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Day Trips From Naples

Are there any special trips planned to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the end of World War II?

Claire Just

Stephens City, Va.

Tours commemorating the anniversary last summer of the 60th anniversary of D-Day were plentiful, but there aren't nearly as many to recognize "Victory in Europe" Day, or V-E Day. Among the trips planned for the May 8 anniversary of the signing of the treaty of unconditional surrender by Germany:

A&E Travel (877-238-6877, www.aetvtravel.com), the tour-operating affiliate of the cable TV network, will lead a 13-day tour through Normandy, Paris and Battle of the Bulge sites in Luxembourg, Belgium and Germany. The luxury tour by the Austin-based outlet includes reserved seats at ceremonies, lodging, most meals, motor coach transportation in Europe and two cruises. Cost is $3,700 per person double. A&E Travel also offers an eight-day trip to Yalta, in Ukraine, where terms of Germany's surrender were hammered out. Cost: from $2,405 per person double, including lodging, most meals, land transportation and tours.

• Travel with former WWII soldiers through Luxembourg, Belgium, Germany and Austria during a trip with Valor Tours (800-842-4504, www.valortours.com) of Sausalito, Calif. The April 27-May 12 trip includes lodging, two meals daily and tours. Cost is $3,495 per person double.

Valor also has independent tours of Normandy, including lodging at a bed-and-breakfast, a private driver-guide and entrance fees. Two- to five-night packages start at $995 per couple. The group also has organized tours throughout the year not only commemorating V-E Day but also recognizing the Battle of Okinawa and the surrender of Japan (V-J Day).

• Though the trips won't coincide with the actual V-E Day anniversary, Clipper Cruise Line (800-325-0010, www.clippercruise.com) will sail a 122-passenger ship along the coasts of France, England and Ireland, stopping at noteworthy memorials along the way. Cost: from $4,840 per person double for the 12-day cruise (May 23 or 30, or June 6).

• Matterhorn Travel (800-638-9150, www.matterhorntravel.com) of Annapolis runs three WWII-themed trips to Europe, though they do not coincide with the anniversary. The six-night guided trip includes airfare, lodging, two meals daily, two boat rides, transportation and airport transfers. Cost: starting at $3,395 from Washington or Baltimore for travel June 27, Sept. 19 or Oct. 3.

If a tour doesn't suit you, plan a trip to London or Paris to coincide with the anniversary; special ceremonies will be held in both cities.

Send queries by e-mail (travelqa@washpost.com), fax (202-912-3609) or U.S. mail (Travel Q&A, Washington Post Travel Section, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071).


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