My name is Pierre-Samuel Natanson. I was born in 1987 in Cherbourg, Normandy. I grew up here, nurtured by the stories of my grandparents scattered throughout Europe. Early as a child, I used to visit the sites of the battle of Normandy, and grew a passion for WWII history. I went on to study military history at King’s College London, and Caen University. I started leading tours for the Caen Memorial Museum in 2012. Thereafter, I worked for a small guiding company, where I gained more experience. During these fruitful years, I came to complete my knowledge of both the history and the geography of Normandy. This allows me to offer a rich, enlightening and friendly experience through one of the hardest battles ever fought in human history.
I created Normandy at War Tours in 2017, after several years of guiding on the Normandy battlefields to offer you a unique experience on your journey in Normandy. I offer tailor made private tours of the battle of Normandy sites for demanding guests. I seek to offer a once in a lifetime experience, and a deep insight into these formidable events.
My objective is to share years of accumulated knowledge, experiences and stories. I had the opportunity and the honour to meet with a number of WWII and D-Day veterans. In 2014 I started leading tours for the National WWII Museum (New Orleans, LA), and continue to do so to this day. I have worked in collaboration with a number of leading WWII historians and schcolars, Alexandra Ritchie, James Holland, Alex Kershaw, Craig Symonds, Michael Neiberg, Robert Citino and more.
The high point of my recent trip to the US was meeting Medal of Honor recipient Hershel "Woodie" Williams USMC (ret) following his closing keynote of the International Conference on WWII at the National WWII [...]
I had the incredible opportunity to attend the 2017 International Conference on WWII at the National WWII Museum in New-Orleans from November 16th to November 19th. I have worked in collaboration with the National WWII [...]
Over one or two days, learn about the american experience on D-Day. From the exploits of the 82nd and 101st airborne division around Saint-Mère-Église and Carentan to the daring assault of US Army Rangers at Pointe du Hoc, from the dunes of Utah beach to the bunkers of WN72 on Dog Green sector of Omaha, you’ll hear about the achievements of the “Greatest Generation”.
You cannot understand the true meaning of bravery and sacrifice until you have stood in the middle of Omaha Beach at low tide!
Over one or two days, learn about british forces’ return to the continent. Four years after Dunkirk, the 3rd and 50th British Infantry Divisions come back for their long awaited revenge! Discover Sword Beach, Gold Beach and the remains of the Mulberry harbour at Arromanches and the engineering feat that made the rest of the battle possible.
And, because no tour of Normandy is complete without it, hear about the first action of D-Day, the audacious assault of the 6th British Airborne Division on Pegasus Bridge!
Over one day, learn about Canada’s most significant engagement of WWII. Often forgotten, Canada, proportionally to its population, made the most important contribution to the allies’ war effort. On D-Day, the 3rd Canadian Infantry division was tasked with storming the longest beach, Juno. It then fought against the infamous 12th SS Panzer Divison “Hitlerjugend” in what was some of the most brutal actions of the battle. From the violence of the assault to the drive towards Carpiquet airfield, learn about Canadian courage and fortitude!
The Battle of Normandy
D-Day is only the first day of a battle that lasted three months and involved millions of soldiers. The push to Caen, the assault on Cherbourg, the capture of St-Lô, Operation Cobra, the German counter-attack at Mortain, Patton’s drive into Britanny or the battle of the Falaise gap ; these are but a few of the major engagements that followed D-Day. Over one day or one week, the possibilities are endless!
Contact me for more information.
With Normandy at War Tours, there is no such thing as a standard tour. You may ask me to prepare your personal tour of the battlefields of Normandy. You might have a special interest in a specific topic, you might want to follow the footsteps of a relative who took part in the battle. I will do the relevant research and guide you into a unique experience and tour.
I charge 630€ a day with transport. This includes my services for 8 to 9 hours and transportation but does not include lunch or entrance fees to museums you wish to visit.
If you prefer to use your own transport, I can step in your car (rental etc). In that case I charge 450€ for the day.
These rates are for tours starting less than 30 min drive from Bayeux or Caen. For tours starting further (e.g. Le Havre or Cherbourg) please contact me for rates.
Yes and no. I do not charge a fee for my time conducting research, however I will pass along the costs associated with the research (purchase of books I won’t reuse, archival fees, documents order etc).
I do not ask for deposits to confirm a reservation. Just a written confirmation via email.
I do not charge cancellation fees up to 7 days before the tour. However, if you cancel 7 days or less prior to the start of the tour, I will invoice you for the entire tour.
No, you can’t.
Normandy and the area where the allies landed is vast (55 miles/80 kilometers between the western end of Utah and the eastern end of Sword). I conduct guided historical tours, not sightseeing tours and you need to allow time to explore and understand the specificity of each sector. An easy rule is that you can visit two adjacent sectors in one day, e.g. Utah/Omaha, Omaha/Gold etc
Moreover I only conduct tours on sites linked to the landing and the battle of Normandy. If you want a guide to visit cultural sites such as the Bayeux Tapestry or Mont-Saint-Michel, contact me and I would be me more than happy to recommend colleagues/friends.
Normandy offers a wide variety of accommodations options from country B&Bs to modern city hotels and it really depends on your preferences.
For touring, the most central location is Bayeux. It is a lovely little town (one of the few to not be destroyed during the battle) and has many hotels and B&B.
My personal favorite are the Villa Lara (5*) and the Hotel d’Argouges (3*). If you prefer a more bucolic scenery, the Château la Chenevière and the Château d’Audrieu are beautiful hotels and still close to most of the important sites.