Luxury Escape in Chateau Country: Self-Guided

Discover the incredible “Garden of France” as you cycle at your own pace, stopping to admire the stately elegance of centuries-old chateaux or to visit a museum, church or wine cave, always assured that your charming room and delightful dinner are waiting for you at the end of the day. You will cycle through the scenic vineyards and fragrant forests south of Tours and visit the “must-see” Villandry Gardens, handsome Azay-le-Rideau Chateau and the incomparable Chateau Chenonceau. Your luggage is transported each day from hotel to hotel. Accommodations are in elegant four and five-star chateaux and manors. The food is sumptuous and elegantly served.

Daily Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Amboise
You start the tour in the town of Amboise. Built at the edge of the Loire River, Amboise is overlooked by its Royal Chateau where the most important kings of France lived. Do not forget to visit the Manoir du Clos Luce where Leonardo da Vinci, invited by his friend Francis the 1st, lived the last 3 years of his life. Your bike will be waiting for you at the hotel.

Day 2: Amboise – Luynes, 27 or 31 miles (43 or 50 km)
Depart for a ‘country’ stage through the vineyards of Vouvray to reach the Chateau de Valmer that offers a beautiful illustration of the Italian Gardens style. Continue through the peaceful ‘Tourangelle’ countryside to join your chateau-hotel.
Alternatively, you can follow the ‘Loire a Velo’ cycling path through the vineyards of Montlouis to reach the Tours, a town steeped in art and history. Then proceed to your next chateau-hotel in Luynes.

Day 3: Amboise – taxi to Villandry – Montbazon, 23 miles (37 km)
Do not hesitate to visit Villandry and its famous Gardens ‘a la française’, matchless in Europe and composed of 3 superposed terraces! This stage will bring you to the Indre Valley passing via Azay le Rideau and its Renaissance chateau: a jewel in a wonderful setting of water and green! Then, following the meandering Indre River, you will reach your chateau-hotel overlooking the Indre River.

Day 4: Montbazon – Amboise, 34 miles (55 km)
Ride along the tortuous Indre River to reach the Cher Valley by crossing vineyards and typical small Touraine villages. Then, you will discover Chenonceaux, famous for its Renaissance château spanning the Cher river still steeped in memories of the famous ladies in French History: Diane de Poitiers and Catherine de Medicis. Continue through the forest to the royal city of Amboise for a last night in chateau country.

Day 5: Departure after breakfast

Getting There

Take the TGV from Paris to St. Pierre-des-Corps (a suburb of Tours), and then a train to Amboise train station. For last minute train schedules visit the website of the French Railways, www.sncf.com.

Meals

Daily breakfast and dinner is included

Prices and Dates

Check out our Tour Calendar

Tour Length

5 days/ 4 nights

Included
      – Accommodations in elegant four (3 nights) and five-star (1 night) chateaux and manors; all rooms have private shower and toilet.
      – 21-speed bike rental, including HELMET,panniers, lock, repair kit, map holder, and odometer
      – Daily breakfast and dinner
      – Luggage transportation – pieces of luggage limited to 2 p.p. & 32 pounds per piece.
      – Route descriptions, maps and travel highlight information
    – Emergency service phone number 7 days a week.
Bicycles

Bikes are included in the price of the tour. Bikes are well maintained 21-speed men’s and ladies bikes, equipped with a saddlebag, repair kit, odometer, and lock. Bike Helmets are included. The bike is adjusted by a cycling specialist.

Level of Difficulty

Easy to Moderate. The cycling itinerary takes place on quiet country roads with little traffic. You will see flat areas along with rolling hills with nice up and downs.

Excluded

– Air fare
– Entrance fees to the various mentioned chateaux
– Beverages
– Lunches
– Other items of a personal nature

Weather

Average daytime temperatures in April and May are 55-65, June, July, and August 65-80, September and October 60-75. Average rainfall is 6 days per month.

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