15 Day Tour to England & France

October 12 – 26, 2024

Bring your hiking boots and sticks, and join the CanHist Tour team and Ellison Tours as we walk in the footsteps of ancient Romans, Britons and Normans on a 15-day fall excursion featuring Hadrian’s Wall, York as well as Medieval and modern Normandy!

In October 2024, Ellison Tour Leader Rebecca Grimes, internationally renowned Historian John Heckman and CanHist Founder Neil Orford will escort you through a week that features 3 days of walking and a special excursion off-the-wall to Vindolanda. You will then go on to spend two days in the spectacular 1000-year-old city of York, followed by a second week touring the sites and trails of medieval Normandy capped-off with two days to finish your trip in Paris.

Along the way, you’ll walk miles of iconic Hadrian’s Wall, experience the archeology of Vindolanda, the grandeur of York Minister and an exciting overnight Ferry trip to Europe. Once there, you can explore the wonders of historic Normandy while staying in medieval Bayeux, visit the Juno Beach Centre and D-Day Landing Beaches, tour Rouen Cathedral and Monet’s home at Giverny and complete your travel with the boundless magic of Paris.

CanHist  – History done differently!

CanHist is a division of ‘Canadian Historical Education Services, Ltd. For more information visit  

CanHist & Ellison Travel & tours are committed to making our walking tours as accessible as possible to as many age & mobility groups. As such, each day on the ‘Northumbria to Normandy’ itinerary, our tour leaders will offer gentler touring alternatives to the planned hikes, for any customer who wishes to downsize their ambition for the day. These might include: easier walking routes / alternative (but just as interesting) activities or optional excursions using public transit. Whatever the case, our tour leaders will have your needs in mind each day.


  • Airfare with AirTransat from Toronto to Manchester, England, and return from Paris, France, including 1st checked bag (within size and weight restrictions) all applicable airline, airport and security fees as of this contract date
  • Transportation via private motor coach for the duration of your tour, including driver, accommodations and tolls/parking (number and size of coach to be determined when numbers confirmed)
  • 4 nights’ accommodation at the Twice Brewed Inn, Hexham, UK; 2 nights’ accommodation at the Park Inn York; 4 nights’ accommodation at the Brunville Hotel, Bayeux, FR; and 2 nights’ accommodation at the Hotel Andre Latin in Paris, FR (based on twin accommodation) including full breakfast daily
  • Baggage handling at hotels
  • P&O Ferries overnight trip from Hull, UK to Rotterdam, NL with Outside Premier twin cabins including wifi access, dinner and breakfast
  • 4 packed lunches and 4 group dinners
  • 3 days of guided walks on Hadrian’s Wall
  • Visits and admission prices (where fees exist) to the following: Birdoswald, Housesteads, Chesters forts, Carvoran Roman Army Museum, Vindolanda, York Minster, Juno Beach Centre, Canada House, Monet’s House and Gardens at Giverny
  • Guided tour in York, Bayeux, Rouen and Paris
  • Ellison Tours Tour Manager throughout the tour
  • Includes all applicable taxes and service charges (HST/GST does not apply)
  • 24-hour Ellison Travel & Tours emergency contact number while on tour


  • Insurance has not been included as part of your tour package. Ellison Tours highly recommends that all travellers ensure they have Travel Insurance. These products, including Cancellation and Medical coverage, can be purchased through Ellison Tours – see insurance information below for details
  • Costs associated with vaccination, testing and other entry/exit requirements for your itinerary (unless noted under included above)
  • Costs associated with visa or passport processing, passport photos and other government processing fees
  • **NEW – Europe and the United Kingdom are launching Electronic Travel Authorization programs.  Many travellers, including Canadian passport holders, will be required to complete/purchase the ETIAS authorization for Europe (as of mid-2025) or the ETA authorization for the UK (date to be determined) in order to travel to/transit through the European Schengen Zone and the United Kingdom.  Further details will be provided as they become available**
  • Meals other than mentioned above
  • Wifi services on motorcoach
  • Baggage handling on the ferry
  • Driver and local guide gratuities: suggested total amount of gratuities for the trip is $130 CAD per person travelling on the trip (details to be provided)
  • Additional taxes, fuel surcharges or service charges levied by the governments or our suppliers
  • Drinks with group lunches or dinners (other than tap water on the tables) are available for purchase
  • Charges by the airline for oversize/overweight luggage/musical instruments, over and above the amount listed under the price includes section above
  • Any luggage fees introduced or altered prior to travel
  • The tour details and airline tickets are processed in the names you provide and must match the name per the legal travel document (eg. passport). An administration fee up to $100 plus applicable airline charges and taxes will be charged per name change or correction.


  • Additional price for an adult participant in a single room: $1,125.00 (call for accurate insurance quote based on their age).

$7350 CAD per person  

$1125 Single Supplement (limited availability)


  • First payment of $800 per person is due December 18, 2023
  • Second payment of $1500 per person is due February 22, 2024
  • Third payment of $2500 per person is due May 16, 2024
  • Final payment is due July 12, 2024


Neil Orford, President & Co-Founder of Defining Moments

Neil is a retired History Teacher, from Dufferin County, Ontario. A winner of both the Governor General’s and Ontario Premier’s Award for History Teaching, his Digital Historian Project© won the 2015 Government of Canada History Award. He has been featured on CBC’s “The National”, TVO’s “The Agenda”, and in numerous articles across Canada. He has written for major Canadian publications and is a regular presenter at Conferences and workshops. He has worked extensively with the Juno Beach Centre and has led a Summer Institute for History teachers in Normandy. Neil is the owner and president of Defining Moments Canada, Ltd.

John Heckman, internationally renowned Historian

John Heckman, a passionate advocate for making history accessible to all, launched The Tattooed Historian in 2015 as his legacy project during his tenure as an Archivist and Historian with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Engaging audiences through livestreams, videos, a podcast (The Tattooed Historian Show), and live events, John has successfully bridged the gap between the past and present, making history both captivating and enjoyable for audiences of all ages.

Rebecca Grimes, Ellison tour leader

A French and History teacher for over twenty years, Rebecca strives to pass on her love of languages, history, and travel to her students.  She has organized and managed past Ellison Tours for students and adults, and is a veteran of the DMC Battlefield Tours.

Rebecca is an avid traveller, a photography enthusiast, and a foodie.  In her travels (thirty countries on five continents and counting!), she always looks for opportunities to learn about the people, the culture, and the history of the places she is visiting.  Her photography is a way to look closer at these places and to remember her adventures.  She loves to try local cuisine – especially the pastries!

Having lived in France twice (Nantes and Bayeux), Rebecca always loves returning to the country she considers a second home.