Tailormade tour Loire Valley by train holiday France

7 nights/8 days

Loire Valley • Montlouis-sur-Loire • Amboise

This holiday by train is a single-centre holiday to the Loire Valley where you can explore this region that is renowned for its ancient hunting forests, vineyards, wide rivers and numerous chateaux, both mediaeval and Renaissance. This holiday includes Eurostar from London to Paris and a direct TGV service to St Pierre des Corps and back. You have seven nights in one location as a base to explore the region by hire-car.
Holiday price guide

Available year-round subject to the opening period of the hotel, from £1,450 per person.

Luxury single-centre rail holiday to the Loire Valley with hire-car

Highlights

Loire Valley • Tours • Amboise • Visit Chateau de Chenonceau • Saumur • Angers • Villandry • Visit Abbaye de Fontevraud • Azay-le-Rideau • Chinon

Day by day

Begin your rail holiday to the Loire Valley on a morning Eurostar from London St Pancras to Paris, before changing stations for your high-speed TGV train to St Pierre des Corps. We recommend that you leave London just before 08.00 hrs which means you’ll reach St Pierre des Corps just after 15.00 hrs. Collect your hire-car from the station and then it’s a short drive to your hotel where you will spend 7 nights.

You have six full days at leisure to explore the Loire Valley. There are several interesting places to visit within a short drive of the hotel, as well as places of interest further afield. Firstly, explore the town of Amboise, on the banks of the river Loire. Here you can visit Château d’Amboise, a 15th century residence of Charles VIII and where you will find the tomb of Leonardo da Vinci. You can also visit Château du Clos Lucé where Leonardo Da Vinci lived. Around 20 minutes from Amboise is Château de Chenonceau. This château offers an extensive art gallery and a collection of exquisite Flemish tapestries, as well as wine-tasting opportunities. You can dine in L’Orangerie, the on-site restaurant, or relax in the tea rooms, before exploring the wax museum or enjoying a boat ride. You may wish to visit the capital of the region Tours, an ancient university town with narrow streets to explore as well as the 12th century Cathedral of Saint Gatien.  Visit Chateau de Villandry, a 12th century castle and gardens. This is about a 20-minute drive from Tours. Just under 2 hours’ drive from your hotel sits the historic town of Angers. The town is home to a number of prestigious château such as Château de Brissac, the home of the 13th Duke of Brissac, where you see the Duke’s collection of antique paintings, the unique private theatre commissioned by the Duchess in the 19th century and dedicated solely to opera, and finally into the Château’s wine cellar, where you will be invited to taste the wine produced on the Duke’s estate. The Château of Angers itself is the ideal spot to take in views of the whole town, while strolling around the beautiful aromatic landscaped gardens. Visit the 11th century Château de Saumur, formerly a fortress, manor house, town governor’s residence, prison, arms and ammunitions depot, and now housing the museum. Nearby are the troglodyte caves the Loire valley is famous for. Not far from Saumur is the Abbaye of Fontevraud, with its strong Plantagenet connections. You can see the effigies of Richard the Lionheart and his mother, Eleanor of Aquitaine here. On the bank of the river Vienne sits Chinon, just over an hour from your base. Popular wine-tasting spots include La Cave Montplaisir, the Cave Painctes for specifically Rabelais wine, and the Château de Coulaine for the local speciality, Chinon Blanc. On the edge of the Chinon Forest, sits the Château d’Ussé, so elegant in its architecture and positioning that it inspired Charles Perrault’s ‘Sleeping Beauty’. Or, to witness something very unusual, in the context of the French château tradition, tour the remarkable underground fortress at the Château de Brézé, sometimes called a château within a château. Nearby is the gem of a chateau at Azay-le-Rideau, built on an island in the Indre River, under the patronage of King Francois I. It combines French tradition and Italian innovation and typifies the style of architecture that developed in the 16th century.

Enjoy a final breakfast at your hotel before checking-out. Return your hire-car to St Pierre des Corps and then take the TGV back to Paris, with a change of stations, and then the Eurostar from Paris to London. There is a train that leaves Tours just after midday which means you arrive in London just after 17.30 hrs.

Holiday price guide Prices from £1,450 per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room and including standard class rail travel. Supplement for standard premier/first class about £190 per person. Supplement to stay at Le Choiseul, Amboise £90 per person.

Holiday Code FRBR14

Luxury single-centre rail holiday to the Loire Valley with hire-car

Holiday price guide Prices from £1,450 per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room and including standard class rail travel. Supplement for standard premier/first class about £190 per person. Supplement to stay at Le Choiseul, Amboise £90 per person.

Holiday Code FRBR14

Our prices include ● Standard class Eurostar and second-class TGV from London St Pierre des Corps return (standard premier/first class can be booked at a supplement)
● 7 nights’ bed and breakfast in a superior room at Chateau de la Bourdaisiere, Montlouis-sur-Loire
● Hire of a group B car for 7 days
● Concierge service and Expressions Holidays regional helpful hints

Our prices do not include ● Early check-in or late check-out at any hotels (although we can arrange this on request at additional cost)
● Any other services not mentioned above, such as transfers, entrance fees and meals except daily breakfast at each hotel
● Personal holiday insurance. This is essential and cover should be in place from when you book the holiday.
● Local tourist tax, usually between Euros 1 and 3 per person per night, and payable locally to the hotel
● Transfers in Paris

Additional information This holiday can be arranged throughout the year. Additional nights can be added at any point on this itinerary. Timings can vary depending on the month and day of the week.
Driving time from St Pierre des Corps to Montlouis-sur-Loire is about 15 mins, and from St Pierre des Corps to Amboise is about 25 mins.

Holiday price guide Prices from £1,450 per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room and including standard class rail travel. Supplement for standard premier/first class about £190 per person. Supplement to stay at Le Choiseul, Amboise £90 per person.

Holiday Code FRBR14

Luxury single-centre rail holiday to the Loire Valley with hire-car

Highlights of the Loire Valley

Cultural highlights include wines and wine vinegars, wild mushrooms - (visit the mushroom museum), the Troglodyte caves, and local art exhibitions.

Festivals in the Loire Valley

Son et Lumiere in the chateaux in the summer months. Summer festival in Chinon in August.

Climate of the Loire Valley

Average air temperatures in Centigrade: Jan: 7.8, Feb: 6.8, Mar: 10.3, Apr: 16.1, May: 16.4, Jun: 23.6, Jul: 25.8, Aug: 24.5, Sep: 21.1, Oct: 16.2, Nov: 11.2, Dec: 7.0. Source: Direction de la Meteorologique de France.

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