The Best of France's Loire Valley and Normandy - Tour Overview
The group will meet at a designated meeting point in Central Paris then travel down to the Loire Valley. We'll dive right in with lunch at a One-Star Michelin restaurant where Pam has enjoyed many delightful meals. The food is creative, but not frou-frou—and always memorable. And we’ll also have our first taste of the Loire Valley wines over lunch.
During our days in the Loire Valley, we’ll visit the Castles of Chambord and Chenonceaux and the beautiful gardens and castle of Villandry.
In the Loire Valley, we’ll stay in Saumur. We’ll go wine tasting (including to one of the region’s best sparkling wine producers) and have meals in small family run bistros where the owners will be our hosts.
After departing the Loire Valley and traveling north, we’ll stop and visit the majestic Cathedral of Chartres. If you know it from your travels years ago and haven't seen it since its radical "facelift," you're in for a big surprise!
Then we’ll make our way to the north coast of Normandy to the enchanting port town of Honfleur. Our delightful little hotel is an oasis of calm and beauty; it's set away from the bustle of the port but within easy walking distance of the center with its beautiful timbered houses and shops. The hotel garden is especially lovely, and in June the hydrangeas and roses will be waiting for us.
Arguably, Normandy produces some of the finest cheeses in the world. And the verdant green countryside is dotted with the apple trees that are used for making Calvados, the local apple brandy. We’ll sample both as we go cheese tasting and calvados tasting.
From our base in Honfleur we’ll visit the lovely coastal village of Étretat, made famous by the Impressionist painters who came here to paint the dance of sea, sun and mists along the coastline. And, while we're in the neighborhood, we'll include a visit to see the famous 900-year-old Bayeux Tapestry which depicts the Norman conquest of England.
Lastly, we will spend a day honoring the memory of those who fought and those who perished on the landing beaches on D-Day.
Of all the travel experiences that we offer, this exploration of two very different French regions is certainly one of the most varied!
Come and join us! À bientôt!