The Battlefields of Champagne
July 28 - August 1
Tour Dates – 28 July – 1 August 2024
Accomodation – Central Reims Hotel
Price includes – Travel, Accomodation (Bed & Breakfast), Champagne House entries, Battlefield Tour
Cost – £1100 – £180.00 Single Supplement
The Battlefields of Champagne
This new tour combines both the Great War battlefields of Tardenois and a tour of Champagne houses and vinyards of Northern France. Departing from Ebbsfleet, the tour will be conducted in an executive coach thorughout and guided by Clive Harris. Based in Reims, our tour will include an exploration of the 1918 battlefields of Tardenois, where British, French and Italian troops fought through the Ardre Valley and its Champagne Vineyards as the Second Battle of the Marne reached its conclusion. In addition the battlefields of Chateau Thierry will also be studied through the eyes of the 2nd US Division and USMC units that fought here. The tour also features a study of the regions famous champagne heritage including visits to a number of Champagne Houses and Vinyards in and around Reims and Epernay. The tour will be situated in centre Reims and allow for time for individual exploration of the picturesque city and its numerous historic buildings.
The tour picks up from Ebbsfleet International before heading to Dover and onwards to Calais, a stop will made onroute to visit Troyon on the Aisne to look at the 1914 BEF actions in the area.
An early evening arrival in Reims is followed by a welcome glass of bubbles before Clive conducts a brief orientation walk around the city centre, free time to enjoy your surroundings
We start the day with a visit to the nearby Fort de la Pompelle to consider the French battlefields prior to the British arrival in July 1918, after visiting a number of sites connected to the fighting between 1915 and 1917 we end with a visit to a Reims Champagne House for a cellar tour & tasting.
The day is spent touring the nearby Ardre Valley where the British fought two actions in the summer of 1918. Firstly the defensive battle fought by the 19th (Western) Division that slows the German advance as they attempt to encircle Reims. We then consider the offensive actions of the 51st (Highland) and 62nd (West Riding) Divisions over the same ground as they fought their way through the dense forests and rolling vineyards before reaching the commanding Montagne de Bligny at the conclusion of an intense 9 day battle. We end the day in Epernay and tour the Avenue de Champagne, the mile long thoroughfare offers an unbroken boulevard of champagne houses and bars.
Continuing our study of the Second Battle of the Marne we head to Chateau Thierry and visit the AEF Memorial overlooking the key town that contained a number of vital bridges across the Marne River, after time to explore the visitors centre, we then head to Belleau Wood to look at the struggles of the US Marine Corps through its avenues and rides. We end with a visit to a small local champagne producer before returning to Reims.
Freetime in the morning to explore Reims with its historic catherdrale or the chance to visit one of its many hypermarkets before onwards travel to the UK.
If you wish to pay by credit card, drop us an email and we will send you the relevant link.
Cheques can be made payable to “Battle Honours Ltd”