sir Antony Beevor (one per booking))
- Services of Michael How as military guide and tour manager throughout
Day1Arrive in ArnhemArnhem, Netherlands
Travelling direct from London to Rotterdam, you will then continue on to Arnhem for a two night stay.
You start the day with a visit to Ginkel Heath, which was the site of the main landings by the British 1st Airborne Division on September 17, 1944. Then it's on to the excellent Hartenstein Airborne Museum. Situated in the building that was used as the headquarters for the British 1st Airborne Division, the museum offers a fascinating overview of Operation Market Garden. You will also focus on the evacuation of the British 1st Airborne Division across the Rhine. Of over 10,600 men in the Division, 2,071 would end up evacuated. You will also stop at the Lonsdale Church where many of those evacuated took shelter. Nearby is the famous house of Kate ter Horst. Used as a Regimental Aid Post to treat the wounded, it featured in the film A Bridge Too Far. Your VE Day tour will conclude at the Arnhem Oosterbeek British Cemetery. Return to the hotel for dinner and an evening talk from acclaimed historian Sir Antony Beevor with Q&A and opportunity to get your book signed.
Day3Arnhem to Ypres and on to DunkirkDunkirk, France
Morning transfer to Ypres for brief visit to see the Menin Gate and on to Dunkirk to visit the the poignant beach at Dunkirk where hundreds of civilian boats joined the 1940 evacuation of 198,000 British and 140,000 French and Belgian troops. You will learn more about this incredible story of valour at the excellent Dunkirk War Museum. Evening dinner on board the paddle steamer Princess Elizabeth, which helped evacuate 1,673 Allied soldiers in Operation Dynamo. Enjoy a welcome drink, wine and a talk and Q&A with Simon Heffer.
Day4VE Day Dunkirk and to CaenCaen, France
Today, you will transfer Arromanches-les-Baines, where you will learn about the enormous Mulberry artificial harbour and pay a visit to the Musée du Débarquement, before continuing to Caen to check in to hotel for 2-night stay. Evening VE Day anniversary dinner at Le Mancel restaurant, located in the grounds of the Chateau de Caen, with talk from military historian and tour manager, Michael How.
Day5Comprehensive visit to many sites associated with 6 June 1944Caen, France
Today you will make visits to many of the places associated with June 6, 1944, better known as D-Day. This morning, you will head to Ranville and the scene of the British airborne attacks, Pegasus Bridge, and its museum. There you will learn of the glider mission to capture the bridge intact in the early hours of June 6, 1944, commanded by Major John Howard. You will move on to the 'Hillman' German position before seeing the Sword Beach landing site. After lunch, (included) you will journey to Bayeux to pay your respects at Bayeux War Cemetery, the largest British Cemetery on French territory. The German gun battery at Longues-sur-Mer is your next stop before you visit Omaha beach, where the US force was focused. You will follow that with the US military cemetary at Colleville-sur-mer before you return via General Montgomery's headquarters at Creully.
Day6Return home.Caen, France
Today you will transfer to Caen station for return rail travel to London by TGV and Eurostar via Paris.
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