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Loire - Châteaux & Vineyards

Exploring on foot the charms of the western Loire Tour Code 5020

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Holiday Overview

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Chinon is on the River Vienne, a few miles of gently meandering curves away from where it meets the Loire. Here are cream-coloured stone buildings, turrets, half-timbered façades and riverside promenades. This is the rich land of wine and food, of castles and kings, producing some of the Loire’s best wine. Picturesque strolls of up to six miles between historical villages allow us to explore this enchanting area of France.

Proposed Itinerary

Day 1 Travel by train to Tours via Paris, continuing by coach to Chinon.
Day 2 We take a walk through the old town of Chinon. Following a leisurely lunch we visit the Forteresse Royale, on a bluff above the town, with some of the best views in the Loire Valley.
Day 3 We start at the mushroom cellars in Montsoreau, then walk to Candes-St-Martin, one of the most attractive villages in France, where the Vienne meets the Loire. We continue the short distance to Fontevrauld Abbey, burial place of Plantagenet kings.
Day 4 After visiting the colourful weekly market in Azay-le-Rideau we visit the romantic castle. We pass troglodyte houses as we walk to Villaines-les-Rochers, Europe’s only wicker-weaving centre.
Day 5 Our morning walk takes us from Chinon past a frescoed troglodyte chapel lived in as a house until 1959, and through vineyards to Cravant-les-Côteaux. Here we have a dégustation of Chinon wines.
Day 6 Our day starts at Chinon’s weekly market. We then drive to the Sleeping Beauty castle of Ussé and walk along the River Indre to Rivarennes where there is the rather unusual museum of preserved pears.
Day 7 Today we visit the gardens at the Châteaux of Villandry. The gardens are truly a wonderous sight with an extensive array of formal planted vegetables and flowers.
Day 8 Returning to Tours by coach, we catch the train back to London via Paris.

Holiday Highlights

  • Some of the best views over the Loire Valley to be seen
  • Strolls though a vineyard and the chance to sample the wine
  • The Sleeping Beauty castle of Usse.
  • The chance to stay at the delightful and under-rated Hotel Diderot
  • Holidays accompanied by an Adagio Specialist to inform and inspire you

Travel Information

  • Travel: London St Pancras – Tours, via Paris or Lille (c 4hrs plus stops), Eurostar/TGV. Via Paris involves a change of station, taxis will be used to get between stations.
  • Provisional times Outward depart/return arrival: 0831/1639.
  • Arrival transfer by road c 50mins.

Accommodation and Meals

We stay in the delightful family-run Hotel Diderot. Well placed in the town of Chinon it provides easy access to many restaurants, bars and cafes and it is a lovely place from which to take a stroll after an enjoyable day of sightseeing, or for a relaxed drink in the evening. Breakfasts will be taken in the hotel and we also include five dinners in local restaurants.

The Hotel Diderot is in the ideal location, close to all the must see attractions of the Loire, yet in a peaceful and idyllic location. Well placed in the town of Chinon it provides easy access too many restaurants, bars and cafes and it is a lovely place to have a stroll around after an enjoyable day of sightseeing, or for a relaxed drink in the evening listening to the bustle of this typically French town.

The bedrooms and public rooms alike are full of character and history, each room is unique and you will feel like you have gone back to a time gone by, it offers a real French experience.

A wonderful, hearty typically French breakfast awaits you in the morning, from warm fresh bread and croissants to the regions specialty of goat’s cheese, honey and walnuts; also the homemade jam is a must!   In the cooler months we can enjoy this in front of the roaring log fire, in the summer we can sit nestled in between the fragrant flowers and green foliage of the hotels wonderful courtyard.

The Hotel Diderot has won the Trip Advisor ‘Travellers Choice’ award  two years running and in 2012 the ‘Certificate of Excellence’, a recommendation in itself!


Holiday Information Sheet

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17 Oct 2017
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London (St Pancras)
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£ 1,185