My Travel Blog

La Charitesur Loire, Sancerre, and My First and Final Selfie

Rabelo was moored in the village of Herry, but just four kilometers away was La Charitesur Loire.  Kevin had done a little exploring with our car, and found this beautiful medieval town on the banks of the Loire River. The Tourist Information Office even had an art museum attached to it. I particularly liked the hourglass, horny chair, and condom art. We spent the afternoon exploring the ancient ruins surrounding the town center while enjoying the views of the river.  Later I went for a swim in the Loire River. I even took my first selfie to prove it. Based on the photographic results it will be the last selfie I ever take.

An interesting hourglass.

A horny chair.

Condom art at its finest.

The last selfie I will ever take.

The next morning Lisa and I went for a long walk on a country road, and came across some farmers picking white asparagus. I could not believe how labor intensive this unusual crop was to harvest.  White asparagus grow underground, and therefore must be found lurking deep within the dirt mounds where they are grown. The rows are covered with a tarp to keep the sun off. It must be removed and then immediately replaced after the asparagus have been picked. That way the immature asparagus do not poke their little heads up through the ground, sprout, and turn green.

Some of the ruins that surround the town of La Charitesur Loire.

La Charitesur Loire and the Loire River.

Picking white asparagus.

Our next stop was Sancerre, home to Lisa’s favorite wine.  I was in trouble.  Sancerre is a classic medieval village with it’s ancient church and chateau, cobblestone streets, and narrow alleys. It is situated on a hill overlooking the Loire River, and the Canal Lateral al a Loire where we could see Rabelo moored. While it is relatively touristy it was still worth visiting.  We also visited Chavignol, which was just a mile and a half away. It is also known for it’s Sancerre wines, and it’s goat cheese. Kevin sent us to Henri Bourgeois in Chavignol where we bought our first case of Sancerre wine.  The next day we went to Domaine Vacheron where we bought a second case of Sancerre wine. Mr. Vacheron was our sommelier, and while his English was on a par with our French, Lisa and I still spent an entertaining hour with him tasting wine.

The hilltop village of Sancerre.

Another view of Sancerre.

Before arriving in Sancerre Lisa went through her many guidebooks looking for a place to eat. According to Lisa and Michelin, La Tour is the best restaurant in Sancerre.  They were booked a week in advance for dinner, but said they had room for us at lunch that day. We don’t normally drink wine in the middle of the day, but when you are indulged in a gastronomic feast of unimaginable proportions there are certain protocols that one must follow. We ordered a bottle of Sancerre wine to go with our meal, as if we didn’t have enough back on Rabelo.  Of course we could not pass up the cheese course with an impressive selection of goat cheeses.

Standing in front of La Tour.

The cheese course.

After lunch we drove back to Chavignol, and bough half a ton of goat cheese at a local fromagerie, or cheese factory. Lisa likes to put out a spread of cheese and pates to munch on before dinner.  She was just making sure we wouldn’t run out. Oh yes, I almost forgot she also likes to serve wine with our little snacks.

Our next stop was Cosnesur Loire.  At the last lock of the day the lock keeper asked us to come back after we had tied up and taste some of the wine he was selling. We like to support the local economy so that evening we returned to buy a third case of Sancerre wines. Rabelo now has enough white wine and goat cheese to feed our guests for the next three years.

A fromagerie in Chavignol.

Our lock keeper selling wine.

-Tom Miller
Author of “The Wave”  and “When Stones Speak”– 
Chuck Palmer Adventure novels


About the Author:

Tom Miller graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor of Science in Geology. He is a consummate adventurer with over 1,000 dives as a recreational scuba diver, and an avid sailor who has traveled 65,000 miles throughout the Pacific including the Hawaiian Islands. Miller has also cruised the canals of Europe on his canal barge and given numerous lectures on cruising the canals of Europe, as well as sailing in the South Pacific. Piloting is also an interest of Miller's, and He has completed over 1,000 hours flying everything from small Cessnas to Lear jets.