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Loire Valley: Where is a good base for 2 day visit


We are planning to visit some of the nearby Chateaux in Loire Valley (Bloise and Amboise) for 2 days. Where is a good base to stay for 2 nights? Would it be Bloise, Amboise, or Tours? Should we stay 2 nights at the same place? or move as we go?

Are there anything to do at night in these places?


Posted by
7991 posts

We've stayed in Amboise twice and really like the town. It's pretty much in the middle of the Loire so we chose it for the convenience of visiting many chateaux. Amboise is on the river, is charming and very walkable... it has many restaurants, fun shops, and Leonardo di Vinci's last home, which I recommend visiting.

Blois (no "e" and the "s" is silent) is a very nice little city, also on the river, with a wonderful chateau... but I wouldn't choose to stay there, only because I like smaller towns. Same reason why we didn't choose Tours, it's a city and not as well located for our purposes as Amboise.

We've stayed in two hotels in Amboise... Hotel Belle Vue which I do not recommend (dirty, moldly, unfriendly owner - may have improved since we were there though) and Hotel Manoir les Minimes which I highly recommend but it's expensive. TripAdvisor is a good source for finding hotels.

Some chateaux have a light and sound show at night... Google for info on that.

Posted by
4765 posts

If you're driving, which I'd recommend, Amboise is easier to get in and out of than Blois or Tours, and has plenty of places to stay and eat. (As for "at night," what I do is pretty much eat, then read, then sleep. Is there something else to do?)

Tours is more central if you want to see places west of there, like Villandry, Azay le Rideau, Chinon, Angers etc. But with only two days I'd focus on the many great places east of Tours.

Posted by
172 posts

Thanks everyone for the suggestion.

Also, is it better to avoid going on Sunday since most of the restaurants/stores are closed on Sunday? How about Saturdays??