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Loire Valley Family Bike Tour
Loire Valley Family Bike Tour

A trip with kids in the Loire Valley? The concept may seem curious in a region synonymous with elegance and order. Not to worry - we bring you the Loire at its fun-loving kid-friendly best. There's easygoing biking past sunflower fields and famous vineyards. Fairy-tale castles to investigate. There's history-come-to-life at Leonardo da Vinci's home. A fencing lesson and pétanque just for the younger set. Wine tasting and private castle tours just for grown-ups. Even the Medici family would have had fun with Backroads!


Straight Talk
We want to make sure you're on the right trip and that you have the best experience possible. Every Backroads trip is unique and this one is no exception.

Limited & Fixed Menus

On many nights, the gourmet restaurants where we dine offer specially prepared limited or fixed menus featuring a delicious selection of authentic regional cuisine.

Day 1 Around each new bend, another castle is waiting to be explored  Great snakes! Check out Château de Cheverny, the model for fictional Château de Moulinsart from the Tintin comic books Spin through postcard-perfect villages and along wooded back roads once favored by horse-drawn carriages.

Day 2 <i>En garde!</i> Kids learn the fine art of fencing under the watchful eye of world-class fencing master Rudi van Oeveren Ride past vineyards and hamlets to Château de Chambord, one of the Loire's largest and most extravagant castles.

Day 3 Gentle countryside graced with rolling vineyards, orchards and sunflower fields  Pedal to Château de Chaumont, an architectural marvel whose edifice spans periods from late French Gothic to French Renaissance, and whose grounds are a fragrant feast for the senses  The younger set joins a Backroads leader for outdoor fun.

Day 4 Experience fascinating French history where it actually unfolded At Château de Chenonceau, adults enjoy a private guided tour of the castle while youngsters discover the château grounds and mysterious "black room"  Discover the curious Pagode de Chanteloup, where kids take in great views of the Loire Valley from the 144-foot tower and try their hands at some old-fashioned outdoor games such as pinball and croquet  Soak up the flavor of bustling Amboise.

Days 5-6 Explore Leonardo da Vinci's home, Clos Lucé Bike past troglodyte dwellings, community gardens and vineyard-laden fields to the village of Vouvray, known for its crisp chenin blanc wine  A local vintner invites us for a tour of the family winery, followed by a gourmet picnic.


Trip Highlights
  • Pedal back in time amid serene farmland, vast vineyards and storybook villages
  • Fairy-tale castles around every bend
  • Kids wield epées with an award-winning fencing master!
  • Leonardo da Vinci's home
  • An afternoon canoeing adventure on the Loire River
big map


Casual Inns

Château du Breuil (2 nights): Located near Cheverny, this 15th-century manor still has its original tower and moat. (pool)

Château de Chissay (1 night): This former royal residence is surrounded by a park and forest. (pool)

Château de Pray (2 nights): A turreted castle nestled amid trees on a terraced slope overlooking the Loire River. (pool)


Routes For All Abilities

Every Backroads trip is designed to appeal to a wide variety of interests and fitness levels. We know your pace may vary from one day to the next-and your traveling companion's may differ somewhat from yours. So we present a range of mileage options, and each day you decide exactly what and how much you want to do.

Daily Route Options
Day EASYGOING ACTIVE AVID
Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4 Level 5
miles feet gain miles feet gain miles feet gain miles feet gain miles feet gain
1 12 400
2 15* 0 28 600 38 1000 57 1400
Kids: Fencing lesson (2 Hours)
3 9* 100 26 500 36 800
15* 400
Kids: Petanque (2 Hours)
4 9* 100 26 200 31 400
36 800
Kids: Pagode de Chanteloup Visit (1.5 Hours)
5 12* 200 38* 500 46 900
20* 200
Kids: Ropes Course or Chocolate Tasting (1 Hour)
6 13 100
Clos Lucé Tour (1 Hour)
 
note:

* Includes a shuttle


2015 Dates & Pricing*

FAMILY TRIPS
  • 6/16-21 Price: $3498 pp dbl. occ., (+ $560 for sgl. occ.)
  • 6/21-26 Price: $3498 pp dbl. occ., (+ $560 for sgl. occ.)
  • 6/28-7/3 Price: $3498 pp dbl. occ., (+ $560 for sgl. occ.)
  • 7/5-10 Price: $3498 pp dbl. occ., (+ $560 for sgl. occ.)
  • 7/19-24 Price: $3498 pp dbl. occ., (+ $560 for sgl. occ.)
  • 7/28-8/2 Price: $3798 pp dbl. occ., (+ $560 for sgl. occ.)
  • 8/2-7 Price: $3698 pp dbl. occ., (+ $560 for sgl. occ.)
  • 8/9-14 Price: $3698 pp dbl. occ., (+ $560 for sgl. occ.)
  • 8/16-21 Price: $3498 pp dbl. occ., (+ $560 for sgl. occ.)

*Prices may change. Once you book your trip, your price is guaranteed.


Recommended Kids Ages

Minimum Ages:

General Info on Minimum Ages:

We strongly encourage families to join our Family Trips, designed with kid- and adult-friendly features. Please note that we have a minimum age requirement of 1 year for all Inn trips and 2 years for all Camping trips. Other than that, we do not restrict trips to a minimum age except in the rare case of a hotel age restriction. We do, however, recommend minimum ages based on the following criteria: Please note that a trip may feature an activity with an older age requirement than the minimum age recommendation for the trip. Younger kids are still welcome on the trip and while they will not be able to participate in the activity, the leaders will suggest an alternate activity. For safety reasons, children under 7 may not ride their own bikes and are required to ride on a Piccolo or in a Burley. For certain destinations, children must be 9 or older to ride their own bikes.

Private Trips Options & Pricing

Pricing for Private Trips (prices may vary based on departure date)

2015

2 - 3 guests from $6,898 pp dbl. occ. 8 - 9 guests from $4,598 pp dbl. occ.
4 - 5 guests from $5,698 pp dbl. occ. 10 - 11 guests from $3,798 pp dbl. occ.
6 - 7 guests from $4,998 pp dbl. occ. 12 or more guests from $3,498 pp dbl. occ.


Guest Trip Reviews

You all did a wonderful job! The family trip concept worked really well for our needs (balancing my serious-bike-rider needs with those of a 10-year-old and other family members). We will travel with you again. It is obvious that Backroads cares and is passionate about client service.
Matt Slepin- San Rafael, CA

We were persuaded by the enthusiastic guest comments on your website. The trip met and exceeded our expectations! It was a wonderful trip for the whole family and, although it was a group trip, you were able to meet and cater to each of our individual needs and wants. My husband got to bike all day, the kids got to bike as much as they wanted, made new friends and tried many fun activities. I got my active holiday but had time to soak in the cultural richness and natural beauty of the Loire Valley.
Pauline Tan- Singapore

On the train back to Paris my husband and I talked about how neither of us could think of a single way to make this trip better. Backroads has mastered client service.
Denise Shade- Moreland Hills, OH

We have literally just landed home an hour ago. I had planned on writing a letter later and still will when I am awake!!!!!! Nothing but good to say. Amazing!!!!!! Best trip ever. Planning next year already.
Suzanne Duffy- Calgary, AB

This was our best family trip ever!! Our leaders were excellent in all areas. The leaders complemented each other exceptionally well. They were wonderful with the kids and keeping them entertained. They did an excellent job adjusting the bike to fit perfectly. Much appreciated!! They all took the time to get to know each one of us individually. You have given us a lifetime of great memories.
Julie Hankin- West Chester, PA

The leaders were just wonderful, and the kids and I had a fabulous time. Thanks!
Ann Barlow- Wellesley Hills, MA

We are returning to Backroads because the level of customer service we have encountered with every member of the Backroads teams, from reservations to the trip group leaders, has not once dipped below excellence!
Tracy Von Der Ohe- Edmonton, AL