Air War Europe: Colditz, Dambusters & the Great Escape

9 days from £849pp.


Colditz Castle

Visit: Colditz Castle, Battlefields

Lancaster Bomber

Visit: Lancaster Bomber, Battlefields

The war in the air above Europe saw the men of RAF Bomber Command taking the conflict to the heart of the enemy. In a new version of this popular tour we focus on the air war and examine three of its great stories: Colditz, the Dambusters Raid and the Great Escape from Stalag Luft III.

    Entrance fees to museums & places of interest (extra cost)

    Local departure by coach or Door-to-Door service, then to Holland for an overnight stay.

    We travel into Germany and visit Reichswald Forest War Cemetery – the biggest WWII British Cemetery in Europe, nearly half the 7,400 graves are men from Bomber Command. From here, we travel to the Möhne Dam in the Ruhr Valley and examine the daring attack by aircraft from 617 Squadron commanded by Guy Gibson. From the top of the dam we can see where the attack came in and understand what a daring raid it was. We also visit Eder Dam, another of the targets in Operation Chastise, before moving on to our overnight hotel in Jena.

    • Included meals: Breakfast

    We visit the famous castle and museum at Colditz, a name forever associated with the story of Prisoners of War in WWII. Perched above the sleepy German town that gives the castle its name, we are able to go inside and explore, and hear the stories of Douglas Bader and Pat Reid, and the many Allied prisoners kept held here. We continue to our hotel in the Dresden area for two nights.

    • Included meals: Breakfast
    Dresden

    Dresden

    We spend the morning in Dresden looking at the raid on the city in February 1945 which destroyed almost all of its original buildings and killed nearly 25,000 civilians. We see some of the surviving buildings including the Trinity Church and Frauenkirche, which stand as memorials to the bombing, and visit some of the mass graves of the casualties of the raid. In the afternoon, spend free time in Dresden or join us on an optional visit to the Bundeswehr Military History Museum which has an unparalled collection of WWII artefacts.

    • Included meals: Breakfast

    We cross into Poland and visit Zagan where Stalag Luft III was located; an Allied Prisoner of War camp was built to hold nearly 10,000 prisoners, many of them air crew. Here in March 1944 the so-called 'Great Escape' took place, made famous in the Hollywood film, when 80 Allied servicemen got away. We look at the story of the escapers, visit the site of the camp and the tunnels they dug, and the memorial to those who were shot after the escape failed. We then continue to our hotel in Berlin for two nights.

    • Included meals: Breakfast
    Berlin

    Berlin

    In Berlin we look at the raids on the city, starting at the impressive air force museum at Gatow, which has a large collection of aircraft from WW1 to the Cold War period. We then visit Berlin War Cemetery where many RAF Bomber Command crews are buried. Around the city we see Flak Tower defences and the air raid shelters used to protect Berliners from the bombs. In the evening, join us on an optional visit around Berlin’s WWII sights.

    • Included meals: Breakfast

    We travel to Hannover and visit the air force museum which has some impressive WWII items as well as a memorial to Second World War air crew. In Hannover itself, we see some of the signs of the bombing raids, ending the day at Hannover War Cemetery with more than 2,000 graves of bomber crew casualties.

    • Included meals: Breakfast
    Arnhem

    Arnhem

    We travel into Holland, stopping at Rheinberg War Cemetery where some of the Dambusters are buried. We end at the grave of Guy Gibson V.C. whose war ended when his Mosquito crashed at Steenbergen. We stay overnight in Belgium.

    • Included meals: Breakfast

    Return home.

    • Included meals: Breakfast

    At a Glance

    Tour Overview

    • 8 nights' accommodation with continental breakfast
    • Specialist Battlefield Guide
    • Battlefield visits as described
    • Convenient local joining points
    • Travel by Silver Service or upgrade to Luxuria

    Included Excursions

    Optional Excursions

    • Entrance fees to museums & places of interest (extra cost)

    Notes

    EVENING MEAL PACKAGES - For your convenience, pre-book 4 evening meals to be taken at your hotels in Dresden and Berlin. £70 per person. 


     

    Single Room Supplement from £179.00 (9 days).

    Certain excursions are included in the price of your holiday. If you choose not to go on an included excursion, for whatever reason, no refunds will be made.
    Yes, you will receive one with your Travel Documents, which are sent 7-10 days before departure.
    We believe that our holidays may not be suitable for children under 8 years old (except for Disneyland Paris bookings) however, we will consider individual requests on application. Customers aged 18 and under at the time of travel must be accompanied by an adult, parent or guardian aged over 18 years old.
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    Accommodation

    You will stay overnight in Holland at the NH Koningshof in Veldhoven, near Eindhoven, or similar, and the 4-star Best Western in Jena, then two nights at the 3-star Ramada Resident Hotel or Hotel Azimut in Dresden, two nights at the 3-star Tryp by Wyndham Berlin City East, or similar on the outskirts of Berlin, overnight at the 4-star H4 Hotel in Hannover, or similar and finally overnight at a city-style hotel in Belgium.

    If you prefer, then you can join the tour at the hotel. To do this, we will require a copy of your passport for identification purposes and you must advise us at the time of booking.

    No reduction will be given if you should choose to do this.

    All hotel rooms benefit from private bathroom facilities.
    Some hotels have tea and coffee making facilities. Please check the tour pages for more information or call our Customer Service Department on 01709 830333.
    Most hotels have a lift, please call our Customer Service Department on 01709 830333 for more information.
    Some hotels have ground floor rooms. Please email for information on individual hotels or call our Customer Service Department on 01709 830333.
    Your hotels will supply towels in your room.

    We are unable to guarantee that the hotel will be able to meet your dietary requirements. We find that the majority of European countries do not generally cater for vegetarians and that the meal supplied may well be what everyone else is having minus the meat.

    We will of course endeavour to arrange for a vegetarian meal at the hotel. We do however suggest that you advise us of your dietary requests at the time of booking and recommend that you speak to the receptionist on arrival with regard to your request.

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    *Please note pickups are subject to availability.

      Departure times given for each region are approximate. Please check your travel documents to confirm the actual timings.

      Front row seats can be reserved for £12pp (up to 6 days duration), £20pp (7 & 8 days duration) and £25pp (9 days duration and over) on all European tours. In addition to this seats on the second row can be reserved for £6pp (up to 6 days duration), £12pp (7 & 8 days duration) and £15pp (9 days duration and over). This offer is only available for bookings of two or four persons on the front row and is subject to availability. Guaranteed front/second row seats cannot be reserved on transfer journeys to/from the U.K. port. Children under 15 years cannot occupy a front row seat due to French Law.

      Please note: On some coaches the legroom on front seats may be slightly less than that available on other seats due to the presence of a modesty board in front.

      If your tour is cancelled for any reason and front/second row seats are not available on your new tour you will be refunded the supplement. No other compensation will be payable.

      Alternatively, we can take seating requests on your booking. However, requests are not guaranteed. All seat numbers are confirmed on travel documents approximately 7-10 days prior to departure.

      We guarantee that all passengers on the same booking will be seated together on the main tour coach. Seats on the transfer coaches to and from the U.K. port are not allocated.
      Hot and cold drinks are served on the main tour coaches. Prices are approximately 90p or 1 Euro per drink. Prices will be confirmed by the driver. Drinks may also be served on the transfer coaches but this is not guaranteed.

      Transfer coaches are routed approximately 2-3 weeks before departure and will depend on where passengers are booked to travel from on any particular date as to which route is taken. If you require further detailed information regarding the route to the port you can contact our Customer Service Department on 01709 830333 two weeks before you are due to travel.

      With regard to the route taken by the main tour coach, this is determined by the driver.

      All main tour coaches have on-board toilets. Transfer coaches to and from the U.K. port may not have on-board toilets. When non-British coaches are used on transfers and tours (air or TGV holidays only) an on-board toilet may not be available. However, comfort stops will be made during long journeys.
      All coaches feature air-conditioning. Should the air-conditioning system break down for a period exceeding 12 hours, compensation will be awarded up to a maximum of £10 per fare-paying passenger per tour.
      We operate a passenger interchange at the Channel port. Transfer coaches, including taxis, minibuses, Megabus and National Express operate to and from the U.K. port. You will join your main tour coach at the port.
      One medium sized suitcase per person, which should weigh no more than 20kg when full. We may refuse to carry larger or heavier cases. Hand luggage can be stored in the overhead racks aboard the coach.
      It could be either - This will be confirmed in your travel documents.

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