Duration: 07 Days
COUNTRIES VISITED: France, Netherlands, Belgium & Luxembourg
PLACES VISITED: Normandy, Eindhoven, Bastogne, Luxembourg, Margraten & Nijmegen
Local departure by coach, then to Port-en-Bessin in Normandy for a two-night stay.
After breakfast today we look at Easy Company in Normandy. We begin in the 101st Airborne Drop Zones to see where they landed, and then look at the story of Richard Winters and the assault he led on the gun battery at Brecourt Manor, seeing the ground where it took place and the nearby memorial. After lunch we look at their post-D-Day attack on Carentan, visiting the superb Dead Man’s Corner Museum with its extensive US Airborne displays which include items from Easy Company Men, as well as a ‘Dakota Experience’. We then follow the attack on Carentan, seeing where the fighting was in the town, and follow this with a look at the action at Bloody Gulch when a German battlegroup attacked Easy Company’s positions.
After breakfast this morning we visit the Easy Company graves in the Normandy American Cemetery overlooking Omaha Beach, seeing the burials from D-Day, the fighting at Brecourt Manor and those killed at Carentan. Some Easy Company men were taken home to America for burial but there are seven who have graves here including John D. Halls, whose death at Brecourt while attached to Easy Company was featured in that episode. We then travel from Normandy via Belgium to the Netherlands, for two nights at our hotel in Eindhoven.
After breakfast today we follow Easy Company during their part in Operation Market Garden in September 1944, and the actions that followed in Holland. We see where they landed, and then look at the fighting near Son and Nuenen, seeing the Easy Company Memorial. Later we travel via Nijmegen to the Island, to see the area where winters led an attack in October 1944 along the banks of the Lower Rhine, as well as the distinctive headquarters building at Schoonderlogt Farm. We then see where they assisted survivors of the British 1st Airborne Division in Operation Pegasus II.
After breakfast this morning we start at the Wings of Liberation Museum near Son, a superb private museum with WW2 aircraft and tanks relating to the story of the war in the Netherlands. We then visit the Netherlands American Cemetery seeing the graves of Easy Company men including William Dukeman killed at the Crossroads battles, and Major Horton, who was a former Easy Company officer killed on the Island. We then travel to our hotel in Belgium for two nights.
In December 1944 Easy Company moved up from their camp near Reims into Belgium and took over defences near Bastogne. We follow their story here from the positions near the town they held, visiting the battlefields at Bois Jacques, seeing the Easy Company Memorial. We then look at the fighting around Foy and Noville. After lunch in Bastogne, we see the grave of the Belgian nurse whose story is featured in the series as well as the 101st Airborne Museum in Bastogne. Later we travel to the Luxembourg American Cemetery to visit Easy Company graves of men who fell in the Ardennes, including Alex Penkala and ‘Skip’ Muck, who died together in the defence of Bastogne, as well as Ken Webb who died at Foy, and John Julian who died when on patrol.
Check out from your hotel and leave for the airport.