For your full-day Loire Valley châteaux tour, rise early for a pickup by air-conditioned minivan from your centrally located Paris hotel. Travel through the rolling hills of the Loire Valley, a UNESCO-listed wine region in central France. Your guide drives you to each castle, which you will explore on your own without being tethered to the rest of your group.
Kick off your tour at Château d’Amboise, which began as a defensive castle in the 11th century for its strategic position overlooking the Loire River before being converted in the 15th century to a residence for royals. Step inside the Chapel of St Hubert, where the remains of Leonardo da Vinci are buried.
Continue to Château de Chenonceau, a 16-century castle spanning the River Cher, and one of the most popular châteaux in France for its elaborate interior and exterior.
Break for a 3-course lunch, accompanied with wine, at a charming 18th-century Breton-style inn. (See below for a sample menu.)
Revitalized, head to the largest castle in the Loire Valley, the UNESCO-listed Château de Chambord. Learn about its astounding Renaissance architecture — legend has it that Leonardo da Vinci contributed to the design of its double-helix staircase.
Your full-day tour ends with return transport to your Paris hotel.