IntroductionAlthough the same could be said of many French cities, historical Tours has exceptional food and wine. There are no less than 30 different markets taking place each week, from flower markets to festivals devoted to garlic and basil. If you want to enjoy pretty views while you eat visit the cafes on the cobbled streets that surround the Loire river, plus a hop and a skip away is where you’ll find the Touraine Wine Museum on rue Nationale. There are designer boutiques aplenty for fashionistas (after all, locals do call it mini-Paris) and you can swot up on fine art at the Musee des Beaux-Arts. Breathe in the history of places like the cathedral quarter, with the imposing gothic-meets-romanesque Saint Gatien cathedral. In the summer an artificial beach is laid down by the river banks, and concerts and film screenings take place.
Just outside Tours is the Unesco World Heritage site encompassing the Royal Château of Amboise and its beautiful landscaped gardens. From the Château visitors enjoy one of the most remarkable panoramas of the Loire valley, and is the reason why tourists arrive here in their thousands every year.