Canoeing on the Cher – a castle from a unique perspective

Take an amazing trip on the river Cher and explore one of the most special castles of the Loire region from a unique perspective. Get in your Canadian canoe and enjoy a real apéro-châto!

If you’re staying in the Loire Valley, it’s definitely worth spending an afternoon in Civray-de-Touraine (near the lively student city of Tours) to see the Cher Valley by canoe to explore. This guarantees an active afternoon full of nature and heritage, because outside the cities the Cher flows, just like the Loire, through beautiful natural areas. Along the rivers you will come across more than a hundred castles. Botanical gardens, landscaped parks or unspoilt natural areas can often be found around these castles.

The Cher Valley by Canoe

A canoe trip is the perfect way to experience the river and see the castle from a different point of view. Especially the reflections in the water are beautiful to see and photograph. At the Canoë Company you can rent a Canadian canoe, ideal for an outing with family or friends. Under a wonderfully blue sky, with the heat of the sun’s rays and a light, refreshing breeze, you cross the river Cher on your way to the famous castle bridge. Enjoy the freedom of your canoe trip through the beautifully green valley, paddling along the natural and architectural heritage of the Cher Valley. If you are warm, take a refreshing dip in the Cher.

At this point, in the early years of the Second World War (until the end of 1942), the Cher formed the line of demarcation between the occupied part and the ‘free zone’ of Vichy France. Via the castle one could reach the free part of France from the north side.

Famille en canoe sur le Cher, devant le château de Chenonceau - J.-F.  Souchard - CRT Centre-Val de Loire

Famille en canoe sur le Cher © JF Souchard – CRT Centre-Val de Loire

Le Chateau de Chenonceau

It castle of Chenonceau is one of the most special castles of the Loire region because the castle is situated over the water of the river Cher. Since the famous castle, dating from the fifteenth century, had the estate across the river, a bridge 60 meters long and 6 meters wide was built over the Cher. In 1577 the bridge was covered with a gallery.

As you paddle, the splendor of this architectural gem gradually appears on the horizon. Take the time to stop and it Chateau des Dames admired from all angles. From the water you will undoubtedly have the most spectacular view of Chenonceau Castle! And if you canoe under the château through the arch on the garden side, you’ll see the stairs that lead to the kitchens and give direct access to the river from the castle. look at the Chenonceau’s website for an up-to-date overview of opening times and buying entrance tickets.

Le château de Chenonceau et son reflet dans les eaux du Cher.  - Photo credits: A. Verger_CRT Centre-Val de Loire

Le château de Chenonceau © A. Verger – CRT Centre-Val de Loire

Organize your own French apéro

The afternoon is the perfect time to whip out your Bistrot’Quai ‘apéro-châto’ basket for a unique impromptu picnic in an exceptional setting! The generous basket is packed with local terrines and pâtés, country bread and vegetable salad, not to mention a bottle of fine wine. Snacks and drinks and nice people to share it with under the arches of the castle of Chenonceau. As the sun casts its golden rays on the castle, the Cher Valley takes on a dreamy air. Time to return to Civray-de-Touraine.

Le bar à terrines Bistrot'Quai, lieu de détente et de restauration sur les bords du Cher - A. Verger_CRT Centre-Val de Loire

Arrange a picnic basket from the terrine bar Bistrot’Quai, on the banks of the Cher © A. Verger – CRT Centre-Val de Loire

Canoeing on the Cher yourself?

Discover the Cher for yourself aboard a canoe. Canoe company Cher rents Canadian canoes and also organizes multi-day trips on the Cher.

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