WJ Tested: Globus La France Motorcoach Tour Review Loire

Angers in France

Angers in France

WJ Tested: Globus La France Motorcoach Tour Review Loire

Angers and Loire Valley

Day 5:
This morning we were able to sleep in until the 7:30 a.m. wake-up call abruptly shook us from our slumber. With the luggage outside our room before the appointed hour, we had plenty of time to relax over the included buffet breakfast at the hotel. Departure for Angers, the historical capital of Anjou in western France, followed at 9:15 a.m. Along the route we drove past Rennes, the capital of Brittany, which is known as the French equivalent of Silicon Valley – very techie!

Angers in France

Angers in France

During our drive Vic passed out the menu for our included restaurant dinner in Bordeaux slated for the following day, and we were able to make our selections for what looked like a splendid 3-course dinner at a local bistro. After 90 minutes of highway driving we made a 20-minute comfort stop at a gas station.

Angers in France

Angers in France

As we drove the remaining 40 minutes to Angers, Vic informed us of the history of the French languages and the culture of Brittany, and by noon we had entered into the region of Anjou, known for being the source of Anjou pears and Cointreau.

Angers Fun Facts:

  • Angers is the capital of Maine and Loire in the department of Western Loire
  • Angers is the 16th largest city in France
  • The population of Angers is over 280,000
  • Anger is located 300 km from Paris
  • For visitors spending more than a couple of hours, a City Pass would be worthwhile
  • Toussaint Abbey Church dates from the 13th century and houses the works of sculptor David d’Angers

Our visit to Angers was a surprise visit and not in the itinerary, and Vic gave us a 20-minute city walking tour before our 90-minute free time/lunch break.

David d'Angers Sculptures in Angers, France

David d’Angers Sculptures in Angers, France

After finding a shop to buy a sandwich to eat, we wandered around the town, then paid a visit to the former Toussaint Abbey Church to see the work of sculptor Pierre-Jean David (known as David d’Angers). The restored church is now covered with a glass roof, and the sculptures are quite fascinating – definitely worth the price of admission.

David d'Angers Sculptures in Angers, France

David d’Angers Sculptures in Angers, France

Loire:
By 2:15 p.m. we were back on the coach for the 2-hour drive east to Tours. Unfortunately, due to construction on many roads and bridges throughout the city center, we weren’t able to stop for a visit and just continued on to our hotel for the night.

 

Travel Tip:
A number of larger cities in France are enhancing their public transportation and building tram lines – so this means that many roads are torn up and not accessible to large coaches. The tram lines in Tours are slated to be completed in 2014, so if you’re heading that way before… be prepared for traffic problems.

 

Loire Fun Facts:

  • The Loire River with a length of around 1,000 km/620 miles, is France’s longest river
  • The Loire Valley is situated in central France and spans over 280 km/170 miles
  • There are more than 800 km/500 miles of bike trails in the Loire Valley
  • This area is famous for its chateaux, vineyards and fruit orchards
  • The central part of the Loire River valley is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000

 

Clarion Chateau Belmont:
With all the road construction problems it took a while for the motorcoach to make it through the narrow streets and get us to the 4-star Clarion Chateau Belmont Hotel. Upon receiving our room keys and going to our guestroom we discovered that we were not able to access WIFI – not good as we needed to get some work done.

Clarion Chateau Belmont

Clarion Chateau Belmont

Clarion Chateau Belmont

Clarion Chateau Belmont

Our first room (115) was pleasantly laid out with twin beds, a sitting area, and a nice soaker tub in the bathroom. After requesting assistance to get the WIFI to work (and it wouldn’t), we were given a room change (104). The only issue with the new room was the wheelchair accessible bathroom that flooded when we showered – big mess.

 

Dinner at Bistrot de la Tranchee:
We had declined the optional dinner excursion for the evening out to a limestone cave in the Loire Valley (we didn’t want to take another coach ride), so instead asked Vic for his recommendation for a nearby restaurant.

Bistrot de la Tranchee - Starter

Bistrot de la Tranchee – Starter

A pleasant 10-minute walk from the hotel and we were seated at Bistrot de la Tranchee, where we enjoyed a terrific evening at this local establishment. The meal was excellent and a 3-course menu was only euro 26.50.

Bistrot de la Tranchee - Terrine de Foie Gras de Canard Starter

Bistrot de la Tranchee – Terrine de Foie Gras de Canard Starter

Bistrot de la Tranchee - Magret de Canard Main Course

Bistrot de la Tranchee – Magret de Canard Main Course

After spending a couple of hours chatting with the locals and savoring an authentic French dinner it was time to make our way back to the hotel and call it a night.

Jill at Bistrot de la Tranchee - Dome Fondant au Chocolat Dessert

Jill at Bistrot de la Tranchee – Dome Fondant au Chocolat Dessert

If You Go:

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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