|LE MANS is 80km northwest of tours in the département of Sarthe, some way from the Loire valley but included here as a good, relatively untouristy base between the latter and Normandy, with swift transport connections down to Angers and Tours. If you want to stay in a Le Mans hotel, check this website. The city is taken over by car fanatics in the middle of June for the famous 24-hour race, but for the rest of the year it's still lively enough, with one of the most beautiful old quarters of any city in France, overlooked by the remarkable cathedral. It was here, in 1129, that Geoffrey Plantagenet, Count of Maine and Anjou, married Matilda, daughter of Henry I of England, and where their son, the future Henry II, was born.|
Pages in section ‘Le Mans’: The City, Information, Hotels, Hostel, Restaurants, Racetrack and car museum, Abbaye de L'Epau.