Austria Radreisen - Wednesday, 12. August 2020
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Castles of the Loire

Castles of the Loire

Gorgeous palaces, pompous gardens and green vine yards…

The Loire Valley is not only famous for its castles, but also for its romantic riverscapes and the medieval flair of enchanting cities.

Total length: approx. 330 bicycle kilometres

Dates

14.04.12 till 06.10.12

Travel beginning: on Thursdays, on Saturdays

Duration: 8 days (7 nights)


Itinerary

  • picture 1: © CDT Touraine, David Darrault
  • picture 2: Maison de la France, Catherine Bibollet
  • picture 3: Schloss Chambord/Maison de la France, LEJEUNE Nicole

1. Day: Tours

Individual arrival and accommodation.

2. Day: Tours - Chinon/surroundings (approx. 60 km)

Along the Cher River we reach Villandry Castle with its famous terraced gardens. We change to the bank of the Loire River and cycle to Langeais Castle, from whose defence tower we enjoy a marvellous view of the surrounding country. On the edge of the forest of Chinon lies the Château d’Ussé, the “castle of Sleeping Beauty”. Through smaller villages we arrive at today’s destination – Chinon/surroundings.

3. Day: Chinon/surroundings - Fontevraud l'Abbaye - Chinon/surroundings (approx. 55 km)

Today the Vienne leads us into the small village of Candes-St.-Martin, where we admire a gorgeous romanic church. Equally worth our time is a small detour to Saumur, the so-called city of mushrooms. After a rest in palace garden, we embark on our return journey through neatly trimmed vineyards, and past the well-preserved convent complex of Fontevraud l’Abbaye, to Chinon/surroundings.

4. Day: Chinon/surroundings - Azay-le-Rideau (approx. 40 km)

We leave Chinon with its medieval alleys in northern direction. Through ancient vineyards and solitary villages the way leads us to Crissey, which counts with its houses from the 15th century to the most beautiful villages of France. Then we cycle to Azay-le-Rideau with its "Château d'Azay-le-Rideau" - one of the most significant moated castles that rises elegantly above the river.

5. Day: Azay-le-Rideau - Raum Chenonceaux (approx. 60 km)

Through the romantic riverscape of Indre we reach the pretty small town of Montbazon. After a short incline we arrive in the valley of the Cher River. We continue along meadow paths to Bléré and to Chenonceau Castle – surely the most beautiful of castles of the Loire! Here a splendid two-storied bridge spans across the river; before that, all visitors will be delighted by the marvellous palace gardens.

6. Day: Raum Chenonceaux - Blois (approx. 45 km)

We leave the Cher and go through the Touraine to Chaumont Castle by the Loire, from where we can enjoy a magnificent view. Romantic riverside paths guide us to today’s place of accommodation in Blois, where we will visit the castle with its galleries, prominent balconies, bays, and aspens. Cyclists in good condition may also choose a longer stage today via Chambord Castle, the biggest and most gorgeous residence of the Loire. (approx. 30 additional km).

7. Day: Blois - Tours (approx. 70 km)

Leisurely the river flows between gold shimmer sand banks. Along the Loire we discover time and again rock housings, which were built directly into the soft limestone. We briefly cross the Loire in order to visit Amboise Castle which accommodated five Kings and one Roman emperor. Also Leonardo da Vinci spent his last years in this village. On smaller paths we return via Rochecorbon to Tours.

8. Day: Tours

Individual departure or extension of trip.