Arnhem & the Rhine Crossings

About the tour: Arnhem & the Rhine Crossings

  • Campaign: World War 2 (WW2)
  • Campaign Dates Covered: Sep 1944 - Mar 1945

This tour will cover the following key events

  • Start of Operation Market Garden - 17 September 1944
    Operation Market Garden involved ground troops and airborne forces and was the largest airborne operation to that date. The aim was to encircle the Germasn on the Ruhr and delve deeper into Germany via The Netherlands.
  • Withdrawal of troops from Arnhem - 25 September 1944
    After a week of intense fighting, on the 25th September, a withdrawal plan was sent across and exacuation of the troops from their isolated position in Arnhem went ahead that night.
  • Operation Veritable: Reichswald Forest - 8 February 1945
    Taking place during the final stages of WW2, Operation Veritable saw Allied forces attempt to clear German forces from an area on the Rhineland, between the Mass & Rhine rivers. The operation was a success and saw German troops retreat, however the battle was described to have seen some of the most fierce fighting in WW2.
  • Operation Plunder: Rhine Crossing - 23 March 1945
    Operation Plunder saw the Allied forces cross the River Rhine at Wessel and Rees, and successfully push the Germans baxk to Hamburg.

Tour Introduction

On this battlefield tour we cross through Holland and Germany, as we delve into some of the most iconic battles of World War 2. We spend time in Arnhem where we look at one of the most significant moments of Operation Market Garden, the battle of Arnhem Bridge. We spend time in Oosterbeek, where we visit the Arnhem Airborne Museum and the Oosterbeek War Cemetery. Moving onto the 1945 battles, we head into Germany where we pay a visit to Reichswald Forest cemetery and take a look at the fighting that took place at Xanten, Goch and the Hochwald Gap. Finally we see the site where the Rhine Crossings took place.

Tour Includes

  • 4 nights hotel with continental breakfast
  • Specialist Battlefield Guide
  • Convenient local joining points
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Once you have booked your battlefield tour either online, or by telephone (), you have the flexibility of how you pay off the remainder of your balance. You can -

  1. Use our balance payment facility online to make and track your card payments. You can pay as much as you want up until your final due date or pay it all, the choice is yours.
  2. Send payments via online banking.
  3. Send payments via cheque.
  4. Call us and make a card payment, either a small amount or as lump sum until your final due date.

Our contact and online banking payment details will be on your confirmation invoice to remind you of your choices.

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Tour Itinerary

Day 1

Local departure by coach, then to our hotel on the outskirts of Arnhem for a four-night stay.

Day 2 - Arnhem Landing Grounds & Oosterbeek

We start the tour at the Arnhem Airborne Museum. Located in the old Hartenstein Hotel, the building was there in 1944 and used as 1st Airborne Division’s Headquarters. Now an excellent museum of the battle, here we set the scene before travelling out to some of the landing grounds at Ginkel Heath and Wolfheze. Before lunch, we see one of the original Arnhem memorials, and in the afternoon look at the bitter fighting in the Oosterbeek perimeter – the infamous ‘Cauldron’. We see Arnhem Oosterbeek War Cemetery, visit Oosterbeek Church, see positions held by the Border Regiment and follow the story of the ‘Lonsdale Force’, before visiting the house where General Urquhart hid during the battle.

Included meals: Breakfast

Airborne Memorial. Ginkel Heath

Airborne Memorial. Ginkel Heath (9)

Key Visits

  • Oosterbeek Church
  • Arnhem Memorial
  • Arnhem Airborne Museum
  • Hartenstein Hotel
  • Ginkel Heath Landing Grounds Memorial
  • Airborne Memorial. Ginkel Heath
  • Wolfheze Landing Zone Memorial
  • Arnhem Oosterbeek War Cemetery

Day 3 - Arnhem Bridge & The Island

The battle of Arnhem Bridge is one of the iconic moments of Operation Market Garden and we see where the fighting took place around the bridge. After lunch in Nijmegen, we visit Jonkerbos War Cemetery before examining events on ‘The Island’ in 1944/45, looking at the fighting around the De Laar Farm, and following the so-called ‘Driel Dash’. American Airborne troops also held The Island after the battle and we see their memorial, as well as the battle scarred building where men from the Hampshire Regiment fought in October 1944.

Included meals: Breakfast

Arnhem Bridge

Arnhem Bridge (6)

Key Visits

  • Arnhem Bridge
  • Nijmegen Bridge
  • Jonkerbos War Cemetery
  • De Laar Farm
  • Driel Memorial
  • US 101st AB Memorial

Day 4 - Reichswald Forest & The Rhineland

Following on from the period of static fighting during the winter of 1944/45, we begin today at the Freedom Museum at Groesbeek to help set the scene for the battles of 1945. We also visit Groesbeek War Cemetery before looking at the fighting in Reichswald Forest, seeing the War Cemetery there - the largest British Second World War cemetery in Europe with more than 7,000 graves. After lunch in Kleve, we look at the advance on the Rhineland, examining the fighting at Xanten, Goch and the Hochwald Gap, before seeing where the Rhine crossings took place between Rees and Wesel. We end the day in the area where 6th (Airborne) Division landed during Operation Varsity.

Included meals: Breakfast

Reichswald Forest War Cemetery

Reichswald Forest War Cemetery (6)

Key Visits

  • Freedom Museum
  • Groesbeek War Cemetery
  • Reichswald Forest War Cemetery
  • Kleve
  • Groesbeek Memorial
  • Hochwald Gap Battlefield
  • Battle-damaged Rhine Bridge, Wesel

Day 5

Return home.

Included meals: Breakfast

Entrance to museums, places of interest and optional excursions are at extra cost.

Museum package available whilst on tour approx cost €20.

Pre-Tour Reading

A selection of related books for pre or post tour reading.

  • Ford, K. Rhineland 1945 (Osprey 2000)
  • Lynch, T. Operation Market Garden (History Press 2011)
  • Margry, K. Operation Market Garden: Then & Now (After The Battle 2004)
  • Middlebrook, M. Arnhem 1944: The Airborne Battle (Pen & Sword 2009)
  • Thompson, R.W. The Battle for the Rhineland (Westholme Publishing 2012)
  • Waddy, J.R. A Tour of the Arnhem Battlefields (Pen & Sword 1998)

Passenger Information

Foreign Currency

The Arnhem & Rhine Crossing tour takes place in Holland and Germany and therefore you will only need the Euro. You are advised to get Euros – in cash – in advance of your tour, as most banks in Holland and Germany do not provide currency exchange services.

What to Bring

The weather in Holland and Germany can be changeable and it is advisable to bring sensible clothes and always pack a jumper and waterproofs. Good, stout shoes are essential and comfortable walking boots or trainers are ideal. In warm weather always bring a hat and sun cream, and it is advisable to have a supply of water, which is usually on sale on the coach as well.

Specialist Battlefield Guides

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.

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You will stay for four nights at the 4-star Hotel De Bilderberg in Oosterbeek.

Travel Options

All our coaches and transfer vehicles operate a 'no smoking on board policy'. The use of electronic cigarettes is strictly forbidden.
In the interest of fellow guests, do not take hot food or ice cream on board.
alcohol can only be taken on board our vehicles at the discretion of your driver.

When it comes to getting to the Battlefields, Leger Holidays make it easy, with a selection of travel options for you choose from.

Travel Extras

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...

Join coach at Interchange

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.

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