Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for French

Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for French

Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for French: HISTORICAL BACKGROUND

Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for French: General Juin and the French Troops in Italy

The introduction of French troops into the Italian theater started with the Winter line battle. The 2nd Moroccan Infantry Division arrived at Naples by 1st December 1943, and the 3rd Algerian Infantry Division was scheduled to arrive at the end of December. Both divisions have been trained in mountain fighting and both were eager to vindicate the old glory of French Army. While the 36th Division was attacking San Pietro Infine, the VI Corps and in particular the French 2nd Infantry Division was told to take to high ground east of Cardito, and the 45th Division was ordered to attack the peaks along the road to S. Elia.

Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for French: the French are successful in Cardito Area

After had been successful in the first French-German encounter on the Italian front near Scapoli, the French were successful on Mount Pantano, on the Cerasuolo flat, Monna Casale. By the 21st December, the troops of the VI Corps were running to Viticuso and Casale. General Mark Clark asked to the French General Juin to attack a very difficult area on the Gustav line, on the right side of Cairo massive. This Monte Cassino Battlefield was clearly the most difficult of the area

Braving a snow storm in weather typical of “sunny Italy” at present, French Goums (Moroccan Goumiers) lead mules down a white covered trail on Mt. Mount Castel Nuovo. Signal Corps Photo 1-12-44. Mount Castel Nuovo, Italy. 12 January 1944(N.A.R.A. MM-5-152398)

Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for French: It Is time to attack the Colle Belvedere

General Clark had little faith in the French army. The major assault on the Gustav Line should be by British X Corps across the Garigliano River and by US II Corps across the Rapido River near Cassino. General Clark asked the French Expedition Corps to plan an attack on the mountain east of Monte Cassino, called Colle Belvedere. It wasn’t an simple task. Colle Belvedere was 800 feet high and was fortified with bunkers and mines, and defended by units of the German 44th and 71st Infantry Division.  The Rapido river should have to be crossed merely to reach the position. Yet General Juin knew he could not refuse Clark’s request if the Allies were to take the FEC seriously.

Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for French: Colle Belvedere and the Ottaduna area

It was, Juin noted, one of the least accessible parts of the Gustav Line, backed by the enormous peak of Monte Cairo. The initial advance to this battlefield would involve crossing the Secco River and the Rapido River, then braking through the defences in the valley, before climbing over 800 metres over bare rock, under direct observation by German Artillery spotters on Monte Cifalco. having the FEC on Colle Belvedere was essential to the safety of the American Red Bulls Juin’s Tunisians from the 3rd Algerian Division was chosen to lead the attack. On 25 January, Commandant Gandoet was ready. The aim was to capture Hill 470, then push on along the north side of Belvedere.

During a tour of French forces near St. Elia, Italy, Gen. Charles de Gaulle, chairman of the French National Committee, talks with an officer of an Algerian division fighting with the Allies. Sant’Elia, Italy. 9 March 1944.(NARA MM-5-44-1992)

The French must keep the so called Ravin Gondoet

A raven had been chosen and was called Ravin Gandoet because it seemed to offer cover from artillery fire and the possibility of surprising the defenders on the objective. It was a bloody battle. On 31st January, not only Colle Belvedere but also Colle Abate was captured. The two French Divisions were now amongst the defences of the Gustav Line, and Juin felt that introducing one more division into the battle would allow them to break through. Clark was not convicted, however, and he was loath to transfer any American unit to the French sector.

Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for French: the troops

Juin wrote in his diary: ‘we saw them coming back, haggard, unshaven, their uniform in rags and soaked with mud, the glorious survivors of the regiment’. They were glorious, but few of the assaulting companies only 30 percent had returned unscathed. 

All the old pictures on this Page were taken from here

Gen. Charles De Gaulle, Chairman of French National Committee of Liberation, salutes the Honor Guard while reviewing French troops near Venafro, Italy. 9 March 1944.(NARA MM-5-44-2621)

Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for French: WHAT YO EXPECT

The “Monte Cassino Battlefield Tours for French”  (about 3 hours) includes:

1) pickup from your arrival at the railway station in Cassino every day at 10.00am or 02.00pm (Main Square, near the Green Kiosk)

2) about 3h30 guided tour of the French most meaningful sites of Cassino:

  • Road from Conca Casale to Sant’Elia
  • the Rapido River crossing on both sides of Sant’Elia
  • Secco River in the Olivella Area and Gandoet Ravin
  • Belvedere hill and Abate hill
  • Castle Hill
  • The Panoramic point
  • The Germans’ caves
  • The Abbey of Montecassino.

3) return to the railway station in Cassino at 01.30pm or 05.30pm

Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for French: WHAT YOU MUST KNOW ABOUT THIS TOUR

TOUR DURATION: about 3 hours

DEPARTUR TIME: Daily at 10.00 am and 02.00pm

MEETING POINT: Cassino Railway Station (Main Square, near the Green Kiosk)


  • Professional WW2 Guidance
  • Transportation
  • Donation to the monastery

WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED: Lunch and dinner are not included



  • No advance payment
  • You can do the payment during the tour cash to your Guide
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Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for French: MORE TOURS IN THIS AREA

“Breaking the Gustav Line” Grand Battlefield Tour (FEC) ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

The Gustav Line-Fronte Garigliano Museum

Visiting the Winterline Museum

Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for Frenchs

Monte Cassino Battlefield Tour for Frenchs held by Anna Priora and WW2 Expert. Price per person

SKU del prodotto: French

Brand di prodotto: Monte Cassino War Tours

Valuta del prodotto: Eur

Prezzo del prodotto: 90

Prezzo valido fino a: 30-12-2030

Prodotto in magazzino: InStock

Valutazione dell'editor