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Best family accommodations between Paris and Loire Valley?

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HI there, I'm looking for some Fodorite recommendations for a charming village, a quaint B&B, a delightful little self catering apartment, or small hotel along the way from Paris to the Loire Valley for our family of 4: 2 adults and 2 children. I'm hoping to use this as a more affordable and relaxing option for exploring some of the surrounding countryside after a busy (and expensive) week in Paris. I'd specifically like to show the kids Giverny, Versailles, and at least a couple Loire Valley chateaux.

I'm open to B&Bs, an apartment or self catering cottage, and even a hotel. Even if someone could recommend which towns to start looking in I can find the hotels. There are so many options online... how to whittle through it all is the challenge.

One option I thought of was to pick a convenient but charming location somewhere in the middle of those three points (if there is one).

Or the alternative (if that doesn't seem feasible) is to find 2 places... say one closer to Paris (for seeing Giverny and Versailles) and another one closer to the Loire valley. I'd try to stay 3-4 nights in each of these locations.

If it were just us adults I'd probably just spend a couple days here, then there, and meander our way through villages until we got to the Loire Valley. (Which I have done on other trips.) But this trip will be with our 2 children (7 and 10), and it'll be easier to keep it to one or two predetermined places to stay. It's the transitions to new accommodations that is such a challenge for them.

Thanks for the advice!
-skatterfly

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