Loire Valley - UNESCO Castle To Castle Trek

Loire Valley - UNESCO Castle To Castle Trek

France » Self-guided (independent) hiking tours

  • Loire Valley - UNESCO world heritage site
  • Historic settlements, great architectural monuments
  • Eceptional world famous castles and top class wines
  • jan
  • feb
  • mar
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  • may
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  • aug
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  • nov
  • dec

From 835 €

Duration (days): 8

Difficulty grade:  

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With cities such as Orleans, Blois, Tours or Nantes, the Loire Valley offers an incredible quality of architectural heritage. Also known as the Gardens of France, Loire Valley is a great place to enjoy biological diversity, endless well kept forests (such as Forest of Amboise) and last but not least, its world class wines.
The Loire Valley is noteworthy for the quality of its architectural heritage, for its world-famous castles, such as the Château of Amboise, Château of Chambord or Château of Chenonceaux (“Château des Dames”), three of the most exceptional castles in France with Versailles but there are also lots of small castles you will see during these walking holidays like Leonardo da Vinci's last home (Château du Clos Lucé).
The romantic representation of the Valley in the 19th century by writers and painters led to the Loire becoming a magnet for tourists, first from France, then Europe, and then in the 20th century the rest of the world. This interest in the scenic qualities of the Valley and its monuments encouraged efforts to preserve the heritage of the landscape, in the form of its monuments, its towns, its rural structure, it nature and gastronomy.

Day 1: Blois
Situated on the banks of the lower river Loire between Orléans and Tours, Blois is the capital of Loir-et-Cher department in central France. In 1986, Blois was given the "Ville d'art et d'histoire" label, a description awarded by the Ministry of Culture to cities that enhance and protect their heritage.
Day 2: Blois to Chambord (walking: 17,5km/4h30)
During this stage you have to follow the itinerary “Loire à vélo”. It begins in the centre of Blois near the railway station: ‘Place de la gare’. First day, two castles (Blois and Cahmbord)! There is no question, you are in the heart of Loire Valley, the land of castles.
Day 3: Chambord to Bracieux (hiking: 15.5km/4h00)
This small town is best known as the location of the Château de Chambord, the largest in the Loire Valley and one of the most recognisable châteaux in the world because of its very distinct French Renaissance architecture. The Chambord castle appears suddenly at the edge of a path, and the sight of its white massive structure that widens and takes shape little by little, produces a dramatic impression, which is even more striking at sunset. After visiting the castle (even if you did it yesterday), you have to take the way to Bracieux. You will cross in this stage unspoilt nature of Loire Valley and its famous vineyards.
Day 4: Bracieux to Cheverny (walking: 18.5km/4h45)
You have reached now a pleasant hamlet which is called Bracieux. In the heart of vineyards, you really feel in harmony. After reaching “Les Ogonières”, walk along and cross a small lake called “Le Grand Cotlereau”. Now, the way to go to Cheverny is “Le chemin aux boeufs”, a very old way, which was used to transfer bullock herd from Limousin to Paris. After crossing Cheverny forest you enter in the town.
Day 5: Cheverny to Fougères (hiking: 16km/4h45)
Almost only famous thanks to the castle, Cheverny lies in the Loire Valley, about 10 km southeast of Blois. The present Château de Cheverny is an original jewel among the more famous monuments that stretch along the Loire Valley. The Belgian comic book creator Hergé used Cheverny as a model for his fictional "Château de Moulinsart" (Marlinspike Hall) in the The Adventures of Tintin books. From the church in the centre of Cheverny, follow the road toward Contres. Cheverny castle, Troussay castle, Clos du Sentier, Clos du Poira,… History and wine take really place along this stage to reach the next town, Fougères.
Day 6: Fougères to Thésée (walking: 19.5km/4h55)
Often called just Fougères, the town is more correctly called Fougères-sur-Bièvre. In the town you can visit: the Middle-Ages castle, the church and the wash-house. At the crossroads in the centre of Fougères turn left, go along the castle to arrive at the church and then follow the direction to Choussy. Before you reach this one take the time to see “Abbaye de Cornilly”, an old and authentic abbey built in the XI century. Don’t take the road to Choussy, go along a mill, cross a forest and go along another castle (Gué-Pan castle) to enter Thésée.
Day 7: Thésée to Montrichard (hiking: 15.5km/4h25)
It is in the small town of Thésée you can see the Gallo-Roman vestiges “Bâtiments des Maselles”. Just after you leave the town in the direction of Tours, you can admire these 2nd century buildings. Take the way to Monthou to leave the town and after Bourré. If you have time, it will be interesting to visit the “Champignonière des Roches”. Just before you arrive to Montrichard you go along Vallagon castle, a lovely old castle.
Day 8: Montrichard
Departure.

Accommodation and luggage transportation: accommodation and meals as follows: Days 1-4: 2*, bed & breakfast; Day 5: 4* guesthouse, breakfast & dinner; Day 6: 2*, bed & breakfast; Day 7: 3*, bed & breakfast; luggage transfers included on days 2,3,4,5,6,7;

Price: 835 Euro per person in twin/dbl room

Single supplement: 270 Euro

Group size: min. 2 persons

The price includes: Roadbook (itinerary description in English and detailed walking maps); accommodation and meals as mentioned, luggage transfers;

The price does not include: other meals and transfers, personal expenses;

Tips: Best travel period: mid-April-mid-October; Best airport is Tours. Other possible airports: Paris Orly and Paris Charles De Gaulle or Nantes. Transfers from Tours, Nantes and Paris (Charles de Gaulle or Orly) airports possible upon request. Pre- or post-tour extra nights can be booked via the tour supplier.