Resting in the Loire Valley

Trip Start Dec 27, 2010
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89
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Trip End Aug 15, 2011


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Flag of France  , Centre,
Monday, May 16, 2011

During our twelve days on the farm, we really didn't do too much, which was exactly what we needed.  There was a fair bit of homework and other computer work to be caught up on, but we kept a slow and steady schedule.  The kids loved exploring the farm and the nearby area, feeding the horses and looking out for badgers (of which we saw one).  Alison enjoyed taking lots of photographs of the horses and other farm scenes.  Mark and I read some of the English books at the house, took walks with the kids, and generally tried to keep things pretty low key.  We all enjoyed the pool too. 

We did a little driving in the area -- mostly to Loches for groceries -- and were in awe of the beautiful villages and communities we saw.  "Picturesque" is the word which always comes to mind.  One outing we had to make was to Tours, known as "The Garden of France."  The main boulevard (Boulevard Beranger) is a beautiful centre of local activity, with its classical French heritage buildings, monuments and its towering trees.  It was a lovely place to have to go for business! 

We also made an outing to Château de Chenonceau.  This is one of over 300 chateaux in the Loire Valley, and one of the most stunning.  It is a work of late Gothic and early Renaissance architecture built in the early 1500''s  and extends across the Cher River.  Stretching out before it are the glorious grounds, which include beautiful gardens, a tree-lined entry and a hedge maze.  It had been privately owned but was seized by French royalty for payment of outstanding debts.  In the mid-1500's,  King Henry II gave the chateau to his mistress, Diane de Poitiers, who had loved it and installed much of the extensive gardens.  When Henry II died, his wife, Catherine de' Medici had Diane expelled and took up residence herself.  She then undertook the installation of her own gardens.  The Chateau is such a sight -- inside and out -- that we all enjoyed spending a slow, relaxed visit there.    

During our down time, we had done some soul searching and come to the realization that our energy and enthusiasm for travelling would not last more than another month.  So we fine-tuned our plans and got ready to move on again.

Kath 

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Comments

Jessie on

So glad you finally found a nice warm pool!! I can't wait to see some pictures. I hope you will print this and put it in a book for further enjoyment. xox

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