As the daughter of an Orléans native, I try to visit this French city every year. Many Americans think of France primarily as Paris, but the rest of the country offers rich cultural history as well. Even if you are set on visiting Paris, you can make room for a brief trip to Orléans while you are in France; the city is just about 80 miles southwest of the capital, the perfect distance for a day or weekend trip.
During your visit to Orléans, you can soak up the charming cafés, of course, but you can also visit the childhood home of Joan of Arc, who grew up in this town. If you enjoy architectural sites, Orléans boasts the Cathédrale Sainte-Croix, a cathedral often considered to be among France’s finest.
For those who prefer to spend vacations outdoors, Orléans offers bike trails that span the entire Loire Valley, totaling 800 km of bike-friendly paths.
About Linda Gottwald
A freelance writer based in Michigan, Linda Gottwald has earned advanced degrees in journalism, nursing, and education. She has taught nursing at the university level and received a fellowship from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation in health reporting. In her spare time, Linda Gottwald enjoys swimming and hiking.