“Travelling in Normandy is like stepping into a time machine”

Surely everyone has thought of pressing a button and traveling to the past. Go, in an instant, from our vibrant technological age to the harsh prehistory, 3,000 years ago, where human beings survived as best they could, or to the time of the pharaohs, or to the dark Middle Ages, or to the Roaring Twenties. in Paris… Although, for the moment, it is a utopia.

What we can do is use our imagination. And, for this, the travel agency PANGEA The Travel Store has created its third author’s journey with history on the coasts of Normandy, exactly in the same place where the Allied landings against the Germans took place on June 6, 1944, whose c It was the beginning of the end for the Nazi army and the Second World War.

“This trip will be like stepping into a historical movie,” says Sergio Martínez, historian specializing in World War II and owner of the YouTube channel War Stories That Deserve to Be Told, who will accompany the group of travelers on this author. trip to Normandy which will be a unique experience.

What happened on June 6, 1944?

On June 6, 2022 – when we will begin this journey – it will be 78 years since the allies landed on the French coasts of Normandy and opened the long-awaited second front in Europe that Stalin had demanded so much, and that, too, they wanted so much to do. , fulfill different US orders. Then begins a battle which will take place for two months in Normandy and which will end in a disastrous retreat for the Germans.

Photo by Sergio Martínez, historian

Interesting, what will this trip bring?

Anyone considering whether or not to go, probably because something has seen or studied on the subject. When you study history, or watch documentaries or movies, it’s ultimately like a fiction that’s going on in your head, but you can’t touch or experience it. The feeling of arriving at the iconic places where it all happened cannot be explained in words, as it transforms everything your imagination has created in your head into reality. The most special thing is that once you are there in person, every time you come back to see or study something about this event, you will be doing it from a different perspective.

What is the highest point of the route?

From my point of view, the beaches of Omaha and Utah, the batteries of Crisbecq entirely preserved and restored, the German cemetery of Le Cambe, and the American of Omaha, the city of Villers Bocage, where Wittmann delivered its most famous battle and, finally, we will have the possibility of buying relics of the battle in the different cities. In addition, we will enter many museums where we will observe tanks and all kinds of original weapons, we will see other cemeteries such as Canadian, Polish or British, and other batteries and emblematic cities, you have detailed everything on the PANGEA website.

Mont_Saint-Michel,_France

Mont_Saint-Michel,_France

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What do you think will impress travelers the most?

The American cemetery, in which several films have been shot, such as Saving Private Ryan. The large cliff of Pointe du Hoc. Michael Wittmann’s grave. The typical Norman French villages. And, finally, discover the real weapons of war, mainly battle tanks. Again, this will vary according to individual tastes.

And what will they learn?

We will get a first-hand idea of ​​how the battle unfolds and its keys. The feeling will be similar to being in the middle of a movie. Besides the places related to the Second World War, we will see many cathedrals, such as Caen or Bayeux, and the castle of Guillaume de Normandie itself in Caen. Although our main objective is related to the world conflict, the Normandy region is very rich in history and all travelers will be able to verify it.

That, and what will we know of fate?

We will get to know the most important beaches where the fighting was the most intense and where the most fortifications remain. We will visit all the cemeteries in which, as you can see, they keep their own essence. Of course, we will enter the most relevant museums, where we will see everything from battle tanks to uniforms, weapons and unpublished photographs. We will be in emblematic cities such as Sainte Mère Eglise, Carentan, Caen or Bayeux, where we will see the remains of the battle. We will be located on the exact spot where Michael Wittmann fought his most famous battle, or where he was finally shot. And during this time, and as a final touch, I insist, we will contemplate the beautiful landscape that the Normandy region already offers.

Sculpture tribute to the landing

Sculpture tribute to the landing

Sergio Martinez

What type of traveler can be attracted by this type of trip?

The best traveler is always a person with a desire for adventure and exploration. Someone who is passionate about history and likes to travel and experience new emotions. This is not a canned trip to visit the typical four things unrelated to each other. It’s a trip that has been planned down to the smallest detail, and aims to give travelers the most complete experience possible. Would you like to experience WWII firsthand, instead of watching it over and over again in documentaries or reading about it in books? If the answer is yes, you fit the profile.

For movies, I recommend Saving Private Ryan, The Longest Day, and a more recent movie called Rommel from 2012.

And you will always be with the travellers?

Of course always. I will accompany the group as an expert author. I will try to bring all my knowledge to enrich the experience and that the group appreciates it as much as me during my visit. We will travel in groups, by bus. From our hotel (beautiful, by the way more details on the web) located on Juno beach itself and with a magnificent view, we will go out every day to each of the places we are going to visit.

The departure of the trip is June 5th, what will the weather be like on these dates?

It is difficult to know so far in advance, but the weather will most likely be cloudy and with a temperature not exceeding 20 degrees. So that everyone can get an idea, the climate is very similar to what can be found in Galicia or the Basque Country. I suggest bringing a raincoat, a jacket to protect against possible colder days and good shoes to walk both in town and on land.

State

state

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An interesting book or film to inspire me?

As movies, I recommend Saving Private Ryan, The Longest Day, and a more recent movie called Rommel from 2012. As books, Overlord by Max Hastings or D-Day by Antony Beevor will come in handy.

Finally, where do I register?

You must enter the “Travels with History” website in PANGEA. You can also call 930 185 123. Of course, we will travel in a small group, maximum 16 places.

With this author’s journey with history you will be able to know in the field one of the most decisive events of the Second World War

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