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FRANCE –THE CASTLES OF LOIRE: FROM BLOIS TO TOURS

a 7 or 5 days self-guided cycle tour along the Loire

 

 

"Douce France" or "Jardin de France" are, not by chance, the names of this region, where a particularly generous nature offers unique sensations and leads to the discovery of fabulous castles, nestled in the middle of forests or situated by sunflower fields and vineyards: Chenonceaux, a magnificent bridge over Cher; Chaumont, a beautiful fortress in the forest; Blois, very important for the history of France; Amboise, which houses the tomb of Leonardo da Vinci; Chambord which, with its 380 fireplaces and 406 halls, represents the apotheosis of the epic castles of Loire. Our proposal for discovering this region is a comfortable cycle tour on a flat terrain: route follows secondary roads and paths in the middle of forests or along the shores of the Loire and its tributaries. Our tour in freedom is thought for those who decide to go on an individual cycle tour without guide for the very first time. This tour is organised with three hotels in Blois , Amboise and Tours : from there you cycle and make lovely ring tours. This allows freedom of choice in case of bad weather, lack of energy or in case you wish to take a day off and do other things. Little towns are connected by railway so, as an alternative, you can visit them by train. For this reason, this tour is also suitable for children: every day you can decide about your programme and adapt it to their rhythms and needs.  Tour starts from Blois, and not from Orleans: this because between the 2 cities there aren’t castles you can visit and, for that reason, it could take 2 days to get to Chambord, the first castle coming from East.

 

 

 

Program

 

 

 

Day 1

Individual tour to Blois in the afternoon, delivery of bikes to the hotel at 6 p.m.

Blois is a medieval town of about 50,000 inhabitants, ancient house of powerful Earls of Blois, initiators of the Capetian dynasty. The history of Blois is directly related to the history of the majestic Castle of Blois , scene of some bloody intrigues.

 

Day 2

Blois - Chambord - Blois  43 km / 27 miles

You follow the river and come to the castle of Chaumont , built on a cliff dominating the Loire ; the castle was built thanks to Pietro d’Amboise and then bought by Catherine de Medici: she kept Chenonceau for herself and sent Diana di Poitiers to Chaumont, for vengeance. Still along the Loire , you get to Amboise , picturesque little town on the left bank of the river, where the castle is situated, again on a cliff dominating the town. Visit of the castle.

 

Day 3 

Blois – Chaumont - Amboise  44 - 51 km / 28- 32 miles

Seguendo il corso della Loira si giunge al castello di Chaumont fatto costruire su di una rupe dominante la Loira da Pietro d’Amboise e poi acquistato da Caterina de Medici per mandarci per vendetta Diana di Poitiers e tenersi per lei Chenonceau. Sempre lungo la Loira si arriva poi ad Amboise, pittoresca cittadina sulla riva sinistra dove sorge il castello anch’esso su di uno sperone roccioso che domina la città. Visita del castello.

 

Day 4

Amboise - Chenonceau - Amboise  35 km / 22 miles

From the valley of Loire to the valley of Cher , passing through the Forest of Amboise , you reach the castle, called “castle of the two queens” Diana and Catherine; it is the most beautiful and the most visited castle of the area, with many arcades on the river. From Chenonceau, you cycle along the Cher river and go back to Amboise : in the afternoon, visit of the Clos-Lucé, house of Leonardo da Vinci, with a museum inside which hosts numerous models of his inventions. In the park of models in scale 1:1, you can interact with these fabulous machines and try them personally.

 

Day 5

Amboise  - Tours  31 km / 19 miles

Along the Loire again, you reach Tours , the most important city of the region, through the famous vineyards of Vouvray, among tuff cliffs dominating the river. In Tours , you can visit the historic centre, Place Plumerau and the cathedral.

 

Day 6

Tours - Villandry - Tours  42 km / 26 miles.

From Tours , following the Cher , you reach Castle of Villandry , known for its gardens « jardin potagers ». The famous gardens of Villandry are the best example of the Renaissance architectural structure of gardens in France , under the influence of Italian gardeners brought here by Charles VIII. Back to Tours on a bike path.

 

Day 7

End of tour after breakfast

 

 

 

There is also a 5 days version (ask the pdf):

Day 1 Blois

Day 2 Blois - Chambord-Blois (42 km / 26 km)

Day 3 Blois-Chaumont-Amboise (46 km / 28,5 miles)

Day 4 Amboise - Chenounceau -Tours (41 km / 25 miles)

Day 5 End of Tour

 

 

 

 

ASSISTENCE PLUS

This trip includes a PLUS ASSISTANCE: this means that you will have a full assistance, in order to guarantee you a quiet departure, above all if this is the first cycle tour for you and if you travel with children or simply because you think you cannot make it. Beyond the normal luggage transportation and the emergency telephone number, there is an assistance/recovery service on site, for needs or any trouble you could have along the route. You will call a number (if you are on an individual tour) or ask for the help of your guide (if you are on a group tour): within a short time, one of our representatives will reach you and solve the problem with you; he/she can also accompany you to your next hotel, if necessary (this service is available form 16 July to 20th August).

 

 

The Loire cycling tour includes:

  • overnights stay with breakfast in hoteli **** (Cat A) or **** and  *** (Cat B) or ** (Cat C). 

  • Tour information

  • Road book in English and maps

  • luggage transportation (1 bag per person - max 20 kg)

  • Local assistance plus  (from 16/07 to 20/08: not for the 5 days version)

 

 

 

Period

7 and 5 days: every Sunday from 16/07 till 20/08; every day in the period from 17/04 till 15/07 and from 21/08 till 09/10 

Level 1/2

mostly flat, with just some short climbs (you could also face them on foot); Tour for all, recommended as a first cycle tour. Daily stretches go from 33 to 48 km, with an average of 13 km per hour (within reach of all) are equal to 2h40/3h30 of cycling per day. Total: 205 km

Participants  

minimum 2 person (solo traveller on request)

Prices p.p. 2017 7 days cycling holiday

In double room  Cat A € 630 - Cat B € 555 - Cat. C € 440 

Children 0- 2 years gratis

children 3/11 years in 3rd or 4th bed Cat A € 310 - Cat B €175 - Cat C €275

children 12- 15 years in 3rd or 4th bed Cat A € 390 - Cat B € 285 - Cat C €300

3th bed  Cat A € 490 - Cat B € 370 - Cat. C € 300

In single room Cat A € 1.148 - Cat B € 834 - Cat. C € 610 

supplement half board adults  Cat A  NO - Cat B € 160 - Cat. C NO

supplement half board 3-11 years  Cat A NO - Cat B € 100 - Cat. C NO
supplement 6 nights in all hotels with pool (supplement only for the adults) CAT. A € 55 

Bike rental     € 85 

Rental 3rd wheel  € 75 
5 days cycling holidays

In double room   Cat A € 420 - Cat B € 399 - Cat C € 320 

Children 0- 2 years  Cat A, B and C gratis

Children 3/11 years 3rd or 4th bed Cat A € 165 -  Cat B € 130 - Cat C € 200 

Children 12- 15 years in 3rd or 4th  Cat A € 230 - Cat B € 190 - Cat C € 230 

Children 0-11 years with only one adult  Cat A NO  -  Cat B € 300 - Cat C € 320 

3rd bed for adults  Cat A € 345 - Cat B € 250 - Cat C € 230 

Supplement single room   Cat A  € 330 - Cat B € 192 - Cat C € 117 

supplement half board adults  Cat A NO -  Cat B € 108  - Cat C NO

supplement half board children 3-11 years  Cat A NO -  Cat B € 65 - Cat C NO

Bike rental   € 60 

Bike rental trailer  € 50 

 

 

 

 

Contact us if you want to receive more information !