Electric bike option available Tour Name
From Orléans to Tours
(6 days /5 nights)
Price per person
Off Peak £712 Peak £712
Board Basis: Half Board
Accommodation is in 2 and 3 star hotels (2 & 3 nights respectively); located in Orléans, Beaugency, Blois, Amboise and Tours.
Upgrading to 3 star properties throughout this tour is an option (suppl.£248 per person).
Wonderful tales of heroines and hunting lodges accompany you on this relaxing tour along the Loire between two of the region's most vibrant cities. Châteaux highlights include Chambord, Blois, Chaumont and Amboise.
Day One - Arrive & explore
Arrive in Orléans, home of France’s greatest heroine, Joan of Arc. There’s plenty of bustle beneath the neo-gothic towers of the Cathédrale de Ste Croix, but the Saint’s statue takes pride of ‘Place’ on the main square. You'll find her reconstructed 15th century house in the old town and her place of prayer, the Chapelle de Notre-Dame-des-Miracles in St Paul's Church.
Day Two- From saints to scents
Joan of Arc rode out of Orléans to Meung-sur-Loire - and that's how you start your tour today too. Liberated by the great heroine, the town has a sprawling château which embodies its rather chequered history. Pink stucco walls of the 18th century Bishop’s Palace nestle in the protection of sterner, towered fortifications and you can certainly imagine Alexander Dumas' d’Artagnan flourishing his fictional sword here at the Comte de Rochefort. A pleasant pedal leads further downstream to your hotel at historic Beaugency. These days the town is renowned for its floral displays, but it was another constant battleground in the 100 Years' War. Don't miss the massive medieval bridge across the Loire here - it’s a miracle that all its 26 arches survived.
Miles: 17 Kms: 28
Day Three - The folly of François I
Heading out from beautiful Beaugency, it's time to leave the riverside today and follow the call of perhaps the greatest royal hunting lodge of all time. As the lanes lead into the forest, little can prepare you for the overwhelming scale and sheer exuberance of both the Château de Chambord and its grounds. There's so much to see - 400 rooms, 365 fireplaces, 84 staircases! - and hectare after hectare of beautiful forest and parkland to explore. When you eventually escape, there’s the Houdini Museum as well as further château treats in store back on the river at historic Blois where you'll be spending your next overnight.
Miles: 29 Kms: 46
Day Four - Loire & Leonardo
Take some time to enjoy the magical staircases and rich courtyards of the château at Blois before following the delightful country route which wends its way to Chaumont-sur-Loire. Here, another great château - squat and fortified this time - sits above the river. It's impressive enough, but there's even more riverside magic at Amboise where the huge royal château is only a fifth of its original size. Don't miss the Clos Lucé mansion with its fascinating insight into the world of Leonardo de Vinci who spent his last days here. Staying in Amboise gives you a great opportunity to really get to know this lively town and enjoy a pleasant evening stroll down its wide promenades along the Loire.
Miles: 27 Kms: 44
Day Five- From vineyards to 'Vieille Ville'
Leaving the bustle of majestic Amboise, it's time for a refreshing change. Around Montlouis-sur-Loire vineyard slopes envelop more petite châteaux such as the one-time home of a famous local Duchess, Château de la Bordelaisière. The route then leads steadily into Tours for your final overnight and a wonderful range of historic treasures both great and small, from half-timbered delights in the old town to the lively café culture of the Place Plumereau and imposing ornate towers of the magnificent Cathédrale St-Gatien.
Miles: 16-19 Kms: 25-31
Day Six - Depart after breakfast - Train to Orléans
After breakfast, you might like to enjoy a final opportunity to explore Tours before jumping on the train to take you back to Orléans. Please note that the train fare to Orléans is not included in the price of the tour (single fare is approx. 19 euros).