Bike along the peaceful Loire River. Pedal through a lush forest. Emerge as if you're in a fairy tale. Standing proudly before you is a château of Renaissance majesty, its gardens sculpted to perfection. You're in an architect's wonderland. Artists and writers escape to the Loire—even da Vinci spent his last years here. If you dream of living like royalty, there's no place more ideal.
1-2 Bike amid peaceful woodland, Vouvray vineyards and picture-perfect villages | Join a vintner for a private tour and degustation at the family’s centuries-old wine cave | On two wheels, explore the rich landscape of French royalty | Walk in the footsteps of famous kings and Leonardo da Vinci as you stroll the regal town of Amboise | With its many beautifully manicured gardens, Château de Chaumont—which hosts the International Garden Festival—is awe-inspiring.
3-4 With a private guide, soak up the glamour of Château de Chenonceau, which spans the River Cher and brims with rare tapestries and magnificent paintings | Cycle through tranquil hamlets, fields of wheat and sunflowers into the Forêt de Villandry | Visit some of France’s most stunning gardens and experience Renaissance grandeur at the 16th-century Château de Villandry | Dine on classic French specialties with views of the valley in evening light.
5-6 Roll past troglodyte caves that housed people (and wine!) for centuries as you make your way to bustling Azay-le-Rideau, a wonderful place to fill your bike bag with goodies for a picnic down the road | Have a look around Chinon, known as much for its full-bodied red wines as for its turbulent history | Before saying au revoir to the Loire Valley, head out on one last spin around the castle-dotted landscape, enjoying the quiet morning as the countryside slowly comes to life.