This tour was based from Chitenay, a small village just south of Blois. We travelled by plane to Paris, then RER and metro to the Gare d'Austerlitz, to catch the train via Orléans to Blois.
The Loire tour went via St Aignan, Montrichard (pictured, on the Cher) and Rilly, (on the Loire), for an 8-night tour, skipping one stop (it differs each year) for a 6-night tour.
August '93 we did the Loire et Cher tour, the shorter version going via Montrichard (right) on the Cher, up to Rilly on the Loire. This tour is geared to chateau visiting, and covers generally easy terrain (the only serious slopes are to be found as you leave the river valleys).
As this was out first tour - and done in a sudden burst of blazing weather at the end of August, we didn't venture too far afield on this tour. The free day at Montrichard we spent heading along the river to the chateau at Chenonceaux, the famous one built across the Loire. On the next day, as the leg to Rilly was only about 10 miles, we made the tour south to the chateau at Montpaupon (pictured) in the first part of the day, spent the heat of the day (3-5pm) on a cruise along the Cher, and only then made the trek to the next night's stay.
At Rilly, we did the obvious day trip to Amboise, where one can visit the house built by Francis I for Leonardo da Vinci on his retirement. The last leg back to base we headed along the Loire, skipping the chateau at Chevignon (we'd rather overdosed on chateaux by this point) crossing to the north through Chouzy-sur-Cisse and into Blois for lunch.