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Author: gibbsgirl

Joined: 6/4/2012
Posts: 11
Trips Taken: 3
Traveler Since: 2011

August 13, 2012

We are planning to take Seine River Cruise.  My husband is extremely interested in the D-Day Beaches.  Can anyone tell me how long the tour is on the day travelers visit the D-Day Beaches?  We may spend additional time on our own before the cruise begins (taking an Overlord Tour from Bayeux); but we are unsure whether we will need to do that.  Did you feel you had sufficient time at each point on the boat's tour of the D-Day beaches?

This is my first time on the Forum and would really appreciate some guidance.  Thanks in advance.

Author: nancyf

Joined: 4/26/2010
Posts: 155
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

43 of the 50 United States, including Hawaii and Alaska, England , France , Italy , Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Africa (Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe. South Africa), Israel, Canada, the Carribbean, Peru, going to Egypt & Jordan in February 2011 ( canceled due to the unrest there, but I will take this trip later!), China, Russia, Kenya, Turkey, Greece, Malta, Sicily.

Traveler Since: 2007

August 13, 2012

I don't know how long they stay at the beaches, but when I was there in 2008, on our own, we stayed at Bayeux for a couple of nights (at the Winston Churchill Hotel), and took something called the Battlebus Tours to the beaches. It was wonderful. Small group of 6 in a mini-van with a wonderful driver/guide. Made it so interesting. Anyway, just my experience. We had booked the Battlebus Tour on the internet before leaving the U.S. Google it.

Author: janice!

Joined: 3/18/2010
Posts: 255
Trips Taken: 7
Countries Visited:

many

Traveler Since: 1999

August 13, 2012

Not having been on the Seine River cruise, I can not answer your questions.

In response to your request for guidance in using the Travel Forum, I would like to offer my advice. To post a new topic, start on the main Travel Forum page, scan the list of forums and click on the one which is most appropriate for your new topic. When you get the list of topics in the selected forum, scroll down until you see the red Post a New Topic and click it. The next page is where you will create your new topic, For this specific topic, I believe that the Europe forum would be the most appropriate. The first two forums are very frequently misused. "Tips for using our forums" should only be used if your are actually offering a tip about using the forum. "Website & Forum Feedback" should only be used if you have comments or questions about the GCT website including the forums. Neither are meant to be used for any trip discussion. Hope this helps.

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 884
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

August 13, 2012

Or another suggestion.  Jack Donahue, who posts as Nana&Papa, took this trip last spring and wrote some lengthy posts and also quite a long review.  I'm surprised he hasn't already popped up to answer your questions.  I will be taking it next July and am really looking forward to it, more so after reading his posts.

Pauline

 

Author: nanaandpapa

Joined: 3/30/2011
Posts: 442
Trips Taken: 15
Countries Visited:

Aruba, Austria, Australia, Bermuda, Belgium, Botswana, Canada, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Rep., Egypt, England, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Luxembourg, Mexico, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Russia, South Africa, Spain, St. Marten (fr), St. Martin (nd), Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, USA, Vatican, Zimbabwe

Traveler Since: 2002

August 13, 2012

 GIbbsgirl,

We took  The Seine Paris to Normandy in late March/early April of this year. The day we went to the Normandy beach sites was about right for us, but we were both born after D-Day and had no family lost there. We left the ship in Honfleur right after breakfast, at 8:00 AM and returned at about 6:30, on time for dinner. They provided a so-so picnic lunch, so that we did not waste time having to have lunch. It was about an hours drive to the Peace Museum at Caen, where we picked up our guide, Bruno,. He was not that good, particularly at Pont du Hoc, as he let the group get strung out and lose the radio signal at times. He was the only guide on the whole trip that was not excellent. The other groups were happy with their guides. Time driving through Normandy is not wasted, as you get a feeling for the land  and the small villages. The first stop was at Longue-sur-Mer where we could walk through German gun implacements as the were left after D-day. It was actually a raw windy day that helped with the feel of D-Day.

From there, we went to Arromanches where the allies had built a tempoary harbor to  support the invasion. There were many remnants of the temporary harbor still there. and there was an excellent small museum there where we happened onto an English language presentation a a group of Canadian students on the activities in building and using the harbor. There was also a slide show and film clips. Most people skipped eating their lunch to make the most of this town.

From there, we went to the American Cemetary at Colleville-sur-Mer, where they had a ceremny for us, as visiting Americans, with each given a rose to place on a grave. If you have loved ones buried here. this is the one place that the timing is tight. Make sure that you have the grave location in advance, if you want to visit it.

Then it was on to Omaha beach, with time to visit the 2 memorials there and to appreciate the immensity of the beach.

The last stop was at Pont-du Hoc, where the rangers scaled to cliffs in the landing. The site is as it was left with craters and destroyed bunkers.

Then, after this very busy day, it was back to the ship.

Thre were 2 other partial days relating to the invasion. The last day of the main trip, we went back to the Peace Memorial in Caen to visit the museum for a couple of hours. It was quite moving and were learned much of the pre-invasion times.

On the Brittany extension, we also visited a German Osuary near Mont St Michel where many German remains are intereed. This was not on the planned itinierary, so I don't know if it would be repeated.

Unless there are other sites that you would want to visit or you would want extra times in these sites, I see no need for a separate trip.

I did a blog format trip report http://jackthetravelingman-seine,blogspot.com.

We would be glad to answer further questions, but we are traveling right now with spotty internet access, so the responses might not be as quick as we would like.

The Brittany post-trip extension was well worth it, showing us another time in history, St-Malo and Mont St Michel were spectacular.

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 884
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

August 13, 2012

See, I told you.  He is extremely informative, and I think he and his wife enjoy their travels so much they want everyone else to enjoy theirs.

I did mention to him about this trip that sometimes I use a cane for balance, and he suggested I make sure to bring it on some of the walks because of the cobblestones.

Author: gibbsgirl

Joined: 6/4/2012
Posts: 11
Trips Taken: 3
Traveler Since: 2011

August 13, 2012

Thank you, Nancy F., Janice, Pauline (you were so right about Nanaandpapa) -- and WOW! thank you, Nanaandpapa - your experience is so helpful.  We will make the trip in the Fall of 2013 (we leave for China trip in September).

I appreciate everyone's kindness to a newcomer to the Forum.

 

Author: nanaandpapa

Joined: 3/30/2011
Posts: 442
Trips Taken: 15
Countries Visited:

Aruba, Austria, Australia, Bermuda, Belgium, Botswana, Canada, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Rep., Egypt, England, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Luxembourg, Mexico, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Russia, South Africa, Spain, St. Marten (fr), St. Martin (nd), Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, USA, Vatican, Zimbabwe

Traveler Since: 2002

August 13, 2012

 Gibbsgirl,

I did a similar report for China & the Yangtze. It was 5 yesrs after the fact and from memories, photos and a text only report, but It might be worth taking a look at. It is http://jackthetravelingman-china.blogspot.com. It was a wonderful trp and we only had 14 of us on it (Yes, it was a GCT tour), so it was fantastic. We love reliving trips by writing them up and talinkg about them. So we would be glad to answer any questions.

Jack

Author: kba

Joined: 6/19/2010
Posts: 64
Trips Taken: 5
Traveler Since: 2009

August 14, 2012

NanaandPapa:

You are the absolute best.....and I love the Jack the travelling man blogs.  I am three weeks away from Paris tp Normandy and then the St. Malo and Mt. St. Michael extension. I will think of you often.

Kim

Author: gibbsgirl

Joined: 6/4/2012
Posts: 11
Trips Taken: 3
Traveler Since: 2011

August 15, 2012

Nanaandpapa

I have just read Jack's blog on China.  I am eagerly anticipating our trip to China in September, and your blog really has me revved up about the trip!  The descriptions and photos are excellent, and I am counting the days to our trip.

Thank you for sharing your experiences.

 

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