Today we set off from Tours. Was supposed to be an easy 45 miles to Blois. In the end it was a bit too easy and so we decided to press on, and gain a day, making it to Orleans.
I was querying whether I should do that anyway, which would mean we could split the 90 miles planned for Tuesday in two. OK, so we still had to do 85 today – but the legs were good so we took advantage. The decision was rubber stamped when we arrived at the campsite in Blois at 12:00 and the sign said they didn’t open reception until 15:00! Decision made.
The day started pretty early, but refreshed after a good sleep in the hotel. Had some breakfast, pocketed a couple of pain au chocolat for the ride and set off.
It was a cracking morning and we made brilliant time, sticking to the D road for the first 15 miles or so. Sun was up and the ride was perfect. After a while we decided to break the monotony of the road and take the EV6 route – was great and in Montlouis S/L we started a small climb into the southern hills by the river.
Soon all you could see was miles of vines…
Following the EV6 we went through Amboise (has a chateau), and it wasn’t long after that we hit Blois (another chateau)
As it was only 12:00, and the campsite was shut, as you would expect of course as it was early afternoon!! We pressed on. It was quite a tough ride as hadn’t eaten and had run out if water, so was ‘bonking’ a wee bit for a while until I could find a shop, that was actually open! Family pack of crisps, litre of water, can of coke, bar of chocolate – scoffed. We continued.
The Loire is stunning, but if there is one blight, other than too many chateau! It is nuclear power stations. I think there are 5 on the Loire and so far I have passed 3.
By 5 we made it to Orleans. Or Olivet, which is a commuter town just to the south. I had booked a municipal camping, and was worried it would be awful! Wrong! Was the best campsite so far.
Set up camp pretty quickly and then headed into Orleans on the tram. Orleans is famed for being the home of Joan of Arc – so I was keen to get the obligatory photo.
Found myself a brasserie to eat at, hate eating out alone, always put in the corner, and the first thing they do is remove the other place setting. Anyway, the table next to me was 6 Germans – their food was messed up several times. Not saying the waitress had an issue – but I did find out that Orleans was raised to the ground in WWII, today is liberation day and they were asking for their steaks well done…take your pick!!