Read Brian’s blog for what we did today. Here are my pics from today.
Since Brian already posted his blog with the itinerary, I will share my pictures for the day.
Another perfect day for cycling. Overcast this morning and then sunny this afternoon. We have really been lucky with the weather this year. Another 70 K day which brings our total to 430 K with a little bit more riding tomorrow before we return the bikes.Plan is to then drive to Paris with stops at Chartre and Versailles along the way.
We also return the car at the airport tomorrow. They say it is really difficult to drive in Paris. If it is like what we have experienced so far, the French seem to change the name of the street every couple blocks. That’s what we use street numbers for. Just saying.
Today’s pics for the blog.
It was another perfect day for cycling. We did 65 K with a pretty stiff cross/tail wind that wasn’t much of a factor. Most of the ride was on macadam (roads) again today. We can travel so much faster on macadam as opposed to gravel.
Brian and Mark had very minor falls when they couldn’t get their shoes unclipped after coming to a stop in Amboise because of pedestrians. Mark insists he fell just to keep Brian from suffering the embarrassment alone. Since no one got hurt, I can say it was very comical. A touch of the two stooges.
We ate a light lunch in the town of Amboise after touring the Chateau du Clos Luce, Leonardo da Vinci’s home the last years of his life, 1516 to 1519. Worth seeing but perhaps a touch overpriced. Beth was going to meet us but the parking was limited and she couldn’t get there in time because of a detour due to an accident. She met us for lunch instead and then toured a different chateau while we pedaled off.
Beth passed us coming into Blois (tonight’s destination) but we were able to beat her to the hotel. There is something to be said for traveling by bike in city traffic, especially when there are dedicated bike lanes. I must say that throughout this trip, the motorists have been very courteous to bikers. We assume many drivers also ride bikes.
Walked to a restaurant, as usual. Beautiful vistas in this city. So far, my prettiest city. Didn’t bring my iPad to take pictures tonight. Bummer. Might be able to take a few as we are leaving tomorrow morning.
Today’s pics for the blog.
Tomorrow we plan to stop at Chambord, another chateau. It’s kind of on our way to Orleans where we will spend our last night on the Loire River. It’s hard to believe tomorrow is our last full day of riding. It’s been a great trip. We are thinking next year Germany and then the following year the Provence section of France. We’ll see.
Hope you are enjoying the blog.
A great day of cycling. 75 k with a tail wind and almost no gravel/dirt paths. Smooth macadam, some on roads (very little traffic) and the rest on bike paths. We really liked Saumur. A nice city but much smaller than Nantes and Angers. There was a possibility of rain today but it only drizzled a few times. Cloudy for most of the ride which is fine.
The second part of the day was the tour of Villandry, built around 1535 and walking around Tours looking for a good restaurant and we found one with the help of the hotel staff. Need to remember to ask the hotel staff every night.
Beautiful morning but no cold cuts at the breakfast buffet. We are usually able to make ourselves cold cut sandwiches for lunch at the breakfast buffets, except today. The French know how to bake rolls.
A pretty easy day which we needed after yesterday, 54 K, 3 1/2 hours. A lot of macadam today. What a difference it makes riding on smooth macadam vs. gravel. Tomorrow we intend to tour our first chateau on our way to Tours, our next destination. Showers are in the forecast. We’ll see,
This was planned as our longest day. It turned out to be for a different reason. We got away about 8:15. Within 5 minutes, I took a a nasty spill. I couldn’t tell you how much time we lost. I think I was dazed by the fall. I hit a curb trying to get on the bike path that was a little elevated from the pedestrian walkway. I remember seeing that I was going to hit this curbing and then the rest was a blur. Washed it as best I could and I soldiered on or, as Marcia sometimes says: ‘I offered it up’.
Brian and I tried to go to mass tonight (to pray for Mark and Beth’s souls) but couldn’t find the church. Added another 5,000 steps to today’s total. No good deed goes unpunished. I got a huge blister. Hopefully I will be able to wear my dock sides home. I have had to wear my bike shoes everywhere since. Does it sound like I am whining too much? Pardon, sil vous plait.
We were supposed to start this trip in Cholet but since we rented our bikes and there is no pick up in Cholet, we adapted and started in Nantes. We decided to do an out and back ride to familiarize ourselves with the bikes and the road signage. Picked up the bikes and off we went.
We were trying to use maps written in French. That didn’t go too well. Our route that Beth was plotting looked like a lot of points on a star. But we figured out the bike route signage which was a collective effort. They tried their best to put the bike route signs in the most inconspicuous places. Sometimes all three of us had a hard time seeing the next sign to turn. Mostly macadam but sometimes gravel paths.
We rode 58 K today. We all felt pretty good and liked our bikes.
Flight was a typical Europe red eye. Paris airport (CDG) is huge. It seems you can’t walk from one terminal to another. Beth rented a car in Terminal 1 but we arrived in Terminal 2. It took about an hour to make that connection. We always seem to struggle with the rendezvous.
The whole drive was rainy. Thank goodness we weren’t riding.
Mark and I were sleeping most of the ride to Nantes (pronounced Nohnts – sort of). I know I butcher most of my French pronunciations – big surprise.
Hard time finding the hotel. Not as bad as Luxembourg City. Beautiful hotel- friendly barmaid. Don’t worry Mar. Bed was rock hard and we all had a wonderful sleep.
Highlights: No flats; no dog chases; Mark following my blog; planning the next trip and pushing for more family to join us; incredibly flat Netherlands and Flanders section of Belgium; great hotels especially Martins Klooster in Leuven, BE and Hotel La Malle Poste in Rochefort, Be; The miles and miles of bike paths; the French dinner in Rochefort and the bread everywhere.
Lowlights: The hills into and out of Rochefort and the rain everyday but our last. It was so nice having Sag Lady along so the clothes we weren’t wearing didn’t get soaked. We always had dry clothes to change into.
Luxembourg City is a blend of new and old. Construction cranes were all over the parts of Europe we traveled thru, especially Luxembourg City. The roads today were the best we were on this trip. Reminded me of the difference in roads in Florida compared to the rest of our trip cross country. We had another nice bike path along a river into Trier. Supposedly the oldest city in Germany and an old Roman city.
That’s it for this trip’s blog. Already looking forward to next year. Marcia, Nancy, Mark and Holly are coming. We’re gonna have a blast. I’m not sure if this is me or the beer talking.