France
  • 7 days/6 nights
  • Next Departure: Jul 17, 2016
  • From $3,498 / person
  • ($580 single supplement) Children: $2,798 to $3,148

Loire Valley Family Tour

Get swept away by the enchanting ambiance of France’s Loire Valley on this simply stunning, family-friendly adventure in one of Europe’s most charming regions. Our expert guides are delighted to share the Loire’s fantastic history and colorful characters. As you and your kids explore the labyrinthine castle rooms, fairy-tale backgrounds and exquisite scenes of central France, enjoy the best in accommodations, the most delicious of local fare, the finest of wines (and juices!) and of course Austin’s signature touch of inspired, thoughtful service throughout this all-inclusive French vacation package. Bike leisurely with your family along the Loire Valley through small, welcoming towns on your way to renowned, grand châteaux. See Leonardo da Vinci’s inventions, walk in the footsteps of Joan of Arc, get lost in expertly-manicured gardens and find out which family member can guess the castle that served as inspiration for Sleeping Beauty. Medieval mystique and breathtaking skylines are yours to behold on this quintessential experience of France’s Loire Valley.

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  • Family Vacations
  • Biking
  • Cultural
  • Wine / Gourmet

Activity Level: Easy

About
This Tour

From castles to kings to vintage cars, this week-long Loire Valley adventure is the perfect recipe for family fun. We've carefully-crafted a most excellent itinerary to fill these seven remarkable days spent exploring France's treasured landscapes and charming towns. Your young princesses and knights-in-shining-armor are in for a treat on this smile-inducing, two-wheeled adventure that also holds the simple pleasure of a glass of wine or stroll through cobblestone streets as you discover some of history's most romantic settings. Truly a trip of a lifetime!

  • Pedal at a leisurely pace crisscrossing vast forests, lush vineyards, fields of sunflowers and quiet villages
  • Bike to King François I’s Château de Chambord and count the staircases in the grandiose 440-room estate
  • Marvel at the lifelike King Charles VII and Anne of Brittany wax figures at the Château de Langeais
  • Ride to Le Clos Lucé in Amboise, the last residence of Leonardo da Vinci, to check out his countless inventions
  • Explore Château de Chenonceau perched gracefully over the Cher River
  • Opt for a gentle kayak along the Vienne River and ooh and ahh over the vintage car collection at Musée Dufresne
  • Dine like royalty over an exquisite meal of beef tournedos and handmade cream puffs at the Château de Pray
Biking in Loire France
Photo: Biking in Loire France

Guides, route, food, hotels, were all awesome.

Andrea J New York, NY

Organization, preparation-superb routes/length-perfect guides similar in age to group-superb

Mary A Orleans, ON

The Loire Valley was magical, especially from a bike

Tom K Naperville, IL

Itinerary
& Map

Tour Itinerary

7 days/6 nights

Paris, France (CDG or ORY)

Day 1: Blois
France Bike Tours
Meals Included:  L, D
Overnight: Hotel Mercure

On Day 1, we meet in Paris in the morning.

After a transfer to the half-timbered town of Blois, mount your bicycle and head to the Château de Chambord, the "Versailles of the Loire."

See its magnificent skyline as you approach, then tour the château for an up-close look.

Tonight, join your guides and fellow travelers for a wonderful welcome dinner.

About Hotel Mercure
Located in the center of Blois facing the Loire River, Hotel Mercure is a three-star hotel just a five-minute walk away from the old part of Blois and 10 minutes from the chateau and the Maison de la Magie house of magic.

With modern architecture, the hotel features the Quai St Jean restaurant, as well as a bar, swimming pool, sauna, Jacuzzi and steam bath.

Day 2: Amboise
France Adventure Travel
Meals Included:  B, D
Overnight: Hotel le Choiseul

Enjoy a relaxing day criss-crossing the Loire, bicycling amid forests and vineyards, and taking time for a wine tasting or a tour.

  • Visit the grand Château du Chaumont, a turreted castle with a colorful past
  • Soak up the lively atmosphere of Amboise and its luminous Royal Castle, where your hotel overlooks the Loire

About Chateau de Pray
Located along the banks of the Loire and at the foot of the Royal Castle of Amboise, the hotel Le Choiseul is composed of three charming 18th century residences that are typical for this region. A small flowered park embellishes the grounds. Its restaurant Le 36 offers Loire cuisine and menus of excellent quality. The hotel wine cellar holds many fine wines, especially from the Loire region. Guests have access to the heated outdoor swimming pool.

Day 3: Loches
Visit France
Meals Included:  B
Overnight: Hotel le Choiseul

In Amboise, marvel at the models of Leonardo da Vinci’s inventions at the Clos Lucé, where the master spent the last three years of his life.

  • Today's route leads to Château de Chenonceau, with its refined, graceful architecture.
  • After touring the grounds, pass fields of sunflowers and ancient wine caves en route to Montrichard and its medieval fortress. These historical sites bring the past to life!

Later, discover everything that Amboise has to offer as you spend this evening on your own.

 

Day 4: Azay-le-Rideau
France Adventure Vacations
Meals Included:  B, L, D
Overnight: Hotel le Grand Monarque

Start your day with a trip to Loches’ wonderful market.

Later, fields of asparagus and mushrooms line our route as placid river views reflect the dreamlike beauty of the countryside. Soak up the breathtaking views as the group picnics in Cormery.

Today's highlight is the Château Azay-le-Rideau. Picture perfect, its graceful silhouette is mirrored in the languid waters that surround it.

You'll stay in this scenic town for 2 nights. After resting and freshening up, gather with the group for yet another delectable meal.

About Hotel le Grand Monarque
In the heart of La Vallee des Rois, a registered UNESCO world heritage site, sits Hotel le Grand Monarque.

This hotel-restaurant offers you a charming stay and relaxation. During your stay, you will discover its enchantment, great comfort, an art of living, and genuine French cuisine.

Day 5: Azay-le-Rideau
France Bike tours
Meals Included:  B, L
Overnight: Hotel le Grand Monarque

Today's ride leads to Chinon.

From the site of France's first parliament to Ussé's Castle, the inspiration for "Sleeping Beauty," today there is something for everyone.

Bike in the densely-wooded forest and walk in the steps of Joan of Arc. In the afternoon, opt for a canoe trip or cycle back to Azay-le-Rideau.

Eat dinner at a restaurant of your choosing before being wowed by a nighttime sound and light show (latter in July and August only).

Day 6: Tours
France Tours
Meals Included:  B, D
Overnight: Chateau de Beaulieu

Following the Loire north, you’re greeted by more magnificent white châteaux perched amid fertile landscapes and quiet villages.

Visit the elegant Château de Villandry and its famous gardens, before following newly laid-out bike trails to the city of Tours.

End your fantastic day with a grand farewell dinner at your lovely château.

About Chateau de Beaulieu
Recognized for the beauty and charm of its 18th-century architecture, Château de Beaulieu is an oasis of tranquility, hidden away in the countryside, and has welcomed guests for rest and relaxation since 1976.

The château and its bedrooms are beautifully decorated in charming French style. You’ll be close to the lovely old town of Tours. You’ll also be able to enjoy the surrounding park and terrace as well as the Magnolia Spa.

Day 7: Paris
France biking tours for families
Meals Included:  B

After breakfast, you will be transferred to Paris for your departure home.

Before heading for Paris or elsewhere in France, you can also opt to spend some time in the bustling center of Tours.

** Trip itineraries are subject to change without notice due to road, weather and other factors outside of our control, for the safety and enjoyment of our guests, as deemed necessary and appropriate by Austin Adventures.

Dates, Rates
& Details

Stop daydreaming and start planning your adventure today. Confirmed departure dates and rates are listed below. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Not finding what you're looking for? Over 33% of our itineraries are tailored to fit your group or family needs. Feel free to call one of our travel specialists for information on custom trips. Let us plan your next adventure of a lifetime!

  • 7 days/6 nights
  • Next Departure: Jul 17, 2016
  • From $3,498 / person
  • ($580 single supplement) Children: $2,798 to $3,148

Confirmed Departures

  • Jul 17, 2016
  • Aug 14, 2016

Recommended Travel Months

CALL (800) 575-1540 for details

Additional Trip Information

Departure
  • Prior to the trip, arrive at your own convenience in Paris.
  • On Day 1, we will meet you in the lobby of Grand Hotel Bedford (8th arrondissement) in Paris at 8:30 a.m.
  • After a transfer to Blois, the cycling begins.
  • After breakfast on Day 7, we take you to the airport, train station, or the hotel of your choice in Paris (three hour transfer).
Activities

Cycling:

  • Day 1 bicycle mileage options: 27 / 41
  • Day 2 bicycle mileage options: 31 / 38 / 43
  • Day 3 bicycle mileage options: 29 / 50
  • Day 4 bicycle mileage options: 29 / 38
  • Day 5 bicycle mileage options: 23 / 41 / 46
  • Day 6 bicycle mileage options: 27 / 37
Meals

The hallmark of an Austin Adventures vacation is our exceptional dining. All meals: breakfasts, lunches, snacks, dinners, refreshments and receptions are included as indicated by itinerary. (B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner). Alcoholic beverages and related gratuities are not included in the trip price.

Included in Trip Price
  • Double occupancy rooms with private baths.
  • All breakfasts. Lunches and dinners as listed by day. Snacks along the route.
  • Fully trained, first-aid certified professional guides and knowledgeable local partners.
  • Bikes, helmets and other necessary equipment – all safe and well maintained.
  • Vehicle support and land transportation during the trip.
  • Austin Adventures T-shirt, water bottle, luggage tags and luggage service.
  • Pre-departure and packing information.
  • Incidental expenses such as taxes, dining and housekeeping gratuities, local guide and expert gratuities.
Not Included in Trip Price
  • Gratuities to Austin Adventures guides.
  • Alcoholic beverages and related gratuities.
  • Pre-and post-trip accommodations and associated expenses.
  • Air and land transportation to/from host cities.
  • All types of personal insurance.
  • Personal expenses.
Photos
Testimonials
Testimonials

With over 20-years of experience in the adventure travel industry, we've perfected the recipe for crafting award-winning small group trips and custom itineraries on all seven continents. On every departure, we aim to exceed your expectations with best-in-class service, expert guides and the finest in regional cuisine and accommodations. From first-time travelers to seasoned alumni, our guests agree that on each Austin Adventures journey , the hardest part truly is going home. We're happy to share that 99.26% of these travelers say they'd join us again...and again...and again. But don't take our word for it. Our guests say it best:

With Ron as your guide, there's always something unexpected that makes the trip so special and memorable.

Don H, Greensboro, GA

Well organized, very pleasant guides, bikes good, routes 99% accurate maps.

Murray E, Toronto, ON

Ron is the best

Charles G, White Plains, NY

great trip, great guides

Debbie R, Dugald, MB

Excellent!

Susan S, West Kelowna, BC
View More Testimonials

Regions we visit in Europe: , , ...

A few more reasons why you've gotta go…

  • 1. The cars: Musee Automobile de la Sarthe (auto museum), is the result of over 100 years of car collecting and features some of the rarest and most beautiful automobiles in the world.
  • 2. The gardens: These well-maintained and manicured outdoor spaces include lush medicinal, aromatic, herbal and vegetable gardens as well as parterres, orchards of trained fruit, labyrinths, cloisters, rose gardens, canals and lakes.
  • 3. The Mini Castle Park: After you’ve seen your share of castles, villas and châteaux, see them again in miniature. This charming park in Amboise contains over 40 miniature models of the country's most famous châteaux.
  • 4. The Loire River Bridge: Explore this impressive masonry bridge designed and built by Jacques Gabriel in 1717, who was the royal architect.
  • 5. In-the-field expertise: From getting your kids excited about medieval history to orchestrating seamless group dynamics, our guides keep their eyes on the details, ensuring that the toughest part of your vacation truly is going home.
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