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Route

Technical Characteristics:

Route Profile: Medium.  You cycle on asphalted and gravelled cycle paths, partially also alongside roads.  There are only a few ascents worth mentioning to be tackled along the very well signposted route, occasionally you many encounter some headwind.

Distance: 8 Day Variation: 325 km
                  10 Day Variation: 465 km

Travel Season: Departures Thursdays (10 day tour) and Saturdays (8 day tour) from April 9 to October 8, 2022
Season 1: April 9 – April 22 and October 1 – October 8
Season 2: April 23 – May 20 and September 10 – September 30
Season 3: May 21 – September 9

Accommodation:

3* hotels of the French classification

The wild romantic Loire is one of Europe’s last remaining unregulated rivers flowing through gently undulating terrain towards the Atlantic. This river accompanies the culture enthusiastic cycling holiday maker following its course along the Loire cycle path from Orléans until Saint Nazaire, past magnificent palaces and blooming gardens and taking you back into France‘s glorious past. You are off into the heart of the royal cycling holiday bliss. Look forward to one of the most interesting UNESCO World Heritage sites, enjoy the sweet life a la francaise and admire impressive natural spectacles

Itineraries

Day 1

Arrival in Tours

Discover the historic centre Touraine today, the highly praised ‘Garden of France’.

Day 2

Tours – Chinon 55 km

The river Cher, a Loire tributary, leads you directly to Villandry palace with its terraced gardens. Certainly, you should not miss paying a visit to this famous installation. Every visitor will be amazed by the shadowy footpaths, the flower bedecked bowers, the fountains and the artistically laid out vegetable gardens. Some kilometres further on you will exchange the bank of the Cher for the bank of the famous Loire. And again you will be tempted by the next castle – Langeais. From the top of the fortified tower (this castle exclusively served for military purposes) you will see the river and its whole surroundings lying in front of you. Via small villages and on side roads you will reach today’s destination – Chinon, impressing visitors with its mighty castle complex.

Day 3

Chinon – Saumur 40 km

You leave Chinon with its medieval alleyways and follow the Vienne River to Candes-St. Martin. A charming stroll through the village up to the highest point of the hill enables an impressive view onto the confluence of both the Vienne and Loire Rivers. Shortly before arriving in Saumur there is a special highlight. The bike path leads right through the mystic rock houses of Souzey. We highly recommend another panoramic view onto the vast Loire valley later from Saumur palace.

Day 4

Saumur – Angers 55 km

After some kilometers you enter the vineyards situated at the southern shores of the Loire. On gentle hills you cycle through the vineyards. Back again at the coast you cycle through quiet, medieval villages towards your next big finish in Angers. Be inspired by the lively university town situated at the Maine.

Day 5

Angers - Saint- Florent-le-Vieil/Surroundings 55 km

Angers is situated on the Maine River, the final significant tributary of the Loire before the Atlantic. You follow this river until it joins the Loire River at La Pointe-Bouchemaine. You continue along the foot of a slate granite massif until Savennieres, featuring the oldest church of the region. Some of the best wines of the Loire Valley are grown here, fruity, dry white wines – we recommend a visit to one of the vintners. From La Poissonniere the route leads you via dykes with wonderful views onto the Loire River into the trim little town of Saint-Florent-le-Vieil.

Day 6

Saint- Florent-le-Vieil/Surroundings – Nantes 55 km

Another day along the Loire River through continuously changing scenery awaits. The Loire now finally enters Brittany and carves through slate and granite rocks all the way to Nantes. The cycle path changes the side of the river several times, which also includes tackling a few smaller ascents – which again rewards you with beautiful views. The Loire ‘escorts’ you into the centre of the historic capital of Brittany, Nantes. Although the Loire estuary into the Atlantic is another 70 km away the influence of the sea is already noticeable and visible.

Day 7

Nantes – Saint Nazaire 65 km

Now the river becomes even wider, the scenery increasingly placid. You proceed through little villages always downstream to the Loire ending in the Atlantic Ocean. Only the impressive bridge over the Loire River separates you from Saint Nazaire. Visit the Atlantic shipyard, which is one of the largest ship building corporations in the world, or the submarine bunker, which is also accessible by bike.

Day 8

Departure or Extension

Prices

    Included:

    • Accommodation in your selected category
    • Breakfast buffet or an extensive breakfast
    • Welcome briefing
    • Luggage transfer between hotels
    • Excellently planned routes
    • Detailed travel documents 1 per room (route maps, route description, local attractions, important telephone numbers)
    • App for navigation and GPS data is available
    • Service hotline

     Not Included:

    • Local taxes payable locally
    • Return transfer by minibus to Tours or Orléans every Saturday morning, costs EUR 79 to Tours and EUR 99 to Orléans per person including your bike, to be paid locally, reservation is necessary

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