Reveille Battlefield Tours

Tours : Monte Cassino

Five days, four nights

About this tour

Three full days are spent examining the Italian campaign with specific reference to the strategic significance of Monte Cassino. We travel to the Salerno cemetery in the south as well as the Minturno cemetery on the estuary of the famed river Gariliano. We visit the vantage point of the abbey of Monte Cassino and will have an opportunity to compare German, Italian, Polish and Commonwealth cemeteries. On our way back to Rome, we visit the American cemetery at Anzio-Nettuno.

More about touring Monte Cassino

Italy was the obvious, if not the only, place for the Allies to regain a foothold in Europe. It was to have been the soft underbelly but subsequent events proved otherwise. To many it became the Paschendaele of World War II - such were the horror and hardships created by the weather and the German defenders, who made the Allies fight and die for every metre gained.

We fly from Stansted to Rome, then drive to the stunning hill top village of St Agata dei Goti, where from our palazzo base we shall in turn follow the progress of the 5th Army northwards from Salerno. We pause at Herculaneum to marvel at the excavated Roman town, once buried under lava following the Vesuvius eruption of AD 79.

We shall experience the virtually impregnable nature of the Gustav Line around the abbey at Monte Cassino and learn what it cost 15 allied nations to achieve victory there. Finally, we shall trace the route of the Anzio breakout towards the Alban Hills and Rome. Our last night will be spent in Albano itself.

In the evenings, we review film footage which will complement our sight seeing, and raise questions about Allied strategy as well as inter-Allied rivalry.

This Reveille tour will introduce you to the Italian campaign and its significance in the overall context of the war. At the end of your visit, you will be able to determine whether it was indispensable to the success of D.-Day or just a 'sideshow' part of the war.

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Talbot House in Poperinge
The cemetery at Minturno is the resting place of 2000 soldiers killed at the Battle of the Gariliano.

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