A Christmas Day Walk above Montrichard

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It’s 25th December and overcast. The sun has obviously decided not to waste its energy on people about to tuck into Christmas lunch inside their homes where they won’t know if it rains or shines. We celebrated Christmas with just the two of us last night as our four adult children are all elsewhere this year, which is not a problem of course. We need some rest! We’ve had our brunch and are ready to go for a little hike. Despite the lack of sun, it’s really quite balmy at 9°C. Our recent walks have been a lot chillier.

The ruins of Montrichard castle

The ruins of Montrichard castle

I’ve chosen Montrichard as our starting point because there is a GR hiking trail high above the Cher River and it seems there are even troglodytes. We try to hike in winter in places where we can’t cycle in the winter.

One of the Renaissance buildings

One of the Renaissance buildings – this is Hôtel d’Effiat, 16th and 17th century

We park in Montrichard and there is not a soul in sight. It’s easy to take photographs with no one around – not even cars! The ruins of the mediaeval castle are omnipresent. We hadn’t realised how many Renaissance buildings there are in Montrichard.

Colourful half-timebered houses

Colourful half-timebered houses

There are also several brightly-coloured 15th century half-timbered houses.

The 11th century preacher's house

The 11th century preacher’s house

Our GR trail takes us up a hill past the 11th century Preacher’s House, the only house that survived when Philippe Auguste ordered the town to be razed to the ground by fire in 1188 to get rid of the English invaders.

Montrichard from the highest point

Montrichard from the highest point

We walk up steep winding steps until we reach the highest point where the castle stands.

Walking up the forest path

Walking up the forest path

The path then takes us through a little wood and down another steep path.

An unexpected little boat

An unexpected boat, looking very bright in comparison with the dismal day

A little blue boat seems a little far from the river today.

A Touraine vineyard

A Touraine vineyard

 

Around the next corner we come to a vineyard.

Walking through the wrong forest

Walking through the wrong forest

We walk through another forest and come to a bitumen road just after two picnic tables and several mounds of beer bottles. This can’t be right – we must have missed the signs, so we back-track and find ourselves overlooking a village with more troglodyte houses.

Troglodytes during our teabreak

Troglodytes during our teabreak

After a teabreak halfway down to the village, we start heading home. The sky brightens a little and then it starts spitting lightly.

The Cher River from the walking track

The Cher River from the walking track

We walk around the castle but there’s a fence to keep trespassers out of course.

The ruins of Montrichard castle

The ruins of Montrichard castle

We end our walk along the Cher. We can see a couple of people on the “beach” where we enjoyed a welcome ice-cream the summer before last after a hot ride along the river.

Walking along the Cher River

Walking along the Cher River

Our path back to the car takes us past the town hall, looking very festive. Joyeuses fêtes, it says, “Happy Holidays”. May I wish you all a happy Christmas as well!

Happy Holiday wishes at the town hall in Montrichard

Happy Holiday wishes at the town hall in Montrichard

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3 Responses to A Christmas Day Walk above Montrichard

  1. Jan Leishman says:

    Thank you for this lovely Christmas walk in the northern hemisphere. Much enjoyed during an Aussie celebration.

  2. Helen says:

    It seems a perfect way to spend your Christmas morning. I assume you returned to a warm fire, a glass of wine and a chestnut or two!
    Our morning dawned cool and overcast, with Santa delivering 8 mms of rain. Perfect for me, but those headed to the outdoors, would have been disappointed.
    Helen recently posted…Christmas Down UnderMy Profile

  3. A marvelous way to spend the day- and pretty this time of year.
    William Kendall recently posted…City Hall And Confederation ParkMy Profile

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