Amboise is a small town in central France through which the Loire River flows. We spent two nights at Chateau de Pray, just outside of Amboise, during the road-trip portion of our May 2015 trip to France. We chose to stay in Amboise because it was a centrally located neat the chateaus that we chose to see while visiting the Loire Valley (Chateau de Chenonceau, Chateau de Chambord, and Chateau de Chaumont). Amboise is home to both Chateau de Amboise and Château du Clos Lucé (once home to Leonardo da Vinci), though we did not have time to visit either of them. If we had had one more day in Amboise, these two would have been on the top of our to-do list.
We spent our days visiting chateaus. The chateaus all closed fairly early in the evenings, so that left our evenings open to wander around Amboise. Amboise was a charming city — so peaceful compared to Paris. One note of warning — the small roads are charming for walking on and looking at, but they were definitely not fun to drive on (at least not for these two Americans)! 🙂
Hot air balloon rides are a common attraction in the Loire Valley; however, we read that the wind is unreliable and hot air balloon rides are frequently cancelled (and rarely refunded). We opted not to risk losing money, but it looks like we would have been okay. Regardless, it was fun to see such a cute hot air balloon floating over Amboise.
The restaurant below, L’Epicerie, was one of the highest rated restaurants in Amboise. We were disappointed that it wasn’t open while we were there.
A cave home! Troglodyte homes are fairly common in the Loire Valley. We came across this one while walking to Clos Lucé.