WJ Tested: Globus La France Motorcoach Tour – Loire Valley & Bordeaux

Chateau Chenonceau Spans River Cher

Chateau Chenonceau Spans River Cher

WJ Tested: Globus La France Motorcoach Tour – Loire Valley & Bordeaux

Day 6:

Anyone who loves French chateaux and manor houses will enjoy a visit to Château de Chenonceau, known in English as Chenonceau Castle.

Chateau de Chenonceaux

Chateau de Chenonceaux

Visiting the elegant Chenonceau manor house was the first stop on our Globus La France motorcoach tour after leaving Tours. We drove through the Montlouis-sur-Loire AOC region, where we viewed caves built into limestone cliffs. During the 1-hour drive towards Chenonceaux, Vic gave an insightful history lecture regarding the Loire Valley. Now we know that there are more than 300 chateaux in the region!

By 9 a.m. we arrived at Château de Chenonceau and Vic ran ahead to the ticket window to purchase admission for our group before the crowds arrived.

Walking to Chateau Chenonceau

Walking to Chateau Chenonceau

The walk from the parking lot took about 10 minutes along a tree-lined pathway until we finally spied the chateau. Upon entering the manor house we each picked up an iPod Touch and did a self-guided audio tour (included in the admission ticket) at our own individual pace.

Chateau Chenonceau Tapestry

Chateau Chenonceau Tapestry

We had almost 90 minutes before we needed to be back on the coach. The chateau and grounds are spectacular and we just wished we could have spent the entire day exploring and enjoying the grounds.

Château de Chenonceau Fun Facts:

  • Located near the village of Chenonceaux in the Loire Valley
  • Spans the River Cher
  • Is also called “Château des Dames”
  • Was built in 1513 by Katherine Briçonnet
  • Further building was done by Diane de Poitiers and then Catherine de Medici
Chateau Chenonceau Garden

Chateau Chenonceau Garden

This was the first time anyone in our group was late for the coach’s slated departure time, but this was due to not anticipating the 10-15 minute walk from the chateau to the parking area. After driving along the highway for just over an hour, we made a lunch stop for one hour at the Poitou-Chartres service station. This service area had a couple of decent restaurants and a cafeteria, regional products store and regional exhibition center. Although our drive was primarily along the highway and we were missing all the quaint villages in the region, we did enjoy views of sunflower fields and vineyards.

Bordeaux

Bordeaux

Back on the coach at 2 p.m. for a 2-hour drive along the highway to our hotel in Bordeaux. Along the way Vic continued with his informative lectures. By 4:15 p.m. we were in our room at the recently refurbished Mercure Bordeaux Chateau Chartrons Hotel on the outskirts of the city.

Mercure Bordeaux Chateau Chartrons Hotel

Mercure Bordeaux Chateau Chartrons Hotel

Mercure Bordeaux Chateau Chartrons Hotel

Mercure Bordeaux Chateau Chartrons Hotel

This allowed us 45 minutes to relax before meeting up with the group at 5 p.m. in the hotel lobby. Then it was back on the coach and a 5-minute drive into the center where we spent 40 minutes with Vic as he toured us through some of the old town.

Visiting Bordeaux

Visiting Bordeaux

Then we had 90 minutes of free time before meeting up with Vic and the rest of our group for a walk to the restaurant where we would have our included dinner.

Bordeaux Grand Theatre

Bordeaux Grand Theatre

Bordeaux Fun Facts:

  • Bordeaux is a port city on the Garonne River
  • It is located in the Gironde department in southwestern France
  • It has a population of about 250,000
  • To see an opera, ballet or concert, check out the 250-year-old Bordeaux Grand Theater
  • Wine making in Bordeaux is a tradition which started more than 2000 years ago
WJ Tested: Globus La France Motorcoach Tour - Loire Valley & Bordeaux

WJ Tested: Globus La France Motorcoach Tour – Loire Valley & Bordeaux

The meal at La Brasserie Bordelaise was excellent and the wine flowed a little more freely than typical (usually limited to 1 glass per person or 1 bottle between 3).

Duck Sausage Starter at La Brasserie Bordelaise

Duck Sausage Starter at La Brasserie Bordelaise

Cold Cuts Starter at La Brasserie Bordelaise

Cold Cuts Starter at La Brasserie Bordelaise

For starters we could choose between duck meat sausage with apples, a plate of cold cut meats or a plate of raw vegetables. The main dishes were either pan grilled salmon with vegetables or grilled duck breast.

Bordeaux Dinner at La Brasserie Bordelaise

Bordeaux Dinner at La Brasserie Bordelaise

Dessert was chocolate torte with ice cream, or lemon, and blackberry sorbet. The meal was delightful and we all loved the atmosphere. Finally our group was able to relax and linger a little longer over dinner than previous nights, before returning to the hotel around 10 p.m.

If You Go:

Château de Chenonceau

La Brasserie Bordelaise

Loire Valley Chateaux

Mercure Bordeaux Chateau Chartrons Hotel

Globus

La France Tour

Read More About WAVEJourney’s Globus La France Adventures:
| Overview | Paris Day 1 | Paris City Tour Day 2 | Normandy Day 3 | Normandy and Brittany Day 4 | Loire Day 5Loire Valley and Bordeaux Day 6 | Saint Emilion Day 7 | Biarritz and Lourdes Day 8 | Carcassonne and Nimes Day 9 | Pont du Gard and Avignon Day 10 | Monte Carlo Day 11 | Grasse to Grenoble Day 12 | Lyon to Dijon Day 13 | Dijon to Paris Day 14 |

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