Canadians in Normandy D-Day beaches Juno Beach and Pegasus Bridge

Duration: 13 to 14 hours
Destination: France, Île-de-France, Paris
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  • 13 to 14 hours
  • Paris
  • E-Voucher
  • Lowest Price
  • Cancellable

Overview

Similar Tours

HIGHTLIGHTS

Stop at the exact location where the original « Pegasus Bridge » used to stand.

Pay your respects to the fallen Canadian soldiers at the Canadian War Cemetery in Beny-sur-Mer

See the famous “Canada House” on Juno Beach, said to be the first house liberated in Normandy.

Walk on the sands of Juno Beach in Normandy just like the Canadian troops did in June 1944.

Visit the Juno Beach Centre, the most comprehensive museum about the Canadian landings in Normandy.

Visit the underground bunker of German General « Richter » in Caen.

Itinerary
This is a typical itinerary for this product

Stop At: Pegasus Bridge, avenue Major John Howard, 14860 Ranville France

Pegasus Bridge is a bascule bridge, that was built in 1934, that crossed the Caen Canal, between Caen and Ouistreham, in Normandy, France.

Also known as the Bénouville Bridge after the neighbouring village, it was, with the nearby Ranville Bridge over the river Orne, a major objective of the British airborne troops during Operation Deadstick, part of Operation Tonga in the opening minutes of the Allied invasion of Normandy on 6 June 1944 during the Second World War.

A unit of glider infantry of the 2nd Battalion, the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry, British 6th Airborne Division, commanded by Major John Howard, was to land, take the bridges intact and hold them until relieved.

The successful taking of the bridges played an important role in limiting the effectiveness of a German counter-attack in the days and weeks following the Normandy invasion.

Duration: 20 minutes

Stop At: Beny-sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery, 1/2 mile east of Reviers on highway D35, Reviers France

The Bény-sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery is a cemetery containing predominantly Canadian soldiers killed during the early stages of the Battle of Normandy in the Second World War. It is located in and named after Bény-sur-Mer in the Calvados department, near Caen in lower Normandy. As is typical of war cemeteries in France, the grounds are beautifully landscaped and immaculately kept. Contained within the cemetery is a Cross of Sacrifice, a piece of architecture typical of memorials designed by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

The men who fell on the beaches and in the bitter bridgehead battles are buried in Beny-sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery which, despite its name, is near the village of Reviers. The cemetery contains 2,049 headstones enclosed by pines and maples. These mark the dead of the 3rd Division and the graves of 15 airmen.

The mayor and people of Reviers take a special interest in the cemetery for, although it bears another name, they feel it to be their own. Fine hedges decorate the entrance, and the flanking registry buildings have platforms from which the visitor can see the whole area and appreciate the skill and devotion that has gone into the planning and design of this superb cemetery.

Duration: 30 minutes

Stop At: La Maison des Canadiens, 34 Promenade des Francais, 14990 Bernieres-sur-Mer France

“Within sight of this house over 100 men of the Queen’s Own Rifles were killed or wounded, in the first few minutes of the landings.”

That stark inscription welcomes visitors at the entrance of a large, timber-framed house overlooking Juno Beach, in the village of Bernières-sur-Mer, France. “La Maison des Canadiens," or Canada House, is one of the most iconic buildings in Canadian military history. It was one of the first houses liberated by Canadian soldiers on D-Day, 6 June 1944, and has since become a familiar historic landmark, standing in the backdrop of the many black-and-white photographs showing troops landing on the sands of this village in Normandy.

This particular house was one of the few left intact, perhaps because it was the favoured home of an occupying German officer.

The left-hand side is owned by the family of Hervé Hoffer, whose grandfather owned the home during the war but was evicted by the Germans.

In 1984, the 40th anniversary of D-Day when large numbers of surviving veterans first began returning on pilgrimages to Juno Beach, Hoffer met some of the Canadians who had actually liberated his house.

Duration: 20 minutes

Stop At: Juno Beach Centre, Voie des Francais Libres, 14470 Courseulles-sur-Mer France

The Juno Beach Centre’s permanent exhibit draws on photographs, documents, multimedia, maps, and artefacts to tell the story of the Canadians who volunteered for military service or mobilized at home to contribute to the war effort. It also presents the battles that took Canadian units from Sicily to Italy and from Normandy to the Netherlands.

The Centre pays homage to the 45,000 Canadians who lost their lives during the War, of which 5,500 were killed during the Battle of Normandy and 359 on D-Day.

The Centre is not only a museum about the war. It also portrays the personal accounts and real-life stories of the society that these soldiers bequeathed to their children and that now forms Canada.

Permanent Exhibitions

Room A Courseulles, June 06th 1944

In this first room, visitors stand in a simulated landing craft to watch a film which puts them into the mindset of Canadians during the Second World War. Images of war, training, D-Day, as well as, Canada during the war years are projected on the walls, while Canadian soldiers and their families describe what they were thinking and feeling at the time.

Room B Canada in the 1930’s

Upon exiting the introduction film, which sets the tone of the permanent exhibit, visitors are given reference points from which to draw an understanding of Canada on the eve of war. The geography, demographics, economic situation, state of the military, politics and the social climate of the time are presented. Young visitors initially ‘meet’ Peter & Madeleine via a terminal located in the main hall. In this circular room and throughout the permanent exhibit, the “young public” circuit is presented through the eyes of these two young ‘virtual’ Canadians of the 1930-40s.

Room C Canada goes to War

This room, comprised of two areas, follows the transformation of the country as it enters the war and builds its armed forces which saw over one million men and women enlist into its ranks.

Canada declares war on Germany on September 10th, 1939 – In a simulated Canadian living room, the speeches of various protagonists announce the entry into war. The voices of Hitler, Daladier, Chamberlain and Mackenzie King can all be heard on period radios.

Civilians and Soldiers: Canadians on Every Front – This area shows that the entire country was mobilized during the Second World War. On both sides of a long curved corridor, visitors learn about the different aspects of this mobilization.

Room D Road to Victory

The visit continues with a presentation of the different campaigns in which Canadians fought, each contributing to the final outcome of the war: the Battle of Italy, Normandy, the Scheldt, Rhineland and Victory. This room also showcases some of the other military branches that played vital roles in the final outcome such as: the medical corps, war correspondents, engineers, etc. Finally this room presents different themes such as: the Canadians on D-Day, the First Nations at War in Europe, the Canadian Flag, the 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion and Canadians behind Enemy Lines.

Many Canadian families lost loved ones: over 45,000 Canadians died in their fight for freedom. Their names scroll across the ceiling to be remembered. On the other hand, large numbers of Canadians returned home to resume their lives and actively participate in developing contemporary Canada.

Room E Some Came Back, Others Did Not

The evocative title of this room marks the human toll of Canada’s war, while at the same time introduces hope for a better future.

Many Canadian families lost loved ones: over 45,000 Canadians died in their fight for freedom. Their names scroll across the ceiling to be remembered. On the other hand, large numbers of Canadians returned home to resume their lives and actively participate in developing contemporary Canada.

In this room, four alcoves line the wall and give visitors another perspective of the war. They can listen to period letters or essays written by Canadians in either English or French. It is in this room that the young public encounters the two young virtual guides Peter & Madeleine for the last time.

Room F They Walk With You

The film entitled “They Walk With You” is an immersive experience using powerful video and emotionally engaging audio, including the voices of the Canadian war correspondents Marcel Ouimet and Matthew Halton. The film utilizes Second World War newsreel footage from a variety of sources and, along with dramatic recreations, re-enacts the role and sacrifice of Canadian infantry soldiers during D-Day and the Battle of Normandy. Viewer discretion is advised.

An infantry soldier in war is often not privy to the “big picture”; his job is to fight and try to survive. “They Walk With You” immerses visitors in an infantry soldier’s experience.

Duration: 2 hours

Stop At: Croix de Lorraine, Voie des Francais Libres, 14470 Courseulles-sur-Mer France

Monument of The Lorraine Cross

Cross of more than 18 m high, located facing the sea, this monument commemorates the return of General de Gaulle to the French soil on June 14, 1944 after crossing the English Channel on board the French destroyer La combattante.

Churchill AVRE Tank – One Charlie

A British Churchill AVRE tank which stands as a glorious memorial of the landing operations on 6 June 1944. It was unable to bridge a deep culvert on D-Day one hundred yards south of the site and the members of its crew were obliged to escape under enemy fire with very heavy casualties.

Duration: 30 minutes

Inclusions
  • Air-conditioned vehicle
  • Entry/Admission – Juno Beach Centre
  • Entry/Admission - Juno Beach Centre

Exclusions
  • Lunch - Food and drinks, unless specified
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Near public transportation
  • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
  • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 8 travelers
Departure Point

Lido de Paris, 116 Av. des Champs-Élysées, 75008 Paris, France


Departure Time

6:30 AM


Return Details

Place de la Concorde, 75008 Paris, France

Voucher info

You can present either a paper or an electronic voucher for this activity.

Duration

13 to 14 hours

For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.

User's Reviews

Image - 02 Sep 2019 -

Wbalaban

We spent an incredibly moving day with our guide, Rėgis. His outstanding knowledge and his ability to share information in a meaningful way is remarkable - and enjoyable. This wasn’t a history class lecture. It was interesting, stimulating and moving. We went to Pegasus Bridge, the Canadian cemetery, Canada House, the Juno Beach Centre (where among other exhibits, an outstanding short film plays) and at the Ardennes Abbey. The last stop has to be experienced by everyone.

Image - 12 Aug 2019 -

Mike S

The cool cafe. Strong booze. DD tank to the bottom but back up again. The bunker tour from a Jets fan. Tears, heartbreak and an appreciation of sacrifice.

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