Read what other Viator.com travelers think about the Loire Valley Castles Small Group Day Trip from Paris by Minivan. What they loved, what they liked and what they think could be improved, it's all here to help you make the most of your next trip.
Not a guided tour and 1 hour at each castle was not enough, if you got the electronic guide there was not sufficient time to listen to all the information.
We were disappointed that the guide was predominantly a driver. He provided some history during our transport to the Chateaus but merely gave us our entry tickets and left us at the entrance. I had been sick from food poisoning and when we asked for our lunch selection I indicated that I only wanted tea and nothing to eat as I wasn't feeling well. After not having to be fed, I was then charged for my tea. The other members of our group had coffee after lunch as did the driver. They were charged for the coffee and the driver stuck the group for his coffee as well. Sites were very interesting but very cold in the winter weather.
Driver/guide was very pleasant and knowledgeable. My one regret was that we were not given enough time at each castle, but with the drive time from Paris it probably would need to be a two day trip to be able to stay longer.
Wonderfull to visit where DaVinci lived and worked. To see his drawings made into working models was sensational. The next castle at Ceananceau (') was very nice as was the lunch in the Orangerie Restaurant. Chambord was big and a bit boring although interesting from the exterior.
The castles were lovely and the tour guide was very knowledgeable. The lunch was very nice as well. It would have been nice to have had a little more time at the castles and for the price, an audio guided tour included.
A very enjoyable day in the Loire Valley. It's an expensive tour, but also a very nice one. There were only 3 people on our tour which was brilliant.
Very enjoyable trip. Our guide, Anna, was amazing; great info about history and the region.
If you want an introduction to two of the most famous castles of the Loire Valley (Chambord and Chenonceau), then this is the trip for you. The only part of the trip I found disappointing was Amboise. It's mostly a quick tour through Clos Luce (the residence where Leonardo spent the remaining years of his life). Otherwise, the tour guide (driver) was great. The scenery was beautiful; and, all in all, it was a nice day trip away from Paris.
Palaces were great, da Vinci's house was interesting. On-time hotel pick-up was fantastic, with small manageable group size. Transport clean and modern, well-informed guide who spoke excellent English. Would have liked to go into Chambord (even if just very briefly ,as it is apparently mostly vacant) rather than just look through the gates. Booking confirmations were fantastic to receive prior to departing home.
An exceptional day - lovely lunch included. You are left on your own to explore so if you prefer guided tours then this is not for you.
I thought that we would be touring Chambord according to the description but we only stopped far away for a photo. We could not even see the entire Chateau. However, we saw Leonardo DaVinci's residence. Lunch at the the Orangerie at Chenenceaux was wonderful. The day started off badly after the Chambord situtation and I thought we were going to get shortchanged. However at the end of the day my group decided that throwing in Leonardo' s residence actually was a good thing. Three castles in one day plus over six hours of driving is a lot.
Although the tour says " castles and wines" there was no wine tour or tasting. Also it would have been better if our guide walked us through the sites rather than give us our tickets and brochures and allow us towalk through ourselves. Lunch at the Orangerie in Chenonceaux was excellent.
The tour was a delight with one major exception. It was booked as an English speaking tour and demanded a great deal of narration by the guide as she drove. HOWEVER, Viator slipped in a French only speaking couple from Quebec necessitating prolonged dissertations by the guide in French. It was stressful on the guide (my interpretation) and quite distracting to at least the two of us. The tour is a must -- shame on Viator for misrepresenting a major aspect of the trip. Demand the English only aspect of the tour when you book. The results were aggravating enough to reduce an otherwise 5 star rating to just 3 stars.
We enjoyed the day and the people on the van with us. Some of the instructions about where and when to meet could have been more clear. The lunch was outstanding! We were disappointed that our guide "Silva" did not go along with us to tell us more about what we were seeing. He answered questions, but I think we didn't know some of the questions that we could have asked. We didn't know what we didn't know. His English was OK but it was difficult to understand all he said.