The Valley of the Kings from Blois to Tours

From castle to castle on the Loire by bike

Highlights

The castles of the Loire Valley by bike : Chambord, Chenonceaux, Amboise...
The Loire à Vélo routes, the beautiful tracks along the river
The vineyards of Touraine : Montlouis, Vouvray...
The beautiful cities of Blois and Tours

Loire by bike | The land of castles by bike

From Blois, you cycle in the heart of the Loire Valley, in the country of castles. You will discover its secrets through one of the most beautiful cycling itineraries in France, La Loire à Vélo.

Embark on the banks of the longest French river, between vineyards and castles, for a bicycle trip totally out of time. Along the route of the Loire à Vélo, you will discover the wild and majestic Loire River and its surroundings, which are constantly changing with the seasons. A few turns of the wheels and the landscape is already changing. You are sometimes lulled by the sandbanks and the birds that come in great numbers when the rain comes, and sometimes struck by the saturated river, ready to overflow when the flood period comes. In the saddle, hearts lighten up and eyes fill up with this splendid natural heritage.

Cycling along the Loire River is the pleasure of riding along these serene banks, hemmed in by forests, fields of sunflowers and bright tufa houses. It is also the joy of letting yourself be carried along the river and between the hillsides by this moderate relief and this green valley extending as far as the eye can see. In a few pedal strokes, you will enjoy the fresh, varied and balanced elixirs offered by the Loire vineyards. This bicycle tour is a great opportunity to discover some prestigious appellations like Cheverny or Touraine Amboise.

Your journey is punctuated by small picturesque villages, medieval cities of character and towns shaped like mirrors of water (Cour-sur-Loire, Montrichard, Savonnières).

The most beautiful castles of the Loire Valley

And what would be the Loire Valley by bike without its emblematic castles? You will ride along a route paved with history and architectural monsters. So many opportunities to taste the most beautiful residences of his Majesties!

  • The Blois castle, the scene of many events in French history, is now home to a unique fine arts museum, with masterpieces such as those of Ingres, Rubens and Boucher. Step off your horse to enjoy the breathtaking view of the Loire River from the Foix terrace.
  • With its 426 rooms and 282 fireplaces, the Chambord castle is undoubtedly the most imposing in the Loire Valley. Built under the reign of François 1er, this sumptuous building, with Franco-Italian influences, has a unique architecture thanks to its exceptional terraces overlooking the adjacent forest and its double revolution staircase (an architectural feat where two staircases turn in the same direction without ever crossing).
  • The Chaumont sur Loire castle, belvedere of the last wild river of Europe, is an exceptional domain which was classified in the world heritage of UNESCO in 2000. Every year, from April to October, it brilliantly hosts the International Garden Festival, where landscape architects and gardeners come to exhibit their latest creations. An event not to be missed by cyclists who love art and nature. It is also a unique opportunity to walk in the footsteps of the famous Queen Catherine de Medici.
  • Back to childhood in the castle of Cheverny, with its splendid interiors, its six themed gardens and its famous Tintin exhibition in 3D.
  • Nicknamed the castle of the ladies (it was notably adored by Diane de Poitiers and Catherine de Médicis), the Chenonceaux castle is undeniably one of the most sumptuous in the Loire Valley. And because it gracefully spans the Cher River, you never tire of admiring the reflection of its majestic arches in the water.
  • The castle of Amboise is the domain where the greatest kings of France have taken up residence and where you will find the tomb of the famous painter Leonardo da Vinci. Located on a promontory, it offers an exceptional 360° view of the Loire Valley. Enjoy a well-deserved stop in this exceptional place.

These iconic symbols of the French Renaissance around the world are a must-see in this region whose art and architecture are no longer to be praised. Much more than a bicycle trip, it is a leap in time that we propose to you on this Eurovelo 6 which crosses the Loire Valley. Accessible stages take you to the heart of the great cities of the valley and allow you to touch with your finger a part of the history of France. A cycling trip in the country of kings, queens and artists who made French history.

Carte itinéraire La Vallée des rois de Blois à Tours
Niveau LeisureLeisure
Day 1

FROM BLOIS, LOIRE LOOP 39km 80m Niveau Loisir

A gentle loop along the longest river in France. You will ride along its banks surrounded by greenery and enjoy the heritage of the Loire. A heritage above all architectural, that you will appreciate through small villages such as Cour-sur-Loire. A natural heritage as well, that you will discover through the presence of numerous birds that are inseparable from this majestic river. Back in Blois, take the time to lose yourself in the narrow streets. Discover its castle, its churches, its houses, its gardens, all built in amphitheatre on a rock. A bourgeois city dressed with a staircase of streets and where, at the top near the cathedral, you will appreciate the panorama of the surrounding countryside and forests.

Meeting with our local guide

Before your first ride, meet our local guide at your departure point. This is the perfect time to catch up on the latest practical advice, find out about the addresses and experiences you shouldn’t miss, answer any questions you may have, make the final adjustments to your bike and get your trip off to the best possible start.

Day 2

FROM BLOIS, CHAMBORD LOOP 48km 162m Niveau Loisir

A bicycle loop to the Chambord castle and its forest park. You leave Blois to ride along the royal alleys that escort you to the four towers of this impressive castle, originally built as a hunting lodge for François I. From the Renaissance to the Empire, let yourself be surprised by the historical richness of the place! Return to Blois.

Day 3

From BLOIS to CHAUMONT-SUR-LOIRE 28km 72m Niveau Facile

From Blois, you can see the Loire river winding its way through the heart of the valley. Look west, because that’s where you’re headed! The target of the day: Chaumont-sur-Loire and its castle which hosts the famous international garden festival every year. You will ride along the route of the Loire by bike and pass by some villages where beautiful houses are hidden. When you arrive at Candé sur Beuvron, you will ride along the small river Beuvron and reach the castle of Chaumont sur Loire.

  • For a few more km 48km 200m Niveau Loisir

    From Blois, you take the direction of the forest estate of Russy. You will pass by the castle of Beauregard, former hunting lodge of François 1st. From here, a 15 km long royal alley leads directly to Chambord. You will then reach the castle of Cheverny, inhabited by the same family for more than 6 centuries. Take the time to wander through the building, its gardens, its labyrinth and visit its Tintin exhibition in 3D. You continue your day by bike to the castle of Chaumont sur Loire.

Day 4

From CHAUMONT-SUR-LOIRE to AMBOISE 22km 100m Niveau Facile

Day trip along the Loire River by bike. You arrive in Amboise, city of Leonardo da Vinci.
His last residence, the Clos Lucé, and the royal castle make it a city of character where it is pleasant to stroll in the narrow streets or on the quays.

Day 5

FROM AMBOISE, CHENONCEAUX LOOP 37km 208m Niveau Loisir

Leave the Loire riverbanks behind and head south. When you arrive in Chenonceaux, take the time to enjoy its famous eponymous castle built in 1513, one of the most beautiful in the Loire Valley. One of its original features is its atypical construction on the Cher river which makes it similar to a bridge. Head back to the royal city of Amboise.

  • For a few more km 61km 316m Niveau Forme

    After your visit to the Chenonceau castle, enjoy a few more kilometers on your way to the authentic medieval town of Montrichard. There is even a beach in the summer if you want to take a dip. Return to Amboise by small country roads.

Day 6

From AMBOISE to TOURS 28km 125m Niveau Facile

You leave Amboise by its hillsides on the side of Montlouis and thus remain on the official itinerary of the Loire à vélo. This is an opportunity to taste some of the Touraine AOC wines, or simply to discover the trades. This itinerant stage takes you to the discovery of the old city of Tours, capital of the Loire castles. Take the time to discover the wooden 15th century houses still present here, they deliver a singular experience and beautiful pieces of history…

  • For a few more km 50km 295m Niveau Loisir

    In this version, you can compare the vineyards of Montlouis and Vouvray. After the vineyards of Montlouis, you cross the Loire to reach Vouvray and the Château of Jallanges. Ride along the Loire on the Vouvray side to reach Tours.

Day 7

FROM TOURS, VILLANDRY LOOP 44km 100m Niveau Facile

You leave the city of Tours quickly and easily by the Loire by bike route. On this part of the itinerary, it is the Cher that you follow on a dedicated cycle track. Your route is brightened up by other cyclists and some locals: fishermen and birds. Halfway along the route, you can enjoy a coffee break in Savonnières and maybe a swim on the beach… Then, enjoy the beauty of the colorful gardens of Villandry castle. A plunge in the heart of the 16th century which, for sure, will not leave you indifferent! Peacefully, you return to Tours.

  • For a few more km 72km 296m Niveau Forme

    For the more athletic, after visiting the Villandry Castle, you branch off towards the town and the Azay le Rideau Castle and town while crossing the Tours countryside. Your return to Tours is by a beautiful bike route along the mill road on the edge of the Cher.

Essential Range

You want to enjoy your itinerary without anything fancy. Our ”essential” range offers a simple accommodation for a good night’s rest in a simple hotel, guesthouse, rest house or hostel.

Accommodation example
Hôtel-Louise-de-Savoie

Starting from 685€/participant in Self Guided option | See detailed prices

Comfort Range

Our quality standard at Abicyclette. This type of accommodation includes 2 and 3 stars hotels. Depending on the itinerary, you might spend some nights in approved guesthouses. You enjoy a double bedroom with private bathroom and toilet and adapted welcome for you and your bikes.

Accommodation example
Hotel Anne de Bretagne Hôtel La Brèche

Starting from 790€/participant in Self Guided option | See detailed prices

Privilege Range

Opt for total comfort in charming 3 and 4 star hotels which offer all the services you need and a special welcome for you and your bikes.

Accommodation example

Starting from 1190€/participant in Self Guided option | See detailed prices

Price includes

  • Accommodation: 6 nights in a Double room
  • 6 breakfasts
  • Luggage transfer
  • Phone assistance 24/7
  • Access to our exclusive travel application to follow your route, inform you about places of interest, restaurants, facilitate your assistance in case of emergency, find all your travel documents and our practical advice.
  • Application fee
  • Taxes
  • The trip itineraries available on the following supports:
    • Loan of a Bicycle GPS uploaded with full itinerary of the trip
    • Topo maps
    • Cycling practical guide including restaurant recommendations for lunch & dinner
  • Additional services included:
    • Day 1 : A personalized greeting with our team at the beginning of the trip to receive your travel documents
  • Price does not include

    • bike rental (see option)
    • Breakfast on day 1
    • Lunches
    • Dinners not included in "Price includes"
    • Drinks, visits & other personal expenses

    Homemade and fully tested itineraries
    • Routes selected for their cycling and touristic interest entirely tested and away from traffic
    • Accomodations selected for their hospitality, atmosphere, services and quality meals
    • A flexible organisation to suit you needs and wishes: You choose the date you want to you leave on! We check the availability of each accomodation to make sure it is possible.

    Close assistance
    • One of our guides greets you on your first day. He will hand out all the needed documents for the trip (hotel vouchers, maps of the area,GPS, practical guide), get you settled on your bikes (for rental bikes).
    • Phone assistance, you can reach the Abicyclette team whenever you need
    • A Luggage transfer service which respects your hours of rest (we pick them up after 10:00 and deliver them before 16:00)

    Follow your itinerary anyway you like – modern, practical, traditional

    appareil GPS TwoNav Cross

    • We loan you a GPS so that you can easily follow your itinerary without having to look for your way around (bike support included)
    • A practical cycling guide with all the useful information (addresses, highlights for the day, topo maps, and touristic information)

     


    You can also

     

    On our guided tours (for groups on demand), we accompany you every step of the way
    • One of our state qualified instructor and professional cycling guide accompanies you every step of the way
    • Full board (all meals covered unless asked otherwise)
    • A picnic buffet set up for lunch with a wide choice of fresh and local produce

    We offer a high-end bike rental service. Our bikes are suited for road and gravel road long-distance cycling. Fully equipped and highly reliable, they are faithful travel companions.


    Touring bike

    An upright and easy going position

    Mixed aluminum frame, telescopic fork. Straight handlebars. Disc brakes. Transmission Shimano 24 to 30 speeds.

    Supplied equipment per bike

    • 1 helmet
    • 1 back bag 20L (waterproof)
    • 1 front bag 4L with plastic map holder (waterproof)
    • 1 lock
    • 1 repair kit (patches, tube, tire lever)
    • 1 multi tools box
    • 1 pump
    • 1 bike computer
    • 1 bike water bottle
    Vélo Rando Abicyclette Voyages

    Trekking bike

    A layed out and dynamic position

    Mixed aluminum frame, telescopic fork. Straight handlebars. Disc brakes. Transmission Shimano 24 to 30 speeds.

    Supplied equipment per bike

    • 1 helmet
    • 1 back bag 20L (waterproof)
    • 1 front bag 4L with plastic map holder (waterproof)
    • 1 lock
    • 1 repair kit (patches, tube, tire lever)
    • 1 multi tools box
    • 1 pump
    • 1 bike computer
    • 1 bike water bottle
    Vélo Abicyclette Voyages

    Ebike

    With an autonomy of almost 120km, cycling has never been so easy!

    Supplied equipment per bike

    • 1 helmet
    • 1 back bag 20L (waterproof)
    • 1 front bag 4L with plastic map holder (waterproof)
    • 1 lock
    • 1 repair kit (patches, tube, tire lever)
    • 1 multi tools box
    • 1 pump
    • 1 bike computer
    • 1 bike water bottle
    EBIKE VELO DE VILLE

    Children Bike

    Recommended bike size (to be confirmed when booking) :

    • 16 inches from 105cm to 120cm (or 6 to 7 years old)
    • 20 inches from 120cm to 135cm (or 7 to 10 years old)
    • 24 inches from 135cm to 145cm (or 10 to 12 years old)
    • SPORT XS bike (adult frame) from 145cm to 155cm (from age 10)

    Supplied equipment per bike

    • 1 helmet
    • 1 inner tube
    • 1 bike water bottle
    Vélo enfant 24 pouces pour vacances à vélo

    Bike trailer

    Thule Chariot Cross 2
    Children’s trailers can only be rented for installation on one of our bikes.
    We do not provide this service on any other bike. There is too much risk of incompatibility and breakage.
    Por one or 2 children.
    Max child trailer load: 45kg.

    Supplied equipment per bike

    • 1 helmet (or 2 if 2 kids)
    • 1 inner tube
    • 1 bike water bottle (or 2)
    • Accessories on request: baby hammock. A padded hammock that supports baby’s sides and offers maximum stability (1 to 10 months). Use only the newborn hammock for walking.

    Getting here

    Departure city : BLOIS

    Coming by car

    • at 2h from PARIS
    • at 4h from BORDEAUX
    • at 4h30 from LYON

    Parking*

    • StatioNeo – Parking du Château – BLOIS
    • Parking Saint-Vincent – BLOIS
    • StatioNeo – Parking Valin de la Vaissière – BLOIS
    • StatioNeo – Parking Halle aux Grains – BLOIS
    • StatioNeo – Parking Château – BLOIS

    Coming by train

    • Blois train station - 1h30 from Paris

    Coming by plane

    • Tours airport

    Arrival city : TOURS

    Coming by car

    • at 2h30 from PARIS
    • at 3h30 from BORDEAUX
    • at 4h30 from LYON

    Coming by train

    • Tours train station - 1h30 from Paris
    • Saint Pierre des Corps train station - 1h from Paris

    Coming by plane

    • Tours airport

    *Parking: Since many of our clients travel by train or plane, we do not include parking in our packages. In addition, many accommodations don’t have the capacity to park a vehicle for the duration of your cycling vacation. So if you’re planning to arrive by car, we suggest you check parking options when you make your reservation. If you reserve a parking space at the first or last accommodation of your stay, you must pay the accommodation provider on site.

    * Abicyclette Voyages accompanies you on demand, including transportation solutions.

    How to get back to the starting point

    • By train from Tours to Blois in 35 min (hotline)
    • Return by car in 0h45 to your starting point
    • Private shuttle: see detailed fares or contact us

    Recommended equipment

    Bike

    • All-Terrain Bike (ATB) or Touring Bike or Gravel Bike
    • 18 to 30-speed transmission
    • 26- to 29-inch wheels
    • Tires: 35 to 42 section, reinforced against punctures
    • Disc brakes recommended
    • 2 bottle cages
    • Bell
    • Front and rear lighting

    Clothing and equipment

    • Helmet (supplied with bike rental unless otherwise specified locally)
    • 1 bike mount for smartphone to use the mobile route planner application
    • Suitable cycling clothing:
      • bib, shorts or tights: elastic and breathable, to facilitate movement and wick away perspiration
      • Breathable T-shirts, synthetic or merino wool
      • Breathable windbreaker
    • Thermal or fleece jacket
    • Waterproof jacket
    • 1 pair of sunglasses
    • 1 pair of cycling shoes
    • 1 backpack or 1 or 2 carrier bags
    • 1 or 2 water bottles (supplied with bike rental in France)
    • 1 lock (supplied with bike rental)
    • Technical details, recommended by the team for optimum comfort:
      • 1 pair of gloves or mittens, depending on season and destination
      • Padded bib (chamois)
      • High-visibility vest or fluorescent belt
      • Neck warmer and cap

    Bike maintenance

    • Emergency repair kit: 2 or 3 inner tubes, patches, pump, tire levers, multi-tools
    • Maintenance kit: rag, oil, brake pads

    Other

    • A suitcase for your belongings carried in the vehicle (limited to one per person)
    • Street clothes
    • 1 pair of evening shoes
    • Fleece jacket for the evening
    • Toiletry bag
    • Telephone and charger

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