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Fall under the charm… For garden-lovers – experts or otherwise – the Loire Valley Tourist Board has recently published a new brochure entitled "Destination jardins en région Centre". Historic, contemporary, medieval, vegetable, botanical – this brochure has selected 24 wonderful gardens for you to discover in the Loire Valley, Berry and Eure et Loir regions. There is a page for each garden, and features on special moments in the year and organised events, all of them bound to make you want to spend some time with friends or family in these gardens, unique, exceptional places to be discovered and rediscovered each season…
Majestic and free, the Loire River has modelled the landscape of the Loire Valley. Proof of this is to be found in the spillways protecting the farming area and the cave dwellings dug out of the rock.
On the banks of the Loire, mainly between Chaumont-sur-Loire and Candes-St-Martin, a well-kept secret now has other uses: the cave galleries of ‘tuffeau' stone dug out of the rock, formerly used to build châteaux, are nowadays remarkable wine cellars and mushroom cellars. Some have even been converted into guest houses or hotels, allowing you to stay in a cosy, magical place, for example in Rochecorbon or Azay-le-Rideau.
Other legacies of the past: the Loire river trade.
Relive the era of boatmen aboard their traditional flat-bottomed boats going by the names of gabarres, futreaux and toues, and hear all about their history, recounted by a handful of enthusiasts. You might smile at the many urinals along the Bréhémont quaysides: a rather singular legacy of the sailors!
Imagine St Dyé-sur-Loire at the time when the boats docked to deliver the materials required for construction of Château de Chambord.
All these references to the past make the Loire an out-of-the-ordinary river ...