Top Things to Do in the Loire Valley
If you don’t have any idea what to do this summer, or you have many and cannot decide, I will help you out. I am sure I will be able to convince you to come over to the center of France and discover the Loire Valley and all it has to offer. So yes, there are plenty of things to do and I am afraid you won’t be able to fit everything in.
Let me help you out and design your dream holidays in France! I made my dream come true and visited the best castles in France. I made the most out of my vacation in the Loire Valley area and also visited other gems it offers. If you follow my tips below, you will get your dream vacation in Loire Valley as well! So let’s get started, shall we?
The Royal Castles!
There are quite a lot of beautiful castles in the area. The Loire Valley is famous for its Chateaux which have been built by kings and aristocratic families in this specific area which is beautiful, rich and offers so much. Depending on your preferences you should pick and choose the most appealing castles to visit. I did it this way but also had some nice surprises when I visited places which I didn't expect to be impressive. On the other hand, I was disappointed with some of the ones I was looking forward to seeing. Remember the more you see the better it is as each castle is different, unique, and offers a special experience worth exploring. Either it is a residence house, a national museum, or it presents the restored life of the Chateau, its rooms, beds, and decor (my favorite type).
Les Plus Beaux Villages de France
There are 11 villages, deemed the “Most Beautiful Villages in France” located in the Loire Valley. I have visited three of them: Apremont-sur-Allier, Lavardin, and Noyers-sur-Serein. I love the medieval small gems which France offers you. So whenever I have the opportunity I do make sure to visit. The villages mentioned above are definitely worth exploring. I was not disappointed at all! But you might also consider other recommendations in the area such as Candes-Saint-Martin, Crissay-sur-Manse, Montrésor, Gargilesse-Dampierre, Saint-Benoît du- Sault and Yèvre-le-Châtel, to name just a few.
I will tell you more about Apremont-Sur-Allier, Lavardin, and Noyers-Sur-Serein in my next article.
Even More Things to Do…
There are also some big towns located in the Loire Valley which developed next to the Royal Chateaux. The ones which are well known and worth visiting are Orléans, Blois, Tours, and Angers among others. The valley is also home to Zoo Beauval, the number one Zoo in France. Really impressive!
Of course, there are more places you should consider visiting in the Loire Valley. I didn't have a chance to do so this time, but if I come back (and I will for sure) I’ll try to do the following things! So consider for yourself:
- Some of the 281 gardens of which 29 were officially listed as the ‘Most Remarkable Gardens’ in 2013. Chédigny is the first village to be listed among them. I have to admit it looks amazing and I would love to see more of this. Check out the Telegraph’s recommendations of the best gardens of the Loire Valley and choose the best ones for you!
- The Loire Valley is considered the third largest wine region in France and produces unique and delicious wines. Their taste is strongly influenced by the Atlantic climate.
- The Loire River, the longest and biggest French river, is located here as well. Discover and follow it when visiting the castles as it is always there. It offers a calming view and a lot of nice picnic areas.
- The valley’s three natural parks La Brenne, Loire-Anjou-Touraine and Perche are definitely worth a visit.
- Different natural assets of the Loire Valley include Sologne, the forest of Orléans. It is the largest state-owned forest in France.
- If you have enough time, explore the four historical routes of the Loire Valley: the Royal Valley Route (la Route de la Vallées des Rois), the Ladies of Touraine Route (la Route des Dames de Touraine), the Santiago de Compostela pilgrims’ trail, and the Jacques Coeur Road.
There is a lot to explore and the choice is difficult to make but if you want to have a dream vacation follow my recommendations for the Loire Valley and enjoy the French experience!
Aga Marchewka is a Pole who loves exploring different cultures, and the differences and similarities between them. She has just moved to Lyon and started to learn a bit more about the French. Not having any experience with France whatsoever, not speaking any French as of yet, she has been gaining many observations about the French lifestyle, places to visit in France and sharing them on her blog, while starting to learn this beautiful, yet so difficult, language and slowly settling in in France. Aga is also one of our Recommended Expat Bloggers.
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