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The Eagle Triumphant: Exploring the History of D-Day on the Queen Mary 2

Program Number: 15617RJ
Start and End Dates:
5/2/2013 - 5/17/2013; 9/26/2014 - 10/11/2014; 6/2/2015 - 6/17/2015; 8/3/2015 - 8/18/2015;
Duration: 15 nights
Location: France/England/United States
Price starting at: $4,590.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Adventure Afloat Study Cruise; Ocean Cruises
Meals: 41; 15 Breakfasts, 12 Lunches, 14 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian    

Learn about Normandy’s dramatic liberation in the summer of 1944 and the Allied advance through northern France. Immerse yourself in the events and personalities that formed the European Theatre of Operations in World War II.




Activity Particulars

Extensive walking along unpaved lanes and cobblestoned streets; some stairs without railings and/or uneven. Participants should be able to stand for at least one hour.



The 06/20/15 and 09/03/15 departures will visit Caen instead of Bayeux.



Itinerary At-a-Glance

New York City, 1 night; aboard Queen Mary 2, 7 nights; Portsmouth (England), 1 night; Bayeux (France), 4 nights; Paris, 2 nights.



Days 1-2: Arrival New York City / embark Queen Mary 2:

Lodging: Four-star hotel.



Days 3-8: At Sea:

In a series of lectures, consider America’s relationship with European powers leading up to and during World War II and see the planning of D-Day through the eyes of the Allied Leaders.



Day 9: Disembark Southampton (England) / coach to Portsmouth:

In Portsmouth visit Southwick House, General Eisenhower’s headquarters in England. Explore the D-Day museum to examine the Overlord Embroidery. Lodging: Comfortable hotel.



Days 10-13: Ferry to Cherbourg (France) / Coach to Bayeux:

An English Channel crossing brings you back to June 1944 to start your study of Normandy’s liberation with members from the D-Day Academy. Explore the beaches of Utah and Omaha in period vehicles. Attend a wreath-laying ceremony at the U.S. Normandy American Military Cemetery and enjoy a private visit to Chateau d'Englesqueville. Take in the famed Bayeux Tapestry. Lodging: Hotel in a historic village manor house.



Days 14-16: Coach to Paris / departure:

Stop in Caen for a visit to the renowned Caen Memorial Center for History and Peace. Expert-led excursions in Paris help to explain what the city was like in the days leading up to its triumphant liberation. Lodging: Four-star hotel on the Left Bank.



Queen Mary 2

At 1,132 feet long and 131 feet wide and cruising at 28.5 knots, the Queen Mary 2 can carry 2,592 passengers. Public areas linked by elevators include restaurants, bars, library, theater, casino, gym, pool and more. Dining in the Britannia Restaurant.



Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Jean-Pierre Benamou

Dr. Jean-Pierre Benamou is the founder of the Battle of Normandy Museum and the D-Day Academy. He has authored numerous books and articles and is considered the leading French authority on the Battle of Normandy. He is an honorary member of ten British regiments and has been named an Officer of the Order of the British Empire. Jean Pierre has lectured on more than 100 Road Scholar programs and, as an oral surgeon by profession, has even provided participants with free emergency dental care!
 
Graham Hollands

Major General Graham Hollands first came to Normandy in 1975 with the British Army Staff College. There, he met some of the key Allied and German participants in the events that took place on D-Day. His 32-year army career from private soldier to two-star general included service in Germany, Northern Ireland, Africa and England. Major General Hollands is a founding director of a historic preservation organization in Normandy, and conducts battlefield explorations for small groups.
 
Meals and Lodgings
   New York Marriott Downtown
  New York City, USA 1 night
   Queen Mary II
  At Sea, At Sea 7 nights
   Hilton Portsmouth
  Portsmouth, UK:England 1 night
   Villa Lara
  Bayeux, France 4 nights
   Villa Pantheon
  Paris, France 2 nights
 New York Marriott Downtown
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: The only Marriott hotel centrally located in Lower Manhattan, New York City's Financial District, and within walking distance to Wall Street and NYSE.
  Contact info: 85 West Street at Albany Street
New York, NY 10006 USA
phone: 121-238-5490 x0
web: www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/nycws-new-york-marriott-downtown/
  Room amenities: This hotel near Wall Street features 497 newly renovated guest rooms, including 7 suites. Hotel rooms offer the new Revive bed, 300 thread-count linens, down comforters and marble bathrooms. Some guest rooms offer views of the Statue of Liberty, New York City Harbor, or Wall Street. This downtown Manhattan hotel near Wall Street offers a state-of-the-art hotel fitness center. High-tech amenities include high-speed internet access and flat-screen TVs in all guest rooms.
  Facility amenities: All public areas non-smoking, Beauty shop nearby (referral at front desk), Cash machine/ATM, Coffee/tea in-room, Concierge Lounge Hours, Concierge desk, Evening turndown service, Florist, Foreign exchange, Gift/newsstand, Housekeeping service daily, Local restaurant dinner delivery, Newspaper delivered to room on request, Newspaper in lobby, Phone calls: toll-free, Room service, 6:00 AM-12:00 AM, Safe deposit boxes, front desk, Valet dry-cleaning, Virtual Concierge Available
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: TBA TBD
  Check in time: 4:00 PM

 Queen Mary II
Type: Cruise Ship
  Description: Queen Mary 2 is the most magnificent ocean liner ever built. Her every detail harkens to the Golden Age of Ocean Travel, while providing one of the most modern travel experiences on earth. From bow to stern, discover 13 spacious decks on which to relax and unwind; to indulge in pleasures and pursuits you never normally have time for. Opulent public areas, extravagant dining rooms, ballrooms, theatres, lounges...even the only Planetarium at sea.
  Ship Information: Length: 1.132 feet, Beam: 135 feet, Draft: 32 feet 10 inches, Height: 236.2 feet, Gross tonage: Approx. 151,400 gross tonnes, Guest capacity: 3,056 max., Crew: 1253, Cruise Speed: 28.5 knots
  Contact info: Cunard Cruise Lines
24303 Town Center Drive, Suite 200
Valencia, CA 91355 USA
phone: 800-728-6273
  Room amenities: Standard staterooms are spacious (min.155sq.ft.) Amenities: 24hr rm service. Direct-Dial telephone & internet access, refrigerator, safe, hair dryer, daily shipboard newspaper, 220V British 3-pin and 110V 2-pin sockets, nightly turn down service.
  Facility amenities: Art Gallery, Bookstore, Canyon Ranch SpaClub®, Chart Room, Commodore Club, Computer Centre, Empire Casino, Image Gallery, Swimming Pools, Golden Lion Pub, Grand Lobby, Library, Shops, Queens Room, Royal Court Theatre, Sports Decks The Zone/The Play Zone | Veuve Clicquot® Champagne Bar
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes

 Hilton Portsmouth
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: Just a ten minute drive from Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard and city center, this Portsmouth hotel is near a host of historic, cultural and shopping attractions. Discover Charles Dickens birth place or Portsmouth’s rich naval history at the Royal Naval Museum. Visit Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard and see Lord Nelson’s historic flagship HMS Victory. Enjoy an extensive choice of shopping, dining and entertainment opportunities at Gunwharf Quays and views over Portsmouth from the Spinnaker Tower.
  Ship Information: n/a
  Contact info: Eastern Road
Portsmouth,  PO6 1UN UK:England
phone: +44 23 92 21 91 11
web: http://www3.hilton.com/en/hotels/united-kingdom/hilton-portsmouth-hotel-PORHNHN/index.html
  Room amenities: 32-inch LCD flat screen TV and freeview channels, wireless internet access
  Facility amenities: Bar, Beauty Salon, Foreign Currency Exchange, Laundry/Valet Service, Lounge, News Stand, Room Service, Fitness Room, Business Center, Meeting Rooms, Restaurant, Tennis Court, Pool
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes

 Villa Lara
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: The Villa Lara is a new boutique hotel in the historic centre of Bayeux, nestled in a quiet tree-lined square facing the 11th century majecstic Bayeux Cathedral and along the Aure River. The famous Bayeux Tapestry is 2 minutes' walk away. The 28 elegantly appointed rooms are in a French style with 8 different colour schemes. All the furniture is made by Moissonnier, a well known company founded in 1885, whose French cabinetmaking skills have been passed on down the generations.
  Contact info: 6 Place du Quebec
Bayeux,   France
phone: +33 (0)2 31 92 00 55
web: www.hotel-villalara.com
  Room amenities: The luxury hotel features period-style furniture, a flat-screen TV, safe and a minibar. They have an individual color theme using neutral tones and printed fabrics. Each has a private bathroom with a marble floor, bathrobes, hair dryer and slippers.
  Facility amenities: Room service, bar / lounge with a fireplace, air conditioned, non-smoking rooms, fitness room, meeting room, elegant breakfast buffet
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes

 Villa Pantheon
Type: Hotel
  Description: The hotel is located in the Latin Quarter in the heart of Paris, close to Saint-Germain des Près, Notre-Dame, Panthéon, La Sorbonne, Ile Saint-Louis, Thermes de Cluny, Arènes de Lutèce, and the Institut du Monde Arabe, making it an ideal base for exploring the city.
  Contact info: 41, Rue des Ecoles
Paris,  75005 France
phone: +33 (0)1 53 10 95 95
web: www.villa-pantheon.com
  Room amenities: Private en-suite bathroom with hair dryer, individually controlled air conditioning, TV with international channels and Pay TV, in-room safe, direct dialing telephone, small refrigerator with bar, in-room modem plug for Internet access. Please note that hotel rooms in France are often considerably smaller than hotel rooms in the US.
  Facility amenities: The Villa Pantheon offers a traditional English feel with leather easy chairs and relaxed atmosphere.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights after: TBD Please contact Road Scholar Travel Services for availability and rates.
  Check out time: 12:00 PM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
At orientation before dinner at the group hotel in New York City. Hotel check-in begins at 4 p.m. You will be staying at New York Marriott Downtown that night.
  End of Program:
After breakfast at the program hotel in Paris. Hotel check-out is at 12 p.m. You will be staying at Villa Pantheon the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. **PLEASE NOTE: Cunard requires that you register online in order to receive your E-ticket(s) and cruise documents. You should do this when you receive your final program materials about 5 weeks prior to departure, your booking number and cabin assignment will be included with these materials. Please go to www.cunard.com to register. Click on Already Booked, then click on Voyage Personaliser on the left-hand side, scroll down a little and click on Visit Voyage Personaliser (in red font). That will open a new window where you can enter your first and last name and booking reference number to sign in. Once you have completed your online registration, you will be able to view and print all of your cruise documents. **You must print your own Queen Mary II Luggage Tags, they are required by the ship porters so your bags can make their way safely to your ship cabin.**
  Parking availability:
N/A
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
  Train or bus availability: There are buses/taxis from JFK airport to Manhattan.
To Start of Program
  Location:  New York City
  Nearest airport:  JFK International Airport
  Transportation to site: Participants can take a taxi from the airport to the city center for $50 plus tolls. The AirTrain connects JFK with the New York City subway system; approximate fare to downtown is $7.25. The New York Marriott Downtown is located 3.7 miles from Grand Central Station. Participants who purchase their international flights through Road Scholar Travel Services and who are arriving at JFK on the group date will be provided with a transfer from the airport to the program hotel in New York.
  From End of Program
  Location:  Paris
  Transportation from site: If you can't take the group transfer, you can take a taxi from the hotel to the airport or can ask the hotel for assistance in arranging a shuttle transfer. Paris Shuttle, a third party service, offers discounted shared shuttle and private transfer rates to Road Scholar participants. The rate they offer is about 10% discount off their published rate. By using the web link below, you can take advantage of these rates and book your transfer for departure in Paris. You will need to pay in advance with a credit card to confirm reservations and print your own voucher. www.parishuttle.com/index.php?partner=P60WEN
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrival and Orientation in New York
(Thursday, May 2)
   
 Arrive To: Afternoon arrival in New York.
 Afternoon: Check in at hotel and take some time to settle into your room before meeting for orientation.
 Afternoon: Meet with your group leader for your orientation. Discuss the program details, and enjoy your initial introduction to your fellow participants.
 Dinner: Enjoy a welcome dinner with your fellow participants.
   
Accommodations: New York Marriott Downtown
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Embarking on the Queen Mary 2
(Friday, May 3)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet at hotel.
 Morning: Free morning: Take a few hours to explore the city and perhaps visit one of the many famous museums in New York.
 Lunch: Lunch on your own to explore the many culinary delights of New York.
 Afternoon: Group transfer from your hotel to the Queen Mary 2 boarding dock. Take some time to unpack and familiarize yourself with the ship.
 Dinner: Enjoy your first dinner on board the ship.
   
Accommodations: Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 3: Crossing the Atlantic: The Prelude to Armageddon and World War I
(Saturday, May 4)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board in the venue of your choosing. Select one of the King's Court dining options on deck 7, go down to the Britannia Restaurant or relax with breakfast in your room as you watch the televised description of today's on board activities.
 Morning: Lecture: "The Prelude to Armageddon - 19th Century" led by your military history expert. Lecture: "World War One" led by your military history expert.
 Lunch: Lunch on board in the venue of your choosing. Your options include the various King's Court venues, the Britannia Restaurant, Todd English (at additional cost) or a light lunch at the Boardwalk Cafe if the weather permits.
 Afternoon: This afternoon you may choose from among the many available activities on board. You might take Afternoon Tea in the Queen's Room, attend a lecture presented by one of Cunard's guest speakers, view a planetarium show, join a book discussion, participate in an art auction, compete in a bridge tournament, relax in one of the deckchairs and watch the horizon... just to name a few of your activity choices!
 Dinner: Group dinner at 6:00 PM at the Britannina Restaurant, featuring several choices for each course prepared by award-winning chefs. Discuss the next day's itinerary as you dine with your group leader and lecturer. Following dinner you may choose to return to your stateroom and enjoy one of the movies screened on your TV this evening, attend a show in the ship's theater or practice your dance steps in the ballroom.
   
Accommodations: Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Crossing the Atlantic: The Peace Conferences, Hitler's Rise, Appeasement and the Path to Perdition
(Sunday, May 5)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board in the venue of your choosing. Select one of the King's Court dining options on deck 7, go down to the Britannia Restaurant or relax with breakfast in your room as you watch the televised description of today's on board activities.
 Morning: Lecture: "The Peace Conferences and the Rise of Hitler" led by your military history expert. Lecture: "Appeasement and the Path to Perdition" led by your military history expert.
 Lunch: Lunch on board in the venue of your choosing. Your options include the various King's Court venues, the Britannia Restaurant, Todd English (at additional cost) or a light lunch at the Boardwalk Cafe if the weather permits.
 Afternoon: This afternoon you may choose from among the incredible variety of onboard activities. At 5:00 PM, join your group leader for a welcome cocktail party and your orientation to the Queen Mary II. Learn about the myriad of activities available to you each day.
 Dinner: Join together for a group dinner at 6:00 PM in the Britannia Restaurant, featuring several choices for each course prepared by award-winning chefs. Discuss the next day's itinerary as you dine with your group leader and lecturer. Following dinner you may choose to return to your stateroom and enjoy one of the movies screened on your TV this evening, attend a show in the ship's theater or practice your dance steps in the ballroom.
   
Accommodations: Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Crossing the Atlantic: World War II in Europe / Planning and Deception
(Monday, May 6)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board in the venue of your choosing. Select one of the King's Court dining options on deck 7, go down to the Britannia Restaurant or relax with breakfast in your room as you watch the televised description of today's on board activities.
 Morning: Lecture: "World War II in Europe" led by your military history expert. Lecture: "Planning and Deception" led by your military history expert.
 Lunch: Lunch on board in the venue of your choosing. Your options include the various King's Court venues, the Britannia Restaurant, Todd English (at additional cost) or a light lunch at the Boardwalk Cafe if the weather permits.
 Afternoon: This afternoon you may take advantage of the many educational, social and physical activities available on board - or simply relax in one of the deck chairs with a view of the glistening Atlantic.
 Dinner: Group dinner at 6:00 PM at the Britannina Restaurant, featuring several choices for each course prepared by award-winning chefs. Discuss the next day's itinerary as you dine with your group leader and lecturer. Following dinner you may choose to return to your stateroom and enjoy one of the movies screened on your TV this evening, attend a show in the ship's theater or practice your dance steps in the ballroom.
   
Accommodations: Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Crossing the Atlantic: German Forces and the French Resistance
(Tuesday, May 7)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board in the venue of your choosing. Select one of the King's Court dining options on deck 7, go down to the Britannia Restaurant or relax with breakfast in your room as you watch the televised description of today's on board activities.
 Morning: Lecture: "The German Armed Forces on D-Day" led by your military history expert. Lecture: "The French Occupation and Resistance" led by your military history expert.
 Lunch: Lunch on board in the venue of your choosing. Your options include the various King's Court venues, the Britannia Restaurant, Todd English (at additional cost) or a light lunch at the Boardwalk Cafe if the weather permits.
 Afternoon: You can grab a ticket for this afternoon's planetarium show, polish your bridge skills during a tournament, or perhaps retreat to the spa for a massage.
 Dinner: Group dinner at 6:00 PM at the Britannina Restaurant, featuring several choices for each course prepared by award-winning chefs. Discuss the next day's itinerary as you dine with your group leader and lecturer. Following dinner you may choose to return to your stateroom and enjoy one of the movies screened on your TV this evening, attend a show in the ship's theater or practice your dance steps in the ballroom.
   
Accommodations: Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Crossing the Atlantic: Interpreting the Battlefield
(Wednesday, May 8)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board in the venue of your choosing. Select one of the King's Court dining options on deck 7, go down to the Britannia Restaurant or relax with breakfast in your room as you watch the televised description of today's on board activities.
 Morning: Morning lecture: "Interpreting the Battlefield" led by your military history expert. Discussion: this is time for you to share experiences of the war, ask questions and discuss the causes and ramifications of D-Day.
 Lunch: Lunch on board in the venue of your choosing. Your options include the various King's Court venues, the Britannia Restaurant, Todd English (at additional cost) or a light lunch at the Boardwalk Cafe if the weather permits.
 Afternoon: This afternoon you can take time to enjoy onboard life and the many opportunities for education, games, socializing and relaxing.
 Dinner: Group dinner at 6:00 PM at the Britannina Restaurant, featuring several choices for each course prepared by award-winning chefs. Discuss the next day's itinerary as you dine with your group leader and lecturer. Following dinner you may choose to return to your stateroom and enjoy one of the movies screened on your TV this evening, attend a show in the ship's theater or practice your dance steps in the ballroom.
   
Accommodations: Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Crossing the Atlantic: Preparing for D-Day Sites in the UK and France
(Thursday, May 9)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board in the venue of your choosing. Select one of the King's Court dining options on deck 7, go down to the Britannia Restaurant or relax with breakfast in your room as you watch the televised description of today's on board activities.
 Morning: Your expert lecturer will lead a final discussion as you prepare to disembark and begin learning about World War II firsthand.
 Lunch: Lunch on board in the venue of your choosing. Your options include the various King's Court venues, the Britannia Restaurant, Todd English (at additional cost) or a light lunch at the Boardwalk Cafe if the weather permits.
 Afternoon: This afternoon take time to prepare for disembarking and perhaps enjoy a few final activities onboard.
 Dinner: Group dinner at 6:00 PM at the Britannina Restaurant, featuring several choices for each course prepared by award-winning chefs. Discuss the logistics of disembarking as well as what to expect during the UK and France component of your program.
   
Accommodations: Queen Mary II
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: D-Day Preparations in the U.K.
(Friday, May 10)

Note: The HMS Victory is a historic warship with very low ceilings, uneven flooring and steep staircases. It would be difficult for participants with limited mobility or any stability/balance difficulties to take part in this field trip. As an alternative, participants can walk around the historic dockyard during this time.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet on board before disembarking.
 Morning: Field Trip "The Southwick House": The D-Day Museum was established in 1984 to tell the story of Operation Overlord from its origins in the dark days of 1940 to victory in Normandy in 1944. The Museum's centrepiece is the Overlord Embroidery. Inspired by the Bayeux Tapestry, it is a moving tribute to the efforts and sacrifices of the Allies in defeating Nazi Germany. The scenes depicted in the Embroidery's 34 panels are vividly described in a multi-language soundguide. Within the Embroidery gallery is the audio-visual theatre, where archive film footage, music, wartime images and the words of those who lived through it combine to evoke the atmosphere of World War II. Then in the Museum's displays visitors experience the sights and sounds of Britain at War - the air raid warden's living room in the Blitz, the factory resounding to the strains of 'Music while you work', and troops preparing for D-Day in their forest camp. The climax of the displays is a dawn to dusk reconstruction of the Allied landings by sea and air on D-Day itself - World War II's 'longest day'. The last section of the exhibition, 'Portsmouth Memories', features the recorded reminiscences of local men, women and children who experienced life on the Home Front or took part in D-Day. The final image in the exhibition - a photograph of the rows of gravestones in the war cemetery at Ranville in Normandy - is a reminder of the price of victory, which must never be forgotten.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local pub.
 Afternoon: Field trip "Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and the HMS Victory": HMS Victory is currently undergoing a period of restoration and visitors have the unique opportunity to witness the process taking place on the oldest commissioned warship in the world. The restoration of this fine ship is a proud memorial to Vice Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson, Britain's greatest Naval hero, and his stunning victory at the Battle of Trafalgar. Her topmasts and rigging have been struck, or taken down, and her planking is under investigation. This is nothing unusual as wooden ships like Victory needed constant care and attention from the day they were launched. These repairs are simply the latest in a long tradition of regular upkeep. The last time HMS Victory was seen without her top masts was back in 1944, so this really is a once in a life time opportunity to see HMS Victory under-going such extreme maintenance. Interestingly, with her topmasts down, Victory will look much as she did after the Battle of Trafalgar when she had to be towed to Gibraltar for repairs.
 Afternoon: Field Trip "Royal Naval Museum": The Royal Naval Museum in Portsmouth's Historic Dockyard is one of Britain’s oldest maritime museums. The Museum’s aim is to preserve and present the history of the 'Fleet' - the ships and the men and women who manned them. The history of the Royal Navy dates back over a thousand years to King Alfred's first battle at sea in the year 882. The Navy has defended Britain from invasion, attacked enemies and eventually established Britain as the dominant world sea power in the 19th century. Today, the Fleet's role involves peacekeeping, fighting piracy and the prevention of drug trafficking. The influence of the Navy can be felt at every level in our society: in our speech, literature, dress, music, character, culture and customs. The history of the Navy is, to a remarkable extent, the history of Britain.
 Dinner: Enjoy a relaxing dinner after checking in at your hotel in Portsmouth..
   
Accommodations: Hilton Portsmouth
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10: Pegasus Bridge and Ranville War Cemetery
(Saturday, May 11)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet at hotel.
 Morning: In the morning check out of the hotel and take the ferry from Portsmouth to Caen, France. Take this time to reflect on the many soldiers who crossed these same waters on June 6th, 1944.
 Lunch: Snack Lunch on board the ferry as you cross the English Channel.
 Afternoon: Field trip and on-site lecture: "Explore the first action of D-Day" led by our local expert lecturer, the precision attack by elite glider borne forces on the two key bridges at Benouville now known as Pegasus and Horse Bridges. Discover the Ranville War Cemetery, the final resting place of thousands of British soldiers.
 Dinner: Dinner at or near the hotel.
   
Accommodations: Villa Lara
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11: Omaha Beach and the American Cemetery
(Sunday, May 12)

Note: World War II period trucks are used for transport along Omaha Beach; participants must climb and descend a short ladder in order to get in and out of the trucks. There will be assistants on hand for this, and the experience is highlight of the program and should not be missed. However, those with mobility limitations should keep in mind that the Omaha Beach experience does require some balance and the ability to get in and out of a period truck.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet at the hotel.
 Morning: This morning you will visit Omaha Beach, site of the bloodiest sector of the D-Day invasion where many American GIs' young lives ended. Pay homage to their sacrifice as you stand on the sand overlooking the Channel. Climb into World War II period trucks to drive along the beach and step into their shoes for a short time as your lecturer evokes the sights, sounds and myriad emotions of June 6, 1944.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Start the afternoon by honoring fallen soldiers with a wreath ceremony at the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial, perched on a cliff overlooking Omaha Beach. Field Trip "Calvados and Cheese: Normandy's Pride": Sample the region's renowned apple brandy at the Chateau d'Englesqueville where the first U.S. monument to WWII soldiers was built. On the way to Pointe-du-Hoc, learn from your military expert about the U.S. Ranger Assault Group's attack. Take this time to look around the bruised landscape.
 Dinner: Return to the hotel before heading out for dinner at a local restaurant.
   
Accommodations: Villa Lara
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12: Pegasus Bridge and the Mulberry Harbor
(Monday, May 13)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet at the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip and Presentation "The Paratroopers of Sainte-Mère-Église": On the way from Utah beach to Sainte-Mère-Église, learn from your military expert about the paratroopers of this town. Upon your arrival, enjoy an independent exploration of the Airborne Museum in Sainte-Mère-Église. Field Trip "Utah Beach": Learn about the Allied landings during a field trip to Utah Beach. Your military expert lecturer will guide you through an on-site presentation about the landing that took place here.
 Lunch: Lunch in Arromanches with a panoramic view of the ocean and the Mulberry Harbor.
 Afternoon: Field trip and Expert-led Lecture "The Artificial Harbor of Gold Beach": On the way to Gold Beach, your expert lecturer will discuss the significance of the harbors. Discover the remnants of the enormous floating harbor at Gold Beach, and marvel at the incredible feat of engineering that enabled the delivery of cruicial supplies, vehicles and personnel during early phases of the Battle of Normandy. Then, explore the German artillery battery at Longues sur Mer with its long range guns overlooking the beaches.
 Dinner: Dinner at or near the hotel.
   
Accommodations: Villa Lara
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13: The Battle of the Hedgerows and the Bayeux Tapestry
(Tuesday, May 14)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet at the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip and Expert-led Lecture "Saint-Lô": Travel to Saint-Lô to explore the hedgerows, which proved to be a very unique and difficult obstacle for American soldiers. On site, your expert lecturer will discuss the significance of Saint-Lô to the war.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Field Trip "Bayeux Tapestry": This afternoon, return to Bayeux and discover the legendary Bayeux Tapestry that is part of UNESCO's "Memory of the World" registry. Take some time to linger over each of the 58 scenes which depict in exquisite detail the Norman invasion of England. Later, enjoy some time to explore Bayeux on your own.
 Dinner: Dinner on your own to explore local cuisine.
   
Accommodations: Villa Lara
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 14: The Caen Memorial / Transfer to Paris
(Wednesday, May 15)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet at the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip "Caen Memorial" and transfer to Paris: Check out of your hotel in Bayeux and board your group coach for Paris. Stop en route in Caen for an exploration of the incredible museum-memorial dedicated to the examination of 20th century conflict and the achievement of peace. Watch the museum's video that delves into the emotions and horrors of war on both sides, and walk through the impressive collection and exhibits detailing the World Wars and the many ramifications of conflict.
 Lunch: Lunch at the Caen Memorial
 Afternoon: Upon arrival in Paris check in at your hotel and then take some time to relax and unpack.
 Dinner: Dinner at or near the hotel.
   
Accommodations: Villa Pantheon
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 15: The Occupation and Liberation of Paris
(Thursday, May 16)

Note: The field trip focused on Paris's occupation and liberation includes up to 2 1/2 miles of walking over the course of 2 hours, with some uneven ground. Participants who have difficulty walking a few miles at a moderate pace should plan independent activities in Paris in lieu of this field trip.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet at the hotel.
 Morning: Field Trip and Expert-led Lecture " The Occupation and Liberation of Paris": With your local expert guide, discover areas of Paris under German occupation and discuss the resistance and liberation. Begin at the Hotel Meurice, once the German Headquarters, and end at the statue of Charles de Gaulle on the Champs Elysées.
 Lunch: Lunch is on your own to discover one of the many restaurants of Paris
 Afternoon: Free time to explore the city on your own and visit one of its many famous sites or museums such as the Louvre or the Musée d'Orsay. Alternatively, you may join your group leader and a local expert guide for an optional field trip to explore Ile de la Cite, the island on the Seine at the heart of Paris.
 Dinner: Farewell dinner at a local restaurant.
 Evening: Field Trip "City of Lights": Following dinner enjoy a leisurely drive around the illuminated monuments in the City of Light.
   
Accommodations: Villa Pantheon
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 16: Departure from Paris
(Friday, May 17)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast buffet at the hotel.
 Morning: Transfer to the airport for departure flights.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


1066, The Year of the Conquest


Author: David Howarth


Description: A crack medievalist and storyteller, Howarth brings to life the momentous events of 1066 in rich, anecdotal history -- a classic portrait of the Norman invasion and conquest of England.



A Day in the Country and Other Stories


Author: Guy de Maupassant


Description: A collection of 28 of de Maupassant's short stories, set mostly in the writer's native Normandy.



A Traveler's Guide to D-Day and the Battle for Normandy


Author: Carl Shilleto, Mike Tolhurst


Description: A compact guide to Normandy's WWII battlefields, memorials, sites and cemeteries.



Battle of Normandy 1944 Map


Author: Michelin Travel Publications


Description: A reproduction of a 1947 map of Normandy showing the main sites of the summer 1944 battle.



D-Day


Author: Antony Beevor


Description: A new account invasion by the bestselling author of Stalingrad and The Fall of Berlin 1945.



D-Day June 6, 1944, The Climactic Battle of World War II


Author: Stephen Ambrose


Description: Written by the best-selling historian Stephen Ambrose, this well researched book draws together interviews and government documents to tell the gripping tale of D-Day. This comprehensive account contains 32 pages of photos and eight maps.



Dawn of D-Day: These Men Were There, June 6, 1944


Author: David Howarth


Description: Howarth weaves interviews and eyewitness reports to recreate the atmosphere, horror and confusion of the assault on Normandy in this spellbinding account, first published in 1959.



Decision in Normandy: The Real Story of Montgomery and the Allied Campaign


Author: Carlo D'Este


Description: Field Marshal Montgomery's battle plan for Normandy, following the D-Day landings on 6 June 1944, resulted in one of the most controversial campaigns of the Second World War. This book gives an account of the conception and execution of Montgomery's plan, with its problems and complexities.



Joan of Arc


Author: Mary Gordon


Description: In elegant, insightful prose, novelist Gordon meditates on the courageous and complex young girl and the iconic status she has acquired.



Lonely Planet French Phrasebook


Author: Marie-Helene Girard, Anny Monet


Description: This handy phrasebook focuses on pronunciation, basic grammar and essential vocabulary for the traveler.



Madame Bovary


Author: Lydia Davis (Translator), Gustave Flaubert


Description: The landmark novel of a woman who suffers in search of relief from her humdrum life in a provincial village outside Rouen.



Michelin Green Guide Normandy


Author: Michelin Travel Publications


Description: A thorough introduction to Normandy and the Channel islands in the classic Michelin style, featuring brief descriptions of all the major attractions. Organized alphabetically, we like it for its broad coverage, and especially for its excellent local maps.



Normandy Map 513


Author: Michelin


Description: A colorful, detailed map of Normandy at a scale of 1:200,000, featuring Rouen, Le Havre and the route of the Seine from west of Paris to the Atlantic.



On Rue Tatin, Living and Cooking in a French Town


Author: Susan Herrmann Loomis


Description: A refreshingly direct, affectionate memoir of making a home -- and cooking -- in Louviers.



Six Armies in Normandy, From D-Day to the Liberation of Paris


Author: John Keegan


Description: A provocative account of the invasion of Normandy and the battles that proceeded it. Keegan's intense descriptions of the war in northern France are accompanied by perceptive analysis of the military tactics that resulted in Allied victory.





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