Fourth Week Family Road Trip in Europe

Road Trips
fourth week family road trip europe

Day 22 Paris to Angers stop at Terra Botanica

Paris to Angers
Paris to Angers

Waving goodbye to the charming city of Paris on our 22nd day, we hit the road with a mix of sadness and excitement for our next destination: Terra Botanica. A three-hour drive awaited, but the anticipation of exploring the botanical park’s wonders kept our spirits high.

Upon reaching Angers, we made a quick stop at the ibis budget Angers Parc des Expositions to drop off our bags before embarking on our eagerly anticipated adventure to Terra Botanica (website). This enchanting botanical park, home to over 500,000 plants from six continents, promised a day filled with exploration and wonder. We opted for the day and night ticket, allowing us to fully immerse ourselves in the park’s daytime splendor and return for the mesmerizing Nocturne night show.

terra botanica face
Terra Botanica

Terra Botanica offered a wide variety of plants, art with plants and even park rides, our favorite was the Journey in a nutshell that transports you on a whimsical adventure through the forest canopy. Nestled within a giant nutshell, you’ll embark on a thrilling ride while gaining valuable insights into the diverse plants that inhabit this elevated realm.

journey in a nutshell
Journey in a nutshell
unicorn statue
Unicorn statue

After a full day of exploring Terra Botanica and its captivating attractions, we reluctantly bid farewell to the park as it closed its doors for preparations for the enchanting Nocturne night show. Seizing the opportunity to replenish our energy before the evening spectacle, we ventured to a nearby McDonald’s for a quick meal.

Terra Nocta
Terra Nocta
Illuminated Forest
Illuminated Forest

The Terra Nocta night show at Terra Botanica was an absolute triumph of artistry and creativity, a spectacle that defied capture by mere photographs. The show’s immersive blend of music, dance, and water acrobatics transcended the limitations of the physical realm, transporting us to a realm of pure enchantment. Words fail to describe the sheer beauty and ingenuity of the performance, which left us spellbound and deeply moved. The Terra Nocta night show is a must-see for anyone seeking an unforgettable experience that will forever linger in their memory.

Our decision to visit Terra Botanica in September rather than August proved to be a wise one. Unlike the bustling summer peak season, the park was pleasantly uncrowded, allowing us to fully appreciate its tranquil beauty at our own pace.

Day 23 Angers to Bordeaux

Angers to Bordeuax

On this day we would travel from Angers to Bordeaux, a distance of around 400 kilometers. We were in no rush, as we had planned a relaxed and calm return to Portugal. We decided to revisit Bordeaux, as we had only spent a morning there the last time we were in the city and wanted to explore more.

We arrived in Bordeaux and parked our car in Park Camille Jullian, one of the most central car parks in the city. We then took our time exploring the historical center of Bordeaux.

Saint-André Cathedral
Saint-André Cathedral (44°50’15.6″N 0°34’39.7″W)

We visited some of the city’s most famous attractions, including:

  • The Saint-André Cathedral: A beautiful Gothic cathedral that dates back to the 12th century.
  • The Basilique Saint-Michel: A 14th-century church that offers stunning views of the city.
  • The Grosse Cloche: A 15th-century bell tower that is one of the most iconic landmarks in Bordeaux.

We also enjoyed wandering around the city’s charming streets and squares, stopping to admire the architecture and soak up the atmosphere.

We had a wonderful day exploring Bordeaux. It was a great way to end our trip to France. We are already looking forward to returning to Bordeaux in the future to explore more of what this beautiful city has to offer.

We ended the day at ibis budget Bordeaux Sud Villenave d’Ornon.

Day 24 Bordeaux to Burgos

bordeux burgos
Bordeaux to Burgos

On this day, you would start your day in Bordeaux, France and travel approximately 450 kilometers to Burgos, Spain.

Burgos, Mirador Del Castillo (42°20’29.6″N 3°42’24.1″W)

After embarking on a picturesque journey through the Spanish countryside, our anticipation grew as we finally arrived in Burgos, eager to delve into the city’s rich history and vibrant culture. As we gracefully parked our car, the imposing Burgos Castle greeted us from its hilltop perch, setting the stage for an enchanting exploration.

Ascending to the castle’s summit, we were rewarded with awe-inspiring views of Burgos Cathedral, a magnificent testament to Gothic architecture. The Mirador Del Castillo, a vantage point nearby, offered the perfect opportunity to capture the breathtaking scenery through our lenses.

Close to the castle, a charming public children’s park provided a delightful interlude for my kids, adding a touch of playfulness to our journey. Once everyone was ready to resume, we made our way to Burgos city center.

cathedral of burgos
Burgos Cathedral of Santa Maria (42°20’25.6″N 3°42’15.3″W)

Our first stop was Burgos Cathedral, where we were humbled by the sheer grandeur of the Gothic masterpiece. The cathedral’s impressive size and intricate details left an indelible mark on our senses, immersing us in centuries of history and craftsmanship.

arco de santa maria
Arco de Santa María, Burgos (42°20’23.2″N 3°42’14.1″W)

Wandering through the city center, we chanced upon the majestic Arco de Santa María, a historic arch that stood as a gateway to Burgos’ past. Its intricate design and historical significance added another layer to our exploration, enhancing our understanding of the city’s cultural tapestry.

Burgos, with its castle-crowned landscapes, cathedral splendor, and historical landmarks, proved to be a captivating chapter in our journey, leaving us with cherished memories and a profound appreciation for the beauty that unfolded at every turn.

After dinner, we headed to our hotel on the outskirts of Burgos, anticipating a peaceful night’s rest after a day of exploration in the city.

Day 25 Burgos to Salamanca

burgos to salamanca
Burgos to Salamanca

On this day, we embarked on a shorter drive, navigating for approximately 2.5 hours. Our destination was the vibrant city of Salamanca, where we would be staying at the charming Hotel Bardo Recoletos Coco.

plaza mayor
Plaza Mayor, Salamanca (40°57’54.1″N 5°39’50.5″W)

This was a more leisurely day, with no need for rushing as we were close to our final destination. After checking into the hotel, we parked our car at the convenient Parking Santa Eulalia, located near the city center. Next, we ventured into the heart of Salamanca, sauntering towards the iconic Plaza Mayor, the city’s vibrant central square. Here, we indulged in a quick and satisfying lunch at McDonald’s, refueling for the afternoon’s explorations.

salamanca cathedral
Salamanca Cathedral (40°57’38.9″N 5°39’57.4″W)

Replenished, we continued our sightseeing, making our way to the awe-inspiring Salamanca Cathedral, a masterpiece of Gothic architecture. Its intricate stonework and soaring arches filled us with wonder and admiration. Our journey then led us to the enchanting Casa de las Conchas, a captivating building adorned with an abundance of scallop shells.

To conclude our day, we sought respite at the hotel’s refreshing pool, basking in the warmth of the Spanish sun. As we floated on the tranquil waters, our thoughts drifted back to the memorable moments we had experienced throughout our journey.

Day 26 Salamanca to Lisbon stop at Belver

salamanca lisbon
Salamanca to Lisbon – 500km

As our road trip neared its end, we embarked on the final leg of our journey, spanning approximately 500 kilometers and taking us approximately 5 hours to complete. With only a brief detour planned in Belver, we were eager to complete our adventure and return home with a wealth of memories.

After a 1-hour drive, we reached the border and crossed into Portugal, marking our triumphant return home. With a sense of relief and excitement, we welcomed the familiar sights and sounds of our beloved country. The border crossing also meant gaining an extra hour, as Portugal observes a -1 hour time zone compared to Spain. With renewed energy, we continued our journey for another 2 hours, eager to reach our final destination in Belver.

we reached portugal
Portugal border

We parked our car near Alamal fluvial beach, where a picturesque walkway trail began, offering breathtaking views of the iconic Belver Castle and Bridge.

With eager anticipation, we embarked on the 1.8-kilometer trail (3.6 kilometers round trip), traversing a mostly flat path alongside the serene Tagus River. Even our 3-year-old child eagerly joined the expedition, demonstrating the trail’s accessibility to all ages.

belver castle
Belver Castle, Passadiço de Alamal (39°29’19.5″N 7°57’59.0″W)
belver bridge
Belver Bridge

After traversing the scenic walkway trail, we savored a delightful lunch at the fluvial beach restaurant, reveling in the idyllic atmosphere. With renewed energy, we bid farewell to Belver and embarked on the final leg of our journey. Before leaving, we couldn’t resist the thrill of the Gavião Swing, soaring high above the Tagus River, leaving us with an unforgettable experience.

After a final 2-hour drive, we triumphantly arrived in Lisbon. The road trip had come to an end, but the spirit of adventure lived on within us. As we reunited with our beloved furball, who had been staying at a lovely Quinta do Sol, our minds were already racing with ideas for future escapades. Where would the road lead us next summer? The possibilities seemed endless, and we couldn’t wait to embark on new adventures that would fill our hearts with joy and our memories with unforgettable experiences.

If you liked our road trip and want to know more about to plan a road trip check out complete guide for a family road trip.

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