At over 1,000 km in length, the Loire is the longest purely French river. It is also considered to be the “most French” of all rivers: nowhere is France so much France as along the Loire and in the Loire Valley.
From the Massif Central to the Atlantic:
The Loire rises in the Massif Central in the relative center of France and then flows into the Atlantic. On the way you will pass famous cities, of which Nantes, Tours or Orléans have illustrious names and are attractive excursion destinations. If you are hiking through the Loire Valley, it is definitely worth visiting at least one of the large cities along the river for a longer and more thorough visit. Above all, however, very different landscapes are measured, two of which are particularly attractive:
The hunting ground of the kings
To the southeast of the Loire valley are the dark forests of the Soulogne. These forests, which are still largely untouched today, show wild France in all its beauty. In earlier times it was the privilege of the French and European nobility to hunt deer and other large game here. Today people from all over the world enjoy beautiful nature in natural reserves, where no one wants to harm the animals.
Further west along the valley the Loire extends
The valley of the castles
For centuries, the Loire Valley was the center of France and the seat of kings and high nobility as well as the French clergy. Well over 300 castles and fortresses line the Loire valley to the west, of which around 100 are still accessible today: It is worthwhile not to take a holiday on the Loire just once …
In Tours, for example, you can visit imposing monasteries from the late Middle Ages, when the city was in full bloom.
The garden of France
The lovely area along the Loire is known as the “Garden of France”. Wine is grown everywhere on the gentle slopes and testifies to the fertility of the earth along the wide river. Culinary delicacies and excellent wines pamper the senses of hikers in an area that has to be visited.
Antibes is located between Cannes and Nice on the picturesque Cote d` Azur in southeastern France. The place is located between the Alps and the Mediterranean and is one of the popular destinations for holidaymakers traveling to the French Mediterranean coast. Since Antibes is one of the oldest cities in the region and has a very varied museum landscape, it is also interesting for study trips on the subject of architecture and art.
One of the sights of Antibes is the well-preserved, winding old town which is protected from the sea by a high wall. The connection between medieval architecture and Provencal style elements is very interesting. The special buildings include the cathedral with a rosary altar, the massive Fort Carèe and Port Vauban, one of the largest marinas in Europe, which is directly connected to the old town. The original Cap d`Antibes peninsula with many beautiful viewpoints is also worth a visit.
Picasso Museum in Antibes
The Picasso Museum Antibes is located on the edge of the old town, just a few steps from the seaside. The world famous exhibition is located in the Chateau Grimaldi, which was built in the 12th century.
The fortress-like castle was the residence of the aristocratic Grimaldi family for almost 300 years and passed into the possession of the French crown in 1608. Over the centuries the building was used as an official residence and barracks. The Musèe Grimaldi has existed since 1925. After Pablo Picasso used a studio there for six months, he donated 23 paintings to the community and thus himself laid the foundation stone for the Picasso Museum, which opened on December 27, 1966. In 1990 the museum received numerous other works from the estate of the Spanish master and thus has a very extensive and personal collection of Picasso’s works.
The commune of Les Baux-de-Provence is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Provence, France. The village near Avignon, dominated by an impressive castle, is considered one of the most beautiful villages in France. The huge castle, which extends over an area of seven hectares, is located on a rocky outcrop and is the largest attraction in the entire region. You should definitely plan a visit to the castle when visiting the region. From here you also have a breathtaking view of the entire region with its extensive olive groves and vineyards. The idyllic town, which attracts thousands of tourists from all over Europe every year, is also characterized by narrow streets, small restaurants and small, hidden artist studios.
Alpilles Natural Park: Breathtaking nature
The municipality of Les Baux-de-Provence, which has a total of only 400 inhabitants, is located in the middle of the 51,000 hectare Alpilles Natural Park, which is known far beyond the borders of France. The nature park, which, in addition to some large forests and fields, mainly includes the mountain range of the Alpilles, offers numerous rare plants and animals a perfect habitat. The rugged rock formations attract not only many people looking for relaxation but also many climbers and hikers from home and abroad every year.
Eze is a small picturesque mountain village in Provence in south-eastern France. The 2,500-inhabitant village between Nice and Monaco, which is considered one of the most beautiful villages on the Côte d’Azur, is a very popular travel destination with tourists from home and abroad. The numerous narrow streets with their many small shops and rustic restaurants invite you to take a relaxing walk.
Exotic garden and breathtaking view
The most popular destination in Eze is a small mountain on top of which the exotic garden “Jardin Exotique” is located. Here visitors can get an insight into the breathtaking flora of the Côte d’Azur. In addition to numerous different cacti and other exotic plants, countless colorful butterflies can also be observed here. There is also a viewing platform in the garden from which you can enjoy a breathtaking view of the entire Côte d’Azur. The mountain is surrounded by the remains of a medieval castle. In addition, the small church in the center should not be missed when visiting Eze.
Medieval festival “Eze d’Antan”
If you travel to Eze in autumn, you should definitely not miss the “Eze d’Antan” medieval festival. Here the Middle Ages come to life again with numerous medieval stalls, traditional handicrafts and every art and culture.