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Special Forces in Northern Italy led by Will Fowler

6th - 12th October 2021

7 days from £1,995pp

Join us as we uncover the lesser-known stories honouring the bravery and sacrifice of those who fought retreating German forces in the final stages of the Italian Campaign - both on and beyond the Gothic Line.

  • Accompanied by expert military history guide, Will Fowler
  • 6 nights in 4* hotel accommodation on a bed and breakfast basis
  • Honour the fallen in a Private Act of Remembrance at Argenta Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery
  • Visit to the Museo della Guerra – Linea Gotica
  • Drive through the Tosco Emiliano Appenines crossing the Gothic Line at the strategic Futa Pass
  • Fascinating military history tours with focus on Operation Tombola and Operation Herring

Special Forces in Northern Italy, led by Will Fowler

Determined by the geography of the country, harsh weather conditions during winter months and dogged resistance by German forces, the Italian Campaign, which opened with the invasion of the mainland across the Straits of Messina on 3 September 1943, finally ended with the cessation of hostilities with German forces on 2 May 1945. This Remembrance Tour focuses on the fighting in Italy after the liberation of Rome as Allied troops sought to breach the vast barrier of heavily-defended German positions, codenamed ‘The Gothic Line’, and uncovers the daring assaults and missions of a secret war behind enemy lines.

Tours explore Operation Tombola when a joint force of British parachutists and partisans successfully penetrated, then devastated, a German base far behind the lines with a crushing effect on German morale. We visit the sites of Operation Herring, the last airborne operation of WWII in Europe, and Operation Roast – a curtain-raiser to the Eight Army’s last great offensive in Italy. A museum visit and drive across the Futa Pass give insight into the challenges of breaking through the last major line of German defences, whilst visits to cemeteries and memorials are testament to the scale of the losses on both sides. Along the way we’ll hear stories of extraordinary bravery and learn about some of the unlikely heroes who played their part in this war.

Your Accommodation

Your Accommodation

Starhotels Excelsior, Bologna

★★★★

Ideally located opposite Bologna’s main Central Station and just a 15-minute walk from the central square of Piazza Maggiore, the Starhotels Excelsior blends classic style with contemporary taste. This elegant 4-star hotel has a 24-hour reception and offers complimentary WiFi throughout. There are 193 elegant, air-conditioned guest rooms all served by a lift.

Hotel Facilities & Amenities
A delicious breakfast featuring continental cold cuts and cheeses, sweet and savoury speciality cakes, omelettes, pancakes and crepes is served in the hotel’s stylish Avorio Restaurant. The restaurant also serves light lunches and of an evening the menu features traditional Italian cuisine. With its elegant, homely ambience, the Fondente Bar by Eataly is the perfect place for a relaxing drink or snack. Other facilities include a fitness centre.
Room Facilities & Amenities
Light and spacious, the comfortable guest rooms at the hotel have been tastefully furnished with polished wood and rich soft furnishings. All have deep windows and many have panoramic views over the city’s rooftops and medieval towers. Rooms with a double bed are for twin/double occupancy or sole use.

All rooms are equipped with the following:

  • Full bathroom with bathrobe & slippers, complimentary toiletries and hair dryer
  • Safety deposit box
  • Flat-screen TV with satellite channels
  • Direct dial telephone
  • Electric kettle and assortment of hot beverages
  • Complimentary WiFi

Grand Hotel Adriatico, Florence

★★★★

In the heart of historic Florence and just a 10-minute walk the famous Duomo and other major attractions, the 4-star Grand Hotel Adriatico combines traditional Florentine hospitality with the service and comfort of an international hotel. In the spacious lobby area, the 24-hour reception desk is hosted by friendly, multilingual staff. The hotel with 129 elegant rooms and suites offers complimentary WiFi throughout.

Hotel Facilities & Amenities
An American-style buffet breakfast is served in quiet and welcoming rooms, or in the hotel’s pleasant garden. In the evening the popular L’Opera restaurant has an a la carte menu featuring delicious Tuscan specialities and national dishes, whilst the wine list includes red and white wines from the best Tuscan vineyards. Other facilities include a Fitness Centre.
Room Facilities & Amenities
Guest rooms at the Grand Hotel Adriatio are spacious, and feature wooden floors and furniture that is complimented by a décor of warm colour schemes. With soundproof windows, air-conditioning and controlled-heating, comfortable beds and a pillow menu, guests can enjoy a quiet and relaxing stay. Rooms have either a double or twin beds for double/twin use and there are generously sized single rooms with a single bed for sole use.

All rooms are equipped with the following:

  • Full bathroom with bath/shower over, bathrobe & slippers, complimentary toiletries and hairdryer
  • Safe deposit box
  • LCD satellite TV
  • Minibar (paid)
  • Kettle with selection of teas and coffee
  • Trouser press
  • Complimentary WiFi