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Day Trip to Loire Valley from Paris feasible?

Day Trip to Loire Valley from Paris feasible?

Sep 1st, 2010, 04:40 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 16
Day Trip to Loire Valley from Paris feasible?

Friends have offered to take us some place outside of Paris that we haven't been and they suggested the Loire Valley to visit several chateux. Is this a feasible day trip? Thanks for your input.
mimi710 is offline  
Sep 1st, 2010, 04:44 AM
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Yes it is ... especially if you'll have friends with local knowledge. Bear in mind it could be a long day and you really won't have time for 'several' chateaux... based in the Loire I've done 3 in a day... from Paris it might be more difficult.

Decide before you go just what you'd like to see...

ParisAmsterdam is offline  
Sep 1st, 2010, 05:11 AM
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It´s about a 3 hour drive each way from Paris to the Loire Valley. Some people like day trips spending 6-8 hours in a car, others do not.

Have you already visited: Versailles, Chartres, Chantilly, Provins, Vaux-le-Vicomte, Fontainbleau, Auvers-sur-Oise, and Giverny?
Sarastro is offline  
Sep 1st, 2010, 06:59 AM
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we did an organized day trip (ParisVision, if I recall). It's definitely doable...especially if someone else is driving. We did 3 chateaux on the tour...Chenonceau was my favorite.

I wouldn't do it if I had to drive, but was happy to do it in a comfy minivan.
china_cat is offline  
Sep 1st, 2010, 07:01 AM
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Well, it's going to be about 6 hours in a car right off the bat. Then another couple of hours each for each chateau, at least. So you're talking about a 12- to 14-hour day. Feasible? Yes. Desirable? Up to you. There are plenty of châteaux closer to Paris if that's what you're interested in.
StCirq is offline  
Sep 1st, 2010, 08:04 AM
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Does it really take 2 hours at each chateau? I guess if you want to hear a guide (person or audio) explaining the history, it could.

When I did the Loire years ago, some could be seen in an hour it seemed.

Now I'm going next week and going to spend a night in Chartres then 2 nights in Tours, hitting the "top 10" chateau or so.

I guess the other big thing in the Loire is visiting the caves but they're kind of pricey.
scrb11 is offline  
Sep 1st, 2010, 08:35 AM
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Well, no it doesn't necessarily take 2 hours for each château (though it could), but when you factor in moving from one to another, parking, walking, buying tickets, etc., I think it's a reasonable amount to allot overall.
StCirq is offline  
Sep 1st, 2010, 09:22 AM
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As a very general rule, 2 châteaux a day works well for many, possible 3 if the proximity of locations so dictate. More properties than that dilutes what one can reasonably retain of what he has seen and benefit by the overall experience.

A good knowledge in advance of each location´s place in history and architectural significance can also enhance one´s appreciation and enrich his understanding of these great treasures.
Sarastro is offline  
Sep 1st, 2010, 10:01 AM
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I don;t tuink you can do 3 chateaux in a dayunless yuo run through them. Many have extensive (and pretty) grounds as well - and we found 2 a day (froma base in Chinon) is the most we could handle.

It would be a resonable day trip but do some research and pick which 2 chateaux you want to see. And realiz it will be 7 or 8 hours in a car
nytraveler is offline  
Sep 1st, 2010, 10:33 AM
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Sure you should take them up on the offer, but don't try to see all the châteaux, that would be a job for a week.... Take a look at the map at http://www.chateaux-de-la-loire.fr/loire_valley_map.htm.

If your friends don't drive you, you can go by yourselves. The train from Paris (Austerlitz) to Blois only takes 94 minutes, there is a nice castle right in Blois, and the incredible Chambord is not far - from May to early Sep, there is a bus leaving from the far left of the square outside the station (not the city buses straight across), it also circles by Cheverny which is more like a grand mansion stuffed with period furniture and paintings etc. Chambord is very different - look it up - it's grand and complex and a unique construction in a huge park, with not much furniture inside.

Or take the train to Tours or to the nearby station St. Pierre-des-Corps - there are shuttles and tourbuses leaving from there, they do this every day and they know where people want to go, like Amboise and Chenonceau.
DalaiLlama is offline  
Sep 1st, 2010, 02:04 PM
Join Date: Jun 2003
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One of my favorite Loire Valley towns is Angers. Angers is an easy 90 minute ride on the TGV from Gare Montparnasse. The Chateau d'Angers is a convenient 10 minute walk from the Gare St.Laud TGV station. Angers has enough to see and do to keep you occupied for a day; the Chateau d' Angers, the Cathedrale St. Maurice, the Musee Jean Lurcat and if time permits the Cointreau Distillery in the nearby town of St. Barthelemy d' Anjou.
Langcraft is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2010, 02:44 PM
Original Poster
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Thank you all who took the time to answer my question. It gives us something to think about. I appreciate the differing points of view. Thanks again.
mimi710 is offline  

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