From Saumur to Chalonnes

The circuit between Saumur and Chalonnes sur Loire, covering the last stretch to the west of the classified perimeter of the Loire Valley, presents another face of the area, one more focused on outdoor activities and nature (walking, cycling, horseback riding or cruises on the Loire).

Saumur

Saumur (49400)

Saumur and its surroundings possess an abundant and varied cultural and natural heritage. Castles, abbeys, mills and caves make up this beautiful landscape between the Loire and the vineyards, which you can explore on foot, bike or horse ... because the history of Saumur is primarily associated with the cavalry and riding through its prestigious institutions ...


Tourist Office
8 bis quai Carnot, 49400 Saumur
Website - tel : 02 41 40 20 60.
Open daily :

October through April, Monday to Saturday : 9:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. / 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. ; Sunday and public holidays: 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. (closed on Sunday from November to January).
May and September, Monday to Saturday : 9:15 a.m. to 7 p.m. ; Sunday and public holidays: 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. / 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. 

June, July and August, Monday to Saturday : 9:15 a.m. to 7 p.m. ; Sunday and public holidays: 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. 

The Tourist Office offers guided tours of Saumur by Segway or by touristic train.


Outdoor market on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.


Maison des vins d’Anjou et de Saumur
7 Quai Carnot, 49400 Saumur
Tel: 02 41 38 45 83.
Free access.
Open fom Tuesday to Saturday: 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m./ 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Initiation to the tasting and oenological animations throughout the year.

Located closed to the Tourist Office and facing the Loire River, the Anjou and Saumur wines House is a must for discovering the wines and vineyards of Anjou and Saumur. A selection is made among the most representative wines of the various vineyards of Anjou-Saumur.


Château de Saumur
49400 Saumur
Website 
- tel : 02 41 40 24 40.
Price in July and August:

Full price / reduced price: €7 / €5. Free for children under 7 years old. Family package : €20.

Prices from April to June  and from September to November 3rd :

Full price / reduced price: €6 / €4. Free for children under 7 years old. Family package : €18.

Open from April to November 3 :

April to mid-June and mid-September to early November , Tuesday to Sunday : 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. / 2 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. 

From June 15th to September 15th, daily : 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Tours in French and English. Tour documents in French and English. Many events, exhibitions and shows for the whole family.

History
Overlooking the Loire, the existence of Château de Saumur is mentioned in a text as early as the year 968.
At the beginning of the 11th century, Foulque Nerra, Count of Anjou, seized the castle. It remained in his family until 1203 and the defeat of John Lackland.
Starting from 1360, the fortress became a castle. It was widely expanded, lit by numerous windows and even gained in height. Over the following centuries the castle underwent a few adjustments. In the late 16th and early 17th century a new fortification, located on the city side, was erected. In the 19th century the palace became a state prison and an arms and ammunition warehouse, which in turn saved it from destruction. Finally, in 1906, it was chosen as the location for the municipal museum of the city and large-scale restorations were begun and still continue today.

The museum

The museum of the city is located in the apartments of the Dukes of Anjou and the abbey. Through didactic museum displays, it shows a collection devoted to decorative arts from the Middle Ages up to the 19th century (furniture, sculptures, paintings, tapestries, ceramics ... ) and a collection dedicated to harnessing and riding throughout the world (saddles, stirrups, bits, uniform ... ).

Access to the belvedere: Panorama on the Loire. Visit of 30 minutes, every day in July and August. Price: €3.

For children
Game booklet for children from 7 to 12 years old: «Inquiry at the Château de Saumur! ».


Église Notre-Dame de Nantilly
Rue de Nantilly, 49400 Saumur

02 41 83 30 31.
Opening times: Summer: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ; Winter: 9  a.m. to 5 p.m.


Although there was an earlier church from the 9th century on the site, the present church was built in Romanesque style at the time of the establishment of the Abbey of Fontevraud. Its construction was completed in the 15th century by a vast Gothic aisle. It is the oldest church in Saumur.



The nave was built in 20 years, from 1100 to 1120. It surprises by its proportions : 17 meters high and 13 meters wide, which is very unusual for Romanesque building techniques of the time. The choir was completed in 1150 and remains in its original state, which is not the case of the transepts, rebuilt in the 15th century and restored in the 19th century. The bell tower was added at the end of the 15th century and it houses a great bell and a smaller one.

The magnificent organ was built between 1685 and 1690. Today it retains its organ case and original instrumental structure (unique in the region).


The beautiful tapestries exhibited inside the church during the summer (July and August) are exceptional. They date from the 12th and 13th centuries and are dedicated to the Virgin. They alone merit a tour of the building.


Saint John Chapel
Rue Corneille, 49400 Saumur

Tel : 02 41 83 30 31.
Opening according to the exhibition schedule.

This chapel was built in the early 13th century by the Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem . This is probably one of the greatest achievements of Gothic art in the region. It now houses exhibitions of contemporary artists and antique tapestries.


Église Notre-Dame des Ardilliers
Place Notre-Dame des Ardilliers, 49400 Saumur

02 41 83 30 31.
Open every day, except on Sunday morning:
In the summer: 8.30 a.m. to 12 p.m./ 2 p.m. to 6.30 p.m. (continuous day in July and August).
In winter: 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. / 2 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
In July and August: guided tours of Notre-Dame des Ardilliers on Mondays and Thursdays at 2 p.m. and 5 p.m.

In the 15th century, a resident of the town discovered a pietà (sculpture of Mary holding Jesus in her lap) in a field near a source already renowned for its healing properties. It was rapidly worshipped and attributed many miracles. A chapel dedicated to the pietà was built in 1553 and the site became an important place of pilgrimage dedicated to Mary. In 1614, the large architectural ensemble that is visible today was built. Of note in particular is the impressive Baroque altarpiece of the main altar.


Musée de la Cavalerie de Saumur
Place Charles de Foucauld, 49400 Saumur
Website - Tel: 02 41 83 69 23.
Full price / reduced price: €6 / €4. Free for children under 7 years old.
 Family package: €17.
Open from April to October:
April, May and October, closed on Friday: Monday to Thursday: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday and Sunday: 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
June and September, closed on Friday: Monday to Thursday: 11 a. m. to 6 p.m., Saturday and Sunday: 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
July and August, every day: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

This museum is housed in the prestigious buildings of the old stables of the Cadre Noir. It retraces the history of the French cavalry from the 15th century to the present day.


Le Cadre Noir de Saumur
Institut Français du Cheval et de l’Équitation
49400 Saumur
Website - tel : 02 41 53 50 60.
Price for a guided tour (1 hour) :

Full price / reduced price: €8 / €7 / 4 to 16 years old: €6. Free for children under 4 years old. Family package : €25.

Open from mid-February to early November :

Guided tours are scheduled Monday to Friday between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. (departure of the last visit). Closed Saturday afternoons, Sunday, Monday mornings and public holidays.

 Guided tour in English available in summer.

With your guide, discover the daily operation of the Riding School (large arena, stables, saddlery ... ), its mission and the history of this prestigious institution.

Opportunity to attend a performance by the horse-riding troop, the Cadre Noir de Saumur.


Centre équestre Saumur-Petit Souper
Avenue de l’École Nationale d’Équitation, 49400 Saumur
Website - tel : 02 41 50 29 90.

Located near the Ecole Nationale d'Equitation (National School of Equitation), ideal for an equestrian experience. Suitable for all ages (3 years old and up), visitors can learn to horseback ride, take courses or enroll children in day camps during the school holidays.


Le Dolmen de Bagneux
56 Rue du Dolmen 
Bagneux, 49400 Saumur
Website - tel : 02 41 50 23 02.
Full price / reduced price : €4 / €2. Free for children under 6 years old.

Opening times:
January through June and September through December, daily, except Wednesday : 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

July and August, daily : 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. 



The Dolmen of Bagneux is an extraordinary megalithic monument erected 5000 years ago. Composed of 15 slabs weighing more than 500 tonnes, it is one of the architectural jewels of the Neolithic era.

Prehistoric tools and explanatory panels illustrate the visit of the site.


Le Musée du Champignon (for the family)
Route de Gennes, 49400 Saumur

Website - tel : 02 41 50 31 55.
Full price / reduced price : €9 / €8/ 6 to 18 years old: €7. Free for children under 6 years old.

Combined ticket includes Pierre et Lumière and the Musée du champignon :

Full price / reduced price: €15 / €14 / 6 to 18 years old: €12. Free for children under 6 years old.

Open daily from mid-February to November 11th :

February, March, October and November : 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. ; April through September : 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. 

Tour documents in 4 languages​​.



The many cave formations along the Loire Valley help to promote the growth of many mushrooms. This culture is an integral part of the heritage of the Loire Valley. During the visit (exploration of the mushroom farm, participation in workshops) visitors will discover the many secrets of mushrooms ...


Pierre et Lumière (for the family)
Route de Gennes, 49400 Saumur
Website - tel : 02 41 50 70 04.
Full price / reduced price : €9/ €8/ 6 to 18 years old: €7. Free for children under 6 years old.

Combined ticket includes Pierre et Lumière and the Musée du champignon :

Full price / reduced price: €15 / €14 / 6 to 18 years old: €12. Free for children under 6 years old.

Open every day from February to November 11th :

February, March, October, November : 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. ; April through September : 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. 

Activities and sculpture workshops for children. Cellar temperature is 15° C (60°F), be sure to bring a jacket.



Pierre et Lumière (Stone and Light) is a miniature park that pays tribute to the soft stone that helped build the castles of the Loire: tuffeau stone. During the tour visitors will discover twenty sculptures carved into the rock: churches, villages, castles .... sure to delight young and old.


Bicycle rental

Véloc’Agis
Garage solidaire Agis Auto
388 Rue Robert Amy, 49400 Saumur
Tel : 06 08 11 88 68.

Détours de Loire
10 Route de Rouen, 49400 Saumur
Website - tel : 02 41 53 01 01.
Détours de Loire allows you to rent a bike at one location and drop it off at another, thanks to its many rental points. Everything is provided for crossing the Loire by bicycle. Many possible rental formulas.


Boat rides on the Loire

Compagnie saumuroise de navigation Saint-Nicolas
Les docks de la Loire, 5 Rue Bonnemère, 49400 Saumur
Website - tel : 06 63 22 87 00.
Open from April through October. Departure : Quai Lucien Gautier, opposite the City Hall of Saumur.

Shuttle Saumur / Montsoreau
« Coche d’eau » 
(Water coach)
This shuttle service allows you to go to the château de Montsoreau on the Loire.
Discovery Cruise

50-minute narrated cruise.

Pôle Nautique
Base de Loisirs Millocheau

1 rue Eric Tabarly, 49400 Saumur

Website - tel : 02 41 51 17 65.
Opening times: July and August, daily. The rest of the year : Tuesday to Saturday.

Canoe Rental, with or without a guide. Discover the Regional Nature Park of Loire-Anjou-Touraine. Several routes are possible, from half-day to multi-day trips.


Eating

The selection of restaurants proposed below consists of restaurants that offer a good price/quality value. “Formule” corresponds to a lunch special with a starter and a main course, or a main course and a dessert. The “menus” usually consist of a starter, a main course and a dessert, for lunch or dinner.

L’Alchimiste – cuisine with fresh products
6 Rue de Lorraine, 49400 Saumur
Website - tel : 02 41 67 65 18.
"Formule" : €19. "Menu" : €22.

Le Pot de Lapin – cuisine from the market
37 Rue Rabelais, 49400 Saumur
Tel : 02 41 67 12 86.
Main course around €17.

Les Ménestrels – cuisine with seasonal products
11 Rue Raspail, 49400 Saumur
Website - tel : 02 41 67 71 10.
"Lunch formule" : €19.50. "Menu" from €36.

L'Escargot – French traditional cuisine
30 Rue du Maréchal Leclerc, 49400 Saumur
Tel: 02 41 51 20 88.
"Menu" from €20.

L'Aromate – Seasonal cuisine
42 Rue du Maréchal Leclerc, 49400 Saumur
Website - Tel: 02 41 51 31 45.
"Lunch formule" €16. "Dinner menu" from €22.

Le Gambetta – Gourmet cuisine
12 Rue Gambetta, 49400 Saumur
Website - Tél : 02 41 67 66 66.
"Lunch menu" during the week €29. "Dinner menu" from €36.

Saint Mathurin

Saint Mathurin sur Loire (49250)


Tourist Office
24 Levée du Roi René, 49250 Saint-Mathurin-sur-Loire
Website - tel : 02 41 57 01 82.
Open all year :

April, May, June and September, Tuesday to Sunday: 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. / 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
July and August, daily: 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. / 2 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
From October to March, Tuesday to Friday and Sunday: 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Outdoor market on Tuesdays.


Maison de Loire Anjou - Loire Odyssée
20 Levée du Roi René, 49250 Saint Mathurin sur Loire
Website - tel : 02 41 57 37 55.

Full price / reduced price : €5 / €2.50
Opening times :

April through June and September, Tuesday to Sunday : 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. / 2:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.
July and August, open daily : 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. / 2 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. ;
October through March, Wednesday to Sunday : 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Accessible to those with disabilities.

The Maison de Loire Anjou offers visitors an informative look at the river, its fauna and flora, as well as its history and its intimate connection with mankind. The scenography is fun and educational.

Self-guided or guided tours. Many activities. Film.


For children (7 years and up)
 :
A game of puzzles and questions lead children to answer the question: Is the Loire a wild river?


Poney Club l'Etiage
49250 Saint Mathurin sur Loire
Tel: 02 41 57 33 24.
Open: July and August.

Pony rides on the Loire for children (accompanied by an adult) 6 to 14 years old.

Practical guide to Angers

Angers (49000)

Angers is not part of the World Heritage site. The city, however, is mentioned because it is an access point to the Loire Valley. The tourist attractions of the city are not mentioned, however the practical aspects are listed to better organize your stay in the Loire Valley.


Tourist Office
7 place Kennedy, 49000  Angers
Website - tel : 02 41 23 50 00.
Open daily, all year round:

May, June and September : Monday :10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. ; Tuesday to Saturday : 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. ; Sunday and holidays: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

July and August : Monday :10 a.m. to 7 p.m. ; Tuesday to Saturday : 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. ; Sunday and holidays: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
October through April: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday : 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. ; Tuesday : 1:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. ;  Sunday and holidays: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The Tourist Office offers discoveries of the Loire by river shuttle, canoe or hot air balloon. For those traveling by bike, the Tourist Office has information on the many bicycle paths of the Loire. In the summer, the Tourist Office also provides bicycle rental.


Transport

Getting to Angers

By car
From the south : Highway A87, exit Angers Centre

From the north, east and west : Highway A11, exit Angers Centre

Nearby classified sites

Mont Saint Michel : 191 km (118 mi), time: 2 hours, 50 minutes

Abbey of Saint Savin : 181 km (112 mi), time: 2 hours, 50 minutes

Chartres: 210 km (130 mi), time: 2 hours, 5 minutes

By plane
Angers Loire Airport
49140 Marce
Website - tel : 02 41 33 50 20.
25 kilometers and 15 minutes from Angers airport taxi

Connections to Nice, London
Nantes Atlantique Airport
44340 Bouguenais
Website - tel : 08 92 56 88 00.

By train
Gare SNCF
Place de la Gare, 49000 Angers
Website - tel : 36 35.

By bus
Gare routière
Esplanade de la gare SNCF, 49000 Angers
Tel : 08 20 16 00 49.
The bus station is close to the train station.


Bicycle rental
At the Tourist Office of Angers tourism from May through September.

Vert Event
23 Rue Paul Bert, 49100 Angers
Website - tel : 02 72 72 54 44.
Possibility of on-site delivery. Professional rental and repair for the "Loire à vélo" itinerary.


Espace deux roues
45 rue Beaurepaire, 49000 Angers
Website - tel : 02 41 87 69 46.


Eating

The selection of restaurants proposed below consists of restaurants that offer a good price/quality value. “Formule” corresponds to a lunch special with a starter and a main course, or a main course and a dessert. The “menus” usually consist of a starter, a main course and a dessert, for lunch or dinner.

Villa Toussaint – inventive cuisine
43 Rue Toussaint, 49100 Angers
Website - tel : 02 41 88 15 64.
Main course around €18.

Le Petit Comptoir – Traditional french cuisine
40 Rue david d'Angers, 49100 Angers
Tel: 02 41 43 32 00.
"Lunch formule" during the week €16.30. "Dinner menu" from €31.

Chez Rémi – cuisine from fresh products
5 Rue des 2 Haies 49100 Angers
Tel: 02 41 24 95 44.
"Lunch formule" from €18. "Dinner menu" from €31.

Une Ile – Gourmet cuisine
9 Rue Max Richard, 49100 Angers
Website - Tel: 02 41 19 14 48.
"Lunch menu" €38. "Dinner menu" from €55.

Le Favre d’Anne – inspired local cuisine
21 Boulevard Foch, 49100 Angers
Website - tel : 02 41 36 12 12.
"Lunch formule" from €38. "Dinner Menu" : €70.

Chalonnes

Chalonnes sur Loire (49290)

Like Sully sur Loire to the east, Chalonnes sur Loire is at the limit of the westernmost area of the classified site. This village, located on an arm of the Loire, is an ideal place to discover the landscapes and explore its fauna and flora.


Tourist Office
Place de l'Hôtel de Ville, 49290 Chalonnes sur Loire
Website - tel : 02 41 78 26 21.
Opening times:

April, May, June and September, Tuesday to Saturday : 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. / 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
 Sunday: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
July and August : Monday to Saturday : 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. / 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. ; Sunday : 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

October through March, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday : 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
The Tourist Office offers walks between the Loire Valley and the Coteaux du Layon.
 


Le petit train touristique
49290 Chalonnes sur Loire

Website - tel : 02 41 78 25 62.
Tour in the village and the surrounding vineyards. Anjou wine tasting offered.

Day package available to be combined with other attractions. Reservations are required.


Cruises on the Loire

Louet Evasion
Le Champs Du Bois
Route Rochefort, 49290 Chalonnes sur Loire
Website - tel : 06 81 87 64 86.
Open from April through September.

Louet Evasion offers day and overnight trips on the Loire and Louet by canoe or kayak. Tours possible by the hour or for several days.

Passeur de Loire
Le Port, 49170 La Possonnière
Tel: 06 30 05 55 40.
Service available in July and August, on Saturdays : 2:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and Sunday : 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. / 2:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. 

Price : €1 per person and €0.50 per bike 

Pedestrians and cyclists board the ferry at the port of La Possonnière or from the vallée de Rochefort sur Loire. The river is crossed on a futreau, a traditional, regional boat. A unique way to navigate the Loire ... for a few moments, at least.


Bicycle rental

Cycles Lefrançois

2 Avenue Jean Robin, 49290 Chalonnes sur Loire
Website – tel : 02 41 47 00 90.
City, mountain and electric bike rental for adults and children

Cycles Gouy Jocelyn

12 allée des Fauvettes, 49170 La Possonnière

Tel : 02 41 39 18 89  or 06 28 43 74 23.
Mountain and electric bike rental

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