Norway Battlefield tour

Custom made private tour on request.

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Norway. A beautiful country to visit with the many fjords and breathtaking nature, but also the Second World War has left many traces here. Despite the fact that Norway declared itself a neutral country at the outbreak of the war on April 9, 1940, the Norwegians were still occupied by the Germans until the end of the war on May 8, 1945. The occupation of Norway was strategically planned by the Germans, because the German war industry was completely dependent on Swedish iron ore, which was only possible to transport via the Norwegian coastal waters in winter. Norway was also seen as an important country to further expand the Atlantic Wall, due to the threat of a possible Allied landing. During this unique tour we also drive through Denmark, where the occupation of this country will be discussed in detail. During this special battlefield tour we will mainly talk about Operation Weserübung, which was the code name for the German attack on Norway and Denmark and the important resistance by the local population in these countries. We visit, among other things, coastal batteries, fortresses, bunkers, museums, cemeteries and monuments led by an expert battlefield guide and tour guide. Not only do both countries have a rich history of the navy, air and army during the Second World War, but both countries are also definitely worth a visit! During this special bus trip we will also discover the fascinating nature and culture, such as the narrow mountain passes, the immense waterfalls, the most beautiful train ride in the world, beautiful fjords, the vast forests and the largest plateau in Europe. After this unique bus trip through Denmark and Norway, you will have a good idea of ​​what happened here during the Second World War and the ultimate beauty of both countries will remain in memory forever.

Photo: Norwegian Industrial Workers Museum

Highlights:

  • Tirpitz
  • City of Bergen
  • U-boat bunker Bruno
  • Fort Kvarven
  • Fjell Fortress
  • Bergenhus fortress
  • Flåmsbana train
  • Cruise on the Naeroyfjord
  • Viking Experience
  • Vemork heavy water factory
  • Oslo
  • Akershus Fortress
  • Norwegian resistance museum
  • Norwegian Armed Forces Collection Museum
  • Tank shooting area
  • Oscarsborg fortress
  • War cemetaries
  • U boat U995
  • Naval Memorial in Kiel

TOUR ITINERARY EXAMPLE

Day 1

We start this special journey from the pick-up points Utrecht Lunetten and Deventer (carpool place), and then travel to Denmark. There will be plenty of stops along the way to stretch our legs and we will already get in the mood with appropriate films and a presentation about the Second World War in Denmark and Norway. Once arrived in Kolding (Denmark) we will enjoy dinner and overnight stay at the hotel.

Day 2

The next day, after our extensive breakfast buffet, we will leave for the Tirpitz Defense Line. This was a World War II German defense position near Blåvand, which was never finished by the Germans in the end. The position consisted of 6000 m3 of concrete and was to contain four 380mm guns to cover the sea route to Esbjerg. Today it has been converted into a museum in the heart of a beautiful dune landscape and there are several exhibitions to visit. The Tirpitz bunker, for example, shows how Hitler's gigantic project the “Atlantic Wall” was created and it also involves walking an underground tunnel to enter the old weapons bunker. This museum also shows how the Danes experienced World War II at that time through eyewitness accounts. If time permits, we will pay a visit to the nearby Stützpunkt Blåvand after the museum. These bunkers also belonged to the Atlantic Wall and are a must to see. In 1995, artist Bill Woodrow transformed them into "donkeys" for the 50th anniversary of the liberation of Denmark and are now known as the Bunker Mules. At the end of the day we drive to Hirtshals where the ferry from Fjordline is already waiting for us for the crossing to Bergen (Norway). On board we enjoy a dinner buffet and then spend the night in a comfortable cabin.

Day 3

After our ferry crossing, we will arrive in Bergen (Norway) in the early afternoon. This is Norway's second largest city and is located between seven mountains. It has a small town atmosphere brimming with character and charm, with world-famous attractions to discover. The picturesque quay with several old wooden buildings in different colors is one of them, with the medieval quay Bryggen on the Unesco World Heritage List. Not only is this a beautiful city to visit, Bergen also shows plenty of traces left by the Second World War. The German armed forces also attacked Bergen during Operation Weserübung because the city had a good location from a strategic point of view and this is reflected in the many museums and monuments in Bergen. We will first start this day with a joint lunch in the center, followed by a short tour of the city. After this, you will have free time to explore on your own and round off the day with a dinner on your own.

Day 4

This day is mainly dedicated to visiting fortifications and bunkers. Today we start with the U-boat bunker Bruno, located near Bergen. This large structure was built from November 1941 to July 1944 and had three spaces for normal boats, three for submarines and one space for storage. After this we drive to Fort Kvarven which was built high on the cliffs to protect the harbour of Bergen. During Operation Weserübung, the fortress played a major role in the defense of Norway and also engaged in firefights with a number of German battleships. Today the fort is open to the public and our guide will tell the story of what happened here. Finally, the imposing Fjell Fortress is planned. This fortress was the largest German fort built in Norway during the Second World War and was designed to play a significant role in the defense of the coastline. Fjell Fortress was rediscovered in 2003 and is open to the public to view the various bunkers, barracks, corridors, exhibitions and other spaces. This impressive day is then concluded with a joint dinner in our hotel.

Day 5

Photo: Holger Hähnisch

In the morning we will visit the Bergenhus Fortress. Bergenhus is one of the oldest preserved fortresses in Norway and was used as a royal court in the Middle Ages. During the Second World War, the fortress was used as a local military headquarters by the German occupation forces. Currently there is, among other things, a WW2 museum that largely highlights the Norwegian resistance and the Norwegian army, also paying attention to the important women who were part of this army. After this we will leave Bergen to continue on to our next popular destination: Flåm. A village surrounded by steep mountains, beautiful waterfalls and narrow valleys. On the way we pass the beautiful 152 meter high Tvindevossen waterfalls and finally arrive at the Stalheim hotel, where we will have dinner and spend the night. This hotel has a distinctive history as it was occupied by the Germans during World War II and used for the "Lebensborn" project that our guide will tell you all about.

Day 6

Today a cultural day is planned, where we will enjoy much of the beautiful nature in Norway. First of all, we will make one of the most impressive train journeys, namely the Flambaan railway (flåmsbana). The train bridges a huge difference in height along steep mountain slopes and along the way you will pass the most beautiful places in Norway. After this, a cruise on the Nærøyfjord is planned, which is the narrowest, steepest and wildest fjord in Europe. The Nærøyfjord is on the Unesco World Heritage List and is also seen as the most beautiful fjord landscape in the world. We will make the trip with the latest cruise boat that, in addition to being environmentally conscious, also sails silently over the water so that the experience can be optimally experienced. At the end of this cruise on the Nærøyfjord, we arrive in the Norwegian village of Gudvangen, where we will visit the well-known Viking village of Njardarheimr. This cultural and historical place has been transformed into an authentic Viking village, where you can clearly see how the Vikings of that time lived and worked. After this cultural day we continue our way to the town of Geilo, where we will have dinner and spend the night. This hotel also has a rich World War II history that the guide will tell you about.

Day 7

The next morning we drive to Vemork where the impressive Norwegian Workers Museum is located. Here, the famous story is told of the successful attack on the heavy water plant by the Allies, also known as Operation Gunnerside. In Norway, this action is seen as one of the most important during the war and is therefore known to many. The hydroelectric plant was used by the Germans during World War II to produce heavy water, an essential building material for the production of nuclear weapons. A special sabotage team of Allies managed to blow up the factory's installations in such a way that the Germans could no longer make an atomic bomb. The Norsk Industrial Workers Museum gives a good picture of what happened here during the war, but also how working life in Norway went in the early 1900s. This location also contains the recordings for the film "The Heroes of Telemark" recorded in 1965. After the museum we will visit the War Memorial in Rjukan. This memorial commemorates the soldiers from Rjukan who died during the Second World War. Finally we drive to our special accommodation where we will have dinner and spend the night in authentic Norwegian huts located on a lake, where you also have the opportunity to canoe or kayak.

Day 8

After the extensive breakfast buffet and free time to enjoy the nature in the area, we continue our way to the capital of Norway, Oslo. The largest city in the country offers an abundance of architecture, restaurants, shops and museums and is one of the fastest growing cities in Europe. Not only is there a lot of culture to be found here, but there are also many traces left by the Second World War. Oslo was also heavily occupied by the Germans and a lot has happened in the maritime field in the Oslofjord. During a short city walk you will get an impression of what the city has to offer and a number of war memorials are also visited. After this, you will have free time to explore the city on your own and to dine. We spend the night in a good hotel in the center of Oslo, with plenty of roads within walking distance.

Day 9

We start this day with an extensive visit to Akershus Fortress in Oslo. Akershus is a castle that was built in the 13th century to protect the city and was taken over by the Germans in 1940. During and after the Second World War, several people were executed here and the site is still seen as a military site that is now open to the public. Next to the memorial to the victims of the Nazis is the Norwegian resistance museum. This museum provides a good overview of the turbulent occupation period that took place in Norway, through photographs, equipment and documents from the war years. There are also some other important monuments to be found here that the guide will explain in detail. After this, the Norwegian Armed Forces Aircraft Collection museum is on the program. This is a military aviation museum near Oslo, which exhibits a unique collection of historic aircrafts and tells the fascinating story of aviation and special missions during the occupation of the country. Also here is the monument to the Norwegian airmen who died during the war. We then visit the tank firing range near Nannenstad and the former execution site in Trandumskogen. One of the first mass graves in Norway since the start of the Second World War was found on this site and a total of 194 people were executed by the German occupier. We conclude this day with a dinner at our hotel in Oslo.

Day 10

Photo: Oscarsborgmuseer

Today we will visit the special Oscarsborg fortress on an island in the Oslofjord. Fort Oscarsborg is best known for the important role it played at the beginning of World War II when the German cruiser "de Blücher" was sunk near the fort. Because of this, one of the goals of Operation Weserübung failed and the local guide will tell us all about it during an extensive tour. The fort is also home to a museum, where various exhibits on the history of the fortress are on display and a lot of attention is also paid to the events during the occupation years. Also, a row of various artillery pieces has been lined up along the west side of the island, which will be further highlighted in the Coastal Artillery museum on the island. Finally, we will also visit the torpedo battery in an underground bunker, telling the story of how the "Blücher" cruiser was sunk under the command of Colonel Birgir Eriksens. After this guided tour of the island, we return to central Oslo where you will have free time to further explore the city and dine on your own.

Day 11

Today we will leave Norway, but first we will visit some military cemeteries in Oslo in the morning to commemorate the victims of the Second World War. Vestre Gravlund cemetery contains war graves (including a Dutch war cemetery), monuments and graves of war veterans, which we will honorably commemorate on this last day in Norway. In the afternoon we will leave the port of Oslo with the Color Line ferry, to arrive the next day in Kiel (Denmark). Along the way you will enjoy a dinner buffet and an overnight stay on the ferry.

Day 12

Photo: Holger Hähnisch

On the last day of this unique tour through Norway and Denmark we will visit two more places in Kiel before we drive back to the Netherlands. We start by seeing an original submarine called the U-995. This submarine was decommissioned on 8 May 1945 in Drontheim (Norway) and was mainly used in the North Sea against convoys and the sinking of ships during the war. U-995 now houses a technical museum that reflects the oppressive living conditions of the soldiers and reminds today's generation of the horrors of World War II. Finally, a visit to the Naval Memorial behind it is planned. This world famous naval memorial was originally dedicated to the memory of the navy members who died in World War I, but is at the same time a memorial to people of all nations who died at sea. The monument is an 85 meter high tower with a viewing platform on top that can be reached by lift or stairs, which gives a panoramic view over the land and the sea. This concludes the impressive battlefield tour through Norway and Denmark and we will then return home by bus to arrive at the boarding points in the Netherlands in the evening.