Here are ten great war tours to go and visit if this year’s commemoration of the 100th-year of the Great War’s outbreak have inspired you to learn more about war history as well as pay respect to those who have fallen during these battles.
TEN GREAT WAR TOURS 1: Visiting Fallen Ancestors
You can pay your respects to an ancestor who fought during the Great War through the battlefield weekends of Back-Roads Touring. The said tour is adjustable enough to allow you time to visit a war cemetery in the northeastern part of France and Belgium. Through this stint, you can also take a look at some of the sites where the most crucial battles in the Western Front took place — Somme, Villers-Bretonneux, Ypres Salient, Fromelles, Loos and Vimy Ridge.
Arrangement: Payment goes from £485 per person with the tour running for about three days. Package includes return flights to the nearest major airport where you are from, transfers, a two-night stay at a Bed and Breakfast along with one evening meal and entrance to the Hooge Crater Museum as well as the Fromelles visitor center and nearby trenches. Departures are ongoing from April to October.
TEN GREAT WAR TOURS 2: The Last Post in Ypres
In this Great War tour, you will be able to visit and hear the affecting sound of the Last Post at the Menin Gate in Ypres, Belgium. Aside from that, you will have the chance to reflect as you walk through the battlefields in Passchendaele, Flanders and the Somme. The memorial’s buglers play their haunting sound in commemoration to the countless of soldiers who were never found at 8 in the evening every night. Additionally, Leger Holidays offer longer tours which include a visit to the Vimy Ridge and the Arras.
Arrangement: Price to pay goes from £269 per person with the package including a two or three-night stay at a Bed and Breakfast, travel via a luxury coach, outings and even a guided tour to the battlefield. The said arrangement is based on the departure date of February 19, 2015.
TEN GREAT WAR TOURS 3: Self-drive to Normandy
Remember Second World war through a self-drive tour tot he place where Operation Overlord took place, the mission which made way for the victory of the Allies. This D-Day self-drive tour is offered by Brittany Ferries with a package that includes a one-night stay at Port-en-Bessin-Huppain, another one night in Arromanches-les-Baines and lastly, in Caen. The route runs for 32 miles with museums, gun emplacements the Mulberry floating harbour at Arromanches, the American Cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer, the Mémorial de Caen and Pegasus Bridge along the way.
Arrangement: Package deal, which includes a car for two people with ferry travel and three-night stay in a Bed and Breakfast, goes from £230 per person.
TEN GREAT WAR TOURS 4:WWI Walk in Picardy
Belle France is behind this walking tour that takes you exploring in a place marred by the Great War. For the first night, you will find yourself in the medieval fortress of Laon. You will be able to cover about ten miles per day through walking with your bags being transported from hotel through hotel courtesy of the touring firm. The expected walking route will take you to a part of the Chemin des Dames road where you will see a lot of memorials and cemeteries along the way. You will also be able to visit The Dragon’s Lair, the series of caves WWI soldiers used to hide command posts and hospitals during the Great War. You will also be able to visit Le Monument d’Ailles, the memorial built in memory of a whole village destroyed due to the war. The last night will take you back to Laon where you started.
Arrangement: Price is from £690 per person and includes half-board accommodation for six nights [based on two persons sharing].
TEN GREAT WAR TOURS 5: Reminisce the Armistice at Thiepval
You can mark the anniversary of the Armistice in this scheduled tour on November 2015 that will take you to a service at the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing. Aside from that, a coach trip together with the War Memorial Society will tour you on some of the key areas in the Western Front like the Somme, Ypres and the Passchendaele as well as war cemeteries like Tyne Cot. The organizers of the coach ride will also try their best to accommodate guests’ special stop-over requests.
Arrangement: Payment starts from £499 per person. Package includes all transportation including pick-up points across United Kingdom, entrance fee to the museum, Bed and Breakfast accommodation and packed lunches.
TEN GREAT WAR TOURS 6: Gallipoli Luxury Cruise
If you want something fancy, then, this Gallipoli luxury cruise is for you which falls on the centenary of the outbreak of the Battle of Gallipoli — on the 25th of April in 2015. In this rare experience, you can watch the sunrise over the peninsula through this cruise, the area where France and Britain spent a total for eight months trying to capture Turkey with their efforts ending in vain. This historic cruise is part of the five-star stint brought by the Luxury Cruise Company, a stint with the travel itinerary that will take you along the Athens, Istanbul and Azamara route. Aside from visiting WWI battlefields, you will also get to see the beauty of Ephesus, Lemnos, Troy, Assos, Çanakkale, Iznik and Bursa.
Arrangement: The payment is quite high with prices starting from £4,199 per person. The package includes a nine-night all-inclusive cruise excluding flight fares.
TEN GREAT WAR TOURS 7: Cycling Tour through the Western Front
If you are the active type, then, this activity might be perfectly suited for you — not only do you get to learn more about war history, you also get to exert muscle power along the way.
Carl Ooghe, a qualified guide, runs the Cycling the Western Front tour. This stint offers rides to Flanders, the Somme, the Aisne, the Marne and Meuse-Argonne. You can make your way to the destination you choose and take the rest while riding bikes.
Arrangement: Prices are low and start at just £60 per person, though, that doesn’t include travelling and accommodation expenses.
TEN GREAT WAR TOURS 8: Paris and Flanders Tour
It is in France that one really feels how great the scale of the Great War was in terms of tragedy through the many war cemeteries found within the country especially in its northern part. You can take a coach tour through France in this paris and Flanders tour brought by Insight Vacation. The tour will start in Paris, then, going through Flanders, Ypres, the Somme, Thiepval, Vimy Ridge and Amiens.
Arrangement: Prices start from £585 per person based on two sharing Bed and Breakfast accommodations for three nights as well as the transfers and services of the tour director. However, flight fares from Paris excluded from the package.
TEN GREAT WAR TOURS 9: Step in Our Heroes’ Footsteps
Now known as the Road of Remembrance, this route – situated in Folkestone – was trod upon by countless of WWI soldiers before they go to France and Belgium. Step into these very same route through a coach tour made possible by Saga. The coach tour’s route will include visits to Ypres, Arras, the Somme and Bruges. Aside from that, you will get membership to the Step Short charity, an organization that traces the wartime history of the family and will give you the results of its investigations.
Arrangement: Prices start from £599 per person and that includes Bed and Breakfast accommodations as well as five dinners.
TEN GREAT WAR TOURS 10: Coach Tour to Ypres
Leger Holidays make this Coach Tour to Ypres possible. Through this, you will be able to learn some key points in WWI history including when the poison gas was first used by the Germans. Thsi tour will include a visit to the Menin Gate, a chance to hear the haunting last post as well as a tour to the Flanders Field Museum.
Arrangement: Prices start at £369 per person and that includes accommodation, continental breakfast, coach which goes to varied pick-up spots as well as a battlefield guide. The tour will start on April 20 next year.