There is not a destination without its own unique history. That is why, wherever we go, almost always a local tour guide is waiting for us to tell and show us around and teach us more about what happened there. Some of our trip destinations require a bit more than a few hours of historical knowledge. For instance, our battlefields trips to the beaches of D-Day, Verdun, Bastogne and Ypres give us a total immersion, either for a day or even a long weekend. Some of our farther destinations, also require multiple days or even an entire week to get a proper idea of what happened there, including Athens, Egypt, Istanbul, Jordan and Rome.
Greece’s capital Athens is one of Europe’s most fascinating cities from a historical perspective. It is of course the cradle of democracy and many landmarks from the 5th-century BC can still be see all over the city, including the incredible Acropolis. Expat Club visits the city during a 4-day trip and arranges a local expert to show us around various parts of the city.
CAIRO & LUXOR (EGYPT)
A country that consists mostly of desert, except for a very long strip of urbanized and cultivated land along one of the world’s mightiest rivers. Egypt speaks to the imagination with some of the oldest structures you can find on the planet. Expat Club visits both its Capital Cairo, as well as the main centers of antiquity Giza and Luxor.
D-DAY BEACHES, NORMANDY (FRANCE)
Possibly history’s most important military operation started in Southern England and had the objective to recapture the Normandy beaches and hinterland back from the Nazi occupiers. Many people died on these shores for Europe’s liberty and their stories should be told until eternity. Expat Club organizes several battlefields tours to learn about what really happened there. For our D-Day program we travel to Normandy during a 4-day trip and have an expert show us around the five landing beaches – Sword, Juno, Gold, Omaha and Utah – as well as some key spots further land inward.
YPRES WWI BATTLEFIELD TOUR (BELGIUM)
In Flanders fields the poppies blow – Between the crosses, row on row… If there is one place on our continent where the total senselessness of war can be seen, then it would be in and around Ypres. The destruction of human lives is hard to put into numbers. With its In Flanders Fields Museum and the many battlefields locations scattered around the surrounding areas, this is a must-see destination for every expat arriving in Belgium.
One of the main capitals of Europe is as old as it is historically impressive. With its countless monuments from Roman times and other eras, one can spend weeks in this city and still not having seen and learned everything. From the Colosseum to the Roman Forum, and from the Trevi Fountains to the St Peter’s Basilica, Rome is a European must-see destination. Expat Club visits it during a 4-day trip with a local expert guide.
BASTOGNE BATTLEFIELDS TOUR (BELGIUM)
With Waterloo, World War I and World War II, Belgium has seen a lot of human suffering on its territory. In the winter of 1944/1945 one of the fiercest battles took place to keep the Germans from re-occupying freed Belgian territory during the Battle of the Bulge. Dug into their infamous foxholes, members of the 101st Airborne Division courageously defended this Ardennes town from the Germans, and they did so under the harshest winter conditions. The Mardasson monument and the adjacent Bastogne War Museum are reminders of what happened here.
The historical treasures of the Middle East are amazing. Indiana Jones was already aware of this decades ago. During this trip we visit several of the locations that were made even more famous due to this iconic movie trilogy (forget about #4, it’s awful). During a one week trip we visit the capital Amman, the Dead and Red Seas, the magical Wadi Rum desert (from Lawrence of Arabia) and of course one of the world’s most famous UNESCO World Heritage Sites Petra, a carved out city that can only be reached through a narrow canyon.
ANCIENT ISTANBUL (TURKEY)
Formerly known as Constantinople, megapolis Istanbul is perfect for a long weekend. It offers many historical places to discover, from the Hagia Sophia to the Topkapi Palace, and from Blue Mosque to the Underground Basilica Cistern. During a long weekend trip we learn more about its history from an expert guide and explore modern day Istanbul and of course the Bosporus that separates the Western from the Eastern part, or in other words Europe and Asia.