Castles in the Loire Valley

France is one of the most diverse countries in Europe. Here's what to visit on the Loire Valley Castles route, our suggestion of what to do in addition to Paris.

One of the coolest programs to do in France besides Paris is to visit the castles in the Loire Valley. Although it is possible to organize scheduled excursions and even day-tours, I recommend renting a car, as the castles are large and it would be a shame to have to worry about time.

In both Chenonceau and Chambord, the main castles in this post, it is possible to take a super romantic boat trip, so a tour would definitely limit your freedom to visit! #reallifefairytale

Where to stay in the Loire Valley

We stayed at an excellent hostel-style hotel called Auberge de l'École in Pontlevoy. In addition to the impeccable breakfast, the hotel's restaurant is also very good and well-known in the region. The rooms are all romantic, a real charm!

Castles in the Loire Valley

Quarto do Hotel

Castles in the Loire Valley

Breakfast at the hotel

Pontlevoy It's a tiny, passing town, but its location is perfect for castles. From Pontlevoy to Chambord it takes approximately 40 minutes and to Chenonceau approximately 20 minutes.

What to do in the Loire Valley

Chambord Castle: Built in the XNUMXth century during the reign of François I, Chambord remains to this day one of the largest Loire Valley castles. Thanks to its 5440 hectares, it is also the largest closed forest park in Europe.

It is interesting here to see the difference in relation to other French castles such as Versailles and Vaux-le-Vicomte that have the famous “French gardens”, while in Chambord there is only a vast green area.

Castles in the Loire Valley

With a very beautiful exterior and furnished interior, the Castle of Chambord it is undoubtedly impressive. Next to its entrance there are several restaurants at affordable prices, which makes the visit much easier, making it possible to spend the whole day there. We chose the restaurant The Cave of the Kings and we like.

The only thing I don't recommend about Chambord is the audio guide: it focuses on the description of the Castle's architecture and leaves something to be desired when it comes to the history of the place.

Castles in the Loire Valley

Green area of ​​Chambord Castle

Chenonceau Castle: the cutest castle in the world #inlove. Built on a bridge over a river, Chenonceau is known as the Château des Dames, or Castle of Women, thanks to the female role in its history.

A good example of this story: Henri II offered the castle to Diane de Poitiers, his mistress, but when he died, Catherine de Medici – the official woman – who was not at all happy with what had happened, asked for the castle back. #drama #revenge

Castles in the Loire Valley

Chenonceau it also has a very small garden, but beautiful to die for #morrimastireifoto . Despite not being so furnished inside, it's really worth getting the audio guide there! Ah, there you can also rent a boat and put your boyfriend to work out his arms on the paddle hahaha #casalfit

This time we chose to have lunch in the city outside the Castle (Chenonceaux), because there was only one fine dining restaurant (expensive) and another buffet that was always full. So we opted for the restaurant in the backyard of the King's Hostel, with good food and honest prices.

Castles in the Loire Valley

Other ideas for castles in the Loire Valley

Amboise Castle: just 20 minutes from Chenonceau, this castle features medieval architecture and is located right in the middle of the city (of Amboise)!

This contrast of seeing the development of the city in its surroundings is very cool. Ah, on the way there we were still very lucky and came across a wonderful field of sunflowers.

Castles in the Loire Valley

Castles in the Loire Valley

Montchard: it is less than 10 minutes from Pontlevoy in route of castles. It's a small town with a Donjon (the tallest tower of a medieval fortress) and a traditional sparkling wine cellar called Monmusseau, where you can enjoy #chic tasting.
There is also an excellent restaurant where we celebrated my boyfriend's birthday last year, Le Nanteuil.

Castles in the Loire Valley

Undoubtedly, France has excellent options for things to do besides Paris, and getting to know the castles in the Loire Valley It's one of them, isn't it? ?

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