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Your Cycling Holidays in Loire

Indulgence | The Loire in Luxury | Self Guided

Famed for its grand châteaux, leftover from its past as a preferred home for French royals and aristocrats, few other regions in the world exude the same sense of class as France’s Loire valley. Today the valley is one of the most popular cycling destinations in the world, thanks to an excellent network of cycle routes, easy terrain and endless list of sites to see. By staying in our three favourite château hotels, you will experience this decadence first hand and leave having cycled like a Softie and slept like royalty. 

What’s Included

  • Delightful 4-star and 5-star hotels
  • Bed & Breakfast accommodation with 4 evening meals (7 night itinerary)
  • Fully serviced touring bikes with panniers, water bottle and repair kit
  • Detailed route information through the Ride With GPS app
  • Expert on the spot support
  • Luggage transferred between your hotels
  • E-Bikes available upon request
  • 100% financial security through ABTA and ATOL
Your Cycling Holidays in Loire

Indulgence | The Loire in Luxury | Self Guided

Day 1 | Arrive at Tours, Poitiers and transfer to hotel in Marçay

Relax by the pool and perhaps sample a glass of the local wines at the bar before dinner.

Day 2 | Marçay to Coteaux-sur-Loire | Distance 28 miles (45km)

Leaving Marçay, you quickly come across the town of Chinon, a maze of charming streets lined with cafes and restaurants, overlooked by its imposing fortress. This fortress has links to the English royal family, as home to Henry II, father of Richard the Lionheart. After exploring Chinon, you cycle from the Vienne to the Loire river, to pick up the Loire a Vélo cycle route. This takes you past Rigny-Ussé and up to Langeais, both home to impressive châteaux, before crossing the river and turning west to approach your next château hotel.

Day 3 | Coteaux-sur-Loire to Saumur | Distance 28 miles (45km)

Today starts with a flat ride along the north bank of the Loire river on peaceful roads before crossing the river at Montsoreau, a picturesque river port. Following the Loire a Vélo, you continue west through the troglodyte village of Turquant, home to a fascinating mushroom producer that is open to visitors. If stopping here, try the Galipettes, grilled mushrooms with a filling of your choice. The last leg into Saumur takes you through vast vineyards before a grand arrival past the imposing Château de Saumur, with its sturdy towers and glistening gold weathervane. A glass of the local sparkling wine is our favourite way to end the day.

Day 4 | Saumur to Marçay | Distance 26 miles (43km)

The last day of cycling follows the Loire a Vélo cycle route to start, before branching off at Montsoreau and taking you to the royal abbey at Fontevraud. Here you can explore the gorgeous ground, marvel at the gothic architecture and visit the burial site of King Henry II and his wife Eleanor d’Aquitaine. Fontevraud comes roughly half way through the day, so makes for a great place to stop for a long lunch. The route carries on through quiet countryside and passing the Abbey at Seuilly, before dropping you off at Château de Marçay.

Day 5 | We say au revoir

Trip extensions are available upon request.

What not to Miss

  • Living like royalty in our selected château hotels
  • The pristine gardens of Château de Villandry and Château du Rivau.
  • Sampling the wines of Saumur, Chinon and Bourgueil.
  • The gothic architecture and interesting exhibitions at Fontevraud Abbey.
Your Cycling Holidays in Loire

Indulgence | The Loire in Luxury | Self Guided

Day 1 | Arrive at Tours, Poitiers and transfer to hotel in Marçay

Relax by the pool and perhaps sample a glass of the local wines at the bar before dinner.

Day 2 | Optional Round Trip: Château du Rivau | Distance 18 miles (30km)

After being equipped with your bikes, it’s time to set off on your first round trip route. The destination for the day is Château du Rivau, a small, privately owned château with characterful gardens and a warm welcome. You’ll pass through the town of Champigny-sur-Veude, famous for its chapel that houses some spectacularly colourful stained glass windows. A short stretch on a newly built cycle path takes you to Rivau, where we recommend lunching on a salad, with vegetables freshly harvested from the gardens.

Day 3 | Marçay to Coteaux-sur-Loire | Distance 28 miles (45km)

Leaving Marçay, you quickly come across the town of Chinon, a maze of charming streets lined with cafes and restaurants, overlooked by its imposing fortress. This fortress has links to the English royal family, as home to Henry II, father of Richard the Lionheart. After exploring Chinon, you cycle from the Vienne to the Loire river, to pick up the Loire a Vélo cycle route. This takes you past Rigny-Ussé and up to Langeais, both home to impressive châteaux, before crossing the river and turning west to approach your next château hotel.

Day 4 | Optional Round Trip: Villandry | Distance 28 miles (45km)

Today we suggest an out and back ride to the world-famous Château de Villandry, home to some of the most spectacular gardens in Europe. Originally built in the 16th century, the castles gardens had all but been destroyed by the end of the 19th century. Fortunately for us, the estate was purchased in 1906 and the new owners pulled out all of the stops in restoring them to their past glory. They now cover 9 hectares, spread over 4 terraces and six distinct zones, of which we think the vegetable garden is the most spectacular!

Day 5 | Coteaux-sur-Loire to Saumur | Distance 28 miles (45km)

Today starts with a flat ride along the north bank of the Loire river on peaceful roads before crossing the river at Montsoreau, a picturesque river port. Following the Loire a Vélo, you continue west through the troglodyte village of Turquant, home to a fascinating mushroom producer that is open to visitors. If stopping here, try the Galipettes, grilled mushrooms with a filling of your choice. The last leg into Saumur takes you through vast vineyards before a grand arrival past the imposing Château de Saumur, with its sturdy towers and glistening gold weathervane. A glass of the local sparkling wine is our favourite way to end the day.

Day 6 | Optional Round Trip: Brézé | Distance 18 miles (29km)

Saumur is a bustling town with a great atmosphere and plenty to keep you busy if you fancy a day off the bike. For those looking to cycle, we propose a round trip to the Château de Brézé. The route leaves Saumur to the south along the Vélo Francette cycle route, before you cross the Thouet river and cruise into Brézé. The Renaissance style building you approach from the entrance, whilst beautiful, is not the true attraction here. As you get closer you’ll discover that the true scale of the building is disguised by it being built into the soft tuffeau stone of the hillside. After exploring the tunnels and caves, you cycle back to Saumur through Saint-Cyr-en-Bourg and yet more pristine vineyards.

Day 7 | Saumur to Marçay | Distance 26 miles (43km)

The last day of cycling follows the Loire a Vélo cycle route to start, before branching off at Montsoreau and taking you to the royal abbey at Fontevraud. Here you can explore the gorgeous ground, marvel at the gothic architecture and visit the burial site of King Henry II and his wife Eleanor d’Aquitaine. Fontevraud comes roughly half way through the day, so makes for a great place to stop for a long lunch. The route carries on through quiet countryside and passing the Abbey at Seuilly, before dropping you off at Château de Marçay.

Day 8 | We say au revoir

Trip extensions are available upon request.

What not to Miss

  • Living like royalty in our selected château hotels
  • The pristine gardens of Château de Villandry and Château du Rivau.
  • Sampling the wines of Saumur, Chinon and Bourgueil.
  • The gothic architecture and interesting exhibitions at Fontevraud Abbey.
Your Cycling Holidays in Loire

Indulgence | The Loire in Luxury | Self Guided

  • Château de Marcay

    4 star

    Château de Marçay was built as a 15th century fortress and is now a magnificent hotel. It is surrounded by a glorious garden, acres of vineyards and stunning countryside. The rooms are fashionable, spacious and elegant. As well as swimming in the outdoor heated pool, you can relax and enjoy health treatments in the spa (must be pre-booked before arrival) or an early morning adventure with a hot air balloon. The Château De Marçay’s restaurant serves gourmet cuisine with seasonal ingredients from the kitchen garden. Guests can also tour the Château’s 12 000 bottle cellar and sample the fine wines.

  • Château de Rochecotte

    4 star

    Perched on a hillside on the northern side of the Loire river and set within 24 hectares of gardens, Château de Rochecotte sits in a spectacular setting. The grand building is host to a range of classically elegant rooms, all of which are over 15m2 and air conditioned. The in-house dining is of a high standard and wine is served from the hotels own vineyards in the Bourgueil appellation.

  • Château de Verrieres

    5 star

    Set in vast grounds and just a short walk from the centre of Saumur, this grand 19th century building was once used to host receptions and grand parties for the officers of the nearby cavalry school. These days it is a 5 star hotel that has been artfully restored. The hotel features a swimming pool and spa, perfect for unwinding and cooling down after a day in the saddle.

Your Cycling Holidays in Loire

Indulgence | The Loire in Luxury | Self Guided

Tour Only Prices | 2020

2020 Departure Dates

Nights

Board Basis

Adult Price

April to October 

7

Bed & Breakfast and 4 Evening Meals

£1995

April to October 

4

Half Board

£1285

Full Half Board Supplements: 7 Nights - £175pp

Your Cycling Holidays in Loire

Indulgence | The Loire in Luxury | Self Guided

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