Arrival from the UK
After breakfast we will head out into the rich, green fields of Flanders. We’ll begin by visiting the German cemetery of Langemark, where we will have a closer look at its history and some of the design elements common to all German cemeteries, before turning our attention to the story of some of the individuals buried there. After that we will make our way to Messines, where you will learn about the German capture and the British defence of the city in 1914 before we have a closer look at myth and reality of the Christmas Truce. After stopping at Gheluvelt to look at the Charge of the Worcesters we will head to Hooge Crater Cafe and Museum for a relaxing lunch break. On finishing lunch we will take a look at the Battle of Hooge that took place on 30 July 1915 and saw one of the first major employments of the flamethrower, one of the most feared weapons introduced during World War I. At Bayernwald we will visit a restored German trench system and a surviving mine shaft before taking a closer look at the bloody fighting for the infamous Höhe 60/Hill 60. Finally, before heading back to our Hotel in Ypres, we will have a look at the unique and tragic story of a German officer buried in a British cemetery.
On this day we will head out into the beautiful and open landscape of the Somme. Arriving near Montauban we will look at the actions fought there on 1 July 1916 and will tell you the story of a Bavarian infantryman who was decorated for a heroic ‘last stand’ action against British and French attackers. From there we will make our way to Hawthorn Ridge, west of the village of Beaumont-Hamel. The attack on the German fortifications there on 1 July by part of the 29 Division became a costly failure. We will look at the reasons for that failure and take a close look at the German defenders of the 119th Reserve Infantry Regiment from Württemberg. After our lunch break we head towards the iconic and stunning Thiepval Memorial for the missing of the Somme discussing again the repeated British attempts to wrest the village from German possession while at the same time looking at the German defenders and their defence of the cornerstone of Thiepval.
At La Sars we will have a look at a forgotten German regimental memorial. From there a short trip will take us to Delville Wood or ‘Devil’s Wood’ as it was also known, taking a close look at the fierce fighting there in July 1916 while our final stop will be a German cemetery lost in time.
We begin the day at Louverval, where we will visit to the missing of The Battle of Cambrai. Heading to Flesquières, the site of fierce fighting during The Battle of Cambrai and place where a large number of tanks were destroyed we will look at a number of tank crews which are buried in Flesquières cemetery, while telling you about the German perspective of the Battle of Cambrai, German adaptation to the tank threat and the strategies and tactics developed by the Germans to counter it. We will then give you ample time to explore the newly opened Cambrai Tank Museum with its impressive center piece – the wreck of D51 ‘Deborah’. After lunch we will head to Bourlon Wood taking you to the memorial to the missing of 1918. We then move on to the village of Bourlon and Bourlon Wood, talking you through the the later stages of The Battle of Cambrai in 1917 and the highly successful German counter offensive which implemented many new and innovative strategies which would become the norm in the battles of the final year of the war.
Travelling back to the UK.
Rob is a full-time German military historian, public speaker and published author who has made his specialist study the life of the German soldier in wartime. He has acted as a historical consultant for television companies and is a regular contributor to a number of British and German specialist military history magazines. He acted as historical consultant for the Department of Media, Culture and Sports and the First World War Centenary Battlefield Tours Programme of the UCL Institute of Education and Equity. He has also worked as an historical advisor and contributor for a number of British television programmes including the BBC’s ‘Great War War Interviews’, ‘Voices 16 – Somme’ and Channel 4’s ‘Battle of Britain: The Last of the Few’ and Channel 4’s ‘Last Heroes of the Somme’. His latest book ‘Fritz and Tommy: Across the Barbed Wire’ written in conjunction with Professor Peter Doyle was published by the History Press.
David is an experienced teacher, re-enactor, historical interpreter and tour guide, with a lifelong interest in the Great War. Since setting up Frontline Living History five years ago, he has travelled the length and breadth of the UK giving talks, displays, presentations and workshops about the First World War to audiences of all ages, specialising in working with school groups. He is particularly interested in the British soldier’s experience of the war, and in the organisation, development and impact of British battlefield medicine between 1914-1918.
What's Included and How to Book
Included in the For King & Kaiser tour package:
- Return Channel crossing.
- Four days touring the Flanders and Somme battlefields via coach.
- Four nights full board accommodation in a 3- or 4-star hotel in Ypres (accommodation excludes drinks.
- The services of two expert guides who will join the coach on arrival at the hotel on the evening of Day One.
- All tips, taxes and admission charges.
- A detailed TourPal – an extensive booklet that will provide you with a wealth of background information about the sites we will be visiting.
- The services of a tour manager who will accompany the coach for the duration of the tour.
- The fully equipped executive coach features air conditioning, seat belts, ample leg room, WC, tea and coffee making facilities, over seat reading lights, a USB charging point for every seat, alternative entry via right hand side for safety when alighting on the continent, and the ability to lower the front of the coach to make access easier when boarding or exiting the coach.
- The coach departs from Bedford with a second pick up at Maidstone. Alternatively, passengers may choose to meet the coach at the Folkestone Eurotunnel terminal.
The full board accommodation provided will be of a 3-star standard or higher.
Breakfast and dinner will be taken in the hotel, while the midday meal will consist of a quality packed lunch taken at a suitably chosen location along the day’s route.
Prices and Booking Procedure:
- Double/Twin Room, 2 people sharing – £1,074 per person (total price £2,148)
- Double/Twin Room, single occupancy – £1,324
When booking this tour select your room choice from the drop down “Room Type” menu at the top of the page, then click “Add to Basket”.
If booking a combination of shared and single occupancy rooms please add to basket separately. The “Continue Shopping” button in your basket will return you to this page.
A deposit of 30% of the total amount is required on booking, with the remainder due no later than 8 weeks prior to the departure date.
Please see the Terms & Conditions page for further details.
The number of people in your party is governed by rooms booked:
1 shared double/twin = 2 people
1 single occupancy = 1 person
Please have to hand the names and contact details of all members of your party when making your booking as these will need to be entered on the checkout page.