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“A must”
Review of D-Day Battle Tours

D-Day Battle Tours
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Rene van Oirschot, Monica Baan and Ellwood Von Siebold of D-Day Battle Tours will provide you with one of the most memorable Normandy D-Day tours. D-Day Battle Tours offers you a quality choice of World War Two D-Day tours with Normandy tours tailor made to match your time schedule and level of interest. D-Day Battle Tours is an established tour company located in the centre of Sainte Mere Eglise, Normandy. We aim to provide a battlefield tour experience which is informative, flexible and memorable for you and your group.
Plainfield, Indiana
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“A must”
Reviewed October 10, 2012

This tour is a must to get an overview of D Day. It was very informative and interesting. It last 8 hours, I recommend doing this one day and then go back to the different places the next

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Sherri O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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309 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Marshfield, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
12 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Exceeded our expectations by 200%!”
Reviewed October 9, 2012

Last spring my wife and I were planning on being in Normandy in July. Like so many veterans, her father NEVER talked about his experiences in WWII. In the nearly 40 years I knew him, he refused to talk about it. All of my life I have been a WWII history buff. It was only after he passed away that he left me numerous documents describing his experiences with the 29th Division, 116th Infantry, E Company, and their landing on Omaha Beach on D-Day and his eventual serious wounding as the allies took St. Lo in mid-July 1944. All of the information he left us pretty much compelled to include an “outside of the box” tour of Normandy during our vacation.
After a lot of research, I narrowed our choice down to Elwood and his team. When we made our reservations we were lucky enough to squeak into a couple of last minute openings he had while we would be there. Since we didn’t need transportation from the train station, but, we did need a hotel, his team recommended the 6th of June Hotel in Ste. Mere Eglise. Although not a 5-star hotel, it was terrific, clean, neat and had very good food.
When we arrived at Elwood’s departure point in Ste. Mere Eglise, he welcomed us into his home and described the pre-D-Day atmosphere in the Normandy area from both the German and Allies stand point. He then explained what he would be showing us throughout the day. Then he lowered the boom! He wanted to know WHY each one of the 6 of us was there to take his tour! We had 2 couples with literally multiple decades of U.S. Military service each, from the Special Forces, Air Force and Navy. Elwood said he would explain throughout the day how each of their respective branches of the service supported the individual parts of the invasion on D-Day. When he got to my wife, she told him about her Dad. He said he would not only show us where he was supposed to land, but, where he actually landed. He then went on to say that if he landed where he was supposed to, she probably wouldn’t be here today!
Elwood’s vast knowledge and detailed stories are spellbinding. They will more than keep your attention for a day, or two. He talks about the 82nd Airborne landing in Ste. Mere Eglise, the 101st Airborne literally dropping into Rommel’s flooded fields and the misplaced landing on Utah Beach. He spends a great deal of time describing how the Rangers over took Pointe du Hoc, as you are standing next to the bombed-out bunkers, gun placements and next to the bomb craters that are still there. In between stops, he describes the country side, as it existed in the early summer of 1944, along with the topographical and man-made challenges facing the invading forces. He then describes in great detail the bloody invasion on Omaha Beach. To wrap the day up, he brought us to the American Cemetery overlooking Omaha Beach, and added a number of stories to our stop there too.
If you are looking for a cookie-cutter, tour-bus type tour of the D-Day Beaches, this tour is NOT for you! If you are looking for a personalized experience of a lifetime, describing one of the most important military battles in history, this is the tour for you. We would HIGHLY recommend Elwood and his team. I have to believe whether you get Elwood, or one of his other well-vetted guides, you won’t be disappointed. I look forward to going back for an even more detailed tour with him again.

Bill C.

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Bill C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
McGregor, Texas
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“A Day with Ellwood - Excellent”
Reviewed October 7, 2012

My brother and his wife joined my wife and I for a one day tour of the
US landing zones with Ellwood as our guide. He has the right materials and knowledge
to bring the attacks to life, answer your questions and explain the Allied and axis positions.
We had fun and our wives did not find it boring - Ellwood is courteous and careful in his explanations to all. Highly recommended! Texans - my Dad served in the Navy on Saipan as an air traffic controller.

Visited September 2012
Helpful?
Thank Don J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pawleys Island, SC
Level Contributor
11 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“No better way to get the American D-Day experience”
Reviewed October 7, 2012

We don't take many tours and like to think we prepare ourselves when we visit memorable locations. But because of the scope and geographic challenge of seeing where these momentous events took place we decided to book a guide.

Let me lead with the conclusion: Ellwood von Seibold gives you the closest to a first hand experience of what exactly happened in Normandy that you can get. When Rick Steves calls him a D-Day zealot, he is not far off the mark. Beginning with his invasion background and overview (in his house on the square in St. Mère Eglise, Ellwood manages to convey what happened during June 6, 1944 as though it occured last week. His comprehensive (understatement) presentation of both the grand sweep of the events and the infinite detail of human experiences in those horrific days is impossible to get from books or movies. Simply put, there is no better way to understand what happened on those beaches, and in the countryside during those fateful days.

If you have the interest and the opportunity to make the journey through time with him, by all means do so. And there is no question that the Euros you spend will be the best investment you've ever made...

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank ThatCrazyGerman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mumbai (Bombay), India
Level Contributor
32 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Needed more time!”
Reviewed October 6, 2012

I have been a history buff all my life and like many in my age group (50+) I am especially fascinated by WW2. I had several Great Uncles who were in the war and I was just spellbound as a child when I would listen to their stories. I have visited many sites that were key in the conflict and many other famous battlefields such as Borodino, Gettysburg and Sedan. We had scheduled a 3 week family vacation with a week in Paris and I convinced my wife and Mother-In-Law to take this tour. My son was keen to go to Normandy as his grandfather and I had sat around the kitchen table discussing a future trip there. I was in several hot zones during my time working for the US Army and was attached to the 4th Infantry Division for a while in Iraq. This too stoked my interest as that unit is still steeped in the historical apsects of the Normandy operation.

We booked the trip with Ellwood von Siebold way in advance based on the advice of Rick Steves. I did a lot of research prior to this trip and it was far and away the most highly recommended tour. I am glad that I took the time and effort to make the personal communication with Ellwood regards the tour. Ellwood even gave us instructions on which train to book and at what time. He arranged to pick us up in Carentan.

Like me, Ellwood is passionate about the subject and his tour is more than just a litany of chronological events. He actually lives in a house that a paratrooper landed in and starts the tours by combining a "get to know you" Q&A along with a BUB (Battle Update Brief). By the time he finishes in his drawing room he understands who you are and why you came and you have a full understanding of the background and planning that took place. Unlike many amateur historians Ellwood understands that logistics win wars. No amount of fighting spirit can make up for a lack of operational and contingency planning along with supply.

There were 4 of us (Me, wife, son, Mother-In-Law) and another American family of 4 adults. My son is only 10 but he is quick and intelligent so Ellwood did not demean him by talking down to him. He treated him like an adult. He treated all of us with dignity and respect and took extra pains to not only answer our questions but to also try and impart upon us the emotions, personal actions and fear of the men involved that day. He did not demonize the Germans. He has respect for them and for all the participants. He took us to the locations we requested to see and it did not take me long to figure out that we were only going to scratch the surface and that I needed days to soak it all in.

The tour was paced for the group and did not feel rushed even though he kept us on schedule. Since we had made the trip by train from Paris he knew he had to get us back to Carentan early. Had we stayed locally or even driven we could have seen and heard much, much more. The day trip by train from Paris really cuts into your time.My son and I have already agreed that he and I will return to spend several days in the area and will include visits to Mont Ste. Michele and Cherbourg. We will also go with Ellwood again. He is worth it. By the end of the day Ellwood did not seem like a guide, he seemed like a friend. I hope to take the tour again soon.

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank AmericanTourister59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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