Well we now have one day of walking under our belts, along with a delicious home cooked dinner offered by our Airbnb host in Baule tonight. Most of the vegetables came straight from their garden and the beef tomatoes were something else.
Today’s walk from Orleans to the village of Baule, a few miles east of Beaugency, was a rather lengthy 19 or 20 miles, mostly on the south side of the river. This is partly because of having to cross tributaries such as the Loiret, which flow into the Loire at quite an acute angle, but also because GR655, which the Camino follows along the Loire, takes a long detour up to the village of Clery-Saint-Andre, for no apparent reason. This turned out to be no bad thing as we found what seemed to be the only open Boulangerie in this part of France in the village, just when we were getting desperate about lunch. The basilica also had some beautiful, modern stained glass.
I was reluctant to deviate from the path at this stage, after an earlier ‘short cut’ landed us on the E9 motorway verge… Otherwise the path was well marked and generally easy to follow – mostly the red and white mark of the Grande Route but with just enough Camino clam shells thrown in for reassurance.