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The castles of the Loire



Discover the « Val de Loire » and its chateaux, stroll through charming villages… the walk will give you the opportunity to have a taste of ancient times.

Well before the « Val de Loire » was registered at the UNESCO heritage, kings, painters and poets had discovered the pleasures of the land.

 

Blois, Chambord, Cheverny… Going through the « Cœur Val de Loire » is like looking at a full-size history book.

 

From the borders of the “Perche » to the deepest forests in Sologne, the invitations are numerous. Royal chateaux, churches with frescos, medieval towns, there is something for everyone.

 

Neighbours to their Loire “cousins”, the Loir châteaux are certainly worth getting to know better.

Built or modified between the end of the Middle Ages and the 18th century, they formed the setting for numerous events.

They were designed in a setting of parks and gardens which have nothing to envy their more famous counterparts. In the Loir Valley, the majority of châteaux and fine residences are inhabited. Better still: you can sometimes stay in them, in “chambres d”hôtes”, or stop by a gastronomic experience.

All around Vendôme, going back even further in time, you will discover the ruins of fortresses that defended towns in the early Middle Ages:

  • Fréteval castle, witnessed some historic encounters between Louis VII and Henry II Plantagenet, King of England in possession of Maine and Anjou, as well as the famous battle won by Richard the Lionheart against Philippe Auguste,
  • The fortresses of Lavardin and Montoire face one another just a few hundred yards apart, perched on their promontory
  • Mondoubleau,
  • Vendôme castle, besieged by Henry IV, now stands in a superb garden setting.

 

That discovery is a romantic experience.