Flanders Fields - Britain's Bastion on the Western Front
4 days from £399pp
- Campaign: The Great War (WW1)
- Campaign Dates Covered: Oct 1914 - Sep 1918 (What's this?)
This tour will cover the following key events
- First Battle of Ypres - 31 October 1914One of the first fights to breakout between the Germans and the Britians during WW1, the First Battle of Ypres was fought in 1914. It saw a battle that lasted for 34 days, as the Germans faught to get to the English Channel, and the beginning of trench warfare on the Western Front.
- Second Battle of Ypres - 22 April 1915The second battle of Ypres involved four battles which were faught in the northern part of the Ypres Salient. The first battle saw the Germans launch an attack on the French on the Allied Front with poisonous gas, this battle was the first time that this weapon was used.
- Battle of Messines - 7 June 1917Arguably one of the most successful operations of WW1 on the Western Front, the Battle of Messines saw nineteen mines being detonated underneath the German mines, in a bid to secure Messines Ridge.
- Third Battle of Ypres - 31 July 1917Known as The Battle of Passchendaele, the Third Battle of Passchendaele began in July 1917 and was fought for four long months. The attack was Haig’s attempt to break through Flanders.
- Battle of the Lys - 9 April 1918Also known as the Spring Offensive and the Fouth Battle of Ypres, the Battle of the Lys was the Germans final attempt to break the Allied lines around Ypres. They did this as an attempt to defeat the Allies before the American troops arrived to aid th British and French soliders already fighting on the Western Front.
- Fourth Battle of Ypres - 26 September 1918Also known as the Spring Offensive and the Battle of the Lys, the Fourth Battle of Ypres was the Germans final attempt to break the Allied lines around Ypres. They did this as an attempt to defeat the Allies before the American troops arrived to aid th British and French soliders already fighting on the Western Front.
Regarded as one of the most important British battlefields of World War One, Ypres saw more than 250,000 British and Commonwealth soldiers fall during the defence of Flanders Fields. On this tour we visit the key locations and sites around Ypres such as, Tyne Cot, the Menin Gate, Messines Ridge and Passchendaele. It is also in Flanders where the legend of the Flanders poppy was born. The poppies were said to symbolise the fallen, as they grew, blood red in colour, on the disturbed battlefield grounds.
- 3 nights hotel with continental breakfast
- Specialist Battlefield Guide
- Convenient local joining points
- Travel by executive coach or upgrade to Silver Service coach
(Deposits from £50pp)
Once you have booked your battlefield tour either online, or by telephone (01709 385 624), you have the flexibility of how you pay off the remainder of your balance. You can -
Our contact and online banking payment details will be on your confirmation invoice to remind you of your choices.
For customers living outside of the UK, if you want to make a booking you will need to provide a UK postcode on our online booking system. If you are not able to provide a relevant UK postcode then you can enter the postcode for London Victoria Coach Station – SW1W 9TP. You should then be able to proceed to complete your booking.
If you do encounter a problem then you can speak to one of our friendly advisors who will be happy to help.
Please Note : After completing your booking, a member of our Customer Service team will be in touch to make sure everything is okay.
Either e-mail our Reservations Department or call on 01709 830 333 and they will check to see whether you can visit a particular cemetery on any of our Battlefield Tours, if we are not able to fit it into our itinerary then you could take some time out of the tour and do this independently by taxi or public transport.
We make our way to the port of departure and coach interchange where you will join your tour coach for the crossing to the Continent. Upon arrival in France we head to Ypres in Belgium and our hotel for a three-night stay.
Day 2 - In Flanders Fields Museum; Ypres
We start our tour at the In Flanders Fields Museum in Ypres. An internationally recognised museum, it was re-opened with new exhibitions in the summer of 2012. We take time to see the displays and follow the story of someone who served in WW1 with the new interactive ‘poppy’ bracelets. We then walk down to the Menin Gate and look at the missing of Flanders and see the Ramparts of Ypres, the only surviving original feature of pre-1914 Ypres. After lunch at Hooge we see a preserved British Trench – Yorkshire Trench – and then see where the ‘Last Fighting Tommy’, Harry Patch, fought in 1917, seeing his memorial. At Langemarck we look at the German dead in Flanders and contrast this with a visit to Tyne Cot; the largest British Cemetery in the world, with its visitors’ centre. At Frezenberg we see the Scottish Memorial and end the day at Hill 60, with its evidence of the ‘underground war’ at Ypres and numerous concrete bunkers.
Included meals: Breakfast
Day 3 - Passchendaele; Messines Ridge
Today, we start at Hill 60, with its evidenced of the ‘underground war’ at Ypres and then travel to Zonnebeke and visit the Passchendaele Museum with its new system of re-created trenches. Here, you can walk through British and German trenches, go into dugouts and shelters and see the whole story of trench warfare. After lunch, we travel to the Messines Ridge, scene of mine warfare in 1917, and see some of the preserved craters at St Eloi and Spanbroekmoelen; two of the largest mine craters in Flanders. At Bayernwald we see the German trench system where Hitler fought in 1914. At Messines we visit the smallest British cemeteries in Flanders, before looking at the story of the Christmas Truce and the static front around Ploegsteert: ‘Plugstreet’ to the British, were Winston Churchill served in 1916. We end on Kemmel Hill, overlooking Flanders, where so many soldiers died in defence of Ypres.
Included meals: Breakfast
We leave the hotel after breakfast and travel to the Channel port. You will leave your tour coach behind as you join your transfer vehicle for your return journey to your original departure point
Included meals: Breakfast
Entrance fees to museums & places of interest (extra cost). Museum package available whilst on tour approx. cost €45
A selection of related books for pre or post tour reading.
- Barton, Peter - Passchendaele 1917 (Constable 2007)
- MacDonald, Lyn - They Called It Passchendaele (many editions)
- Sheldon, Jack - The German Army At Ypres 1914 (Pen & Sword 2010)
- Reed, Paul - Walking The Salient (Pen & Sword Ltd 1999, new edition 2015)
This tour will look at the Great War battlefields around Ypres which during the years 1914-1918 was the main British bastion on the Western Front. Almost every soldier who came to the Western Front fought at Ypres at some point and by the close of the war, more than 250,000 British and Commonwealth soldiers had died here.
Occasionally it is possible, depending on time, for us to visit a cemetery or memorial outside the main tour itinerary. However, clients will appreciate there are more than 170 British military cemeteries around Ypres and we are not in a position to visit them all. Such visits are at the discretion of your Specialist Guide/Drivers. It is advisable you speak them as soon as possible on the first day of your tour.
The ‘Flanders Fields’ tour takes place in Belgium and therefore you will only need the Euro. You are advised to get Euros – in cash – in advance of your tour, as many banks in Belgium do not provided currency exchange services and some cash machines do not accept UK credit/debit cards.
Although lunch is not included in your tour price, we now offer a very reasonable optional lunch package covering most of your needs - available to book on tour.
What to Bring
The weather in Belgium can be changeable, and it is advisable to bring sensible clothes and always pack a jumper and waterproofs. Good, stout shoes are essential – remember this was once a battlefield and most of the time we are in rural Belgium! Walking boots or stout trainers are ideal but not essential. In warm weather always bring a hat and sun cream, and it is advisable to have a supply of water.
All of Leger’s battlefield tours are accompanied by specialist guides. Their individual in-depth knowledge of warfare will be informative, as well as enhance your overall experience, as they recreate a fascinating perception of the history and factual events of each battle. Discover the actual catalysts for war, the strategies employed and the final, inevitable outcomes, as well as experiencing the emotional human side of the front line.
Please note: On certain tours, you may get tour guides other that the ones listed below.
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.
You will stay for three nights at the 3-star Novotel in the centre of Ypres, near the Menin Gate and the market place. The hotel has a lift, bar, and restaurant.
Novotel Ypres Centrum+ View more
About the hotel
This excellent hotel is located in the heart of historic town of Ypres, only a couple of minutes' walk from the Menin Gate Memorial, where the 'Last Post' is sounded every evening. The hotel is a firm favourite within Leger’s Battlefields programme and makes the ideal base for exploring the rich military heritage of the area. All the comfortably furnished bedrooms are en-suite with T.V., telephone and air-conditioning. The hotel has a small bar area and restaurant.
- English Speaking Staff
- Guest Lounge
- WiFi Available
- Bath and/or Shower
- Tea and Coffee Making Facilities
Executive Coach+ View more
Silver Service Coach+ View more
With an overnight stay or the option to meet us at the interchange, our travel extras allow you to create a travel experience to suit your needs...
Stay overnight near Dover+ Find out more
Why not go the night before your tour for a relaxing start?
You can park for FREE for up to seven days at the Holiday Inn Ashford North and enjoy an overnight stay with English breakfast from just £38 per person (Based on 2 sharing a twin/double room on a B&B basis, subject to availability. Single supplements and terms and conditions apply.) We’ll then collect you from the hotel on the day of departure and return you there at the end of your holiday.
To book this package, please call the hotel on 01233 713333, quoting ‘Leger Holidays’ and your booking reference. If your holiday is longer than seven days you can pay for additional days’ parking. Ask one of our friendly reservations team for more details when you book your holiday
Join coach at Interchange+ Find out more
Join your tour coach at the interchange.
On most tours if you’d prefer to join your tour coach at Stop 24 services, you can park your car in the car park which is accredited by the Park Mark safer parking scheme and is monitored 24 hours a day by CCTV. Payment for the parking is made on arrival using the self-service machines.
Excludes tours to Ireland and the U.K. and tours travelling via Brittany Ferries.