Join us aboard the National Geographic Explorer for a commemorative voyage to the D-Day beaches of Normandy. Sail the English Channel as we learn about the planning of Operation Overlord, which involved the largest seaborne invasion in history. Then go ashore to walk in the footsteps of Allied soldiers along the Normandy’s historic beaches, and trace the dramatic evacuation of Allied forces from Dunkirk. Dock at historic North Sea cities along the way, discovering the Gothic charms of Brugge and strolling the colorful, bicycle-filled squares of Amsterdam; and take in London’s legendary landmarks as you navigate up the River Thames.
This trip is offered in partnership with Lindblad Expeditions.
Depart the U.S. on an overnight flight to Copenhagen. Arrive in Copenhagen and settle into your cabin aboard the National Geographic Explorer. Enjoy a guided tour of the stylish Danish capital before we set sail. The next day, dock at Lübeck, once the medieval center of the Hanseatic League. Take a walking tour of the old town, admiring landmarks of Gothic architecture such as the Holsten Gate, St. Mary’s Church, and the Hospital of the Holy Spirit—one of the oldest hospitals in Europe.
Enjoy breakfast on deck as we cruise past the peaceful towns and villages of northern Germany and enter the North Sea at Brunsbüttell. As our ship continues southwards along mainland Europe, attend talks by our experts, browse our library, and unwind at our onboard spa.
With its gabled houses, squares cluttered with bicycles, and canal-lined streets, Amsterdam is bursting with unique character. Stroll through the vibrant historic center of the Dutch capital and learn about its architecture, art, and history. Then, discover the spectacular Rijksmuseum on a tour with a private guide, examining the works of Vermeer, Rembrandt, and other Dutch masters.
Explore Belgium’s charming coastal towns, including a visit to Antwerp, where the famed baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens spent most of his life. Tour the artist's former home and studio, and step into city's imposing Gothic cathedral.
Discover medieval Brugge, a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its Gothic architecture, cobbled streets, and picturesque squares. Wander through colorful Markt (Market Square) and hear the bells of the Belfry toll the hour, then glide down serene canals in small boats for a swan’s-eye view of the quaint town.
Spend four days retracing the momentous events of D-Day, the largest seaborne invasion in history. Sail past the White Cliffs of Dover, a beloved beacon to many British soldiers returning home from the war, then cross the English Channel to learn about the months of preparation leading up to the Normandy landings. Tour the beaches of Normandy with a local historian, and walk in the footsteps of Allied troops at Omaha Beach and Sainte-Mère-Église. Pay your respects to fallen soldiers at the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial, and visit Pegasus Bridge that crosses the Caen Canal, where the troops of the British 6th Airborne Division landed in the early hours of June 6, 1944. See the remains of the portable Mulberry Harbours, created to provide a safe point of entry for Allied supplies and equipment. Discover the details of the Dunkirk evacuation, known as Operation Dynamo, then follow that path over to England, navigating up the River Thames toward London.
Disembark in London and transfer to Heathrow Airport for your flight home.