Ask Frank Barrett: Saddle up for an authentic taste of the Loire Valley or cruise the rivers of Vietnam

  • Mail on Sunday’s Travel Editor Frank Barrett shares his recommendations 
  • He suggests a gentle cycling tour through the Loire Valley in France
  • Also advocates a heavily discounted river cruise of Vietnam and Cambodia 

Looking for an active, rural adventure with an authentic European feel?

Or perhaps a river cruise through the ancient wonderlands of Cambodia and Vietnam?

Mail on Sunday’s Travel Editor Frank Barrett answers your travel questions this week. 

Cycling For Softies operates a Chateaux Of The Loire holiday which combines glorious countryside with fairytale castles in France. Pictured, the Chateau de Sully-sur-Loire

QUESTION: We’re planning a celebration for our silver wedding anniversary and want to make it a memorable occasion. My husband likes active, rural adventures and I love seeing historic city sights. Can you suggest an authentic European experience? Stella, by email

ANSWER: How about going on a cycling tour? Specialist operator Cycling For Softies (020 7471 7760) offers a range of gentle, tried-and tested self-guided itineraries in Europe that suit all cycling levels. 

Its new Chateaux Of The Loire holiday combines glorious countryside with pretty towns and medieval villages boasting fairytale castles and Renaissance sites. 

This itinerary costs from £585 per person for a three-night break, including bed and breakfast, gourmet evening meal and bikes and equipment, as well as luggage transfers.

APT is running a discounted 15-day luxury river cruise dubbed Vietnam And Cambodia Highlights, sailing from Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap, pictured

QUESTION: We would love to take a Vietnam cruise this summer but don’t have a big budget. Can you recommend any New Year special offers? Brian, by email

ANSWER: To mark its 90th anniversary, APT (0800 046 3002) has several special deals at the moment with savings of up to £2,400 per couple on luxury tours through China, India, Burma and Vietnam and Cambodia, thanks to its Fly Free promotion. 

Luxury river cruises start from £3,295pp, saving 23 per cent, for the 15-day Vietnam And Cambodia Highlights luxury cruise from Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap. 

Prices include home-to-airport private transfers, return flights from Heathrow, onboard meals and drinks, and sightseeing and onboard entertainment. 

Free business-class flight upgrades are available for certain dates and cabin categories.


Contact him at or on Twitter: @FRANKBARRETTMOS 


Courtesy: Daily Mail Online

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