03 June 2024 • 6 Mins Read

What to Expect from a Fully Guided Normandy D-Day Battlefield Tour

This year is an excellent time to plan your next fully guided tour to Normandy, as the UK commemorates the 80th anniversary of the D-Day Landings on 6 June 1944.

Stepping onto the historic shores of Normandy is a profound and moving experience, offering the chance to walk in the footsteps of the soldiers who fought there during WWII.

Our fully guided Normandy battlefield tours provide an immersive educational journey through one of history's most significant military operations. Here’s a detailed guide on what to expect, including key sites and the unique experiences that come with a fully guided tour.

Expert-led insights

One of the most significant benefits of a fully guided tour to Normandy is the wealth of knowledge provided by our experienced guides. Highly knowledgeable on the history of D-Day, the strategic importance of key sites, and the personal stories of the soldiers who fought there, their narratives bring the past to life to offer a deeper understanding of the events that unfolded.

Tim was a brilliant tour guide, his style really brought the D Day landings to life and I loved how he talked about individual soldiers/regiments and the challenges they faced, while we were clambering up hills, across fields and along the beach. And it was emotional to end our tour at Ranville Cemetery with one of our RAF Engineers laying a wreath on AirTanker's behalf. Very much a time for reflection and feeling humble at the lives that were lost, for our freedom.
AirTanker Services, Normandy


Emotional connection

Walking along the beaches, visiting cemeteries, and witnessing the remnants of war creates an emotional connection that reading about these events can’t fully capture. Our tours often include opportunities for moments of reflection, where you can pause to consider the significance of these key sites.

Logistical convenience

Geographically, Normandy is close to the UK and an easily accessible to visit. Depending on your location, you can reach Normandy from the UK in a matter of hours, with our guides there to oversee all the logistics including transportation and navigating between different sites and locations. This convenience lets you focus entirely on the experience without becoming concerned about the trip running smoothly.

I would like to thank you and the team for putting together an amazing package for us. We managed to visit all the beaches as well as play at a number of iconic locations - it was a trip that will stay with us for a long time. Chris was a total star - he ‘got’ our intent and delivered his knowledge at the right level. He is a charismatic individual and he got on with the kids and adults alike. A first-class guide in my opinion who was able to navigate the plan and deliver what was needed.
Campbell College CCF, Normandy


Personalised experience

We offer flexibility to customise your itinerary based on specific aims. Whether you have a particular interest in certain regiments, want to follow the path of a relative or past pupil who fought in the battle, or have specific sites you wish to explore in more detail, our guides can often accommodate these preferences.

Comprehensive itineraries

Guided tours are meticulously planned to cover all major sites, ensuring you don’t miss any key locations. Our tours can include visits to the following key sites and locations:

British and Canadian Beaches

Gold Beach

The landing beach of the British 50th Northumbrian Division. Its objective to capture Bayeux, which did not occur until 7 June. Also on King Sector, CSM Stan Hollis, of the Green Howards, would be the only soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross on D-Day.

Strong Point “Hillman”

The German artillery and local headquarters position (one of a number) overlooking Gold Beach. It was constructed underground and would take the Suffolk Regiment 6 hours to capture it, possibly having a major effect on the ability of 3rd Division to capture Caen on D-Day.

Juno Beach, (split into 2 areas; Bernieres sur Mer & Courseulles)

The objective of the 3rd Canadian Infantry Division. This division took the second highest casualties after the US divisions at Omaha Beach. There are 2 good examples of Hobart’s ‘Funnies’ (variants of armoured vehicles specially designed to overcome the German beach defences) to be found on these beaches, all have their stories.

German Battery at Longues sur Mer

A German Naval gun position, having had the guns removed from a German battleship, which managed to fire a total of 170 shells throughout the day. The battery finally being captured by the Devonshire Regiment. The forward observation bunker was used during the making of the film, ‘The Longest Day’.

Arromanches, Mulberry Harbour

The unique floating Mulberry Harbours ensured the delivery of combat supplies to the expanding bridgehead. They were a key factor in both enabling the strategic intent and servicing the tactical battle. It also aided the German belief that the Normandy invasion was a decoy for the real attack on Western Europe, as no major port had been assaulted.

Circular ‘360’ cinema

Mixes archival footage filmed in June 1944 by war correspondents, with current shots on these sites, today. View the film and then some time to browse in the bookshop before heading back to your accommodation.

American Sector

US Airborne, St Mere-Eglise

An essential town on the Cotentin peninsula, that would prove vital for the success in opening up routes for the US troops coming off Utah beach. The square was used in the filming of ‘The Longest Day’, where US airborne troops dropped in by accident. To capture the town, the commander of the 3rd Battalion of the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment issued an unusual order.

Pointe du Hoc

A strategic cliff top seized by U.S. Army Rangers, featuring well-preserved German bunkers and craters from the intense bombardment. The German Battery was believed to have 6 x 155mm guns, covering Omaha and Utah Beaches. 2nd Ranger Battalion, under Lt Col Rudder was given the task to capture the position. After capturing the site and suffering counter attacks there were only 90 of the original 225 who were able to fire weapons when relieved on 8 June.

Omaha Beach

Where both the 1st and 29th US Divisions landed on the 4-mile beach. The Germans had prepared their positions and battle drills in preparation for a landing. The cliffs and defences being equivalent to a medieval fortress, with the same effect on those who were to be the initial attacking force, as the opening sequence of ‘Saving Private Ryan’ depicts. 34,250 troops would land on Omaha beach on 6 June, of which 3,881 would become casualties.

St Laurent US Cemetery

Situated, overlooking Omaha Beach and maintained by the American Battle Monuments Commission, the Normandy American Cemetery and memorial, has 9,387 burials and another 1,557 names on the Memorial in the Garden of Remembrance. There are three Medal of Honor recipients; Sgt Peregory, Lt Monteith and Gen Roosevelt buried in the cemetery.

La Cambe, German Cemetery

One of the six German cemeteries in Normandy, together holding 77,960 burials, of which La Cambe has 21,139. The German War Graves Commission completed the work at La Cambe in 1958. The German tank commander, Michael Wittmann (The Black Baron) lies in this cemetery with his tank crew.

Other visits

Normandy Memorial: The British Normandy Memorial at Ver Sur Mer

The Memorial sitting on the slopes above Gold Beach, was unveiled on 6 June 2021, the 77th Anniversary of the D Day landings. Its panels record the names of 22,442 servicemen and women who died while serving under British command, both on D-Day and during the subsequent Battle of Normandy, which lasted until 25 August 1944.

The names include personnel from all the services and commemorates personnel from over 30 nations. The site also includes a French Memorial, dedicated to the memory of French civilians who died during the Normandy Campaign.                              

Bayeux Memorial

The Bayeux Memorial is dedicated to over 1,800 Commonwealth soldiers who died in the Normandy campaign during World War II and have no known graves. It is a poignant reminder of the sacrifices made by these individuals and their contributions to the Allied victory.           

Bayeux Tapestry

The world-famous embroidered cloth nearly 70 metres long and 50 centimetres tall depicts the events leading up to the Norman conquest of England concerning William, Duke of Normandy, and Harold, Earl of Wessex, later King of England, and culminating in the Battle of Hastings. Entry to the exhibit includes the use of audio-guides.

Plan your fully guided history tour to Normandy

Our fully guided history tours to Normandy offers a rich, informative, and hassle-free way to explore one of the most significant historical regions of World War II. It provides a deeper understanding, emotional connection, and comprehensive experience that can be difficult to achieve independently.

I’d also like to pass on my thanks from our team for the work done by your excellent guides over the past couple of weeks. Not only have they brought the history to life with their vast knowledge, they’ve been instrumental in developing the knowledge and confidence of our young LDOs (Learning Development Officers).
Army Foundation College Harrogate, Normandy


Find out more about our fully guided history tours to Normandy, or request a quote to get started.