Tuesday, 26 October 2010


It was fortunate that we had done our research prior to our visit to Dresden, because it was treated as a "free day". I always consider this to be a cop out on a any holiday, but even more so in one which is dedicated to walking battlefields. We were left entirely on our own and later discovered that the guide and coach had gone off to recce Bautzen. I feel quite strongly that this is just not good enough. All recce should be done prior to starting the tour. Paid customers should not be left to explore a city as best they can. This was our first, but not our last, disappointment with this Midas tour.

Due to our preparation we were aware of the main phases of the Battle of Dresden in August 1813. In particular I knew that the Great Garden had played an important part. And even though the city has greatly changed since then, we were able to find the Grosser Garten by joining a city tour bus and asking to be dropped there.

Unfortunately the garden was also a disappointment. It has been completely rebuilt and looks similar to any other park in any other major city.

Link to the Dresden blog


Tuesday, 19 October 2010


The cross roads at the village of Hassenhausen makes this a very easy battlefield to visit and explore. The road junction was the centre of Davout's position, and the flat ground to the south the area of the Prussian attacks.

The view of the battlefield is very similar to Waterloo, and one of the main features of the battle was the ill fates Prussian cavalry attack against the French infantry squares. Again a reminder of the French cavalry attacks against the British squares at Waterloo.

Link to Blog


Monday, 11 October 2010

Jena - Kapellendorf

The last visit of our day spent on the Jena battlefield, was to the small town of Kapellendorf.

It was here that General Ruchel made his fateful decision to move forward and attempt to save the broken survivors of Hohenloe's defeated army. He had arrived in the town with just 13,000 men to reinforce Hohenloe. On arrival he was advised that the Prussian army was in retreat pursued by the massed French cavalry. He ordered his division to advance towards Jena in an ill fated attempt to stem the French pursuit and save the Prussian army. In the event he was promptly crushed and joined the rout.

Link to blog


Sunday, 3 October 2010

Jena - Vierzehnheilligen

Vierzehnheilligen church

Vierzehnheilligen is the village where the Prussian infantry formed line in the open to exchange fire with the French infantry who were behind all available cover in the village! Not surprisingly it went badly for the Prussians.

The whole area is very unspoilt and it is not too difficult to picture the destruction of the Prussian infantry, and the gallant charge led by Marshal Murat which followed and led to one of Napoleon's most famous victories.

Link to blog