The Battle Of The Bulge

The Battle Of The Bulge

The Ardennes Offensive 1944-45

Battlefield

5th - 9th December 2018
(5 Days)

Guide : Dr Peter Schrijvers

Tour price: £1,445

click here to book

The Battle Of The Bulge

The Ardennes Offensive 1944-45

Battlefield

Your Holiday Essentials

5th - 9th December 2018
(5 Days)

Return Eurostar Standard Premier, 3 and 4 star hotels, buffet breakfast, 1 picnic lunch, 3-course dinner with drinks each evening, all entrance fees and expert guide throughout.

Activity Level: 2

Guide: Dr Peter Schrijvers

Tour price: £1,445

Single supplement: £145
Deposit: £150
Price without flights: £1,295

Booking open

click here to book

Tour Introduction

Based on his internationally acclaimed books on the Battle of the Bulge, Belgian academic historian Peter Schrijvers brings to life the decisions of commanders under extreme pressure and the experiences of soldiers and civilians in desperate circumstances. How did American infantrymen halt Waffen SS armour at Elsenborn Ridge? Why did Kampfgruppe Peiper turn Baugnez into a killing field for POWs? What were the consequences of the fall of St. Vith and how did American and British troops halt the German tide? Why did the airborne Band of Brothers prevail in Bastogne and what happened to the civilians in this cauldron? While looking for answers, we will reflect also on the cost of Hitler’s last gamble at American, British, and German cemeteries. And we will conclude with a close look at the traces of war in the Bastogne War Museum.

Background

In the summer of 1944, the Allied momentum appeared unstoppable as troops broke out of Normandy, captured Paris, and raced through Belgium. In early autumn, however, the advance lost steam when logistical lines snapped and Operation Market Garden failed. Allied troops prepared for a hard slog at the Siegfried Line. Meanwhile, Hitler, under pressure on two fronts, decided on a last gamble in the west. On 16 December 1944, he launched a major counteroffensive through the Ardennes, a forested area thinly held by exhausted American veterans and green troops. Hitler wanted to capture the crucial logistical hub of Antwerp and tear apart the seam between American and British forces. The Führer hoped that, combined, this would make the Western Front collapse, thus dramatically changing the course of the war at a time when all seemed lost for Nazi Germany.

Itinerary

Day 1 – The Ultimate Price

Eurostar from London to Brussels and train to Liège. We drive to the Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery on the northern shoulder of the Bulge to discuss the main German effort there and how American forces managed to block it. Check-in to our hotel in Malmedy for two nights.

Day 2 – The Waffen SS Unleashed

We follow the trajectory of the Sixth Panzer Army’s Waffen SS spearheads, discuss the massacre of American POWs at Baugnez, and analyse the destruction of Kampfgruppe Peiper at Stoumont and La Gleize. Return to our hotel in Malmedy.

Day 3 – Into the Breach

We reconnoitre the massive gap that opened up when von Manteuffel’s Fifth Panzer Army surrounded the 106th Infantry Division and captured St. Vith. Picnic lunch. We take a closer look at how American troops threw up dams in places like Parker’s Crossroads and British troops joined the fight to push in the Bulge’s nose. Check-in to our hotel in Bastogne for two nights.

Day 4 – Those Who Hold Bastogne

We start the day at the Mardasson Memorial to sketch the outline of the siege and visit sites like the iconic Band of Brothers’ Bois Jacques to explain why the Germans failed to capture this crucial Belgian crossroads. After lunch, we walk the streets of Bastogne and then drive southward to Assenois to learn more about how Patton’s Third Army finally came to the rescue.

Day 5 – Retracing the Bulge

We visit the Bastogne War Museum and retrace our steps through the Ardennes with a look at unique artefacts, rare photographs, and vivid dioramas that detail the campaign from mid-December 1944 to the elimination of the Bulge by late January 1945. After lunch, we drive to Liège and take the train to Brussels and the Eurostar to London.

Photo Gallery

Your Holiday Essentials

5th - 9th December 2018
(5 Days)

Return Eurostar Standard Premier, 3 and 4 star hotels, buffet breakfast, 1 picnic lunch, 3-course dinner with drinks each evening, all entrance fees and expert guide throughout.

Activity Level: 2

Guide: Dr Peter Schrijvers

Tour price: £1,445

Single supplement: £145
Deposit: £150
Price without flights: £1,295

Booking open

click here to book

Photo Gallery

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