Centre-Val de Loire
The Centre (pronounced "son-truh") is a large inland region of central France located to the south-west of the French capital Paris. The official name for the region is frequently combined in tourist literature with the French appellation Val de Loire to produce the combination Centre-Val de Loire, reflecting the fact that much of this region embraces the renowned valley of the river Loire. The region is known for its fine historical towns, for its vineyards and agricultural produce and for its many beautiful castles (châteaux).
The region is divided into six departments:
- Bourges - home of the famous cathedral St Etienne
- Chartres - home of the famous cathedral of stained-glass
- Nogent le Rotrou
- Orléans - town protected by Joan of Arch
- Saint-Benoît-du-Sault — medieval city
- Tours (pronounced "Tuurh") — located on the river Loire in the Centre-Val de Loire region
- Nançay - delighful small village, home of the delicious "Sablés de Nançay" (shortbread cookies, as well as the radioastronomy facility. Le Pôle des étoiles offers guided tours of the facility, sky theater shows as well as interesting science exhibits. Official website of the learning center
Visit the Pôle des étoiles and discover the Universe! Located in Nançay, a delightful Sologne village, Pôle des étoiles is a learning center. It offers guided tours of the radioastronomy facility, sky thearter shows, as well as iteresting science exhibits. Official website
Travellers wishing to see more of the Loire Valley can continue further west into the adjoining Pays de la Loire region, studded with additional historical cities and chateaux at sites such as Angers and Saumur.