WargamerTour.com World War II & Castles Military History

Tremblay-en-France, France

BO
Bill Owen
  • Email address verified
1 review
May 8 - 21, 2018
Group size: 9-12
WargamerTour.com World War II & Castles Military History
Tremblay-en-France, France

Bill Owen
  • Email address verified
1 review

$3199
May 8 - 21, 2018
Group size: 9-12

About this trip

THIS IS OUR fifth European wargamers’ tour since 1991’s Millennium of Mayhem led by James F. Dunnigan. Join a small group of wargamers and family to see battlefields, castles and see some general interest sites in France, Belgium and the Netherlands. If you like, there will be options to play several wargames hosted by local gamers. Lasting friendships have developed among US and European participants. You can even ride on vintage German tanks and softskins at the Militracks militaria fair in Overloon. We have 1 seat open; there is still time to join the 10 booked to date.


Our historian tour manager is Mark Williams, a long time wargamer and retired from military aircraft design at Boeing. He teaches history and political science at St. Charles community college in Missouri.

Our tour host is Rich Baier who has traveled on the WargamerTour in 2003 & 2010. His goal is to make sure everyone feels included and having a good time.

They both look forward to welcoming you aboard our squad's Mercedes Sprinter mini-coach!

Highlights

• Custom Europe tour itinerary for those interested in military history like wargamers • Visits to olden cities, battlefields, castles and military history museums: • Château de Chinon • French Tank Museum in Saumur • D-Day sites: Utah Beach, Sainte-Mère-Église, Omaha Beach, Pointe du Hoc, Villers-Bocage, Ouistreham Flak Tower, Pegasus Bridge • Chateau Galliard • Rouen • Batterie Todt • Dunkirk • Ghent • Market Garden: Eindhoven, Nijmegan, Arnhem • Militracks militaria fair: ride along restored WWII German vehicles • Overloon • Amsterdam • With options for Paris, wargames, Caen Memorial Museum & Castle Gravensteen • Travel with a limited-size group & meet US & foreign gamers • Limited group size

Accommodations

Fourteen days (12) total number of nights

Tremblay-en-France/Roissy CDG (1) Sheraton Paris Airport & Conference Center

Chinon (1) Ibis Styles Chinon

North Caen, Hérouville-Saint-Clair (3) Ibis budget Caen Hérouville

Rouen (1) Ibis Rouen Centre Rive Gauche Saint Sever

Dunkirk (1) Ibis Dunkerque Centre

Ghent (2) Ibis Gent Centrum St-Baafs Kathedraal

Arnhem (1) Holiday Inn Express Hotel

Horst (1) Parkhotel

Amsterdam (1) Hampshire Eden Amsterdam Hotel

Note: some hotels are subject to change with equivalent or better; see Updates section for latest.

Details

Click here for a printer-friendly flyer. Tour is operated by Horn Tours of Netherlands. Price is per person based on double or triple room occupancy. Or while single rooms are available, a single supplement is payable to have a room to yourself. Click to contact Stevie Jay.


Document required for US Citizens is Passport valid through at least November 21, 2008 (or 6 month after planned return if later than May 21) with two blank pages; no visa or shots at this time. Other citizens should consult their consulate.


Insurance coverage is included at no extra charge, via a Deluxe Group Plan from Travel Guard at a cost of 7.2% of the tour cost to cover accident, bags, cancellation/trip interruption charges, for coverage details see www.steviejaytravel.com/insurance. Click here if you want to waive coverage. Because of licensing issues, Pennsylvania & Montana residents cannot buy TravelGuard's Deluxe Group Plan, but may buy insurance coverage on an individual plan by mentioning that interest in the Notes to the Organizer.


Other terms at www.steviejaytravel.com/terms-and-conditions are incorporated by reference. Details and price subject to change, due to conditions beyond our control, such as fuel surcharges, government-imposed taxes and fees. Riding WWII-era vehicles is subject to equipment operation and availability beyond our control.


Included meals are noted each day with the initials of either Buffet Breakfast (BB) or Continental Breakfast (CB).

Updates

Since this site was uploaded and the pdf flier was made the end of November:

• 8DEC17 Delta Air Lines is now charging fees for checked bags on transatlantic routes for its lowest-priced fares. For flights departing on or after April 10, 2018 basic economy ticket holders will now pay $50 [see below] for the first checked bag and $100 for a second bag. Source: TravelMole.com

• 11DEC17 Delta Air Lines is imposing a $75 fee for the 1st checked bag for economy class pax on flights to Europe and North Africa from Canada and the U.S. OpenJaw.com

• 31DEC17 Extended the early bird discount to Saturday January 6. We have enough people booked for the tour to "go" but the date approaches when we must release excess hotel rooms. Group size likely to be smaller, perhaps a dozen so we are negotiating for a Mercedes or Ford mini-coach that holds 14-17 people instead of the bigger motor coach.

• 03JAN18 Sent out a LAST CHANCE email because we must give back unused hotel rooms soon. We are unlikely to be able to get them back later (although we will try for you).

• 10JAN18 We now have 9 people booked and have heard from 2 others that may be booking shortly. Seats open dwindle in what we call our "Sdkfz 250" mini-coach (Mercedes Sprinter) but hotel space is likely to be gone before all seats are utilized.

• 12JAN18 We now have 10 people booked. Above we added an Important Note About Limited Space Left—see the top of the page.

• 02FEB18 We have held a two extra hotel rooms so that we book a few more people without delay.

• 21FEB18 To accommodate a smaller group size, e have committed to a medium size motor coach from Horn Tours who now operates the tour instead CHR Travel. 

• 26APR18 We have had to release two unsold hotel rooms and now have just 1 seat open, sharing with another guy who is already booked. If 2 or more want to go, click the CONTACT ORGANIZER button to see if we can accommodate your party.

Because of the 21FEB18 change, we have had to change 3 hotels: 

Accommodations: (12) total number of nights

Roissy (1) Sheraton Paris Airport & Conference Center

Chinon (1) Ibis Styles Chinon

Caen (3) Ibis Budget Caen Nord Memorial* (similar location/quality original hotel withdrew their confirmation claiming that they were doing renovations)

Rouen (1) Ibis Rouen Centre Rive Gauche Saint Sever

Dunkerque (1) Ibis Dunkerque Centre

Gent (2) Ibis budget Gent Centrum Dampoort* (closer to old quarter; new hotel)

Arnhem (1) Holiday Inn Express Hotel

Horst (1) Parkhotel

Amsterdam (1) ibis Amsterdam Centre Stopera* (closer to game club & resistance museum)

*New hotels are starred; we have left the original list of hotels in the Accommodations section so you can compare.


Testimonials and military history

 THIS IS OUR FIFTH WARGAMER TOUR

By Bill Owen, tour designer since 1972 and wargamer since 1965, not counting Napoleonic 200th anniversary re-enactments of various battles (the guys had an "in-tents" experience, plus vintage train tours of Civil War battlefields):

• 1991 Millennium of Mayhem from Manchester, England to Amsterdam, Netherlands with James F. Dunnigan and Al Nofi

• 1997 Tanks For The Memories, round from and back to London

• 2003 WYWAE: Wargame Your Way Through Europe from Rome to London

• 2010 Tour Of Battle from Paris to Strasbourg with Al Nofi

• 2018 WargamerTour.com WWII & Castles from Paris to Amsterdam

 

TESTIMONIALS

• "They listen to your wants and desires and follow through. Totally professional but friendly all the way." - Michael Mathews, Sous-Officier, 21e Régiment d'Infanterie de Ligne, 3e Compagnie 

• "Was on your 2003 tour. Definitely will recommend this tour to others. Well worth whatever the cost will be. I'm 80 now and just finished a similar 14 day tour in Poland, father's birthplace." - Dave Nelson WYWAE tourmember sent us a photo riding in halftrack in Poteau, Belgium


REMAKING HISTORY ON TOUR 

Some recollections from past tours • My buddy, Bob Bledsaw, won the Napoleon at Waterloo tournament • Bob Bledsaw and I were playing Hitler’s War on the way through the Cotentin Peninsula and at some point I got tired of his asking “Can you do that?” and threw the rulebook at him saying “I quit!” And he responded, “Does that mean I win then?” So I grabbed it back and said, “I’ll show you why you’re wrong!” and we kept playing.

• And another now-fond memory is his walking around with a giant beer mug at Waterloo in 1991. “What’s with the empty mug, Bob?” He responded with disgust that they charged him $5 for the beer so he figured that it came with the "souvenir" mug.

• Or Jim Dunnigan saying at the top of the Lion Mound there “Napoleon was defeated by mud.” That’s it?!

• At a display case showing the WWI helmets, JFD said, “Here’s illustrated cultural differences in the armies involved: the Germans hired a ballistics expert to design their helmet, the French, an artist and the British, a committee!”

• While driving through the Ardennes, I volunteer, “Doesn’t look like rough terrain (here) to me.” And John Holtz responding, “But the defender gets to choose where to set up!”

• Yelling while packed into a vintage Sdkfz 251 we were riding in at Poteau Belgium, over the extremely loud motor, something like, “We’re spotted …even if they can’t see us yet!”

• On the hill by the Mulberry Harbor at Arromanches, checking to verify the terrain accuracy with my new giant D-Day wargame map series and the coach driver saying to me, “It won’t be that hard to find your way back to coach parking lot.”

• Most infamously, my tiny wargame set-up in a thin, leather briefcase that the guys called the Football, like the Secret Service carries for the President and the nuclear “button”.

• Nick Moran driving straight into the world’s biggest mud puddle with his British Army surplus Chieftain tank.

• Al Nofi's plan to lead a "Patton Memorial" group pee-in-the-Rhine excursion at Strasbourg

What’s included

  • Transportation
    Private motor coach and driver from Paris' Charles de Gaulle airport to the Amsterdam hotel at the end
  • Driver & Guide tips
    So you aren't having to reach into your pocket for included features
  • Travel insurance
    Via Travel Guard Deluxe Group insurance plan
  • 12 Meals: 12 Breakfasts
    Lunch & dinners being free gives you free time and makes our touring more flexible
  • Hotel accommodations
    Mostly superior tourist class hotels or higher
  • Hotel taxes
  • Admissions per itinerary
  • Led by wargamers
    Rich Baier & Mark Williams
  • Transport to airport
    From Amsterdam hotel to Schiphol airport by van
  • Several wargames
    Miniature game opportunities put on by local wargame clubs in Ghent, Arnhem and Amsterdam
  • Ride a vintage WWII tank
    Like a Hetzer at Militracks in Overloon, or choose a half-track (like Sdfkz 251) or soft skin (like Kettenrad or Sdkfz 7), as available
  • Historical commentary
    By professional local guide in Normandy and for the Market Garden route, plus elsewhere en route by historian/gamer Mark Williams
  • Airline fare
    Fly from the USA May 8, tour starts May 9 at Paris (CDG) airport, and ends at Amsterdam (AMS) airport on May 21. Inquire if you want us to help you choose good value air flight options.
  • Airline baggage fees
    Depends on the airline you choose whether any baggage fee applies
  • Baggage handling
    You are allowed one checked bag and a small carry-on bag which you carry in and out of each hotel
  • Optional tours and meals
    Optional admissions projected: Caen (Memorial Museum €20); a Waterloo side trip may be offered during the free day in Ghent (price depends on how many are interested; Gravensteen Castle, Ghent (€10).
  • Passport application
    If needed: $135 new; $110 renewal.
  • Tax/fuel surcharges
    If any are in effect.

Available Packages

Twin or Double Room Passenger
Available until Mar 31stonly 3 left

The per-person price for Twin or Double Room passengers is the same. Double rooms (one double bed) may only be made as a request and cannot be guaranteed. Twin rooms (2 beds) is what we currently hold at each hotel and are confirmed immediately on your booking.


Also choose this package, if you are a single and want us to find you a roommate (of the same sex naturally), note that below in the Occupancy section. Likewise choose this, if your roommate is booking separately, note that below in Occupancy also. 


Otherwise if you want a single room to yourself, click the following Single Room package.

$3199
Single Passenger
Available until Mar 31stonly 2 left

A single room has one single bed and is for one person. At some hotels single rooms may be smaller, less well-located rooms.

$3998
Triple Passenger
Available until Mar 31stonly 3 left

Triple rooms (usually one double and one single bed) are on request and subject to confirmation. If we are unable to confirm a Triple room, we will make a full refund.

Because of the time it takes to get a triple room back into our room "blocks", we must receive your payment first to know that you are committed and under the cancellation penalty terms before we do all that work. Thank you for your understanding.

To request a Triple Room, click blue button at upper left that says CONTACT ORGANIZER

$3166
$3199

Twin or Double Room Passenger
Past Trip

Itinerary

Day 1 Tues., May 8, 2018
Depart USA for Paris today on an overnight flight.

US travelers depart for Paris today on an overnight flight.

NOTE:  • You arrange for your own flight on May 8, 2018 to Paris/CDG* (Charles de Gaulle airport). • To arrive any time tomorrow, May 9, 2018 in Paris at Sheraton airport hotel in CDG's Terminal 2.

*On the grey map below, Tremblay-en-France & Roissy are the small French towns where Paris' Charles de Gaulle airport (CDG) is located. When you arrive at the CDG airport, you either just walk to the Sheraton right in Terminal 2 or take a free tram from other terminals. 

Our tour stays the first night (May 9) in the Sheraton hotel that is located in CDG's Terminal 2 right above the RER rail terminal that takes one into to Paris. After arrival at the hotel, you are welcome to head into Paris on a RER train (terminal underneath hotel); an RER ticket costs €10.30 each way (on the return, look for trains to “Aeroport Ch. de Gaulle 2–TGV”).

We depart CDG in our tour's private coach on May 10 to Chinon. Do NOT schedule your flight to arrive in Paris on May 10! You must depart the USA on May 8 or before; arriving in Paris the next day. Call us if you need suggestions on the best value air flight options from your nearest major airport.

Departing the tour

Any flight time on May 21 from Amsterdam Schiphol (AMS) airpot is fine. If you give us the flight schedule in April we will arrange a van departure from the hotel to allow for plenty of check-in time based on your departure time. If you stay on after May 21, you will need to make your own hotel and travel arrangements.

Very important note about booking your air fare 

Choose what most air booking sites call a “Multi City” search (not just "round trip"). So, enter to Paris May 8 and return from Amsterdam May 21.

Your Organizer


BO
Bill Owen
1 review
Stevie Jay, has been leading tours and broadcasting in radio for decades now. He's crazy about his wife, Janet, and their four kids. Bill Owen has been designing custom tours for forty years and is a fan of olive trees and pressing oil. We are pleased that Mary Beth Kuraskek has joined us in late spring 2018. She has been a tour director for over 15 years. Our home page is at www.steviejaytravel.com.

Reviews

MR
I had a great time. My fellow travellers were a great bunch including our bus driver and tour guides. Hotels were comfortable and much better than I remember from my 1971-1974 tour of duty. Tour guides were knowledgeable. Ed was just great. I missed the European menus the day after I was home. Great food. Looking at another trip. However, I need to get in better shape. We were on the go most of the time and castles and bunkers don't have elevators.