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Pays de la Loire

Langeais Castle - Château de Langeais

Langeais Castle

Langeais is one of the oldest chateaux of the Loire Valley.

On the outside, it's a fortified castle with a draw bridge, and a fine example of military architecture from the 15th century.

But once you walk through it's doors, you'll fine a Renaissance manor.

Thanks to the legacy of the Siegfried family, the general public can marvel at a remarkable collection of chests and other furniture from the 16th century, paintings (frescos by Luini), as well as a precious collection of tapestries; Dutch for the most part.

It is without a doubt in this luxurious atmosphere that Charles VIII and Anne de Bretagne celebrated their wedding at the chateau in 1491 (she was 15), thus uniting France and Brittany.

Chinon Castle - Château de Chinon

Chinon Castle


This formidable romantic ruin, three fortresses and a chateau, dominates the town of the same name and the Vienne river.


It is nearly 1300 feet long, and 230 feet wide and is composed of the vestiges from three fortresses: fort St-Georges, the Château du Milieu and the Château du Coudray.

The Château de Chinon became famous thanks to Joan of Arc. Joan of Arc met with the "Dauphin" (the future Charles VII) in the Chateau, and from there she set out on her famous journey which would take her to Reims to crown the king.

The fortress is surrounded by a fortified outer wall, of which the oldest portion dates back to the 10th century. Over time the chateau welcomed many illustrious visitors: Henri II and his wife Eleanore of Aquitaine or then again, Philippe II Auguste.

The restoration job done on the town of Chinon is admirable. Although,you won't be able to drive your car into the center of town, even horses had a hard time getting through its narrow streets.

Once you're there, it's hard to believe that it's actually the 21st century, and that just a few miles away there is a nuclear power plant.

It would make a wonderful backdrop for a swashbuckler film! Chinon wine is usually quite excellent. Thirty years ago, one could still get a hold some very fine prune alcohol from Huismes. Can anyone tell me if they still exist?


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