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Wartime Channel Islands & Liberation Tour

Wartime Channel Islands & Liberation Tour

Visit privately owned military museums, bunkers along the Atlantic Wall and hear wartime stories from expert guides that reveal what life was like when the Channel Islands fell under Nazi occupation during World War II. Their story is fascinating to say the least; visitors who come to enjoy present day island life are often left intrigued by the lasting remnants, vivid artefacts and wartime memoirs still evident today.

Occupation of the Channel Islands

The German Occupation of Jersey began one week after the British government had demilitarized the island fearing for the safety of civilians should there be any conflict. The codename for this was “Operation Green Arrow” and the initial German Air Force reconnaissance flights mistake civilian farming lorries for troop carriers. On the 28th of June, the German Air Force, not knowing of the demilitarization, bomb and machine gun multiple sites on the island. The attacks killed ten people and wound many more. A few days later on the 1 of July 1940 General Richthofen, The Commander of the German Air Forces in Normandy, dropped an ultimatum from the air demanding the immediate surrender of the island. White flags and crosses were placed in prominent positions, as stipulated by the Germans, and later that day Jersey was occupied by air-borne troops under the command of Hauptmann Gussek.

 

Hotel

4* Pomme D’Or Hotel, St Helier

 

The Pomme D'or is one of Jerseys most famous hotels superbly located in the centre of St Helier overlooking Liberation Square and the Marina. For more than 180 years the Pomme D'or has been the focal point of Jersey hospitality. It is was the HQ for the Nazi's during the occupation. The 4* hotel has 143 bedrooms, 2 restaurants, 3 bars and offers 24-hour room service. Guests staying at this hotel also have complimentary access to the Hotel Merton (Sister hotel) Aquadome and Leisure club. This comfortable, contemporary hotel offers en-suite bedrooms with satellite TV and 24-hour room service, free Wi-Fi and has a lift

 

Price includes:

· Return ferry crossing

· Return transfers between hotel & port

· 4 nights dinner, bed & breakfast

· Bunkers at Night: guided visit (to sites not usually accessible to the public) led by expert WWII researchers

· Full day excursion with WWII guide including Jersey War Tunnels

· Guided Coastal Foraging tour

· Porterage

· Escorted throughout

Day 1

We make our way to Poole for the ferry crossing to our hotel in Jersey. Upon arrival you are met by a local coach company who will transport you to the hotel.

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Day 2

Bunkers at Night Guided Visit
Tonight, you will experience Jersey's military heritage in a new light! Researchers take you on an evening of WW2 bunkers & tunnels that are not usually accessible to the general public. They will show you how Jersey was made into an impregnable fortress and help you appreciate what the Third Reich was able to create with slave labour. The tour is also a perfect complement to understanding the history of the D-Day invasion, which took place less than 30 miles away. On this tour you will have a unique opportunity to visit German bunkers, Artillery Batteries & tunnels. They use real historic artefacts and digital media to enrich the experience. Although they focus on Jerseys WWII Military History, there is no limit to beautiful scenery seen on the tour. You will be taken to 4/5 locations across the island that were used during the war effort and given lots of information about why and how they were used.
Please note: A warm jacket and walking shoes are necessary.

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Day 3

The War Tunnels is the first stop in the morning. Jersey War Tunnels depicts the true story of the Occupation of Jersey during World War II. Walk along the very tunnels which were trodden on by the German soldiers and discover what Jersey life was like during those dark days of the occupation. The Tunnels give an amazing insight into what life was like in the only part of the British Isles to be occupied by the Germans during WWII. Visitors can also enjoy the War Trail, Garden of Reflection, visitor centre, café and gift shop. During World War II, the Crown left Jersey defenceless and the Island became occupied by German forces. Jersey War Tunnels are a product of five long years of occupation; they bore witness to the cruelty of the Nazi regime. Dug deep into the hillside by forced and slave workers from nations across Europe, they now contain an underground collection of thought-provoking exhibits that tell the fascinating story of Jersey's occupation from resistance, through to starvation, then eventual liberation. There is time during this visit for you to purchase a coffee or tea and cake and buy a souvenir from the gift shop.

The tour in the afternoon will include a tour of the Island taking in the sights to include Gorey Castle, (short stop) but along the way the WW2 Guide points out some interesting facts about the German occupation, see where the Germans landed. The hotel Pomme D'or which is now a hotel but was the headquarters for the Nazis during the occupation. This hotel faces what is now Liberation square and was where the allied forces re took the Island by removing the Nazi Flag and replacing it with the Union Jack. Some useful and remaining artefacts, signage and knowledge about the relationship between locals and the Germans, how the Islands were left unguarded allowing the occupation with no resistance, starvation, rations.

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Day 4

Guided Coastal Foraging Tour
This coastal forage is along a stretch of St Ouen's beach taking in the tide and shore line. The tour leaders Grandparents lived in Jersey during the occupation and owned a farm. The Nazis commandeered the farm and all the food production. The tour guide will tell you the story about how they had to forage to survive. He will identify edible plants, seaweeds and shellfish. He will also track down some coastal plants.
Please note: Duration of walk approximately 2 and a half hours. Please dress with an eye on the weather and bring along any food and drink you may need. Sensible clothing is suggested as the whole tour is outdoors.

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Day 5

We depart after breakfast and make our way to the port to catch the ferry home.

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Br=Breakfast, D=Dinner

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