Broaden Horizons Orléans Loire Valley

    ES | FR | EN

    Broaden Horizons Orléans Loire Valley

    ES | FR | EN

    Visit Orléans,
    the Loire Valley Next to Paris 

    Orléans is a key city in French history, the city of the Dukes of Orléans was strongly linked with the Capetien royal family. It is nowadays a big and dynamic city, head of the Centre Loire Valley region. Nevertheless Orléans is not on the list of the major Loire Valley Sights. Well, it should be. Recently the old city center, part of the UNESCO World Heritage Listed Loire Valley, has been systematically renovated. Orleans large heritage is now highlighted from Ancient Rome, to Medieval or Renaissance periods, and, in the modern era, from the 17th to 20th centuries. 

    Orléans surrounding includes great natural and historical sights, as an easy access to famous Loire Valley Châteaux. The city clearly deserves a stop and is a good base if you visit the Loire Valley. Orléans is also a great weekend destination as it is the closest Loire Valley point from Paris (+/- 115 km). We propose at Broaden-Horizons.fr a large Orléans sightseeing tour offer and we will be happy to guide you during your next stay in Orléans.

    Guided Tour Services to Make the Most of Your Stay in Orléans Loire Valley

    Why Visit Orléans Loire Valley?

    Visit Orléans: View of George V bridge and the cathedral from one of the city green area in the south bank of the Loire River. Credit Zebulon72 Pixabay.
    Visit Orléans: the city is on the UNESCO World Heritage Listed Loire Valley area. Since 2003 Orléans old city center have been systematicaly restored and there now plenty of multicolored half-timbered houses to see there.©Broaden Horizons
    Visit Orléans: Bording orleans in the south is the Sologne forest, Natura 2000 largest European Site, with its magnificent ponds – Credit Emlew Pixabay

    Orléans is the capital city of the « région Centre-Val de Loire »

    Meaning that Orléans is the capital city of the Loire Valley region.

    A city with more than 2000 years of history

    A heritage twice recognized nationally and internationally as Orléans is part of:

    Orléans is a green city

    The old city is now a large pedestrian walkway, the Loire quayside are a popular stroll place and plenty of green spaces await for you in the south of the city.

    A city surrounded by nature

    • The Forêt d’Orléans : France’s largest national forest
    • The Sologne: Natura 2000 largest European Site of Community Importance

    Orléans is also surrounded by Loire Valley heritage sites

    Some of the famous Loire Valley Châteaux are easily accessible from Orléans, but you will also discover in the east of the city an off-the-beaten-track Loire Valley with one of the most impressive Loire Valley Castle: Le château de Sully-sur-Loire.

    The intersection of two famous routes

    • Loire by Bike
    • Camino de Compostela (Way of Saint James)

    Loire Valley Wines

    Till 19th century Orléans region was one of the most important wine producer in France. The city is still bordered by two vignards the Orléans and Orléans-Cléry.

    The closest Loire Valley sight from Paris at only +/- 115 km

    An highway easily conects the city to Paris and Intercity or regional trains drive you from Paris-Austerlitz station to Orléans in +/- 1 hour.

    Orléans is an ideal weekend destination in the south of Paris

    Visit Orléans The Orléans’s quays are the remains of the former Port of Orléans, now a popular place to take a strool along the Loire river © Broaden Horizons 

    Visit Orléans: The hôtel des Créneaux is a  example of transition between Gothique and Renaissance style  © Broaden Horizons.

    Visit Orléans: The Sainte-Croix-Cathedral from the place de l’Etape square © Broaden Horizons.

    Discover Orléans Heritage

    Joan of Arc

    • A long and rich history, with a lot of French historical milestones, role of Joan of Arc, in 1429 in the siege of Orléans, is one of them.
    • Joan of Arc, often called the Maid of Orléans is the city heroine. Orléans is the right spot to learn more about her.
    • The Maison de Jeanne d’Arc (Joan of Arc house) is a dedicated documentation center. A short movie about her life is shown there.
    • The Joan of Arc Orléans Walking Tour is design for those who want to know more about the French heroine.

    Architecture 

    • Sainte-Croix huge gothic cathedral is a unique exceptional monument.
    • Saint-Pierre-le-Puellier 12th-century romanesque collegial-church. The former collegial is now dedicated to contemporary art exhibitions.
    • Recently renovated old city center with plenty of historical timbered houses.
    • A rich Loire Valley Renaissance heritage from traders’ houses to prestigious royal related mansions.
    • A more recent diverse architecture from the 17th-century mansions to Art Nouveau, Art Deco, or post WWII experimental reconstruction.
    • Our Orléans guided tours are the ideal tools to discover the city architectural heritage.

    Museums

    Nature and green space

    • The Loire quayside, remains of the former Orléans port are now a popular place to take a stroll along the river banks, as the Orléans Canal towpath.
    • The La Source Parc Floral, a 35-hectare garden with its 17th-century château.

    Food, wine and tradition

    Orléans is the Place of two Famous Loire Valley Festivals

    Both of them, the Joan of Arc Festival and the Loire Festival are related with Orléans heritage.

    The Orléans Joan of Arc Festival

    The 8 of may of 1429 after having besieged Orléans during months the English army finaly gave up the place.

    This event is the watershed of the Hundred Years between France and England and Joan of Arc is considered as the main actor of this French Army success.

    Since then, each year, Orléans eternally grateful is celebrating Joan of Arc from April 29 to May 8th, a time of fireworks, parades and medieval fair. The Orléans Joan of Arc Festival in French « Les Fêtes de Jeanne d’Arc«  is one of the oldest one in Europe.

    Visit Orléans the Loire Festival summer 2017 © Broaden Horizons 
    Visit Orléans: Orléans Joan of Arc Festival in spring 2018 © Broaden Horizons

    The Loire Festival

    Orléans stands at the northernmost point of the Loire River, therefore, the closest to Paris This strategical position is one of the explanation of the weight of the city in French history. Orléans economical prosperity was also directly due to this position. The Port of Orleans was also the port of Paris. Orléans was then one of France more considerable economic center until the arrival of the railway which rapidly ended with the activity of the Port of Orléans.
    Each two years, in September, Orléans is celebrating is Former Port. The Loire Festival in french « Le Festival de Loire » is the most important inland waterway transport festival in Europe.

    Orléans is the Place of two Loire Valley Famous Festivals

    Both of them, the Joan of Arc Festival and the Loire Festival are related with Orléans heritage.

    Visit Orléans : Orléans Joan of Arc Festival in spring 2018 © Broaden Horizons

    The Orleans Joan of Arc Festival

    The 8 of may of 1429 after having besieged Orléans during months finaly gave up the place.

    This event is the watershed of the Hundred Years between France and England and Joan of Arc is considered as the main actor of this French Army success.

    Since then, each year, Orléans eternally grateful is celebrating Joan of Arc from April 29 to May 8th, a time of fireworks, parades and medieval fair. The Orléans Joan of Arc Festival in French « Les Fêtes de Jeanne d’Arc«  is one of the oldest one in Europe.

    Visit Orléans the Loire Festival summer 2017 © Broaden Horizons 

    The Loire Festival

    Orléans stands at the northernmost point of the Loire River, therefore, the closest to Paris This strategical position is one of the explanation of the weight of the city in French history. Orléans economical prosperity was also directly due to this position. The Port of Orléans, was also the port of Paris. Orléans was then one of France more considerable economic center until the arrival of the railway which rapidly ended with the activity of the Port of Orléans. .

    Each two years, in September, Orléans is celebrating is Former Port. The Loire Festival in french « Le Festival de Loire » is the most important inland waterway transport festival in Europe.

    Its Surrounding is Another Reason to Visit Orléans

    Once you will have visited Orléans you will see that there is a lot to discover in the urban area and the surrounding 50 km (Mappy references).

    Between Loire and Forest treasures

    Visit Orléans: Château de Sully-sur-Loire – Credit Christian B. Pixabay

    Eastern Loire Valley exceptional sacred architecture

    Carolingian oratory of Germigny-des-Près (+/- 30 km)
    Germigny-des-Près has been constructed by Théodulf Bishop of Orléans and abbot of Saint-Benoît-sur-Loire between approximately 803 and 806. This is the only church in France with a Carolingian mosaic.

    Saint-Benoit-sur-Loire Abbey Church (+/- 35 km)
    Only few kilometers away from Germigny-des-Près stands Saint-Benoit one of the Christianity most famous abbey, founded in 640, it is also called Fleury Abbey. The present edifice built from the 11th century is famous for its Romanesque Figurative carved capitals, king Philip I rests there.

    Visit Orléans: Clery Saint André Church – Credit Manfred Heyde [CC BY-SA 3.0]

    Visit Orléans: Châteaux de Chambord – Credit Borian Mongel Unplash
    Visit Orléans: Orléans & Orléans-Cléry AOC Vineyards – Credit S. zeller – Unsplash

    Off the beaten tracks Eastern Loire Valley

    Visit Orléans: Carolingian oratory of Germigny-des-Près. The  only church in France with a Carolingian mosaic.  © Broaden Horizons.

    Visit Orléans:Châteaudun castle – Credit Daniel Jolivet castle [cc-by-2.0]

    Chateau de Chambord

    World famous Château de Chambord, the Loire Valley most famous one is at only around 46 km from Orléans. Once you will be there you will be at not far away from other Loire Valley famous landmarks as :

    Its Surrounding is Another Reason to Visit Orléans

    Once you will have visited Orléans you will see that there is a lot to see in the urban area and the surrounding 50 km (Mappy references).

    Between Loire and Forest treasures

    Visit Orleans: Orleans & Orleans-Cléry AOC Vineyards – Credit S. zeller – Unsplash

    Off the beaten tracks Eastern Loire Valley

    Visit Orleans: Château de Sully-sur-Loire – Credit Christian B. Pixabay

    Eastern Loire Valley exceptional sacred architecture

    Carolingian oratory of Germigny-des-Près (+/- 30 km)
    Germigny-des-Près has been constructed by Théodulf Bishop of Orléans and abbot of Saint-Benoît-sur-Loire between approximately 803 and 806. This is the only church in France with a Carolingian mosaic.

    Saint-Benoit-sur-Loire Abbey Church (+/- 35 km)
    Only few kilometers away from Germigny-des-Près stands Saint-Benoit one of the Christianity most famous abbey, founded in 640, it is also called Fleury Abbey. The present edifice built from the 11th century is famous for its Romanesque Figurative carved capitals, king Philip I rests there.

    Visit Orléans: Carolingian oratory of Germigny-des-Près. The  only church in France with a Carolingian mosaic.  © Broaden Horizons.

    Visit Orléans: Clery Saint André Church – Credit Manfred Heyde [CC BY-SA 3.0]

    Visit Orléans:Châteaudun castle – Credit Daniel Jolivet castle [cc-by-2.0]

    Chateau de Chambord

    World famous Château de Chambord, the Loire Valley most famous one is at only around 46 km from Orléans. Once you will be there you will be at not far away from other Loire Valley famous landmarks as :

    Visit Orleans Châteaux de Chambord – Credit Borian Mongel Unplash

    Our Orléans City Tours

    The best way to visit Orléans Loire Valley.

    Our Orléans tours are led by a qualified licensed guide who also owns the VPAH Loire Valley Acreditation.

    Our guided tours are available in English, French and Spanish.

    We propose during all the year private VIP tours as an offer for bigger groups. For this kind of guided tour, for which you chose your date, prices vary with the size of the group.

    During the high season, we also organize tours open to any individuals following an agenda shown on this page, price is then 10 € per person.

    We currently proposed three Orléans city tours 

    • Generic Orléans City Tour: An Orléans walk designed for newcomers who want to discover the city. Two possible durations.
    • The Orléans Joan of Arc Walking Tour. This Orléans guided tour focus on Joan of Arc : story, footsteps and iconography. 
    • Orléans Cathedral and around Guided Tour: to know all about this half millennium architectural challenge of the Loire Valley. 

    Our three Orléans walks have been designed to be dissimilar from one another, so you can follow all  the three if you want.

     New tours are coming soon

    • Orléans River Loire Banks Tour
    • Renaissance in Orléans Walks

      Orléans Museum of Fine Arts

      With no doubt the best art gallery of the Loire Valley

      This museum with five levels dedicated to its permanent collection is definitely something you should not miss when visiting Orléans.  The Orléans fine arts museum is showing a huge collection going from the end of the Middle Ages to the 20st century.

      Visit Orléans: Ariadne in Naxos, Le Nain brothers © Orléans Museum of Fine Arts, credit François Lauginie.

      If this museum is famous for its pastel gallery (known to be the second one in France after Le Louvre), it also shows an impressive number of works by foreign old masters as Correggio, Annibale Carraci, Guido Reni, Velázquez, Van Dick, Jan Brueghel the Elder, Batoni... and also French ones as de La Hyre, Le Nain brothers,  Rigaud, Fragonard, Boucher, Quentin de La Tour, Chardin,  Delacroix,  Boudin, Courbet, Gaugin… or sculptors as Rodin, Maillol, Bourdelle, etc.

      Visit Orléans. Allegory of Astronomy by Laurent de la Hyre © Orléans Museum of Fine Arts, credit François Lauginie.

      Don’t miss this rich museum if you visit Orléans Loire Valley. We  will be happy to guide you in this exceptional place, so do not hesitate to follow one of our Orléans Museum of Fine Arts tours.

      Guided tour of the Orléans Museum of Fine Arts

      Make the most of your visit of Orléans Loire Valley with a private tour (English, French or Spanish) of the Orléans Museum of Fine Arts.
      Three tour duration are available. Prices start from 39 € (for two people).

      Visit Orléans. Study for the Massacre of the Innocents, Léon Cogniet © Orléans Museum of Fine Arts, credit François Lauginie.

      This museum with five levels dedicated to its permanent collection is definitely something you should not miss when visiting Orléans.  The Orléans fine arts museum is showing a huge collection going from the end of the Middle Ages to the 20st century.

      If this museum is famous for its pastel gallery (known to be the second one in France after Le Louvre), it also shows an impressive number of works by foreign old masters as Correggio, Annibale Carraci, Guido Reni, Velázquez, Van Dick, Jan Brueghel the Elder, Batoni... and also French ones as de La Hyre, Le Nain brothers,  Rigaud, Fragonard, Boucher, Quentin de La Tour, Chardin,  Delacroix,  Boudin, Courbet, Gaugin… or sculptors as Rodin, Maillol, Bourdelle, etc.

      Don’t miss this rich museum if you visit Orléans Loire Valley. We  will be happy to guide you in this exceptional place, so do not hesitate to follow one of our Orléans Museum of Fine Arts tours.

      Guided tour of the Orléans Museum of Fine Arts

      Make the most of your visit of Orléans Loire Valley with a private tour (English, French or Spanish) of the Orléans Museum of Fine Arts.
      Three tour duration are available. Prices start from 39 € (for two people).

      Orléans on Demand Guided Tour Services

      Custom-made Orléans guided tour

      You didn’t find what you want in our ready made Orléans Loire Valley walks and tours offer ? You want a 1 or 2-hour tour on a specific subject we don’t cover ? Or you want a guide in Orléans for  half  a day (4 hours max. duration) or a full day (8 hours max. duration). Contact us on the dedicated page and we will be happy to prepare a tour just for you !

      Custom-made Orléans guided tour

      You didn’t find what you want in our ready made Orléans Loire Valley walks and tours offer ?

      You want a 1 or 2-hour tour on a specific subject we don’t cover ? Or you want a guide in Orléans for half  a day (4 hours max. duration) or a full day (8 hours max. duration). Contact us on the dedicated page and we will be happy to prepare a tour just for you !

      Corporate, business to business services

      You are a professional interested n Orléans Loire Valley tourism ?  DMC, tour operator, museum… any need to:

      • Take responsibility of one of your tours
      • Temporary exhibition
      • Custom-made tour

      Corporate, business to business services

      You are a professional interested in Orléans Loire Valley tourism ?  DMC, tour operator, museum… any need to:

      • Take responsibility of one of your tours
      • Temporary exhibition
      • Custom-made tour

      Large group tours in Orléans

      If you are a group of more than 6 people, we consider you as a large group,  this means that you can’t directly book on our private VIP Tour offer which is limitated to groups of maximum 6 persons.

      Nevertheless, all the private VIP Tours offer is accessible to large groups but as organization tasks are bigger than with little groups you have to contact us first. We also have a specific offer for large group.

      Large groups tours in Orléans

      If you are a group of more than 6 people, we consider you as a large group,  this means that you can’t directly book on our private VIP Tour offer which is limited to groups of maximum 6 persons.

      Nevertheless, all the private VIP Tours offer is accessible to large groups but as organization tasks are bigger than with little groups you have to contact us first. We also have a specific offer for large group.

      Orléans and around photo gallery : interesting places to see during a visit of Orléans. 1 – Joan of Arc statue by princess Marie d’Orléans 2 – Sully-sur-Loire Loire Valley Castel . 3 – Remains of the ancien port of Orléans: the Loire River banks 4 – Multicolored half timbered houses in Orléans old city center. 5 – 17th century former palace of the bishops of Orléans. 6 – Orléans Cathedral main facade an 18th and 19th work. 7 – Second Renaissance houses in place du Châtelet.  ©broaden-horizons for all images, except n°2 Sully-sur-Loire Casle Credit Ddouk Unplash

      Our Services in Orleans

      Broaden Horizons Orléans
      Val de Loire

      Contact

      contact.orl.en@broaden-horizons.fr

      Orleans guided tour services

      Reach Orleans

      Located at a little more than one hundred kilometers in the south of Paris, Orléans is easily accessible by intercity train (approx. 1 hour) from Paris-Austerlitz train station.

      Orléans guided tours : Logo of FNGIC French national federation of guide interpreters and speakers

      Your  licensed guide in Orléans is the holder of card n° CG 17-45-05, he is a member of FNGIC which is a member of the World Federation of Tourist Guide Associations.