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The next morning the tour finally started. Tourguides Jan and Angela took nine riders from the United States and two riders from Cyprus out of Paris to explore the northwestern region of France with them. Every rider was looking very much forward to start the ride.
France has some curiosities to offer ... this is a fir tree that has its branches growing downwards. It almost resembles a mysterious creature's home
Even though we are nowhere near the French region of La Provence ...
... we found some lavender fields and the smell was bewitching. Here are our flower power girls Janice, Sharon, Shanique and Stefani
The Chateau de Maintenon
It became so hot in the afternoon that we had to have a cool down break before our next highlight of the day. Shanique, Sharon and Ken are enjoying their cold beverages
And here we have a familiar face on Edelweiss tours John from the USA
Janice and Jim happy in the shade
Stefani and Theodor from Cyprus - welcome to the Edelweiss family
The main highlight of the day was Chateau de Chambord, the largest of the many castles situated on the river Loire. It has been built in the early 16th century by King Franz I., and has mainly served as a hunting castle.
Along the way to our destination we caught an impressive view of the city of Blois with its beautiful medieval buildings
After the group has left for their ride, Sharon and Angela went to see the famous Tapesty museum of Bayeux. The tapestry is 68 meters long and shows the conquest of England in the 11th century by Willhelm the conquerer
At the famous Cafe Gondrée, next to the Pegasusbridge, we had our coffee ☕
The Café Gondrée certainly has a special touch as everything is still as it used to be back in those days. A place full of memories. In the final days of WW II this little house was the first building to be liberated by the British paratroopers. And what is really amazing, the lady you'll find working in the little kitchen is the, back then 4 year old girl, who has an abundance of stories to share.
And the food was good in Honfleur. What a nice town that is. Beautiful houses along the harbour and fishermen coming back from the sea with their catch.
Arriving at our hotel after a beautiful ride, crossing the big Normandie bridge, this is our view: the famous cliffs of Etretat.
The village we stopped for coffee revealed the ancient but unfortunately ruined Abbaye de Jumièges.
It was founded in the year 654 by Saint Philibert. Over the long period of time the Benedictine monastery has seen both prosperous times as well as destruction and decay. Today, the remains of the building belong to the French department of Seine-Maritime, which uses it as a location for concerts and other events.
The last highlight of our last tour day was something special, too. We went to see Claude Monet's house and flower garden which were the inspirational source of the impressionist painter
The ladies are missing in the picture but there it is - the famous water lily pond with the boat