|Type of tour:||Self-guided|
|Distance:||26 Miles/day average|
|Dates:||Daily: Mar 1-Oct 31, 2014|
|Start city:||Orleans, France|
|End city:||Tours, France|
Follow the new cycling path "Loire à vélo." The “Loire à Vélo” trail runs through the Centre and Pays de la Loire regions. As of 2008, you are able to cycle through the Anjou, Touraine, Loir-et-Cher, Loiret and Cher areas over more than 250 miles of signposted tracks alongside the Loire River and its tributaries. Loire à Vélo is part of the future “Euroveloroute” running between Nantes and Budapest (1,500 miles/2,400 km).
You can take 5, 9 or 14 nights to discover this great valley and reach the Atlantic coast. The route consists of three stages; you can ride just one, or link two or all three together.
Section 1 : From Orléans to Tours
Discover the royal valley by longing the majestic river from Orléans to Tours where thousands of treasures are waiting you including historical heritage and testimony with numerous chateaux, wonderful landscapes of different natural areas, and regional gastronomy delights. This page will book you onto just this section.
Section 2 : From Tours to Angers
This part of the Loire Valley is the most dotted in chateaux and vineyards. Follow the Loire river which will guide you from historical places to famous cellars for tasting. Enjoy the 'French art de vivre' along the peaceful and wild landscapes. To view details about this tour, please click HERE.
Sections 1 and 2 can be viewed and booked together as a nine night tour HERE.
Section 3 : From Angers to Le Croisic
Discover the charms of the Western part of the Loire valley from Angers all the way to Le Croisic. This itinerary is your chance to visit the typical countryside by salterns and marsh to finally "take the plunge" into the Atlantic Ocean at Le Croisic. To view and book sections 1, 2 and 3 together as a 14 night tour, please click HERE.
Learn more about self-guided tours.
Day 1: Arrival in Orléans
Discover Orléans and its old historical centre, situated between the large countryside fields of Beauce area, green pastures, ponds and forest of Sologne area.
Overnight in 2-star hotel and dinner in a local restaurant in Orléans.
Day 2: Orléans – Beaugency (18 miles/28 km)
Longing the wild river banks for a stage in calm and serenity through the charming and very flowered city of Beaugency.
Overnight in 2-star hotel and dinner in a local restaurant in Beaugency.
Day 3: Beaugency - Blois (29 miles/46 km)
Leaving Beaugency by the river banks passing via the prestigious château of Chambord : the widest Château of the Loire Valley masterpiece of the Renaissance period. Then, follow the direction of Blois presenting a rich historical heritage with the château offering a brilliant illustration of the evolution of French architecture from the Middle Ages to the 17th century.
Overnight and dinner in 2-star hotel in Blois.
Day 4: Blois – Amboise (28 miles/44 km)
Follow the small countryside routes until the chateau of Chaumont overlooking the Loire river, before reaching Amboise and its royal chateau from 15th –16th century. Few streets further on, is the last home of Léonardo Da Vinci : Manorhouse of ‘Clos Lucé’.
Overnight in 2-star hotel and dinner in a local restaurant in Amboise.
Day 5: Amboise – Tours (16 or 19 miles/25 or 31 km)
A stage via the vineyards of Montlouis to discover the numerous cellars offering sweet white or sparkling wines. Then, enjoy the lovely chateau birthplace of Gabrielle d’Estrées, the favorite of King Henri IV. Continue to the heart of the city of Tours to discover the old quarters sheltering the famous 'Place Plumereau' and its half-timbered houses.
Overnight in 2-star hotel and dinner in a local restaurant in Tours.
Day 6: Departure
Breakfast then departure.
Daily: Mar 1-Oct 31, 2014
|Category A: 2- and 3-star hotels|
|Category B: 2-star hotels|
Does not include
These are sample hotels and may vary based on availability.
Day 4: Hotel La Breche, Amboise
Day 5: Hotel Le Criden, Tours
Interested in visiting other areas before or after your tour? Visit our hotels page to learn more about lodging options.
The bikes available are 21-speed men's and ladies' bikes. They are equipped with two saddlebags, a high visibility jacket, an anti-theft device, a mapholder, a helmet, a counter and a repair kit. A cycling specialist will help you adjust your bike upon arrival.
Most operators allow you to bring your own pedals and shoes. On guided tours, the guide will often switch out the pedals for you, but you should bring your own tools just in case. For all self-guided tours, you must bring your own tools. While the tour company may be able to swap them at the start of the tour, you typically just drop off your bike at the end and would need to swap them on your own.
Many tour operators also allow you to bring your own saddle or saddle and seat post combination. If you would like to bring your own saddle, please let us know the specifications of both the saddle and seat post, and we can check with the tour company to see what is possible. Please note that the tour operators can't guarantee a fit, as they often have bicycles with different specifications, and with number of bikes they have to move around on any given day, they may not always be able to deliver one with your specifications.
The Loire à Vélo tour routes alternate between quiet roads with little traffic (37%), dedicated bike paths (27%), no-thoroughfare roads open only to local residents and non-motorized vehicles (24%), and cycle lanes along roadways (12%). Two-thirds of the overall routes runs along the Loire.
"As with our previous trips, we have been very impressed with the organization of the tours. We had a great time. Bike (tandem) was just right. The hotels and restaurants were all excellent and the towns fun to explore. Restaurants made the evening a pleasure. Especially nice was dinner the last night in La Croisic - WOW, looking out over the ocean and it must have been a 3 or 4 star place, because we felt like we were with the high-rollers that night. A great way to end the tour! Will definitely be back."
- Larry and Judy, July 2012
(Note: La Croisic not included on all Loire a Velo routes)
Nearest airport: Paris, France
Neares train station: Orleans, France
Nearest airport: Paris, France
Nearest train station: Tours, France
Tips on getting to and from your tour
Weatherspark.com offers information on average weather conditions at most destinations throughout the globe. Type a destination in the search box, and select "Averages," and you'll find a range of information such as average high and low temperatures, precipitation, cloudy days, humidity and wind speed/direction.
Of course, if your tour is coming up in the next week, you can also select "Forecast" to get the most current information on upcoming conditions.
With more than 40,000 monuments and 6,000 museums, France's history and tradition continue to thrive in Western Europe's largest country. Along with its history, France is at the forefront of modern development, a leader among European nations. A country of contrasts, France provides opportunities for all interests. Fashion, art and elegance prosper in the dynamic cities of Paris, Lyon, and Nice. Outside the cities, a variety of landscapes stretch over the remaining 80% of the country.
France's hexagonal shape is defined by the English Channel and Atlantic on the western coast with the Pyrenees and Alps sitting on the southwest and southeast borders. The Mediterranean Sea runs along the southern coast with the Rhine River flowing beside the German border. Visitors exploring the cities or countryside can bask in France’s pleasant climate, enjoying the stylish life, local wine and cuisine.
Loire Valley Travel has been organising cycling and walking tour packages in a large number of French regions and making its exclusive skills available to you for more than 20 years.
From 3 days to two weeks, our fully inclusive tours and trips allow you to take advantage of our France’s most beautiful regions on cycling tours . You are free to program the visits of sites as you please. Programs adapted to your own rhythm !
With experience and detailed local knowledge, our team ensures your comfort by selecting the best private hotels, where you will be constantly reminded that you are in a region where well-being and living well are key concepts!
When you book one of our tours, you can be sure of the tranquillity of an organised holiday planned down to the last detail before you leave (hotel reservations, luggage transfers, detailed itinerary and maps). Once you arrive, you have all the time you want to complete each day’s itinerary in total freedom and at your own pace, stopping where you like - you can choose from among the various sites suggested along your route depending on your interests (culture, cuisine, vineyards etc.).
Any change to a confirmed booking will give rise to extra cost of: 40 euros per person.
For cancellation of a booking more than 30 days before the departure date, expenses will be payable on the following basis:
And for cancellations of a booking
The insurance costs are not refunded in case of cancellation of the trip.