The first day of the bike tour was a slow start, we went and picked up our bike and made a start into the ride. Some of us hadn't been on bike for years, so it was a good time to get used to being on a bike seat again.

The start of the ride was straight into a hill, which we stopped at the top of and tried to figure out where we were going. The tour company (Inntravel) took our bags from hotel to hotel for us and provided the notes on where to go each day.

The ride took us through some back country roads past vineyards and old houses before we got to Villandry for lunch. Villandry was a smallish town with a big Chateau on the hill, but the line was really long to get in and we were already pressed for time. We went instead to Savonnieres and looked at the old boats in the river.

After that we went to Rigney-Usse in time to see the Chateau d'Usse with the sun setting on it. This is the castle that inspired the sleeping beauty castle (apparently) ... it was very impressive. By this stage we were all pretty buggered from having ridden 45km that day. We went and checked in to the Hotel and collapsed in the garden. The only outing that night was a brief walk down the road to see the chateau at lit up at night.

Loire Bike Tour day 1