Normandy to the Liberation of Holland 2023

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1-888-597-3519

905-639-9954

dhtour@dhtour.ca

15 Days / 14 Nights
Availability : April 26 - Only one departure!
Start: Paris, France
End: Amsterdam, Holland
 

HONOURING THE 78th ANNIVERSARY OF THE LIBERATION IN 2023

Normandy to the Liberation of Holland: 2 nts Caen, 2 nts Arras, 2 nts Ypres, 8 nts Arnhem

Join us, May 2023, for the 78th Liberation of Holland, to reunite for the first time in 2 years, with our Dutch friends and family. We’ll celebrate together, remembering the Canadian veterans who liberated the Netherlands from the Second World War.

For the first 6 nights of the tour we will explore Canada’s involvement in both WW1 and WW2 in northern Europe, with visits including Normandy, Dieppe and Vimy Ridge. During the 2nd half of our tour we will embrace the Dutch and Canadian celebrations in a series of events and tours all designed to honour those who did the impossible, up against all odds, so that we could have peace today.

15 DAYS / 14 NIGHTS

Minimum Tour Capacity: 20 Travellers per 40 seat coach/ Maximum Tour Capacity:  25 Travellers per 50 seat coach

Contact DHTour at 1-888-597-3519 or 905-639-9954 or dhtour@dhtour.ca to book: Normandy to the Liberation of Holland. 

Looking for more Battlefield tours or are you interested in a private tour?

Normandy to the Liberation of Holland: Tour Details

The Battlefield Tour Difference

– Celebrate 78 years of remembrance in the Liberation of WW2, in Holland
– Celebrations & Commemorations in Holten, Arnhem, and Groningen
– Explore the grounds of Vimy Ridge, where it is famously said Canada became a Nation

– Beaumont Hamel: The largest fully intact, First World War battlefield in the world.  It has been kept as it       was and maintained by Canada

– The last post  Ceremony at Menin Gate honouring those who fought in the Great War
– Visit the German Cemetery of Langemark to find a different perspective

 

 

Pick Up Location & TIme

Charles de Gaulle Airport  ( Paris)
(Google Map)
10:00am – Meet your tour manager in the arrivals lounge.

 

 

Drop off Location & Time

Schiphol Amsterdam Airport  ( Amsterdam) (Google Map)
11:00am drop off at airport

 

 

Price Includes

  • 14 nights accommodations in Superior Tourist Class (3 - 4 Star Hotels
  • Full-Time Experienced Battlefield Tour Manager
  • Executive Motor Coach with Washroom/AC/tea/coffee
  • Daily breakfasts, 12 dinners
  • Online Custom Map Kit & Tour Resource & Info Guide
  • All surcharges, fees, and departure taxes
  • All Entrances as per your Itinerary

Meals

  • 14 breakfasts
  • 0 lunch
  • 12 dinners
  • 0 teas

Price Excludes

  • Airfare - this is a land only itinerary
  • Transfers
  • Lunches (L), Some Dinners (D) + and drinks with dinner
  • Gratuities owed to tour staff (may we suggest 5EUR per person, per day)
  • Porterage (luggage handling to your room available upon request)
  • Travel Insurance
What to Expect

With over 30 years of experience we provide you with a seamless travel program using trusted accommodation and restaurants that we personally know and love. As well, you’re receiving reliable and insightful information from an experienced and knowledgeable source, gaining one of the most in-depth understandings of the areas you’ll be exploring.

Following the footsteps of our fathers, The Battlefield Tours has had the honour of leading our Canadian Veterans through the Battlefields of Europe. Unique to mainstream tours, the Battlefield Tours are different: This is real history. 

Itinerary

Day 1- Wednesday, April 26thPegasus Bridge

Upon your arrival into Paris CDG, you will be met by your Tour Manager and Coach Driver before our journey to Normandy. We begin our orientation with a visit to Pegasus Bridge where the 6th British Airborne landed, captured and liberated the first house on D-Day, the Café Gondree. We continue to Caen for our hotel check-in to enjoy a relaxed afternoon before our group welcome dinner in the old port. (D)

Accommodation: Novotel, Caen 4* or similar

Day 2 - Thursday, April 27thCanadian battlefields of Normandy

Today we will explore the Canadian battlefields of Normandy, including visits to the Queens’ Own Rifles House – the first house liberated by Canadian forces – and the Juno Beach Center, to explore the beaches, museum, and bunkers. En route today, we will also visit Abbayes des Ardennes, to see the Canadian Memorial Garden, as well as Point 67, to discuss the devastating Battle of Verrieres Ridge. We end the day with a solemn visit to the Beny-sur-Mer Canadian Military Cemetery. Tonight, after enjoying a local meal in Bayeux, we return to Port en Bessin for our overnight. (B,D)

Accommodation Novotel, Caen 4*

Day 3- Friday, April 28thDieppe

Today we say our farewells to Normandy and head along the French coast to the seaside resort town of Dieppe. Here, we will explore the Blue Beach at Puys to view the gun emplacements on the cliff tops, which, on Aug 19, 1942, were responsible for such terrible Canadian casualties. We will also visit the Dieppe Canadian Cemetery before traveling to the main landing beaches of Red and White on the Dieppe seafront. In the late afternoon, we continue our drive to the City of Arras, in the North of France, for our check-in and overnight. (B,D)

Accommodation: Mercure, Arras 4*

Day 4- Saturday, April 29thSomme, Beaumont Hamel, Lochnagar Crater

Today will be spent on the battlefields of the Somme. We start underground, at the Musee Somme 1916 in the Town of Albert. We continue to explore the largest preserved battlefield in the world, at Beaumont Hamel – dedicated to the Royal Newfoundland and Labrador Regiment who lost so many men on that first day of battle. After enjoying a locally made picnic lunch, we will view the Lochnagar Crater, the largest man-made, non-nuclear crater in the world. We will also see the Memorial to the Missing at Thiepval, the Tank Monument at Pozieres and the Canadian monument at Courcelette. This evening, we return to the gothic city of Arras, with time to explore the city and enjoy dinner on our own. (B)

Accommodation: Mercure, Arras 4*

Day 5 - Sunday, April 30thHill 70, Vimy Ridge Memorial Park, Menin Gate Last Post Ceremony

Today we will visit the Canadian Memorial at Hill 70 to commemorate the Battle of Hill 70 – oftentimes dubbed as “Canada’s Forgotten Battle”. In the afternoon, we continued to Vimy Ridge Memorial Park. It was here, at Hill 145, on April 1917, that Canada truly became a nation in the eyes of the world. Its troops combined and stormed Vimy Ridge after all other allied forces had failed to do so. We will tour the tunnels, trenches and memorial, as well as the new interpretation centre, which opened in Spring 2017 for the 100th Anniversary. When our explorations of the battlefields are through, we continue on to Ypres the City of Peace. After checking into our hotel we will enjoy an early group meal together in the heart of Ypres’ Grote Markt. Tonight, at 8PM, we will witness the iconic and historic Last Post Ceremony, at the Menin Gate Memorial to the Missing, led by the Ieper Fire Department & the Last Post Association. This daily act of homage is among the most memorable acts of remembrance that we will witness on our tour. (B,D)

Accommodation: Ariane, Ypres 4*

Day 6 - Monday, May 1stEssex Farm, Tyne Cot Commonwealth Cemetery, Hill 62

Today we explore the Ypres Salient of WW1. We begin our introduction with a visit to Essex Farm, the place where John McCrae wrote the famous poem “In Flanders Fields”. We will also visit the Tyne Cot Commonwealth Cemetery – the largest Commonwealth Cemetery, of any conflict, in the world. We then discuss the Battle of Passchendaele, with visits to the Crest Farm Memorial. We continue further to explore the German Cemetery of Langemark, and the ‘Brooding Soldier’ at St Julien, marking the place of the first gas attacks against the 1st Canadian Corps. Lastly, we take a visit to the Hooghe Crater, and Hill 62 – a small area of the original battlefield and part of the Canadian Front Line. This evening, we return to Ypres where you can enjoy exploring and dining in Ypres at your own pace. (B)

Accommodation: Ariane, Ypres 4*

Day 7 - Tuesday, May 2ndCanada Poland Museum, John Frost Bridge

Today we drive north to Holland, as we continue to follow the First & Second World War story in Western Europe. Enroute, we explore the mobilization, occupation and liberation of Flanders through lively dioramas at the Canada Poland Museum. As we drive to our hotel in Holland we will discuss the Battle of Arnhem. Upon arrival into Arnhem, we will see the John Frost Bridge, (A Bridge Too Far). We arrive in time for some rest and relaxation before our “Welcome Dinner”, where we will have the opportunity to meet the rest of our Canadian traveling companions. (B, D)

Accommodation: Van der Valk Hotel, Nijmegen-Lent

Day 8 - Wednesday, May 3rdKeukenhof Gardens

After breakfast, we make the drive to Lisse to visit the Keukenhof Gardens, home to Europe’s largest garden, home to 7 million tulip bulbs planted annually. After the war, the Dutch people and their Royal family expressed their thanks to Canada by sending thousands of tulip bulbs to Ottawa. The Gift of Tulips became a yearly tradition. Approximately 10,000 of the bulbs from the Keukenhof are gifted to Canada each year. Before returning to Arnhem we will see the Kinderdijk Windmills UNESCO World Heritage Site, the largest of all windmill sites in the Netherlands, where we’ll discuss more about Holland’s history & heritage. Tonight, we return back to the hotel for our dinner and overnight. (B,D)

Accommodation: Van der Valk Hotel, Nijmegen-Lent

Day 9 - Thursday, May 4thCommonwealth Military Cemetery, Canadian Clubhouse, Liberation Museum

**Private Community Wreath Laying Ceremonies at the Holten and Lochem**

Today is Remembrance Day in the Netherlands. After breakfast, we depart for the breathtaking Commonwealth Military Cemetery in Holten. Here we will explore the new Holten exhibits in their new and impressive interpretation centre, before uniting with Holten’s staff and community for a wreath laying ceremony. Before returning to our hotel for dinner, we will also get the opportunity to visit the Canadian Clubhouse, home to the 005 Canadian Legion of the Netherlands for a big and beautiful lunch. Later, Barry Swarthoff, will show us his collection at the Liberation Museum in Lochem, while showing what his community does to honor the Canadians. (B,D)

Accommodation: Van der Valk Hotel, Nijmegen-Lent

Day 10 - Friday, May 5thWageningen, Apeldoorn

After breakfast, we take the short drive to Wageningen. On 5 May 1945 German Commander General Blaskowitz met with Canadian General Foulkes, here, at the Hotel de Wereld. There they negotiated the surrender document for all German forces in the Netherlands. This afternoon, we head to Apeldoorn to walk the street of the Thank you Canada Lane – home of the ‘Man with Two Hats’ Memorial to Canada. Here we will lay a wreath to commemorate the veterans we’ve held hands with down this lane. This afternoon, we return to our hotel for dinner and a good rest, or take the chance to see the Memorial Crossing over Nijmegen. (B,D)

Accommodation: Van der Valk Hotel, Nijmegen-Lent

Day 11- Friday, May 6thGroningen

**Drive to Groningen**  

This morning we take an early and leisurely drive up to Groningen in the northern part of the Netherlands. Liberated by the 2nd Division in April of 1945, the Canadians up here had to fight for four long days to liberate the city, suffering 43 fatalities, 166 wounded.110 civilians were also tragically caught in the crossfire. This afternoon, we will meet our local guide before exploring the central market square. Here, the heaviest fighting took place – the scars still bear witness to the action 77 years ago. Despite the loss and destruction, the citizens of Groningen were determined to celebrate their liberation – and in the early evening, we will honour that memory in celebration with our local friends in a private dinner event in the heart of the city. After dinner, we take the drive back to Nijmegen, enjoy the option of watching a film on board. (B,D)

Accommodation: Van der Valk Hotel, Nijmegen-Lent

Day 12 - Sunday, May 7thNational Military Museum, New Lancaster Pavillion

**Special visit to the NMM**  

Today, we’ll make the drive out to the National Military Museum in Soesterberg who has invited us to join them for a special introduction. Upon arrival, we will be welcomed with coffee and tea, followed by the orientation of the New Lancaster Pavillion – Nowhere in the world is an aircraft exhibited in this way. A beautiful tribute to the seven crew members of this Lancaster NN775. We’ll partake in an orientation tour, followed by a museum visit for you to explore the museum at your own pace. A large part of the museum’s ground floor is furnished with Canadian and German WWII equipment. (B,D)

Accommodation: Van der Valk Hotel, Nijmegen-Lent

Day 13 - Monday, May 8thHartenstein Hotel, Nijmegen, Groesbeek

**VE DAY in Europe**

Today marks the 78th Anniversary of Victory Day in Europe. We begin our day with a visit to the Hartenstein Hotel, the HQ of the beleaguered Airborne Forces in Operation Market Garden – now a remarkable museum before heading to the city of Nijmegen for an orientation tour and lunch before a private wreath laying ceremony in honour of our good friend, Bud Weeks, at the foot of the Sherman Tank. This afternoon, we continue to Groesbeek with a visit to the Liberation Museum. We finish our day in the Canadian Military Cemetery of Groesbeek to pay our respects. (B,D)

Accommodation: Van der Valk Hotel, Nijmegen-Lent

Day 14 - Tuesday, May 9thZeeland, Canadian War Cemetery of Bergen-Op-Zoom, Woensdrecht

Today we take a drive out to Zeeland to visit the Liberation Museum of Zealand and Liberation Park to discuss the Battle of the Scheldt. Zeeland was the hardest-hit province in the occupation, and the effects of the Battle for the Scheldt were felt far beyond. This single operation cost the Canadians more casualties than any other operation during the whole of WWII. After our orientations we head to Yerseke to sample some of their world renowned seafood for lunch. We end our day with a solemn visit to the Canadian War Cemetery of Bergen-Op-Zoom. Before the day’s end, we will also visit the small village of Woensdrecht. Here, the Black Watch and the Royal Hamilton Light Infantry engaged with the German 6th Paratrooper Regiment in a fierce battle on October 13th, 1944 – “Black Friday” as it is known, due to the high losses of men from both Canadian unit – however, victory was achieved, and it paved the way in cutting off a large number of German forces in the battle of the Scheldt. Tonight we return to our hotel for our dinner and overnight. (B,D)

Accommodation: Van der Valk Hotel, Nijmegen-Lent

Day 15- Tuesday, May 10thAmsterdam

After breakfast, you will be transferred to Schiphol Amsterdam airport for our flights back to Canada. (B)

Option to extend to Berlin or Amsterdam with visits to Anne Frank & the Dutch Resistance Museum… ask us!

Dates and Prices
Departure Date Double/Twin (pp) Single Rate
2023: April 26 $6,285 $7,395

TOUR PAYMENT SCHEDULE:

Initial Deposit: $500.00 (of which $300 is non-refundable) to guarantee your space is due immediately

Your Remaining Balance: Due by Thursday, February 24th, 2023 (90 days prior to departure)

 

Pricing

Pricing is per person (pp) based on twin/ double occupancy.
Rates are in $ CAD.

 


Contact DHTour at 1-888-597-3519 or 905-639-9954 or dhtour@dhtour.ca  to book.

Ask us for the best available pricing for your dates & choice of airline.

 

Notes

Rooms:

Please specify if you prefer a double (shared) or twin beds. Most rooms are doubles and twins may be on request. Single rooms are in short supply and early booking is advised. All rooms have private facilities which will be either bath or WC or shower & WC. We will try to meet your request but cannot guarantee your preference will be met.
 

Luggage:
We ask that those of you on the motor coach tours, limit your luggage to one suitcase plus a carry on. Please be sure that you are aware of current airport and airline weight and carry-on restrictions.
 

Wheelchairs:
We are able to carry your folding wheelchair in the luggage compartment but not battery powered wheelchairs. Please advise the Battlefield Tours if you intend to bring one. If you are disabled in any way please ask our staff about the suitability of any particular tour or hotel.

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