Summer Holiday 2010: Loire Valley

After two days at the beach in Normandy (St. Aubin sur Mer) we headed inland, via a nervous drive through Paris, to our gite destination in a village just outside of Gien in the Loiret region.

The gite was in a fabulous location, with the river Loire at the bottom of the garden, and just fields of sweetcorn surrounding us.

Nearby, was a town called Briare-le-canal where we went on a bateau mouche along the canal and through a lock , which I had never done before, and the children couldn't understand why we wouldn't flood the boat when the water rose!

The same day we also visited Chateau des pecheurs at Le Bussiere where there were lots of little cabins hidden in the woods for the children to discover. The chateau also had an extensive kitchen garden where we picked our own raspberries and ate them for lunch.

The following days were spent in an area just over the border in the Yonne region of Burgundy where me and the boys did high ropes, which is one of my favourite holiday activities. It was one of the most difficult I have done with tarzan swings and zip wires finishing up in the trees.

Finally, we visited the fascinating medieval castle being built at Guedolon, which is a great thing to see: 35 skilled people are building a castle using 13th century tehniques, and it is estimated that they will complete it in 2025. All the stone is quarried on site, as is the wood. Everything down to the ropes, scaffolding and nails are made in the ways of the time.


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