It doesn’t take long to drive the 20 miles of straightaway road that runs beside the Loire River from Blois to Amboise, but I was in a hurry that afternoon. After three days of rain, the sun had finally shown its face giving me a chance to take a few shots of the beautiful Château d’Amboise. We had been circling the château for the past two days waiting for the rain to stop, so I wasn’t going to miss this chance.
Château d’Ambroise First Impressions
When you are approaching the town of Amboise and see the castle for the first time you’ll notice that it’s completely different from the the stylish Chenonceau or the fairytale aspect of Chambord. Surrounded by 10-foot-high walls, the luminous limestone façade of Château d’Amboise rises above the river, behind a row of ordinary houses that rest at its foot. Constructed in the 11th century by the Count of Anjou, the castle was erected on the foundation of an old Gallic fortress and was expanded many times over the centuries. Its strategic position –up on a promontory overlooking the Loire– offered a solid defense against any attackers. Continue Reading
History can be strange and fascinating sometimes. Especially when political intrigue, great love, jealousy and revenge are involved. But what would a castle be without all that? Chenonceau is widely considered the…
The Loire Valley’s spectacular scenery, fine wines and amazing châteaux have lured visitors for centuries. Nowhere else in the world can you find such a large number of castles in one area. But beyond their beauty, the chateaux of the Loire Valley are an expression of France’s history. These fortified palaces were in fact the central points around which towns and villages developed during the middle ages.
There are more than 100 châteaux that are open to the public in the Loire Valley. In order to see them all you’d probably need to move into the area, so the challenge that every visitor faces is choosing which castles to see during their visit.
Coming from Paris, the first great site you’ll discover after Orleans is the royal Château de Blois, positioned right in the center of the city of Blois. The town itself is really charming, built on a steep hill with winding pathways and guarded by the tower of the Gothic Blois Cathedral. Continue Reading