Europa Day 14


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May 26th 2012
Published: May 26th 2012
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Day 14 and this is 2 weeks away.......

A day in the Loire valley doing the castles here. But first things first - washing. Find a coin laundry very close tot the hotel we are staying and all systems go, until we can't read the instructions.....

Luckily the man in the adjoining laundry (think he runs both) gives us change for the machines and smiles - most of the time. While we wait, we drive to a little village not too far away and get a coffee and drink for me from a bar (at 1100) - no beer but tempting. This with some nice chocolate croissant and other pastry thing for Chris and we are back to the washing. After many requests for change to fill the machines, the washing is completed and we are finally off to the castles - Viallandry the 1st port of call.

This has a chateau and gardens which are not too far from where we are staying. Nice little villages on the way and then we are there amongst all the Winnebagos (only seem to have seen them for the last few days but boy are they here in numbers).

Gardens are spectacular and the chateau is also stunning - way different to those we have seen around Paris - much lighter in its decorating and open spaces. The garden is a picture of organization - all set out in geometric fashion and very stunningly planted with colors, etc.

We finally leave and head towards the Azay-le-Rideau chateau not far from where we are. Stella directs us nicely and we are about to turn the last corner when we are stopped by a Mercedes V8 CLS 63 Biturbo (extremely flash new model sports version) dressed up as a wedding car - and dressed is an understatement - flowers down the side of the car, on the doors inside the car and ribbons on the bonnet and over the roof - almost like a Vietnamese wedding procession.

Turns out they were going to the same place for the wedding.

This castle not as impressive as the first but a lot older - we are talking 13th and 16th century stuff here - way past our date ranges. Interesting but no match to Villandry as far as we are concerned.

Off we go and decide to visit Chinon - little town which is a wine producing centre - interesting place by a huge river with funny little boats everywhere. Many punt like boats with dudes pushing them with poles to get up the river.

Enough fun for one day, back to the hotel for dinner - the waiter recognises us from last night and we get good service with a smile and nice food so off to bed for tomorrows adventure deeper intot the south of France.

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