After fierce fighting, German troops captured Kemmel Hill during their Spring offensive in April 1918. The Germans where not the first, nor the last, to realise the military importance of this dominating landmark. From the period of the pre-Roman Celts until the end of the Cold War, the hill has hosted a number of military functions.
In the early fifties, the Belgian Forces installed a large underground bunker on the slope of the hill. If hostilities had broken out the bunker would have served as a command and control headquarters, co-ordinating military forces over Belgium and surrounding areas. The secrecy surrounding this bunker was only lifted in 2009, when it opened to the public as a museum showing the role of the Belgium Forces in the Cold War. Since then the site can be visited on a restricted number of days each week.
Erwin, the principal guide of our company, is one of the very few Kemmel Bunker guides with a military background, as he served as a regular soldier with the Belgian Army of the Rhine during the Cold War. This offers the unique benefit of going on a tour with someone who will give you first hand information on the subject.
For groups, a visit to this site is subject to pre- booking. Visiting days are Tuesday, Thursday (only schools) and Saturday.