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Situated in north-central France, about 120km south west of Paris , Orléans is the capital of the Loire department. The city, formerly the country’s second largest, is renowned for its long, hard history. Plagued by invasions, the city has been under siege from the Romans, the Huns and Second World War bombs. Joan of Arc, the Maid of Orléans, is still a revered character in the city, having mastered its liberation from the British in 1429.
Now, Orléans is a city with a mixture of modern and traditional architecture. It sits on the banks of the Loire River in a fertile valley, which is often referred to as the Garden of France. As well as providing plenty of entertainment and things to see in the city, it is also extremely well connected with the rest of the Loire Valley - surrounding towns, cities and a vast, rolling countryside – in easy reach.