Travel challenge: The Loire


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The Independent Travel

Each week, we invite three companies to offer us their best deal for a specific holiday. Today: a week-long break in the Loire region of France. Prices are per person, based on two people travelling together in April.

Le Boat

£294: The boating break

Includes a self-drive cruise aboard a Capri boat for departures in April, with full training. Flights and transfers extra. "My favourite cruise in this beautiful region is a loop from the charming town of Decize," says Rob Cox of Le Boat. "You can sail past beautiful old chateaux in Chitry-les-Mines and Châtillonen-Bazois, and stop at your leisure in Tannay to enjoy wine tasting and shopping." (0844 463 3577;

Cresta Holidays

£835: The chateau stay

Includes Eurostar from London St Pancras to Paris on 23 April, onward TGV travel and B&B at the Domaine de Beauvois. "This 16th-century manor near the ancient city of Tours is a perfect retreat for couples looking for a romantic break. It's known for its food and wine and is surrounded by the beautiful vineyards of the Loire," says Katie Elson of Cresta Holidays (0844 879 8036;

Grape Escapes

£1,395: The wine tour

Includes Eurostar from London St Pancras to Paris and onward TGV on 25 April, plus B&B at the Hotel de l'Univers in Tours. A two-day guided wine tour is also included with tastings, some meals and excursions. "We'll arrange a chauffeur to whisk you off to the most prestigious producers, so you don't have to worry about driving," says Mark Hallet of Grape Escapes. "It also includes a day's bicycle hire and a visit to Chateau du Clos Lucé, the former home of Leonardo da Vinci." (08456 430 860;