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Château de Chenonceau, Civray-de-Touraine

5.0 stars


Romantic Castle of Chenonceau

The Chenonceau Castle is one of the most beautiful and inspiring castles I ever visited. Located in the River Loire’s valley area, its history has to do with several notorious women – hence its nickname “Castle of Ladies”.
Among them we can count Diane de Poitiers, the mistress of King Henry II of France, and his wife Catherine de Médicis. The castle’s origin relates to a fortified mill – the Marques Tower at the entrance – but each of the Chenonceau’s ladies extended its construction and beauty.

As you go across the amazing gallery corridors to the other side of the River Cher, you will find in the woods the serene tomb of Madame Pelouze, owner of Chenonceau in the XIX century.

The interiors of Chenonceau are full of charm and refined design – go and see for yourself. Be careful not to stay locked on the other side of the river – and enjoy the beautiful entrance gardens too. [more ]

Exploring Chenonceau

The Chateau survived the ravages of the Revolution, and in 1863 Dame Pelouze bought it, and spent the next 10 years restoring it. Today, Chenonceau stands in stark contrast to the ruined fortress of Chinon. Strolling the elegant gardens, or walking through the meticulously restored bedrooms and galleries, you can get a sense of the opulence and wealth of its former owners. Chinon, on the other hand, tells of an earlier time, when thick walls and fortified towers were more important than rich tapestries or beautiful artwork.
We left the beauty of Chenonceau, after walking the grounds and visiting the outlying farm buildings. Then we traveled back to the middle ages, as it were, to Chinon and its fine wines and food. [more ]

Chateau de Chenonceau

As a contrast to the pragmatic, no-frills fortress of Chinon, we decided to visit one of the pleasure palaces of the renaissance, the Chateau Chenonceau. We headed east, across much rich farmland and fields of poppies, and finally arrived in Chenonceau. This was to be the most touristy visit of our trip. As we arrived, tour buses were already pulling into the parking lot. Chenonceau is no ruin, but a carefully preserved and excellent example of renaissance architecture.
Thomas Bohier originally built the chateau. In 1547 Henri II (king of France, not Henri II Plantagenet) gave it to Diane de Poitiers, his lover. It was she that had the bridge built that spanned the Cher and connected the square Pavillion of Thomas Bohier with the other bank of the river. Diane also had the Italianate garden on the east end constructed. After Henri’s death, his wife, Catherine de Medicis took over the chateau and drove out her husband’s mistress. She had a 2 level gallery added to Diane de Poitier’s bridge, and she had a garden of her own constructed opposite Diane’s garden. [more ]

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