CrĂ©dit photo : P. Forget
Between its cathedral and chateaus, Bonneval offers up medieval charm in the lush green setting of the valleys of the Loir and the Ozanne.
In this serene environment that is a paradise for fishermen and casual cyclists, Bonneval strives to balance modernization with conservation of its heritage.
This green vacation destination invites visitors to participate in numerous recreational pursuits: hiking, horseback riding or biking trains, tennis, canoeing/kayaking and exploring this fortified city by motorboat.
In 2007, this "Little Venice" will be hosting the kick-off for the Young Talent Paris-Tours for the 14th time.
Tours and its cathedral - Photo credit: Yves Brault
It was not by chance that the Kings of France chose to make their home in the Loire Valley, today listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.
The gentleness, harmony and quality of life in the Tours region have won over more than a few. A City of Art and History, Tours benefits from an outstanding location in the heart of what is called the Garden of France, just one hour from Paris. Far from remaining content with the extreme wealth of its historic monuments and richness of its cultural and sporting life, Tours has created many institutions that have made it a major economic and academic center in the Greater Western region. Innovative and humane, Tours places sustainable development, the environment, beauty and diversity at the heart of its endeavors.
A GARDEN CITY IN THE HEART OF THE LOIRE VALLEY
Tours, the capital of the "Garden of France", regularly receives awards for its green areas and floral decorations. Its wide shaded avenues, numerous historic gardens in the heart of the city, as well as its giant parks that unfurl like green carpets along the banks of the Loire and the Cher, have enough trees and flowers to rival the multitude of private gardens lovingly cared for by their owners. On the border between the north and the south and between the central and greater western regions, the city has always made the most of crossroads status. The star-shaped motorway interchanges located right on a major European route and the international airport make the city surprisingly easy to access at any time thanks to the motorway exit situated two minutes from the city centre. The TGV high-speed rail link means that it is only one hour from the capital, while numerous other daily direct connections service major French and European cities.
THE CITY WITH FESTIVALS FOR EVERYONE
Tours cherishes diversity above all. Throughout the year, there are some 15 festivals that punctuate the city’s cultural life, with many events that are now famous, such as the FĂȘtes Musicales and FlorilĂšge Vocal, not to mention the Aucard de Tours and Rayons Frais, which takes over the banks of the Loire and the city streets each summer.
THE CITY WITH SPORTS FOR EVERYONE
Team sports often put Tours in the sporting news spotlight. However, in Tours sports are also synonymous with simple pleasures, like running along the banks of the Loire or participating in one of the many water activities available on the various waterways: rowing, kayak-canoeing, dinghy sailing, windsurfing, etc. Tours is a dream city for all athletes, whether they are top level competitors or simply in search of fresh air. More than 600 hectares of parks, wooded areas and forests in the city center and outlying areas offer everyone a chance to engage in their favorite pastimes, particularly at the brand new aquatic center at the lake and the future compact golf course in the city. Every year the 10,000 participants in the 20 km of Tours and the Nouvelle RĂ©publique prove, as if it were necessary, the local passion for sport. With 160 sports clubs counting a combined 32,600 license holders in more than 120 disciplines, there really is something for all levels and all tastes. Tours can also count on its star clubs to provide it with the energy needed for victory. Tours Volleyball, Tours Football Club, Tours JouĂ© Basket, U.S.T. Rugby and the ASGT (Tours Ice Sports Association) are worthy representatives of the city’s athletic spirit, which is perfectly embodied by the Paris-Tours race.