Open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm
DAY 2 (BB) - Breakfast followed by the day at leisure in Honfleur - Walk around the harbour and the narrow streets on the harbourside, lined with shops cafes, restaurants. Watch the fishermen bring their catch to the harbor, and boats abound. Honfleur's Église Ste-Catherine is notable for being built entirely of wood, very similar to a Norwegian Stave church. From Honfleur you can also take boat trips out on the vast Seine estuary, or embark on a walk along the phenomenal Pont de Normandie that spans the Seine estuary so sensationally.
OR - Enjoy a day exploring the D-Day landing beaches including Pegasus Bridge, the Museum of the Atlantic Wall & Grand Bunker, then follow coastal road past Juno Beach to Arromanches les Bains where you can visit the 360 degree theatre and the D-Day Landing Museum.
OR - Explore the medieval City of Rouen & the Seine Valley. Rouen, with its soaring Gothic cathedral, beautifully restored medieval quarter, excellent museums and vibrant cultural life is one of Normandy’s most engaging destinations. As you drive along the Seine Valley you'll discover Les Andelys, a city dominated by the Château Gaillard. Perched on a rock, the château has a magnificent view over its surroundings and the river Claude Monet Home and Gardens in Giverny. Strolling through the famous Japanese garden with its water bridge and waterlilies floating in the pond, Monet's gardens are a relaxing and peaceful spot where you can admire some beautiful horticulture that once inspired a master.
DAY 1 (RO) - Morning P&O Ferry Crossing from Dover to Calais (other crossings available on request) After disembarkation in Calais you have the choice of taking the direct route or a more scenic route following the coastal road via Wissant, Wimereux, Boulogne sur Mer and Etaples sur Mer, where attractions include; Battery Todt and the 39-45 Museum. Suggested stops in either the walled town of Montreuil sur Mer or Le Touquet. then continue to follow the coastal road to Honfleur with arrival at the Mercure Hotel late afternoon/early evening - Mileage - Direct route approx. 150 miles or the Scenic route 160 miles.
DAY 3 (HB) - Honfleur to the Loire Valley - Departing Honfleur after breakfast today you have the option to take the scenic route via the Suisse Normande region or a more direct route via the legendary town of Le Mans. La Suisse Normande, "Norman Switzerland", may not be truly alpine with its 600-foot summits, but it owes its name more to its wooded countryside, shaped by the rivers which run through the valleys and gorges of this scenic area. Picturesque villages are to be found deep in the valleys or on the hillsides. Le Mans, the home of the world famous 24 motor race held every year in June, the N138, D140 and D139 are some of the roads that are a part of the Le Mans 24hr circuit, The N138 is the Mulsanne Straight where Jaguars, Mercedes and back for 2014 Porches drive around the track at speeds of over 320kph (200mph). Visit the Le Mans 24hr museum which holds over 120 cars, including past race cars from big names such as Bugatti, Ferrari and Porsche. After arrival in Ouchamps and the Hotel Le Relais des Landes you'll have some free time to relax and freshen before a welcome dinner at the hotel where you'll have the opportunity to meet your fellow participants - Mileage: (via Suisse Normande) approx. 210 miles / (via Le Mans) approx.180 miles
DAY 4 (BB) - Breakfast followed by the day at leisure in the Loire Valley.
Enjoy the morning at in Blois with its Chateau towering above the northern bank of the Loire, Blois’ royal château, one-time feudal seat of the powerful counts of Blois, offers a great introduction to some key periods in French history and architecture. Then spend the afternoon in Amboise, nestling on the left bank of the Loire, Amboise has kept traces of its royal past, the town's majestic Château and its terraces overlooking the Loire Valley. Amboise also played host to Leonardo da Vinci, invited by François I to Château du Clos Lucé and even today the genius of the famous inventor haunts this Château, where around 40 of his fabulous machines are displayed.
DAY 5 (BB) - Breakfast followed by the day at leisure in the Loire Valley.
In the morning you'll visit the spectacular Chateau de Chennonceau, probably the most recognised of all of the Chateau's of the Loire with its Icy clad houses, old coaching inns and bridge spanning the river cher. Admission to the Chateau & Gardens is included. Your routing then today takes you west to Tours, the city has so much to offer the first time visitor and its modern tramway transport system allows for easy and inexpensive access to many of its landmarks. You can sample the old Tours by visiting the popular Place Plumereau with its carefully restored half-timbered townhouses, the area is packed with cafes/bars and restaurants of every kind. A stroll through the old quarter day or night offers many distractions and delights. Rue Colbert which lies midway between Place Plumereau and the cathedral is gaining a reputation as one of the most fashionable streets in the city for its young population. In Tours you have the opportunity to visit a street market every day of the week, except Monday which is the normal closing day for shops in France. Return to the hotel late afternoon with the evening at leisure.
DAY 6 (BB) - Breakfast followed by the day at leisure in the Loire Valley.
Depart the hotel after breakfast and head west along the banks of the Loire River where you can spend the morning in Saumur with the stunning Chateau de Saumur overlooking the river. Straddling the Loire, Saumur is an attractive town famous for the Cavalry, Museums and Sparkling wines. Several firms welcome visitors to their cellars. Then continuing west, the next stop is Angers, located in the heart of Anjou, Angers is a tapestry town and home to 'La Tenture du l'Apocolypse', the longest tapestry in France. Angers is also home to Cointreau, where visitiors can enjoy a factory tour and tasting. Return to the hotel late afternoon with the evening at leisure.
DAY 7 (BB) - Loire Valley to Calais - Breakfast followed by departure from the hotel and the Loire Valley. Your route today sees you making your way back via Le Mans, Alecon and Rouen to Calais for a late afternoon/early evening ferry crossing back to the UK (other crossings are available on request) - Mileage approx. 340 miles - Please note: If you would prefer to make an overnight stop en route to Calais we can re-arrange your ferry crossing accordingly.
Meal Basis - BB = Bed & Breakfast / HB = Dinner, Bed & Breakfast / RO = Room Only