Tours - The City

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Tours (the ‘s’ is silent) lies at the heart of Loire Châteaux Country, a legacy of the centuries when it was the capital of France and the French royal court was based in the Loire Valley. The châteaux of Chenonceau, Blois, Amboise, Cheverny, Azay, Villandry and Chaumont are all within an hour’s drive. Quality, elegance and class are the region’s hallmarks and famous vineyards surround the city. Even the streets look stylish in neat lines of white stone and black slate.

South of the Cher and north of the Loire extend the newer business districts. The main attraction though is the historic centre between the rivers. In medieval times, Rue Colbert was the main street. Mainly pedestrianized, it remains a domain of little shops and cafés, as well as the museums and Gothic cathedral, beautifully lit up at night. Today the main street is busy Rue Nationale, with department stores and dozens of interesting smaller shops. As always in a place like Tours, look for style, not just bargains.