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THE BANKS OF THE LOIRE

The castles of the Loire

The heritage of the Loire Valley region important in local history but also in the history of France. The Loire Valley includes a rich and unique architecture which has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The Loire

The Loire is the longest French river, around which architecture and the arts were built. The Loire Valley territory is mainly known for grouping many Renaissance castles: the castles of the Loire. Between Sully-sur-Loire and Chalonnes-sur-Loire, this area has been listed since 2000 as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for the richness of its architecture. The quality of the Loire landscapes also makes it a source of inspiration for painters and writers. The Loire and its surroundings allow many activities including bike rides and nautical activities.

The castles of the Loire Valley

It is in the Loire Valley where we find the largest number of Renaissance castles in the world: more than 1,200. This emblematic heritage brings together the most famous castles like Chambord, Blois, or Chenonceau but also the most small noble castles.

Anjou also has fabulous castles. Angers Castle, which dates from the end of the Middle Ages and is recognizable by its fortress, exhibits a unique work of medieval art: the tapestry of the Apocalypse. The castle of Saumur, now a museum is also worth visiting, with a panoramic view from above of its gardens. This ancient fortress, transformed into a palace, is the symbol of the city. As well as the Château de Brissac, which is the tallest castle in France with 7 floors. It is a huge Renaissance style house, furnished and inhabited, surrounded by a large park. In addition, the Château de Serrant is one of the most furnished castles in the Loire Valley, with exceptional architecture and preserved authenticity which have earned it 3 stars in the Michelin guide.

Activities on the Loire

Bike rides

Between Angers and Nantes, numerous bike rides are offered, a route of more than 800km! Go along the Loire passing by the island of Chalonnes, the largest island of the Loire still inhabited with a 13 km cycle route which is part of Eurovélo n ° 6. Other routes between Chalonnes-sur Loire and Rochefort-sur-Loire or even between Ingrandes and la Possonnière.
For the more courageous, mountain biking trips with more sensations, for beginners and confirmed, with the aim of discovering the landscapes of the region and the vineyards between the Coteaux du Layon and Aubance, or the Loire Anjou Touraine Regional Natural Park.

Hiking

Several hiking options are available to you: historic routes passing through cities of character, Denée to Ingrandes or Blaison-Gohier, or passing through the “podcast” villages in Aubance. Or circuits in the heart of nature on the banks of the Layon, the mills, the vines and the Loire towns to discover the landscapes of Anjou.
You also have the possibility of following the famous GR3 road which starts at the source of the Loire.

Activities on the water

Unique experiences to live on the Loire or its rivers, including a ride aboard a traditional boat or a canoeing trip.
L’Anjou will delight fishermen with different freshwater fishing spots, an activity that is very important in the region. Dozens of places for natural swimming, and even on the banks of the Loire, in Saumur, Ponts-de-Cé or Ingrandes!

The Loire Valley terroir

The Loire landscape

The Loire is of major importance in the region, it is also the river that shaped the Loire landscapes. The Loire and its multiple rivers offer a veritable green valley with sandbanks, forests, parks and gardens, as well as its hedged farmland. Its majestic architecture by the castles of the Loire and the history that marked this territory.
The Loire Valley has many resources since it is also a clay soil and a land where the vine is cultivated. In addition, Anjou is the land of the horse, an equestrian tradition with the Black Frame of Saumur and the stud farm of the Lion of Angers as symbols.

Wine and experiences in the heart of the vineyards

The exceptional treasure of the Loire Valley is its vineyards of Anjou and Saumur, which make it the 3rd wine region of France. The richness of the land allows a diversity of flavors and wines: white, red, rosé, mellow, fine bubbles, … There are 27 AOC appellations, of which the 3 main are: Coteaux de l’Aubance, Coteaux du Layon and Anjou-Villages Brissac. The main grape variety for whites is Chenin, which is emblematic in the region. The cellars and the biggest wine houses open their doors to you: the Gratien & Meyer house for its unique panorama on the Loire, the beauty of the Ackerman cellars, or an unusual bike tour at the Bouvet Ladubay house, or the Langlois house -Château one of the best known appellations, among others.