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Normandy, Brittany and the Loire Valley, France, Photography Tour

The battlefields of Normandy, Celtic Brittany, and the castle-laden Loire Valley in northwest France

 

May dates, TBD

12 nights/13 inclusive days  |  Limited to 5 participants

$4,691 USD per person  |  Single Supplement: 14% of the base cost of the trip

The deposit for this photography tour is $300

Explore our discounts for client loyalty, early enrollment, 2 trips in 12 months, room sharing, referral rewards and more

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Gateway airport: Charles De Gaulle, Paris [CDG]
Arrival window: Arriving one day early is always recommended
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Normandy, Brittany and the Loire photo gallery
Map of overnight locations
Client responses to our photo tours
The tour cost, fine details, and enrollment are here

9 places are available at this time
Web page updated: Saturday the 24th of June, 2017

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Photography Tour Overview: Normandy, Brittany and the Loire valley in northwest France are not particularly acknowledged as photography destination 'icons' as it were, but join our trip and you'll be pleasantly surprised. Whatever your favorite photography subjects may be, you'll find that this photography trip contains a variety of captivating subject matter to suit all tastes. From Monet's inspirational flowers in Giverny, to the historical beaches of Normandy and on to the Loire Valley Châteaus [castles]. In-between you'll photograph quaint harbor scenes, lighthouses, medieval villages and walled towns, ancient standing stones and the entrancing island castle of Le Mont Saint-Michel. In all, this is a photography tour awash with a potpourri of photographic opportunities.

Our itinerary . . .

Just a moment, first things first! We suggest that you set your camera clock to the local time, as your images will then synchronize with the times in our included photo tour field notes.

Day 1  |  Auvers, Giverny, and Les Andelys, Normandy
Our group will meet in the lobby of our gateway hotel near the Paris airport at 10:30 am, and we'll then head northwestwards to Auvers-sur-Oise where Van Gogh painted several river scenes and the Auvers church. Lunch is included today, and will include a digital presentation of the trip given by John. On to Giverny via canola and poppy scenes to the gardens made famous by the impressionist painter Claude Monet. Here you will photograph the artist's home, garden and the bridge seen in so many of his paintings. We'll help you get some 'Monet effects' as I'll suggest you play with long exposures, intentional blur, and perhaps some tinkling about with photo software later on. We then go via an old mill house and bridge scene prior to heading for our hotel. Late light photography nearby if the light cooperates.
Near Val de Reuil, 1 night

Days 2 + 3  |  Honfleur
Early on day 2 we'll be in the proximity of a scenically situated château complete with the backdrop of the River Seine and white cliffs. After breakfast we will continue northwestwards and detour into the 'Parc Naturel Régional des Boucles de la Seine Normande' . . . which roughly translates to 'The Seine river loops of the Seine Regional Nature Park in Normandy'. You'll find that the ruins of a 7th century abbey provides much in the way of photographic material. Onto Honfleur for our two night stay. Honfleur's harbor has often been depicted in paintings by famous artists such as Gustave Courbet, Eugène Boudin, and Claude Monet, and the 'Honfleur artists school' as it were, is considered as one of the origins of the impressionist style. Honfleur is a quaint town of contrasts with half-timbered buildings, and picturesque harbors. We'll also make time to photograph the nearby Normandy bridge in the Seine estuary.
Honfleur, 2 nights

Day 4  |  The Normandy Coast and Le Mont Saint-Michel
At first light we'll explore Honfleur harbor one last time, then head west for a number of striking and poignant shots of a region that featured heavily during the D-day invasions. Remnants of the temporary Mulberry harbors are still visible offshore at Arromanches les Bains, and we shall also capture respectful and 'symmetric' images of the American Cemetery near Colleville-sur-Mer where 9,386 young American soldiers lie having fallen here in June of 1944. We'll shoot Point du Hoc above Omaha Beach then depart inland to pause and photograph the ancient town of Villedieu-les-Pôeles. We'll check into our hotel in the late afternoon, take dinner, and at late light we'll be in the southwest corner of Normandy shooting the French icon of Le Mont Saint-Michel [St Michael's Mount]. This special Gothic 'pyramid' was originally a tidal island, then connected to land by road, but now once again surrounded entirely by tidal waters. Constructed in the 13th to 16th centuries, it is a spectacular sight and sits just beyond the Normandy coastline.
Near Mont Saint-Michel, 1 night

Day 5  |  Mont Saint-Michel, and Brittany's 'granite coast'
At dawn we'll be situated at 'our own' remote Mont Saint-Michel viewpoint to capture the first light magic of this spectacular island monastery. After breakfast we'll return one last time to Mont Saint-Michel to explore the streets, and walls on foot. Then west into Brittany [Bretagne] for photography along the 'pink granite coast'. Locations will include spots such as Fort la Latte that stands on a cliff edge, the Cap Frehel lighthouse and more. On to our hotel for one night stay.
Treguier, 1 night

Days 6 + 7  |  Western Brittany
As usual we'll do some early light photography, take breakfast, then head up to the nearby coastline for a series of stops including the rocky coastline, and the 'house sandwich' photographic oddity. We then head west and take in a coastline that offers Perros-Guirec, and the Ploumanac'h lighthouse complete with some giant boulder formations. Then on south across the Brittany peninsula to the region known as 'Finistère', 'the end of the land'. Late light photography is included as always.
On day 7 we’ll explore the Crozon Peninsula with photography stops along the way, plus Camaret-Sur-Mer, and Pointe de Penhir. On our return we'll spend time in historic Locronan, one of the most quaint and authentic villages in all of Brittany. Point du Raz will also be included during our stay in the region.
Audierne, 2 nights

Days 8 + 9  |  Quimper, Concarneau, Quiberon and the Carnac Standing Stones
We'll early, then following breakfast we'll go west to the ancient town of Quimper which sits pictorially on the banks of the River Odet. It's a place to experience the Celtic side of Breton culture and find another potpourri of images including centuries old half-timbered buildings, and the twin-spired Saint Corentin cathedral. We’ll then head for Concarneau which is a walled fort in the middle of the harbor that contains the medieval Ville Close. On to the charming Pont Aven for a water mill and 'le toilette', followed by the late light near Carnac where we’ll make our home for two nights.
On day 9 we’ll be hoping for mist in the fields as we shoot the stunning collection Carnac standing stones. This huge concentration of megalithic stones reputedly dates to between 2000 BC to 5000 BC, and some are believed to be older than Stonehenge and the Egyptian Pyramids. We’ll also spend part of the day exploring the rocky Quiberon peninsula, an oddly situated Dolmen, and photogenic harbours.
Carnac, 2 nights

Days 10 + 11  |  Auray and the Loire Valley Castles
Early light on the Carnac standing stones once more, back for breakfast then on to historic and picturesque Auray prior to taking the fast track eastwards into the Loire region for our two night home in Near Azay-le-Rideau.
The Loire Valley nee 'Valle de la Loire' or 'Garden of France', is also considered to be the 'cradle of the French language.' We will photograph several significant chateaus [castles] while in the Loire, but will start today with Château Azay-le-Rideau. The Château dates from 1515 and is located adjacent to the River Indre. Historically, in 1418 Prince Charles [later King Charles VII] visited and was jeered by the guards upon his arrival. The Prince was so angry he had all 350 of the soldiers killed and burned the local village down to the ground. Also scheduled is Château Villandry, built in 1536 and complete with magnificent vegetable gardens, L’Islette Chateau, plus Château d'Ussé that sits above the village of Rigny-Ussé.
Azay-le-Rideau, 2 nights

Day 12  |  Loire Valley Castles . . . and back to Paris
Early light in the vicinity of accommodation this morning and following breakfast we'll head for our 'private viewpoint' of Château de Chenonceaux situated quite literally on the River Cher complete with drawbridge and moat. The original castle burnt to the ground in 1411, then the replacement was demolished too. Today's building was completed in 1521. Next will be Château Chaumont with an exploration of the grounds and château on foot including the contemporary and ever-changing Festival Gardens. Our last major stop of the trip will be the Château de Chambord, the largest of all the Loire valley castles and a magnificent example of French Renaissance architecture. It was built between 1519 and 1547 and has a roof-line like no other castle. The classic image includes the river foreground plus whatever flowers are in bloom on the day. And finally . . . we'll take a fast track to our hotel north of Paris to close the trip. The included dinner on the last night of our photography tour will feature an 'It's You!' presentation of clients in action by John.
Near the Paris airport [CDG], 1 night

Day 13  |  Departure day
As there is no photography scheduled for the day of departure, your flight home can be arranged for any time today. If you are participating in one of our British Isles photography tours, free transport to the UK is available.


Photo Tour Photographer/Leader: John Baker, Travel Images Photography Tours
The preceding itinerary is a copyrighted work by John Baker Photographer LLC, and Travel Images Photography Tours

 
 
Enhancing Your Photography Skills: Describing the assistance you'll receive on one of our photography tours takes more than a few words, so for greater detail please go here.
 

Exertion level: This photography tour is classified as 'non strenuous' to 'mildly strenuous'

A majority of images are found in close proximity to our vehicle

It is 15 minutes each way on an fairly level paved footpath out to Point du Raz

There is a steady 10 minute descent to Fort la Latte, plus a steeper descent for a second viewpoint

In every other respect this photography tour is considered non-strenuous to mildly strenuous

 
Do you need a Visa for travel to France?
Travelers from all countries can do a quick check of visa requirements here or here
Our international clients may need to contact the embassy of their intended destination in their own country for a visa. Go here or here
 
 
Photography Tour Cost, the Fine Details and Enrollment

Trip Cost: $4,691 USD per person not including airfare. A 5% discount is applied to all double occupancies. A single room supplement is required for single occupancy

Single Supplement: 14% of the base cost of the trip

The deposit for this photography tour is $300

 

Included in the Trip Cost: The following items are included in the trip cost . . .

  • Photography instruction throughout the trip by John
  • All accommodations with private facilities [ensuite]
  • All breakfasts
  • Lunch on day one of the trip
  • Dinner on the last night of the trip
  • On-vehicle snacks and bottled water
  • All ground transportation
  • Airport pick-up on day 1, and drop-off on departure day. Arrival prior to day 1 is not included
  • Entrance fees for sites and activities listed below under ‘Admissions Included’
  • Following the trip, field notes describing the time, place and subject of each photo stop, and a disc containing images of clients 'in action' on the trip

Not Included in the Trip Cost: The costs for these items are the responsibility of each participant . . .

  • Airfare
  • Travel costs between your home and the gateway airport and return
  • Any transportation or travel costs incurred prior to or after the tour’s inclusive dates
  • Pre-tour and/or post-tour accommodation
  • Lunches and dinners except for lunch on day one of the trip, and dinner on the last night of the trip
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Entrance fees or costs related to optional sites or activities not included in the itinerary
  • Baggage fees
  • Medical expenses
  • Personal items such as the hotel mini-bar, laundry etcetera
  • Incidental charges incurred at our accommodations such as movie rentals, internet and phone
  • Travel insurance
  • Passport or visa expenses
  • Airport departure taxes, if applicable

Admissions Included in the Trip Cost:

  • Monet's house and gardens

  • Cinema Circulaire 360 at Arromanches

  • The chateau and gardens of the Loire valley castles of Château d’Azay-le Rideau, Château Villandry, Château d'Ussé, and Château Chaumont.

  • The gardens/grounds of the Loire Valley castles Château L'Islette and Château Chambord.

  • Any other admissions are optional and not included

 

                            

 

 
 


 
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Travel Images Photography Tours: Guided Landscape, Natural History, Macro and Wildlife Photography Tours
Phone: 208-559-8248  |  Postal: Travel Images, P. O. Box 2434, Eagle, Idaho 83616