Saturday, 28 August 2010

Austerlitz - Sokolnitz

The last of the Austerlitz villages we visited during this tour was Sokolnitz.

Sokolnitz was the scene of the most savage fighting of the whole battle.

The battle opened with the attack on Telnitz, but quickly spread to the adjoining village of Sokolnitz. The village has a small castle, a large walled garden and a number of large stone buildings. All changed hands many times during the battle.

Sunday, 22 August 2010

Austerlitz - Telnitz

For a casual visitor Tenitz has little of interest. This village was the southern hinge of Napolens battle line, and was the scene of desperate fighting throughout the battle. Despite this we could find no plaque or acknowledgement of its deserved place in history.

Of course it is ten years since we were there, and things may have changed.

We were fortunate that we were on a guided tour, and Alan Rooney brought the history alive with an excellent description. He also took us through the village to the fields beyond which were the scene of the intiial fighting.

For the first time on this tour, the sky cleared and we were able to sit and soak up the athmosphere.

More photos at

Sunday, 15 August 2010

The Pratzen Heights

Without the huge Peace Memorial it would be difficult to identify the Pratzen Heights from any distance. I had expected the heights to dominate the battlefield, but in fact we found it difficult to see them even from Zuran Hill.

The memorial dominates the Pratzen in much the same way that the Lion dominates Wellington's ridge at Waterloo. But at least here the hill was not reduced to build a mound.

From the Pratzen there is an excellent view of the French positions opposite, just as Zuran Hill provided great views of the allied positions.

An easy walk along the ridge covers the area of the main French attack and the desperate allied counter attack.

More photographs of our visit at

Friday, 6 August 2010

Austerlitz Castle

The castle did not play any significant part in the battle, it was well behind the allied battle line. I believe that the armistice was signed there, and no doubt Napoleon would have spent a night or two there, as it is the most impressive building in the area.

Our battlefield tour included an evening meal at Austerlitz Castle, but we were not expecting the artillery drill display that went with it. Jan even got the opportunity to fire the gun. Next came a display of sword fighting and finally the meal itself.

An excellent evening, and a very enjoyable addition to the tour.