WWI Commemorative Cruise in Picardy Villers-Bretonneux to Compiegne or vice versa
Commemorating the anniversary of World War One
Two cruises will follow the Canal de la Somme, starting or finishing near Villers Bretonneux on the weekend of the ANZAC Day Dawn Service, an event of deep significance to Australians and New Zealanders
Day 01: Villers-Bretonneux (Corbie) We meet you at the *designated meeting point and transfer to the hotel barge moored in Villers-Bretonneux for a champagne welcome and introduction to your crew and hotel barge. Time for a walk or cycle ride before dinner on board.
Day 2: Villers-Bretonneux (Corbie) > Cappy This morning we cruise along the Canal de la Somme to Cappy with plenty of walking and cycling opportunities. After lunch we visit the enormous Lochnager and Hawthorn Ridge craters, formed on the first day of the Battle of the Somme. We see Sunken Lane and the beautiful, moving Newfoundland Park, set up by the mothers of the Newfoundland regiment that was wiped out in 40 minutes on 1st July 1916. Hear amazing stories of individual heroism and enormous sacrifice, and see the evidence still there almost 100 years on. Dinner on board.
Day 3: Cappy > Peronne After breakfast we begin our visits to the famous sites of the 1916 Somme battles in which the Anzacs were involved. We see the very moving Thiepval memorial, the Gibraltar Bunker and the monument to the famous Pozieres Windmill, which was finally captured on 4th August 1916 by Australian troops, "who fell more thickly on this ridge than on any other battlefield in the war". After lunch we enjoy a relaxing cruise to Peronne. Dinner on board.
Day 4: Peronne > Bethencourt-sur-Somme This morning, continuing with the story of the epic 1918 battles to take the Hindenburg Line, we visit scenes of some of the most momentous and extraordinary feats of soldiering bravery. We visit Mont St Quentin and explore Peronne's medieval fortified museum with its detailed maps and awe-inspiring stories. Return to the barge for lunch, then cruise on the Canal du Nord alongside the River Somme through countryside to Bethencourt-sur-Somme. Dinner ashore tonight in a local auberge.
Day 5: Bethencourt-sur-Somme >Campagne After breakfast, we visit the tiny hamlet of Villers-Bretonneux, which is twinned with the town of Robinvale in Victoria, to commemorate a son lost in battle there. You will hear about the remarkable events and feats of the Australian troops in this area and also further along the Hindenburg Line in 1918. We visit the wonderful VB Australian WW1 museum and school, where we meet the school children who love to practise their English on Australians, who are seen like returning heroes to their school on each Anzac day. We then visit the memorial site of nearby Le Hamel, which commemorates General Monash's astounding 93 minute victorious battle over the Germans with his Australian and American forces. Return to the hotel barge and cruise to the village of Campagne. Dinner on board.
Day 6: Campagne to Compiegne This morning, a cruise to our final destination, Compiegne,. After lunch on board, we go deep into the forest of Compiegne to the Armistice Clearing, site of the signing of the Armistice aboard a train on November 11th, 1918. The clearing and its museum tell a fascinating story that stretches far beyond that historic day, as on board this famous train was also where Hitler insisted that the French capitulate to Germany in 1940. Return to the hotel barge for lunch, followed by a cruise to our final destination, Compiegne. Captain's Farewell Dinner tonight.
Day 7: Compiegne
This morning after breakfast we say farewell to our crew and transfer to the designated drop off point.
The designated meeting and drop off point is Paris.
Please note: This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change. Where possible, we will try to adapt the visits to reflect the interests and nationality of guests on board.
Vessel La Belle Epoque is a spacious, luxurious hotel barge and sister ship to L'Impressionniste. Although she originally carried logs from Burgundy to Paris, she was skilfully converted into a delightful hotel barge.
She has been designed with both elegance and passenger comfort in mind and offers a sun deck with spa pool, wood-panelled saloon/dining room and other luxury amenities.
She is also fully air-conditioned. The spacious cabins offer a choice of twin or double beds with marble en suite facilities. The Captain leads a crew of six comprising Master Chef, Deck-Hand, Tour Guide and two Housekeepers.
• Return transfers from meeting point in Paris to the barge
• Accommodation in air conditioned ensuite cabins
• All gourmet meals aboard and ashore
• A champagne welcome
• Select regional wines and alcoholic beverages consumed onboard. • Excursions and entrance fees as per the itinerary • Use of bicycles and other hotel barge facilities such as a spa pool • Local transfers to and from the designated meeting point
Pricing (per person) $AUD
Departs 2015 Departure Dates
Apr 19 (Reverse Itinerary); 26
2015 Departure Dates Sunday Apr 19 (Reverse Itinerary); 26
Booking conditions La Belle Epoque can be chartered for a minimum of 10 passengers - please contact World Journeys for details.
La Belle Epoque can be chartered for a minimum of 10 passengers - please contact World Journeys for details.
Not included • Air transportation
• Airport taxes
• Superior Chateaux vintage wines
• Optional activities such as hot air balloon flights
• Items of a personal nature
• Communication charges
• Any purchases
• Air transportation • Airport taxes • Visas • Insurance • Superior Chateaux vintage wines • Optional activities such as hot air balloon flights • Items of a personal nature • Communication charges • Any purchases