8 am breakfast with our hosts was a very yummy and lots lovely food prepared including home made yoghurt and jams, fresh bread, pastries, fruit and coffee.
Our bikes were packed and ready to roll, so some quick farewells.
Back on our route, these signs were common today. Wonderful to see the encouragement of cycle tourism here. Certainly we saw hundreds of cyclists out and about today.
Endless villages on the river banks.
Endless wonderful river views continued. Looking for beavers! No beavers were site but we did spot two pigs racing along the river flats, and a few small snakes.
The big city to navigate today was Orleans. As we approached the outskirts, there are parks and water sports facilities galore. On this section, cyclists and walkers are separated by a nasty fence. You would not want to fall. This fence is maybe 500 metres in length?
Orleans was a bit crazy and we just concentrated on moving as safely as we could through. It was Sunday and everyone was out and about and there were running events on along our route.
Orleans was the original capital of the Kingdom of France during the Merovingian period. Joan of Arc celebrated annually for her brave role during the Hundred Years War.
More signs encouraging cyclists. Big spider warning too.
Daily we figure out where we will stop for coffee and a treat. Today Meung-sur-Loire looked promising from a distance. However as we approached, we could see cars lining the river bank.
Still we ventured across into town and had to get off and push our bikes as there were so many people. There were markets in the main, narrow streets, and queues 10-15 deep outside boulangeries. We are not that desperate, so had a quick squizz and decided to get away from the humanity mass.
This is the local church on the edge of the village, with a history back to the 1100’s. Joan of Arc also led a battle here. In fiction, it is the village where D’Artgnan decided to join the Kings Musketeers (The Three Musketeers)
Back on our bikes, we noted that Beaugency was only 8 km or so away. We visited there in 2015 when we rode from Calais in the far north of France, to Narbonne in the south. We decided we would stop there if life was a bit quieter when we arrived.
We followed this little canal up the street, and at the end found our accomodation from 2015.
We then found a lovely brasserie that had a few unreserved tables so had a lovely lunch. We spent over an hour here, so quite a long stop but our check in was not until 5 pm.
Pretty roses on this house adjacent to the Loire.
Today we spent over half of our 137 km on gravel. Our bikes are white with dust but thankful it has not rained yet, as they would be caked in gunk. It is always nice to get back on a lovely sealed surface such as below.
Lovely vista at Cour-sir-Loire.
More sites along our trail.
Today was a scorcher, a really hot day to be riding. The temperature peaked at 34C so we had been riding to conserve energy as much as possible and when we saw this observatory along the river bank, we stopped.
We were on the outskirts of Blois where we were going to find more liquid, but this place had sorbet and Perrier water and the kind lady filled out bidons with cold water.
Ahead is Blois, a city created in 832. During the Renaissance, Blois was the official residence of the King of France.
Back onto sealed paths looking up at the tallest church in town, there were a few.
We then crossed this bridge, as did the horse and cart.
Two view of Blois after we had crossed the river, providing a longer lateral vista.
At Chaumont-sur-Loire we looked for more fluid. A fancy chateau overlooked the river, and a small boat tour business below. they pointed us to the local tap!
Our destination tonight was Amboise, boasting the impressive Chateau d’Amboise overlooking the river. Amongst famous residents was Mary Queen of Scots, when as a toddler she was betrothed to the dauphin. She lived here for many years until her husbands early death and her return to Scotland. Leonardo di Vinci is buried on the grounds.
We arrived at our accomodation at 5 pm. The place was an impregnable fortress. The buzzer did not work nor did the lounging cat behind the gate offer any assistance.
After 137 km ride, in very hot conditions, we were keen to shower. We were a bit frustrated.
Eventually, I noted a lady entering a building a few doors away and chatted to her. She rang the owners, who sent their son and he arrived at 5.50 pm. 😫
Showered we headed into centre ville. This clock is from the 1500’s. Front and back views.
There is a wide variety of food options in the main eating strip, particularly crepes, crepes or crepes. We chose….crepes. We had a delicious galette each.
Arriving as late as we did the chateau was closed, bit we went for a wander anyhow.
We walked to Clos Luc, the 15th century home of Leonardo di Vinci, where he died in the arms of the French King. There is a museum and extensive gardens. I think this would be a worthwhile visit….next time, as it closed at 6pm.
Walking back into centre ville I was amazed at some of the homes embedded in the cliff.
We had seen numerous caves that had been gated and historically used for storage of wines, and many now operate wine sale business from.
The blog today is late. Once we got back from our walk, our room in this otherwise unoccupied house was like a sauna. No fan options.
So we headed to bed and I planned to get up early…which I did at 5.30 am to write whilst Tony slept. The two cats in the house have mewed most of the night too, as they must have been hot!
It will be a later breakfast, although a tad earlier as a result of delicate negotiations…8.15 am. We will be dressed, bikes packed. The son asked us what we would eat. I said, whatever you have, we will eat. But first, we need coffee please.
Our route followed is below. 137 km. I have altered the map so you can see relatively where we are versus Paris, London, Switzerland, Italy and Spain.
Finally, two borrowed photos showing Amboise from the opposite side of the river and bridge.
Thanks for reading, Ooroo, smile on 😊