ANZACS Remembered (20-25 April 2020)

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 (Includes Anzac Day Dawn Service at Villers-Bretonneux on the 25 April 2020
 

When The Great War came to an end in 1918 Australia was left to come to terms with a war which, on the Western Front alone, had cost Australia 48,000 dead (* and including Gallipoli, over 60,000 dead) and over 156,000 wounded.  Militarily, the ANZAC reputation stood sky-high at the end of the war and along with the Canadians, they were regarded as among the most elite fighting troops in the British Expeditionary Force – tough, battle hardened and ruthless, they were greatly feared by the Germans and grudgingly admired even by their nemesis - the British High Command.

On this very special tour we follow in their footsteps to the places where the Australian reputation was established on the Western Front between 1916 and 1918. Along the way we shall hear tales of enormous courage, endurance and sacrifice that will both inspire and humble, culminating in the amazing and very moving Villers-Bretonneux Anzac Day Ceremony.
Images:

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Day 1 – Monday 20 April 2020
Arrive at your Lille hotel for overnight accommodation prior to departure after breakfast the following morning on your tour.

Accommodation:     Lille, France
Meals:                       Nil


Day 2 – Tuesday 21 April 2020
After breakfast and loading baggage we depart hotel for our short drive to the Ypres Salient. During our day we will have visits to: 

Lunch at local restuarant 

Late afternoon/evening check-in to our hotel in Ypres 
This evening we experience the Menin Gate Last Post ceremony. 

Accommodation:       Ypres area, Belgium
Meals:                         Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner


Day 3 – Wednesday 22 April 2020
After an early breakfast and checkout we depart in our coach to the battlefield of Fromelles where we visit the tragic battlefield of 19 - 20 July 1916, where Australia incurred the greatest loss in its history.

We visit:  

We then travel onwards to the breathtaking Canadian Vimy Memorial at Vimy Ridge for a quick stop, before travelling on to the lovely city of Arras for lunch, virtually destroyed in WW1.
In the afternoon we visit:

We then travel north to the Arras area and our hotel for the next three nights.
Dinner tonight is not included, and you are free to eat in the modern hotel bistro or take taxi to nearby Bethune (10 mins). Bethune has a great choice of authentic French bistros and restuarants for dinner.

Accommodation:           Arras area, France
Meals:                             Breakfast, Lunch


Day 4 – Thursday 23 April 2020
After breakfast at our hotel we then depart for Mont St. Quentin to learn about the bitter battle in 1918 and see the inspiring Mont St Quentin Australian Memorial. 
Sites of the American & Australian attacks on the St Quentin Canal line 
The mouth of the St Quentin Canal tunnel and the inspiring Bony American Cemetary.
We then return to our hotel for a relaxing afternoon before an early dinner (included) in the hotel as it is a very early start tomorrow. (Note: The breathtaking new Louvre Museum at Lens is only 13 klm away, and if enough people are interested we can arrange for our coach to take you there and return in the afternoon.) 

Accommodation:          Arass area, France
Meals:                            Breakfast, Dinner


Day 5 – Friday 24 April 2020
After breakfast we leave the hotel with our first stop the famous Wellington Quarry in Arras (La Carriere Wellington) This world famous amazing underground museum is where the Allies launched their audacious attack on 9 April 1917 in the Battle of Arras - at the same time the Canadians launched their successful assault at Vimy 12 miles to the north of Arras. Miles of underground tunnels were carved out by Kiwi tunnellers in the Wellington (Named after Wellington NZ) quarry complex, housing up to 24,00 Allied troops for the attack.

We will then stop in Arras centre for a light *lunch break (*not included) before we visit the amazing Vimy Memorial at Vimy Ridge, and learn how an all Canadian assault on the *9th April (*Vimy Ridge Day) took this impregnable fortress. This date (9 April) is equivalent to all Canadians as Anzac Day is to all Australians. Vimy is an amazing and truly inspirational memorial and sits on top of Vimy Ridge - and is Canadian 'Holy Ground'. 

After visiting the Vimy memorial ** we will then return to our hotel for the evening and to prepare for tomorrow's historic Villers-Bretonneux Anzac Day event (Australian National Memorial) and your visit to the newly opened Sir John Monash Centre. 

Accommodation:          Arras area, France
Meals:                            Breakfast, Dinner



Day 6 – Saturday 25 April 2020           ANZAC Day
Leave the hotel this morning very early at 1am sharp. Security is very strict at the ceremony and we want to arrive with plenty of time for security processing. We anticipate arriving at the Australian National Memorial at Villers-Bretonneux and cemetery around 2.30-3am so we have time to give you an opportunity to experience the full commemorative programme for the Anzac Day ceremony. It is usually very cold before dawn at the memorial so be prepared and wear layered clothing as the day will change from sub freezing temperatures in the early morning to usually quite a warm day.(You will have a Spirit rainproof poncho/thermal blanket in case it rains). Full details of the ceremony here: 

Once the service is over we will then visit nearby Adelaide Cemetery (where our unknown soldier came from) on our way to a well deserved full breakfast at the delightful Le Moulin des Ecrevisses restaurant. After breakfast we head back north to visit the newly refurbished *Franco- Australian (Victoria School) Museum in Villers Bretonneux, then onto Monash's greatest victory at Le Hamel Memorial Park. We then travel north again to Bullecourt for the official DVA centenary service. Here we will enjoy a packed picnic lunch before the ceremony starts at 2pm. This will finish about 4.00 pm then we depart for Arras where our tour ends. (Arras is a 1 hour fast train trip from Paris or Lille). We also suggest that you *stay the night in Arras before you resume your travels the next morning as it is a very long day. (*Overnight accommodation 25 April in Arras is not included) 

Accommodation:            None 
Meals:                              Full buffet breakfast

Highlights

Item Details
Your guide:   
Dates: Mon. 20 – Sat. 25 April 2020
Duration:    5 Nights / 6 Days
Tour Code:  VB206DLIL
Cost in EUR  
Value tour € TBC pp (2 people sharing room)
€ TBC Single supplement 
Deluxe tour € TBC pp (2 people sharing room)
€ TBC Single supplement
        
                  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 





Tour includes:
• Highly experienced and knowledgeable military historian and guide throughout
• Executive standard coach used throughout the tour
• Dedicated experienced coach driver throughout tour
• 1 night accommodation in Lille
• 1 night accommodation in Ypres
• 2 nights accommodation in Arras area
• Breakfast daily whilst on tour
• 4 lunches
• 3 dinners
• Museum entrance fees:

  • Ploegsteert visitor centre
  • Passchendaele Museum, Zonnebeke
  • Fromelles WW1 Museum
  • Bullecourt
  • Franco-Australian Museum (Victoria School), Villers-Bretonneux
  • Sir John Monash Centre

• Special souvenir colour tour booklet  
• Commemoration tour bag