Cycle Path Psychopath part 5 – Wine, Cheese and Castles

Suevres to Limeray
Friday 10 October
Fog engulfed the Loire as I headed off this morning, backtracking a little as I wanted to visit my hosts’ friend, and visit Chateaux Chambord. I rode over to Domaine de Croc du Merle at Muides-sur-Loire, arriving as they opened. I asked for my hosts friend, who offered wine tasting? Mmmm wine and cheese for breakfast? Why not! He explained that their cheese was all from happy cows, that the milking system was fully automatic, and cows wandered into be milked whenever they felt like it. The system produces more, and better quality milk, and consequently very delicious cheese. I tried 7 wines, and ended up buying a bottle of a Chardonnay Sauvignon blend, and a cheese – lunch for the next few days.

Wobbling towards Chateaux Chambord, I rode past a of group army men, one of which recognize my shell and wished me a good Camino. Arriving at the Chateaux, I took a wrong turn, and circled the fairytale castle in the fog before finding somewhere to park my bike. The chateau is a World Heritage French Renaissance marvel constructed by King Francis 1 of France around 1519. A quick visit with a stamp in my Credencial, then on my bike… Only to get lost exiting the castle, I circled again, and again before finally finding the road to Blois, passing a couple of women cyclists several times. We ended up, on the same road, and seems they had been lost too, and were heading in the same direction. Finally back on the marked path, only to be interrupted by some road construction and a detour. I asked directions in broken French, and got us back on the correct path. I soon left them, as I had further to go after my, ahem, breakfast detour.

Arriving at Blois, I regretted that I hadn’t arrange to spend the night there, as it looked quite magical across the river, but I had booked to stay at a campsite further along the Loire, at Limeray. It was much further than I had anticipated, so pushed the pedals a fast as I could to make it before I got dark. With detours and getting lost I ended up doing 88 km that day, the most so far. I arrived at the small campsite, that was not quite what I had expected… Situated between a busy highway and a train line, it ended up being the nosiest night in had spent in France! The facility’s were good and clean, and after I set up my tent, had a lovely hot shower I heated up a quiche I had bought earlier and opened my bottle of wine, before snuggling down for an early night.

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