September 15, 2014

Europe Trip-Loire Valley

Saturday, August 9th-Loire Valley

Probably our most favorite, or close to most favorite, part of the trip was our time in Loire Valley, France. We left Paris early Saturday morning and hopped on a train to Tours. We had reserved a manual car, which provided lots of entertainment in itself. TJ did great, once we figured out how to put it into reverse and leave. :)

Loire Valley is best known for it's incredible chateaus and beautiful French countryside. We began our chateau tour with Château de Villandry, which is best known for it's gardens. You'll see why. Oh my goodness, this place felt like a dream!






Most chateaus are in tiny, picturesque little towns, so after visiting we would stroll around town.
Here's how this lunch order went:
TJ: Bonjour, jambon-fromage, s'il vous plait
 Me: Bonjour! Do you speak English?
French Woman: No.
Me: {panicked, searching for a familiar sandwich I could eat}eh...tomate et fromage?
French Woman: blank stare.
Me: deux! {points to ham and cheese sandwich}
Please note I don't actually eat ham, although I did that day. Please also note that I do not expect French people to speak English, but was caught off guard having been able to mix-and-match French and English to get by in Belgium and Paris. I loved that in these small towns there wasn't any of that! 

How amazing is this? This is a "vending machine" which contains produce straight from the farm next door! Loved this.

Those pears were delicious, and we carried that little crate around with us all weekend. So good.
Next, we headed to Château d'Azay-Le-Rideau.


Wild sunflowers on the side of the road. Oh my.

The biggest, probably most well-known chateau we saw was Château de Chenonceau.




We stayed at Chateau de Pray and it was right out of a storybook. 




French wine (beer for some), appetizers and champagne for cocktail hour. 





We had the best meal. Every little detail was perfect, and it lasted three hours. We didn't have anywhere else we wanted to be.



                                  ...and we were the last ones in the restaurant. C'est la vie!
Sunday, August 10th                      The next day we headed out.
 We stopped at one more chateau before catching the train to Paris.


 a "tomato bar" is my kind of bar

 I can't even talk about these heirloom tomatoes that were picked from the garden and put straight on our plate. My mouth is watering thinking about them!

 Back in Paris, we were pretty tired from the all of the travel. We wandered around the city like worn out robots, but we enjoyed what was left of our vacation strolling around the city, eating an early dinner and crepes for dessert before taking a train to Brussels.

 Last picture of the trip was when we got to Brussels, TJ wanted to take me to a famous fry-maker (at 11 pm, mind you) and I didn't complain. This was a trip we'll always cherish!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Love all of these beautiful pictures! So glad to hear you had a lovely trip in Europe!

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