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Paris, Orleans, Blois, Château de Chambord, Saumur, Chinon, Le Mans, Amboise, Villandry, Langeais & Tours
Group 1 30 July – 6 August
Group 2 1 – 8 October
We meet our tour leader at 4.00am for our Air Malta flight to Paris Charles de Gaulle airport departing at 6.25am. On arrival at 9.20am, our coach picks us up to go to our 3-star Hotel Campanile Orleans Centre Gare in Orleans in the Loire Valley. On our way, we go to Paris for a free panoramic city tour, where we see, amongst others, La Defense, Champs Elysees, Arc de Triomphe, Tour Eiffel, Place de la Concorde, L’Opera and Notre Dame Cathedral. We continue to Orleans, and upon arrival we check-in at our hotel.
Our first optional excursion takes us in the heart of the Loire Valley, in the royal town of Blois which is packed with animated streets, paved squares, restaurants and taverns. We then proceed to Château de Chambord (extra), a unique monument by its architecture and proportions. The largest of the Loire castles, the turreted Chambord Castle was built for King Francois 1st as a hunting lodge. The intricate stone “double helix” staircase leading up to the spires and turrets of the rooftop terrace is thought to have been designed by Leonardo da Vinci.
Today’s full-day optional excursion takes us first to Saumur which is situated in the southern end of Anjou region. The area around Saumur is the 3rd largest sparkling wine appellation in France with more than 12 million bottles of Saumur Mousseux produced each year. We go for a wine tasting tour at the Caves Louis de Grenelle, and at the end of the tour we will be given a bottle of Cuvée Ivoire Brut. Afterwards, we go to the centre of Saumur and we go round its imposing buildings. Then we proceed to the medieval town of Chinon, a town with endless vineyards and a majestic fortress that towers over the centre with its halftimbered houses. One can also enjoy a peaceful river ride on a traditional boat (extra) to enjoy the fantastic views of the ramparts and the Vienne River.
The day is free to enjoy Orleans, a city with its history mixed with Joan of Arc and with an attractive old quarter centering around the 18th and 19th century streets, with arcaded galleries that evoke a gracious and prosperous history. Its pedestrian district, its museums, its shopping streets, its paved squares and the waterfront are all picturesque places to wander around, and together with our tour leader we go for a familiarisation walk.
Another full-day optional excursion takes us to Le Mans. This is a truly unique city and for many it is the location of the world-famous 24-hour car race. For others, the Old Town area of Le Mans is appealing, and features ancient Roman walls, a true labyrinth of winding alleyways, and many old buildings which are full of character, both inside and out. Le Mans is dominated by its awe-inspiring cathedral, the Cathédrale St. Julien. Close to this part of the city, we find the Sarthe River and the centrally located Place de la République, many shops and eateries.
Our full-day optional excursion takes us to Amboise, cradle of the Renaissance. It is often said that Amboise has the most Italian flair of all the Loire Valley cities. It is also home to one of the largest markets in the area, which is held on Friday. We have some free time before we proceed to a wine cellar where a briefing will be held on the Loire Valley heritage, together with tasting sessions of wines and local food products. Our last stop is Château de Chenonceau (extra), which is built on the river Cher. Its unique beauty of its architecture reflects in the water. The lovely surroundings, the formal garden and the park surrounding it, add to the impression of delicate grace emanating from the castle.
Our last full-day optional excursion takes us to the most spectacular gardens of Villandry (extra). By its diversity, originality and by its size (15 acres), Villandry is the Loire Valley Garden which should not be missed. We can relax in the shade of the lime trees and the pergolas, by the vast lawns of the water garden or the new Italian-style waterfalls. There is also a secret maze! Afterwards, we shall make a stop in the town of Langeais.
After breakfast, we check-out and we shall visit the city of Tours, one of the largest cities in the Centre-Val de Loire region of France. The city’s historical centre is registered in the UNESCO, and it is home to the Vieux-Tours, a patrimonial site. The garden city has a green heritage and an urban landscape strongly influenced by its natural space. The historic city is nicknames ‘Le Petit Paris’. We return back to the hotel, and in the afternoon, we board our coach to Paris Orly airport for our return Air Malta flight departing at 6.50pm and arriving in Malta at 9.25pm.
PRICE PER PERSON
GROUP 1 GROUP 2
Adult in Triple €729 – €629* €779 – €679*
Adult in Twin €779 – €679* €829 – €729*
Adult in Single €999 – €899* €1049 – €949*
Child sharing w/2 adults €649 – €549* €699 – €599*
Air Malta return direct flights to Paris airports
7 nights in 3-star Hotel Campanile Orleans Centre Gare in Orleans or similar
Rooms with private facilities, TV & Wi-Fi
Daily buffet breakfast
Free Visit in Tours
Return airport transfers
Services of tour leader
Airport taxes & service charge
EXCURSIONS , ADULT – CHILD
Blois & Château de Chambord €49 / €25
Saumur (Wine Tasting included) & Chinon €55 / €40
Le Mans €49 €29 Amboise (Wine Tasting included) & Château de Chenonceau €54 / €40
Villandry €45 / €29
NOT INCLUDED IN PRICE
City tax of €1.50 per person per night is to be paid directly at hotel
Château de Chambord €13
Chinon traditional boat €26.50
Château de Chenonceau €15.50
Spectacular gardens of Villandry €11