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Exploring in and around Villers-Bretonneux


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I'm looking for ideas for visiting the Australian National Memorial at Villers-Bretonneux from Paris in July after the Olympics and will probably be travelling alone.

I've been told I could stay in Paris and get the TGV to Arras then join a day tour of the Somme and the memorial before returning to Paris.

As much as I love Paris, I was thinking I should really spend some time in the area since I speak French (passably well) and maybe it would be good to mix with the locals and see a bit of the countryside.

At one point I was considering taking a river cruise down the Seine to Normandy and the D-Day landing beaches but I was advised that Villers-Bretonneaux is a better place for Australians battlefield-wise. Not sure about tourist-wise though.

Any ideas would be gratefully accepted.
Will you have a car? We did not stay in VB. We were about 45 kms away but did visit Australian sites in the area. This was before the Monash centre was built at the cemetery.

If you have a car there are places such as Pozieres and the memorial at Mouquet Farm. We also enjoyed our visit to Australian Corps memorial at Le Hamel. We came across other memorials to Australians on our drives around.

We also went to the English memorial at Thiepval, Ulster Tower and the Newfoundland memorial at Beaumont Hamel.

Other places we visited were Compiegne, the Armistice Clearing, the chateau at Pierrefonds, St Quentin, Coucy le Chateau and Amiens.

We were there for a week and obviously had a car.

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