Discover l'Auberge de Ploegsteert

Ploegsteert Battlefield Experience in the heart of History

Ploegsteert Battlefield Experience in the heart of history.

It is now possible for individuals and groups of battlefield tours enthusiasts of the 1914-1918 Great War to tour the Ypres Salient, Ploegsteert, Fromelles and the Somme sectors with a qualified guide and a dedicated support team.

Half- or full-day tours covering sites of specific actions, in the Ypres area local cemeteries and memorials, locations of billets and 'back areas' where dignitaries and well-known figures served including Sir Winston Churchill, KG, OM, CH, TD, DL, FRS, RA, Adolf Hitler, Sir Anthony Eden 1st Earl of Avon, KG, MC,PC, Albert Jacka VC, MC & Bar, General Sir John Monash GCMG, KCB, VD and Cartoonist Bruce Bairnsfather.

Custom-built tours can be arranged - you supply the detail, we'll do the rest. You can conduct the tour yourselves or, for more than two to three persons we will arrange and provide you with all you need. We specialize in full-day and multi-day tours, using an Opel Vivaro minibus – comfortable, fully-insured and fully-equipped for tour purposes - umbrellas, binoculars, digital maps, photographs, videos and refreshments etc.

The guides claim a sound knowledge of the Great War – what happened (and where it happened) in these sectors through information and experience gained over 30-years in meetings and discussions with many different authors and historians of the Great War. Claude Verhaeghe (Senior Tour Guide and owner of l'Auberge restaurant in Ploegsteert) spent literally months working with Ted Smith (co-author with Tony Spagnoly) in research for the book "A Walk Round Plugstreet".

He is frequently called upon for information and help from representatives of the Western Front Association, the British Legion and the BBC. Claude is also a member of the scientific committee of the "Plugstreet 14-18 Interpretation Centre" as well as a member of the organizing Committee responsible for the monthly sounding of Last Post at the Ploegsteert Memorial on the first Friday of every month throughout the year.

For the tours we use a fully equipped Opel Vivaro fully insured, air conditioned we can carry eight persons in full comfort.

Our tours :

  • 1 Australian battlefield tour in Flanders and the Somme 2 days starting from Lille or Arras

    Day1:
    Leaving your hotel in Lille or Arras at 09h00 towards Fromelles seeing the Pheasant Wood Cemetery where the 250 Australian soldiers found in a mass grave are now buried. You will stand on the Front line where Australian troops launched their assault on 19 July 1916, on the same spot is the satue of the "Cobbers" it is commemorating Simon Fraser and his men who brought to safety 250 wounded soldiers laying in no man's land. I will bring you to VC Corner Cemetery the only exclusive Australian cemetery in France.
    Now driving towards Armentières, sometimes called "the nursery" and Ploegsteert where the 5 Australian Divisions were in the winter 1917-1918.
    Lunch

    Going trough Messines to Hill 60 standing near the Caterpillar crater and the memorial to the 1st Australian Tunneling Cie. The next stop is at Polygoon Wood seeing the memorial to the 5th Australian Division and the cemetery housing the dawn service on ANZAC Day.
    In Passendale you will stand in Tyne Cot Military Cemetery, the CWGC's largest cemetery in Europe, 11 000 graves and a memorial bearing the names of 35 000 soldiers who have no known grave. The German "Students Cemetery" in Langemark is the next visited place before heading to Ypres where you will have some free time to see the Cloth Hall and the square before attending the Last Post at the Menin Gate. After the service.
    At 20h15 I will bring you back to your hotel.

    Day2:
    Leaving your hotel at 09h00 towards Villers Bretonneux visiting the Victoria School and its museum, the Australian Memorial Park where Dawn service happens on ANZAC Day. You can climb in the tower to have a stunning view on the battlefield. At the bottom is the Memorial, it is remebering 11 000 Australian soldiers killed in the Somme who have no known grave.
    Heading to Le Hamel to see the Memorial to the Australian Imperial Forces on the battlefield where General John Monash led the battle.
    Lunch

    In Ovillers you will stand near the Lochnagar Crater, that mine was triggered on 1st July 1916. In Pozieres you will stand near Moo Cow Farm, the Windmill and its new Memorial Park near the memorial to the tanks. You will end the day in Bullecourt visiting the museum created by Jean and Denise Letaille in a barn of their farm, seeing the Slouch Hat Memorial and the statue of the Digger in the park.
    Driving towards your hotel.

    Minimum 2 persons € 390,00 each. Lunches, transport, entrance fees, a booklet and all taxes included

  • 2 Australian battlefield tour in Flanders and the Somme 2 days starting from Bruges or Ypres

    Day1:
    Leaving your hotel in Lille or Arras at 09h00 towards Fromelles seeing the Pheasant Wood Cemetery where the 250 Australian soldiers found in a mass grave are now buried. You will stand on the Front line where Australian troops launched their assault on 19 July 1916, on the same spot is the satue of the "Cobbers" it is commemorating Simon Fraser and his men who brought to safety 250 wounded soldiers laying in no man's land. I will bring you to VC Corner Cemetery the only exclusive Australian cemetery in France.
    Now driving towards Armentières, sometimes called "the nursery" and Ploegsteert where the 5 Australian Divisions were in the winter 1917-1918.
    Lunch

    Going trough Messines to Hill 60 standing near the Caterpillar crater and the memorial to the 1st Australian Tunneling Cie. The next stop is at Polygoon Wood seeing the memorial to the 5th Australian Division and the cemetery housing the dawn service on ANZAC Day.
    In Passendale you will stand in Tyne Cot Military Cemetery, the CWGC's largest cemetery in Europe, 11 000 graves and a memorial bearing the names of 35 000 soldiers who have no known grave. The German "Students Cemetery" in Langemark is the next visited place before heading to Ypres where you will have some free time to see the Cloth Hall and the square before attending the Last Post at the Menin Gate. After the service.
    At 20h15 I will bring you back to your hotel.

    Day2:
    Leaving your hotel at 09h00 towards Villers Bretonneux visiting the Victoria School and its museum, the Australian Memorial Park where Dawn service happens on ANZAC Day. You can climb in the tower to have a stunning view on the battlefield. At the bottom is the Memorial, it is remebering 11 000 Australian soldiers killed in the Somme who have no known grave.
    Heading to Le Hamel to see the Memorial to the Australian Imperial Forces on the battlefield where General John Monash led the battle.
    Lunch

    In Ovillers you will stand near the Lochnagar Crater, that mine was triggered on 1st July 1916. In Pozieres you will stand near Moo Cow Farm, the Windmill and its new Memorial Park near the memorial to the tanks. You will end the day in Bullecourt visiting the museum created by Jean and Denise Letaille in a barn of their farm, seeing the Slouch Hat Memorial and the statue of the Digger in the park.
    Driving towards your hotel.

    Minimum 2 persons : € 420,00 each. Lunches, transport, entrance fees, a booklet and all taxes included

  • 3 Canadian Vimy Somme and Flanders battlefield tour 2 days starting from Lille or Arras

    Day 1:
    Leaving your hotel or accommodation at 09h00 towards Tyne Cot Military Cemetery and Memorial, the largest WW1 cemetery in Europe. You will stand at Crest Farm Memorial the last defensive line before reaching Passendale. You will visit "Passendale 1917 Museum" in Zonnebeke.
    Lunch.
    Visit at Hooghe Crater, Hill 62, Sanctuary Wood also called Mount Sorrel. You will stand at the memorial of the Brooding Soldier at St Julien and at Essex Farm where John McRae wrote the Poem "In Flanders Fields". We will heading towards Ypres where you will have some free time before attending the Last Post under the Menin Gate at 20h00.
    Back towards your hotel

    Day 2:
    Leaving your hotel at 09h00 towards Vimy Ridge where you will go down in the Grange Tunnel, stand in the Canadian and German trenches, and spend some time in the visitor centre. Time to go to the Memorial on the crest of Hill 145 captured by Canadian troops in April 1917.
    We are now driving to the Somme, seeing the memorial in Courcelette.
    Lunch.
    Standing near the Lochnagar Crater, seeing Thiepval Memorial and its 73 000 names of soldiers who have no known grave visit the new museum. You will end the day at Beaumont Hamel seeing the old trenches and no man's land as well as the visitor centre dedicated to the New Foundland soldiers who fought there.
    Back to your hotel.

    Minimum 2 persons :€ 420,00 each. Lunches, transport, entrance fees, a booklet and all taxes included

  • 4 Canadian Vimy Somme and Flanders battlefield tour 2 days starting fro Bruges or Ypres.

    Day 1:
    Leaving your hotel or accommodation at 09h00 towards Tyne Cot Military Cemetery and Memorial, the largest WW1 cemetery in Europe. You will stand at Crest Farm Memorial the last defensive line before reaching Passendale. You will visit "Passendale 1917 Museum" in Zonnebeke.
    Lunch.
    Visit at Hooghe Crater, Hill 62, Sanctuary Wood also called Mount Sorrel. You will stand at the memorial of the Brooding Soldier at St Julien and at Essex Farm where John McRae wrote the Poem "In Flanders Fields". We will heading towards Ypres where you will have some free time before attending the Last Post under the Menin Gate at 20h00.
    Back towards your hotel

    Day 2:
    Leaving your hotel at 09h00 towards Vimy Ridge where you will go down in the Grange Tunnel, stand in the Canadian and German trenches, and spend some time in the visitor centre. Time to go to the Memorial on the crest of Hill 145 captured by Canadian troops in April 1917.
    We are now driving to the Somme, seeing the memorial in Courcelette.
    Lunch.
    Standing near the Lochnagar Crater, seeing Thiepval Memorial and its 73 000 names of soldiers who have no known grave. You will end the day at Beaumont Hamel seeing the old trenches and no man's land as well as the visitor centre dedicated to the New Foundland soldiers who fought there.
    Back to your hotel.

    Minimum 2 persons :€ 440,00 each. Lunches, transport, entrance fees, a booklet and all taxes included

  • 5 Canadian battlefield tour in Vimy and the Somme starting from Bruges, Arras or Lille

    We are leaving your hotel or accommodation towards Vimy and the Somme battlefields.

    You will visit the Subways dug by the British Engineers and used by the Canadian troops to go towards the German lines minutes before the Battle of Vimy. You will walk in the Canadian and German trenches, seeing the scars left by the war in the landscape. Mine-craters, shell-craters are the witnesses of what happened there.

    I will bring you to Neuville Saint Vaast Canadian N°2 Cemetery and Courcelette Canadian Memorial.

    Time for lunch, a light lunch, a sandwich or an omelette or a soup and a drink all included.

    After lunch we are going to Lochangar Crater, to Thiepval Memorial to the Missing, the largest CWGC memorial bearing the names of more than 73,000 soldiers who have no known grave. Behind it lays the Anglo French cemetery, 600 graves. A visit at the new museum at THiepval.

    We will end the day with the Beaumont Hamel New Foundland Memorial Park, a place where you will also see the trenches used by the troops, Y Ravine where the Germans were, a shell crater transformed in a cemetery, a statue of a Highland Soldier of the 52nd Highland Division and the "Danger Tree" the only tree in the area who was there during WW1.

    Heading back towards your hotel or accommodation.

    Minimum 2 persons :€ 225,00 each. Lunches, transport, entrance fees, a booklet and all taxes included

  • 6 Canadian battlefield tour in Vimy and Flanders starting from Bruges, Arras or Lille

    We will leave your accommodation at 9am driving towards Vimy to visit the Grange subways and tunnels where the Canadian Divisions stood just before the assault in April 1917. You will march in the trenches in the footsteps of these heroes. I will also bring to their last resting place and to the Memorial on the top of Hill 145.

    We will move towards the Ypres area where we will have a lunch.

    Afternoon we will stand on Hill 62 (Mount Sorrel), visiting Tyne Cot Military Cemetery and Memorial, the largest CWGC's cemetery in Europe. The walls are bearing 35 000 names of soldiers who have no known grave, the cemetery contains 12 000 graves, 8 400 are unknown. From there we drive to Passendale, Crest Farm Memorial, the Brooding Soldier in Sint Juliaan where the German's used for the first time gas. from there going to Langemark to see the "Studenten Friedhof" the resting place of more than 44 000 German soldiers.
    Before arriving in Ypres you will stand at Essex Farm where John McRae wrote "In Flanders Fields" after loosing a very good friend.

    Spending some free time in Ypres before attending the daily Last Post. At approximately 8:20pm we will leave Ypres towards your accommodation.

    Minimum 2 persons :€ 230,00 each. Lunches, transport, entrance fees, a booklet and all taxes included

  • 7 Australian battlefield tour in Fromelles and Flanders starting from Lille or Arras

    Following a 9am pickup at you hotel or accommodation in Arras or Lille, meet your guide then travel onward into the WWI battlefields of Fromelles to begin your tour. On arrival, visit the Pheasant Wood Cemetery and Fromelles Museum, and take in key sites of interest including the mass grave where 250 Australian soldiers were buried by the Germans.

    Visit the Australian Memorial Park — home to the Cobbers’ Memorial — and the VC Corner Cemetery, the only exclusively Australian cemetery in France. Then, continue on to the Ploegsteert Memorial to the Missing. Here, perhaps pay your respects to Australia’s fallen soldiers.

    After lunch, explore mine craters around Messines and Hill 60 — where the Memorial to the 1st Australian Tunnelling Company stands — and see the 5th Australian Division Memorial in Polygon Wood, the "Passendale 1917 museum", visit Tyne Cot Cemetery and in Passchendaele, the largest Commonwealth War Graves Commission cemetery in Europe.

    See where John McRae wrote his famous poem In Flanders Fields, then enjoy free time in Ypres to explore at your leisure. Attend the daily Last Post ceremony at the Menin Gate, then depart Ypres for the return journey to your accommodation in Arras or Lille.

    Minimum 2 persons € 225,00 Lunches, transport, entrance fees, a booklet and all taxes included

  • 8 Australian Battlefield tour in Fromelles and Flanders starting from Ypres or Bruges

    The tour starts at your accommodation in Bruges or Ypres. You will be heading towards Fromelles, seeing where the mass grave was where 250 Australian soldiers were buried by the Germans. You will stand at the newly built Pheasant Wood Cemetery and visit the Fromelles Museum.

    From there your guide will take you to the Australian Memorial Park seeing the statue of Simon Fraser, the "Cobbers" Memorial, and to VC Corner Cemetery the only exlusively Australian cemetery in France. Next, you will drive towards Armentières and Ploegsteert.

    In Ploegsteert, the only place where the 5 Australian Divisions were all together in the winter 1917-18, you will stand at the Ploegsteert Memorial to the missing.

    Time for lunch. After Lunch you will be in Messines. From there to a mine crater the "Caterpillar crater" at Hill 60 where the Memorial to the 1st Australian Tunneling Cie stands. You will now drive towards Polygoon Wood the site of the 1st large air battle more than 90 aircraft were involved in that battle, seeing the 5th Australian Division Memorial and a remaining bunker in the wood.
    You will visit the "Passendale 1917 Museum" in Zonnebeke.
    You are now at Tyne Cot Cemetery in Passendale near the bunker taken by the ANZAC's on 4 Octobre 1917. Tyne Cot is the largest CWGC cemetery in Europe. Leaving Passendale towards Ypres standing where John McRae wrote "In Flanders Fields" and having some free time in Ypres before attending the "Last Post" ceremony at the Menin Gate at 8pm.

    Leaving Ypres towards your accommodation.

    Minimum 2 persons :€ 230,00 each. Lunches, transport, entrance fees, a booklet and all taxes included

  • 9 A day in Flanders battlefield tour

    We are leaving your hotel in Bruges, Ypres, Arras or Lille towards Messines on the battlefields of June 1917. You will stand near a mine crater who was detonated on 7 June and you will walk in some German trenches. You will go in the Lettenberg bunkers near Kemmel and in Lijstenhoek Military Cemetery, you will visit the center and see the evacuation system for wounded soldiers. I will bring you in the death cells in Poperinge and will show where the execution poles were standing.
    Time for Lunch.
    You will go now towards Langemark German Cemetery, Gravenstafel, the New Zealand Memorial and Tyne Cot cemetery. Taking some time for a visit at the "Passendale 1917 Museum" before
    a stop at Essex Farm where John McRae wrote "In Flanders Fields". Arriving in Ypres showing you the square and most important buildings before having some free time in town. At 8pm attending the Last Post service at the Menin Gate.
    After the Last Post we are heading back towards your hotel.

    Minimum 2 persons :€ 230,00 each. Lunches, transport, entrance fees, a booklet and all taxes included.

  • The Atlantik Wall V1 and V2 launching sites in Northern France day tour

    The tour is starting at your hotel or accommodation or from another place, on request.
    We will driving towards the French Opale Coast to see a part of the Atlantic Wall near le Cap Griz Nez, if the weather conditions are good you will see England. From there we will go to visit one of the Todt Batterie bunkers.

    Lunch break.

    Visit of some destroyed Todt Organisation bunkers on the coast.
    Heading towards Eperlecques where is the largest bunker built by the Nazis in Northern France. The bunker was a V2 launching base bombed by the allies, it became a liquid oxygen factory after the bombing.

    Ending the tour with a visit of a V1 launching site at Morbecque near Hazebrouck, the Bois des huit rues site is in a very good state and was never used.

    Heading back towards your hotel or accommodation.

    Minimum 2 persons :€ 285,00 each. Lunches, transport, entrance fees, a booklet and all taxes included.

More informations on our tours>>