There are a select number of battlefield tours that every military history enthusiast should experience. Here we list seven of the finest, most reasonably priced, worldwide tours available.
Guided Battlefield Tours
Our success has been based on providing our guests with a quality, personal experience at a reasonable price. Our group sizes are limited on each scheduled tour. You will be accompanied by a specialist guide who will be aware of any special interest that you have discussed with us. Our guides will place sites in a proper historical context, in addition to bringing each site to life in terms of the experiences of men who served there.
We are happy to talk to you about the military service of relatives and can give you advice on how to undertake your own research or offer the services of our researcher. Our tours are inspired by a passion for history and a deep appreciation of the sacrifice of past generations. We ensure that all our guests experience the battlefields in an atmosphere of respect and remembrance.
We offer a range of WWI and WWII tours in Northern Europe. The cost of the tours include all travel from the point of pick up, bed and breakfast accommodation in 3* hotels, and bottled water each day, in addition to tea and coffee and entry to all museums. There are no hidden costs. Our 2014 dates are now available for booking. Details of our tours are on our website. Please telephone us if you have any questions or email us to receive a brochure.
TEL: 01633 258207
Treading in Tommy’s Footsteps
Recalling the Somme
Chapters from the Western Front
Battles of 1917-1918
The Forgotten Front
Poets at War 1914-1918
Walking the Somme Battlefields
Normandy and the D Day Landings
The Battle of Arnhem – Operation Market Garden
Entente Cordiale Battlefield Tours
Entente Cordiale Battlefield Tours has developed themed WWI battlefield tours to key destinations on the Western Front. We also offer bespoke WWI battlefield tours that can be arranged as a personal journey for families or groups of friends or colleagues. Tours are available for larger groups, including school and college parties, army, and territorial units.
First World War battlefield tours can be planned, arranged, and tailored around your party’s requirements. We will visit places of special interest and locations off the beaten track as well as the most popular sites on the Western Front. Your guide will help you to interpret the landscape and look for signs of battle evidence today. WWI tours last for between one and six days (or more if required). The atmosherere is friendly and informal. You will stay in quality accommodation and enjoy good food and hospitality. We are particular specialists in guiding visitors from New Zealand, Australia, and Canada.
TEL: 01244 341920
In The Footsteps of The Early BEF – the retreat to Mons and the Battle of The Marne
Harry Patch ‘the Last Tommy’ – Ypres, Passchendaele and Poperinge
The AEF – Australian sites including Fromelles
The Canadians – Vimy Ridge, The Somme, and Ypres
Kitchener’s Pals – The Somme
The Americans in France
Victory – the last months of World War I in France and Belgium
The Battlefields Trust
The Battlefields Trust is the UK charity dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of Britain’s historic battlefields. It is perhaps best known for its recent ground-breaking work in locating the true site of the Battle of Bosworth. Readers may well have seen some of the information boards it has helped to erect at battlefields all across the country. This year’s programme includes Ray Wilkinson’s tour around two of Kent’s most important battlefields; Maidstone 1648 where Fairfax won a crucial victory over the Royalists and the Medway, the possible site of one of the most significant battles in British history when the invading Roman Legions defeated the Britons under Caratacus. A weekend of re-enactment events at Naseby Village Hall and playing fields is taking place in June, with the Sealed Knot, Vikings, and the Medieval Siege Society.
You are advised to consider becoming a member – as well as enjoying the above benefits, including a choice of over 30 events all around the country, you’ll also be making a real contribution to the protection and preservation of Britain’s battlefield heritage. Annual membership starts at £18 per person. For a membership form, to join online, and for more information on the work of this excellent organisation visit our website.
Guided tours have been organised studying the Battle of Upton, the Battle of Ripple, and the Battle of Nibley Green. Dr Peter Burley and Mike Elliott will be leading a walk around Medieval St Albans, and Dr Christopher Duffy will be delivering a lecture on Redcoats and Highlanders: the Jacobite Rebellions.
Holts Battlefields and History Tours
Although much has changed in the world of travel since the first Holts Tour, more than 30 years ago, visiting places of historic interest remains a most rewarding experience. Our 2013 programme is packed with the usual wide variety of tours. As always, popular regular tours such as It’s A Long Way To Tipperary, Dunkirk to D-Day and Waterloo are featured, as are anniversary tours Napoleon In Germany, Gettysburg, Dambusters, Kursk and Sicily. These days it is often not clear what you are getting for your money; we have always thought it important that there are no hidden costs, and so much is included in the price that each tour represents excellent value for money. We are fully bonded with ABTA and ATOL for your protection. If you would like to receive our 2013 Battlefields and History brochure, please telephone our office or request a brochure via our website.
TEL: 01293 865000
The Zulu War: 19th April – 2nd May 2013
The Making of London: 27th – 29th April 2013
Dambusters 70th Anniversary: 15th – 19th May 2013
Walking the Five Battles of Ypres: 7th – 10th June 2013
The American Civil War 1863 – Battle of Gettysburg
150th Anniversary: 1st – 9th July 2013
The Battle of Kursk – 1943: 10th – 15th August 2013
The Eastern Front 1914-1921 : 24th – 30th August 2013
Napoleon in Germany 1813: 18th – 22nd October 2013
Waterloo Battlefield Tours
Talan Lindsey, who has lived close to the battlefield and studied it for 20 years, takes small groups or individuals over the three battlefields of Waterloo, Quatre Bras, and Ligny. The march of events, the dominant personalities, the manoeuvres of each army, and the actions of individual soldiers, coloured by the weather conditions and the influence of the terrain are all revealed with humour and insight.
• Each tour is organised according to your requirements and special interests.
• Transport for up to four passengers is included.
We recommend our clients to stay in Waterloo which is has many first class hotels and restaurants.
TEL: +32 10 41 08 40
MOB: +32 (0)475 616 646
Visits include the Wellington Museum, Le Caillou, Hougoumont, the Lion Mound, Plançenoit and more.
South African Battlefields tours study the classical Victorian Military expeditions of the Anglo Zulu war and Anglo Boer Battlefields in KwaZulu Natal of 19th Century British colonial Africa. Walk the iconic battlefields from when the British first crossed the Buffalo River, and follow the trail of the biggest military reverse ever inflicted on the British army at the spears of the native Zulu force at the battle of Isandhlwana.
These tours will also take you around the Anglo-Boer battlefields, stopping at the siege towns of Ladysmith, the killing fields of Spionkop, the site where a young Winston Churchill witnessed the train ambush, and the British HQ of Melrose House in Pretoria where the peace accord was signed on 31 May 1902.
TEL: +27 83 448 6898
Anglo Zulu Battlefields
Anglo Boer Zulu Battlefields
Anglo Boer Zulu Battlefields and
Kruger Park Safari
Please refer to website for combined tour options.
Run by husband and wife team Tony and Allison Eden they provide battlefield tours of an extremely high quality along with a high level of personal service. From first time visitors to history students, tours cater for groups of 12 to 18 people of all ages, providing a relaxed, friendly, and informal atmosphere.
Tony’s grandfather, Rifleman William James Eden of the King’s Royal Rifle Corps, was killed at the first battle of Ypres and is remembered on the Menin Gate, which has fuelled Tony’s passion for the battlefields. Over the years Tony has taken guests on personal pilgrimages to the graves of loved ones as well as helping trace their specific involvement in the conflict.
Visit our website, read our testimonials, and for the perfect tour of remembrance, choose Rifleman Tours. Lest We Forget.
TEL: 01908 617264
Somme and Ypres Salient including ‘Behind the Lines’ – 21 June 2013
The Somme – 5 July 2013
Loos and the Ypres Salient – 6 September 2013
Mons and the Ypres Salient – 25 October 2013
Normandy and the D-Day Beaches – 13 June and 18 July 2013
Private tours can be arranged.
Please view our website for 2014 Centenary Tours.
To view this feature as it appeared in issue 32 of Military History Monthly, click here.