le tasting room

Loire wine tours, tastings, day trips from Paris & short breaks organised by experienced English wine trade professionals.

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Petite Cité de Caractère - Le Thoureil

It was such a beautiful morning I couldn't resist walking down to the river. Here are a few photos that I took - it's 8am and the sun illuminates everything in such a lovely way, highlighting the tuffeau limestone of the houses along the riverside and the old boats on the water.

Most of the houses along the riverside have these wonderful terraces which enjoy spectacular views over the river Loire.

Walking down Creuse rue to the river.

This little pathway runs high above the riverside houses giving you a glimpse of the terraces.

This is the Tour des Hollandais built by the Dutch Van Voorn family around 1670. They were négociants in wine and made their fortune in Le Thoureil becoming important vineyard owners, transporting their wines to Nantes and further afield using the waterways. These towers were built so that the merchant owners could watch their wares going along the river.

View of Le Thoureil looking towards Gennes (5km away).

This the lovely terrace of the Tour des Hollandais with the tower dominating the view.

This is l'Hotel des Mariniers - a former hotel (during the 15th century and after) which used to accommodate merchants and fisherman who were using the ancient port. The tower dates back to the 14th century.

Boats on the river Loire at the Cale de Richbourg -( little quay).

Another view of l'Hotel des Mariniers with it's 14th century tower.

The school in Le Thoureil - it has one class of CM1 & CM2 children (numbering between 12 and 30 depending upon the year). The canteen has amazing views over the river.

Waling down to the riverside you pass a couple of vineyards that look lovely in the early morning light.

The vines are pushing now and the shoots are beginning to form in this beautiful weather.

Bicyles propped up outside one of the lovely riverside houses.

View from vineyard just before descending to the river.

From the top of the hill where I shot the video yesterday. This morning you can see the bridge at Les Rosiers sur Loire. It looks more like a painting than a photo.

Vines in the early morning sunlight.

If you join us for the la Loire - Secrets of the River tour this year, Le Thoureil is where the old sand dredging boat is docked ready to welcome us during the afternoon. Alain Gillot is an experienced mariner and a local man who knows the history of this ancient port as well as that of the river itself.


  1. Thanks Jean - it's the light that does it. Aren't we having the most beautiful weather at the moment - feels more like mid-summer.