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Castles of the Loire Valley

Tours using road, hybrid or touring bikes:

  1. Mostly flat
  2. Flat with some gentle slopes
  3. Rolling, hilly terrain
  4. Some long and/or steep climbs
  5. Extensive climbing

Tours using mountain bikes:

  1. Mostly flat, wide trails
  2. Some gentle slopes, wide trails
  3. Rolling, hilly terrain and/or narrow trails
  4. Some long and/or steep climbs and/or technical trails
  5. Extensive climbing and/or highly technical trails
  1. Variety: Choose from more than 200 tours offered by local operators in 35 countries.
  2. Advice: Our informed advisors help you choose the trip that's right for you.
  3. Lower cost: You pay local tour company prices—less than what big American companies charge.
  4. Great exchange rates: Pay low rates thanks to the millions of dollars in foreign currency we buy each year.
  5. Convenience: We handle the full booking and payment process.
  6. Support: We’re your advocates from initial planning through final pedal stroke.
Tour Type: Guided Self-guided

Tour description

Through the garden of France, a landscape full of light. Enchanted by rich history and medieval architecture, spoiled by refined gastronomy.

Daily program

Day 1: Arrival
Saturday in Angers is free to spend. Enjoy the French savoir-vivre while having a walk and an aperitif. Your guides are looking forward to welcoming you on Sunday morning.
Overnight in Angers

Day 2: Angers – Saumur (24 miles/39 km)
Our tour starts with a short walk to the medieval fortress of Angers, where we will view the worldfamous series of tapestries: the Apocalypse tapestry. We cycle on calm and flat paths to Cunault with an unexpectedly large Romanesque church. One hour away there is Saumur, famous for its exquisite red wines and crémants.

The last miles of our route are bordered by former tuffeau, the city's former stone quarries, which are now used as wine cellars or for the cultivation of mushrooms, but also as apartments and restaurants. Right in the center of Saumur the charming hotel awaits us. We will have dinner in one of the town's best restaurants.
Overnight in Saumur

Day 3: Saumur – Beaumont-en-Veron (32 miles/52 km)
After breakfast we take a walk through the historic center to Saumur castle. Since the partly collapse of its walls, it has been under meticulous restoration and can only be admired from outside. From the castle hill our bikes take us to Fontevraud Abbey, where the Plantagenet kings, among them Henrich II. and Eleonore of Aquitania, found their last resting-place.

In the afternoon we reach Chinon, the birthplace of Rabelais, which has has admirably maintained its medieval character. The fortress complex is a site of great historical importance to the French as it was the meeting of Joan of Arc and Charles VII. A few kilometers further, we are received at the hotel, nestled in the vineyards which produce the famous Chinon red wine.
Overnight in Beaumont-en-Veron

Day 4: Beaumont-en-Veron – Azay-le-Rideau (27 miles/44 km)
Cycling along quiet country roads and forest paths, we gain the wide valley of the Loire and Indre rivers. Today’s first sightseeing object is the fairy-tale Castle of Ussé (visit from the outside) with its numerous towers and turrets. Following the Loire River, we are soon in Langeais. There we visit the castle where the marriage between Anne de Bretagne and Charles VIII took place. After about an hour cycling we reach Azay-le-Rideau. A day full of castles ends with a water castle, a highlight among the royal buildings in the Loire Valley.
Overnight in Azay-le-Rideau

Day 5: Azay-le-Rideau – Chenonceaux (21 miles/34 km)
After a short climb our route leads past orchards and extended forest areas to Villandry. We visit the famous gardens of the castle which have regained their original Renaissance appearance only at the end of the 19th century. We take a cab to Amboise. The castle there was initiated according to the Italian Renaissance through Charles VIII. and completed by Francis I. After lunch we visit Clos Lucé, the last domain of Leonardo da Vinci. In the late afternoon after having passed a primary hilly route, we reach our hotel with the best cuisine.
Overnight in Chenonceaux

Day 6: Chenonceaux – St. Dye sur Loire (20 miles/31 km)
In the morning we walk through the enchanting castle complex of Chenonceaux, beautifully straddling the river Cher. Legendary among the castles of the Loire valley, its destiny was primarily determined by females, earning it the nickname, Castle of the Six Women. During the Enlightenment, Chenonceaux found new life through visits by Voltaire, Montesquieu and Rousseau, who sang the praises of its hospitality.

Lovely paths through fields and forests lead us to our next castle: Blois, the Versailles of the Renaissance. It was the showplace of bloody intrigues and political influence in the Middle Ages. We take a taxi to get to our accommodation, where we will spend the last two nights of our tour.
Overnight in St. Dye sur Loire

Day 7: Sologne loop (24 miles/38 km)
After breakfast we cycle through the northern part of the varied landscape of the Sologne region. You can especially enjoy the guided cycling tour in the Loire valley due to the well-developed cycling tracks.

Our path leads us along isolated moorland, lakes and again and again through deciduous and pine forests. In this unspoiled nature we cycle past picturesque half-timber villages or red-brick houses.Hunting parties are still a tradition, their origin leading back to the Second Empire (1852-1870) when 340 hunting lodges had been edified for this purpose. In the afternoon, our route leads to Chambord, the crowning glory of the Loire Castles. Charles V considered it the embodiment of what human art can create. Even the view is striking when we approach Chambord. The exquisite cuisine of the Manoir Bel Air provides an appropriate finish to our Loire experience.
Overnight in St. Dye sur Loire

Day 8: Departure (5 miles/8 km optional)
In the morning we cycle through the floodplains of the Loire River to the railroad station of the village of Mer. If you prefer not to cycle the five miles on the day of your trip home, we will arrange for a transfer. A suburban train takes us in 30 minutes to Orléans.

In this city, Joan of Arc's triumphal procession over the English power started with the end of the siege of Orléans on the 8th of May 1429. This date is synonymous with the awakening of the French national consciousness. On a stroll through the historic center we visit the mighty cathedral Ste. Croix, the house of Joan of Arc and Place de Martoi with the famous monument dedicated to the Virgin of Orléans. About noon, our trip comes to an end at the railroad station.The airport shuttle to Paris starts here. Please note that we ask you to book the shuttle in advance if you want to use it.

Please note there is optional cycling on the last day of the tour. Extra nights are possible. Please inquire for further details and pricing.

Dates

June 2; Sep 8, 2018 (minimum 8 participants)

Prices

Tour package
Per person, double occupancy
€1590
Single room surcharge (1 person/1 room)
€360
Bike Rentals
Electrically assisted bike
€165
Please note: Instead of operating bicycle tours ourselves, BikeTours.com represents local bicycle tour operators around the world. Review the tour operator's information and terms below, then submit your booking request through BikeTours.com. The primary benefits of booking your tour through BikeTours.com include:
  • Lower cost: You pay local tour company prices—less than what big American companies charge
  • Variety: Choose from more than 200 tours offered by local operators in 35 countries.
  • Advice: Our informed advisors help you choose the trip that's right for you.
  • Great exchange rates: Pay low rates thanks to the millions of dollars in foreign currency we buy each year. Or pay in euros!
  • Convenience: We handle the full booking and payment process.
  • Support: We’re your advocates from initial planning through final pedal stroke.
Contact us with any questions about booking and paying for your tour through BikeTours.com. We look forward to serving you!

Rotalis Terms and Conditions

Cancellation:

 

If there is a price increase of more than 5%, you are entitled to cancel the tour at no charge. If a reservation is changed to a different tour within 60 days prior to the start of the tour, a fee of EUR 60 per person will be due. However, this shall only apply if you do not find a substitute participant. At a later date, the change of reservation will be treated as cancellation at the cancellation fees stated below.
If either of two customers booked in a double room cancels the contract, the original registration will be converted into a single-room reservation, with the tour price being adjusted accordingly. In such a case, we expect the remaining customer to be willing to accept a room of a lower standard or to stay the night and have breakfast at a different hotel or Bed + Breakfast, if this should be necessary at some stops; however, this shall apply only in case no substitute participant registers for the vacancy in the double room.

Cancellation fees of the confirmed tour fare for tours in Europe:
Before the 60 th day prior to the start of the tour: 10 %
From the 59th to 28th day prior to the start of the tour: 30%
From the 27th to the 14th day prior to the start of the tour: 50%
From the 13th to the 6th prior to the star of the tour: 60%
From the 5th day to 1 day prior to the start of the tour: 80%
Non-commencement of the tour (day of arrival): 95%

Cancellation fees of the confirmed tour fare for bike & boat tours:
Before the 60th day prior to the start of the tour: 20 %
From the 59th to the 31st day prior to the start of the tour: 30%
From the 30th to 21st day prior to the start of the tour: 50%
From the 20th to the 11th day prior to the start of the tour: 70%
From the 10th to 1 day prior to the start of the tour: 90%
Non-commencement of the tour (day of arrival): 100%

Cancellation fees of the confirmed tour fare for long distance tours:
Before the 35th day prior to the start of the tour: 30%
From the 34th to 22nd day prior to the start of the tour: 50%
From the 21st to the 1 day prior to the start of the tour: 80%
Non-commencement of the tour (day of arrival): 95%

For special tours and tours reserved to circles of friends, separate cancellation fees are applicable.

Cancellations of pre- or post-stay reservations made by the tour operator are subject to the general cancellation terms. The cost for e-bikes cannot be refunded due to their long-termed disposition.

The customer cancelling his/her tour will be free to prove that the cancellation costs are lower than the lump-sum fees mentioned above. However, it is required that the tour operator office is promptly notified of the cancellation, first by telephone and subsequently by written confirmation.
You can protect yourself against the cost risk in the event of cancellation by taking out cancellation insurance. We strongly recommend that you take out travel cancellation insurance. Your travel professional can advise you.

The tour operator reserves the right to call off a tour if the following minimum numbers of participants are not reached: eight (8) participants for tours in Europe (exception the tour operator Special: 6), eight (8) participants for tours outside Europe, 14 participants for Bike & Boat tours. The cancellation will be made five (5) weeks prior to the beginning of the tour at the latest. In this case, you may immediately request the participation in an equivalent tour, provided that such a tour is available in the program without additional charge.

The 5 weeks guarantee shall not apply if we have to call off a tour, or discontinue a tour, due to events of force majeure, e.g., war, riots, civil unrest, Acts of God, etc., which jeopardize the safe organization and implementation of the tour in the best interest of our customers.

The tour operator has the right to terminate the travel contract with a participant without notice if such participant persistently disturbs, interferes with, or jeopardizes the cycling tour despite having been warned. We trust you understand that such termination is justified also in order to safeguard the best interests, and the expectations, of the other participants with regard to the holidays booked with the tour operator. In such a case, however, the tour operator retains the right to claim payment of the tour fare, less any travel expenses saved, if applicable. Any extra costs arising from return transportation shall be borne by the excluded participant.

Participants who prematurely terminate a tour, are not entitled to refunds.

Services of the Tour Operator:

The tour is deemed to start by the time the first service is rendered by the tour operator, e.g., when the first hotel room is made available and/or the bicycle is handed over. The meal plan starts with dinner on the day of arrival or with breakfast on the first cycling day and ends with breakfast on the last day of the tour. Our packages also include transportation by car/bus, railway and ship, etc. during the tour as well as all costs incurred in connection with any scheduled visits to places of interest. Note: The costs of visits made on your own and the transportation costs on so-called "rest days" as well as optional activities offered by the tour operator are not included. We reserve the right to modify individual tour services should that become necessary after the travel contract has been signed, provided that such modifications are immaterial and do not impair the overall style of the tour.

Liability:

Within the limits of our obligation to exercise the care and diligence of prudent businessmen, we warrant that the description of all specified travel services is correct at the time of the update of the website, that the service providers (hotels, carriers and others) have been properly selected and procured and that the tours have been conscientiously prepared and will be implemented with all due care. Transportation by rail, bus, cog wheel train, cable car, ship, canoe and the like during the trip are services which are only procured by us as agents and shall be subject to the terms and conditions of the respective carrier; such terms and conditions shall also govern the limit of liability of the tour operator. If a visit scheduled in the program is impracticable for reasons beyond our control (renovation of churches and the like), we cannot be held responsible. If an unforeseen event of force majeure (e.g., war, riot and civil unrest, Acts of God) occurs and it must be expected, on the basis of an objective weighing of all circumstances, that carrying out the tour would become substantially more difficult or involve a substantial risk, the participant and/or the tour operator may each give notice of termination of the travel contract. This provision shall also apply if the tour has already started. However, in such a case the tour operator retains the right to adequate compensation for the travel services already performed or yet to be performed until the end of the tour. If the package includes a return trip by air, the participant and the tour operator shall bear the extra costs for the return trip in equal shares. You will participate in the cycling tours at your own risk. This provision shall also apply to other activities such as hikes, boat and canoe trips included in the cycling tour, and it is understood that participation in such activities is voluntary at all times (bike routes are always available as an alternative). The responsibility for complying with the road traffic regulations shall lie with you. You shall be liable for any loss, damage or injury you may cause to third parties. If you have personal liability insurance, it may provide coverage for such contingency. We are liable to you for compensation of the loss of or damage to your baggage only if such loss or damage is attributable to intent or gross negligence on our part. In other respects, our liability for damages on account of mal-performance of the contract is limited to an amount corresponding to once the tour price, provided that the loss or damage has not been caused by us either intentionally or by gross negligence or if we are responsible solely on account of fault of a service provider selected by us. Any responsibility on our part is excluded if the participant fails to comply with any instructions issued by us in his/her best interest (e.g., for safety reasons). We suggest that you protect yourself against such risks by taking out accident and/or baggage insurance. Minors may only participate if accompanied by a parent or (legal) guardian. If you have reason for complaint, please advise your tour guide or the tour operator without delay. It is understood and agreed that our tour guides are not entitled to acknowledge claims. In addition, any claims against us will be deemed to exist only on condition that they are asserted with us not later than one month after the contractually stipulated end of the tour. Contractual claims for body damages due to intent or gross negligence shall become statute-barred after two years. All other contractual claims shall become statute-barred after one year.

Miscellaneous:

Verbal agreements shall not be effective unless confirmed by us in writing. Services, fares and prices are subject to change, and we reserve the right to correct errors, including typographical errors and errors in calculation. Any and all disputes arising out of or in connection with the travel contract shall be resolved exclusively by Austrian courts and shall be governed by Austrian law.

Before booking your flight, please make sure that the required minimum number of participants has been reached. The tour operator cannot make any refund in case that the trip is cancelled because the minimum number of participants has not been reached.

In the event of grossly negligent or deliberate damage to the bike provided by the tour operator for the tour, the operator is entitled to exercise claims for the occured damages.

For tours operated by contractual partners, special terms and conditions may be applicable. Detailled information will be made available upon request.

By signing the travel contract you agree that any photographs taken during the tour by tour guides or fellow travelers, may be used by the tour operator for their company advertising, in particular for the tour operator catalog and website.

All photos used by permission. ©Rotalis

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