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Has anyone been to the Loire Valley?

(52 Posts)
nkf Tue 26-May-09 20:11:56

I have a hankering to see the chateaux. Am reading very enjoyable book about the period of their construction. Are they worth the trip. And has anyoen ever camped there?

with thanks in advance.

KashaSarrasin Wed 27-May-09 17:12:41

The Loire is beautiful, and great for camping! We went there pre-DC, stayed a few nights at this site near Sully sur Loire:
www.ukcampsite.co.uk/sites/details.asp?revid=5600 then a few nights near Blois here:
www.ukcampsite.co.uk/sites/details.asp?revid=6718

This was a few years ago now and from reading the reviews the one near Sully has now been upgraded with a pool and stuff that wasn't there when we stayed, but it was lovely, right next to the river. The second one was OK, but had squat toilets (yuk) which have maybe gone now!

The chateaux are beautiful, we'd be going again this year if DS1 was more chateau-safe (4 tomorrow and full of beans!) grin

Ewe Wed 27-May-09 17:27:10

Loire Valley is lovely and the chateaux are fantastic and there are so many!

I don't camp as ILs have a home out there near Montrichard, a nice little town. You must do wine tasting if you are in the area, so many fantastic producers. There are also so many excellent restaurants in the region, which if you go I will post about but I can't remember the names off the top of my head!

ramonaquimby Wed 27-May-09 17:29:43

is gorgeous, we go most summers. have never camped though. There is great biking along the river, it's really flat. The castles are stunning.

scienceteacher Wed 27-May-09 17:30:51

Montrichard is lovely - I think there is camping on the riverbank.

We visited the Cave there and had a good lesson on Methode Champenoise.

COCOTTE Wed 27-May-09 17:42:11

I was born there ! The castle of Angers is great, saumur as well !And the wine is fab !!!

Ewe Wed 27-May-09 22:46:20

This restaurant is great. Although I heard that the chef has changed recently but would imagine it's still pretty good - can report back in August!

treacletart Wed 27-May-09 22:54:11

No Loire camping experience to share, but my mum and dad live not far from Amboise and we visit most holidays. The chateaux are great, but the landscape is lovely and there's heaps to do with kids - how old are your dcs?

MrsASHLEYBanjo Wed 27-May-09 22:58:53

We camped at Amboise as a child. I remember that as one of the hottest summer holidays - loads of midges though since near the river.

MrsBartlet Thu 28-May-09 09:24:20

Yes I have camped in the Loire several times - well when I say camped I mean stayed in a mobile home with Canvas smile. I have stayed on the following campsites - Parc de Fierbois; Parc des Alicourts; Chateau de la Grenouillere (sp?) and Chateau des Marais. I have visited Chambord and Cheverny both of which are gorgeous and well worth the visit.

nkf Fri 29-May-09 18:29:25

Oooh lovely. Thank you all so much. I am bookmarking this thread and will use the info later.

bigTillyMint Fri 29-May-09 18:42:16

We have camped at Blois - camping la Grenouillere. And at Parc du Val de Loire. In our own tent!

We visited a few chateaux - many have events on - one has a fab interactive gardens event every year, Chambord is huge and good for cycling, I'm sure we went to lots of others, but I can't remember all the names - we also did lots of wine-tasting (and buying!) I second the caves at Montrichrd!

We are going to Fierbois this year - hope it's good, MrsB. And we're planning on a day at Futuroscope - anyone been?

GrapefruitMoon Fri 29-May-09 18:47:02

We stayed at the second one Kasha linked to (Chateau des Marais) last year and I would highly recommend it. The only thing I didn't like was the on-site restaurant, I felt the menu was a bit limited and expensive. There is a great pool area and it is small enough to let even young children have a bit of freedom.

MrsBartlet Fri 29-May-09 19:24:36

Fierbois is great bigTillyMint! I am quite jealous envy! There is a gorgeous lake on the campsite with a lovely walk around it. The location is definitely the best of all the campsites in the Loire that we have stayed in.

batgirl Fri 29-May-09 20:12:00

I can recommend le moulin fort if you want something small & quiet, although it does have a pool,shop & restaurant.
It is about 5 mins walk from Chenonceaux on the banks of the river Cher - most of the tent pitches overlook the river (though, maybe not so fab if you have v young children!)- we sat outside our tent in the evenings trying to imagine how much we would pay to rent a house in a similar location!

treacletart Fri 29-May-09 20:36:48

Apart from the chateaux and just wondering in the woods, these are soe of our favourite places to visit with kids..
Chanteloup Pagoda and garden with wooden games, Amboise mini chateaux park, luluparc mini theme park, Beauval Zoo,
Blois Magic Museum
And look here, found this googling... you can stay in a treehouse!

bigTillyMint Sat 30-May-09 14:40:46

Oh, that's great MrsB! We wanted to stay there a few years ago, but it was fully booked, so we booked really early this time!

I second the Chanteloup pagoda and garden - it's great, and I think we went to Luluparc (or something very like it!), which was definitely worth every penny for the children! We must try out the others!

I'd also recommend the area for cycling with children - we have done quite a bit, using the cycle routes (you can get the map from the tourist offices or even the campsite!)

bigTillyMint Sat 30-May-09 14:43:18

Oh, and just remembered that Chateau de Cheverny is Tintin's chateau (there was a big exhibition when we went!)

MrsBartlet Sat 30-May-09 17:55:17

We went to the Tintin exhibition aswell!

nkf - what is the name of the book you are reading? Dh would like to know as we are going back to the Loire again this year.

nkf Sat 30-May-09 18:10:47

It's about Catherine de Medici. By Leone Something. I can check in a minute. Anyway, many of those chateaux were built by her or by her husband's mistress, Diane de Poitiers. It doesn't have pictures or anything but it made me think about that period of architecture and want to see it. Good book.

nkf Sat 30-May-09 18:11:40

It's only tangentially related to the chateaux.

nkf Sat 30-May-09 18:11:40

It's only tangentially related to the chateaux.

gill89 Sat 30-May-09 18:17:51

we stayed at fierbois a couple of years back and it was a fantastic site.

only down side was the on site restaurant wasn't up to much but the restaurant in the village made up for it! booking essential.

hope you have a good time

MrsBartlet Sat 30-May-09 19:26:11

Thanks nkf!

Ewe Sun 31-May-09 19:11:22

Thanks for the fab links treacletart, was wondering how to amuse DD for two weeks and the Luluparc and the Pagoda place look brilliant.

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