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Castles of the Loire Valley 1 Day
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Print time：2018/03/17 06:36:04
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- Castles of the Loire Valley
The Loire is the longest river in France with a length of 1 020 km. In the middle portion of the Loire Valley, along the river from Orleans to Anger has a large number of historical monuments, including hundreds majestic castles which retrace and feature all the big and little even ts of history of France. This area is called "the Garden of France." Many castles were registered into the list of World Cultural Heritage by UNESCO among which Chambord, Chenonceau and Amboise are the best known.
1, National Domain of Chambord
An influence by the Masters, at the heart of a vast gamey forest, the Château of Chambord, the iconic palace of French Renaissance, emerges from Sologne marshes. Chambord was born from the dream of François 1st, King of France, who brought his battles with Italy contesting for many artists, including Leonardo da Vinci. No one knows the architect of Chambord, but this masterpiece seems inspired by sketches of the great Italian masters, including the famous double helix staircase.
A wonder of the Renaissance, the château of Chambord is one of the most unique constructions left to us by the Renaissance. Its architecture is a carefully balanced blend of traditional elements of Medieval French architecture and other elements borrowed from the Italian Renaissance. The massive keep, enclosed by four towers with their corbelled walkway and the rampart path are so similar to medieval fortresses. Similarly, the walls, moats and gothic look of the rooftop constructions. But the central placement of the keep, the position of the double helix staircase, the geometric lightness of the facades and their decoration, the symmetry of the buildings, how openings are included to provide a flow through the building and the presence of vaulted ceilings on the second storey are the many innovative touches that make the monument unique.
With its dual inspiration, the château was the perfect instrument to sing the praises of the king and the perfect reflection of the personality of the man who had it built – a knightly king, heir to French traditions but at the same time a modern man who was fascinated by culture and the arts, inspired by the greatest artists of his time.
The château of Chambord is an exceptional architectural creation that draws its inspiration from the French tradition as much as from the new ideas of the Italian Renaissance. The genius behind the project remains a mystery. Some art historians attribute it to an Italian while others maintain that it is a purely French creation and still others say it is a collaboration between artists from the two lands. At the beginning of the 20th century, the name of Leonardo da Vinci was first put forward. While the multi-talented genius may have had a hand in the initial design of the keep, his death in 1519 means he could not have directed any of the construction. The central placement of the keep, the presence of the double helix staircase, latrines with a double tank system and air vents or the water-tightness of the terraces are just so many hints that mean he could have been the inspiration behind François I’s masterpiece.
2, Château of Chenonceau
The Château of Chenonceau was once a royal residence as property of the crown. It is a truly exceptional site, both for its original idea of building it on the Cher River, and for its destiny: to be loved, managed, and protected by women such as Diane de Poitiers and Catherine de’ Medici. Today, the Château of Chenonceau is second only to Versailles as the most visited château in France.
For the historical background, the “Château des Dames” was built in 1513 by Katherine Briçonnet, and successively embellished by Diane de Poitiers then Catherine de Medici. Chenonceau was protected from the hardship of the revolution by Madame Dupin. The iron, but very feminine, fist in the velvet glove has always preserved Chenonceau during times of conflict and war in order to make it forever a place of peace.
Throughout its history, this emblematic Castle has always attracted talent and inspired great artists. Conveying beauty and combining the elegance of architecture with that of the spirit is also sharing an elegant way of life.
At Chenonceau Castle, the flower display in every sumptuously furnished room adds to its elegance. The room of Five Queens, the living room of Louis XIV, the grand gallery overlooking the River Cher, fabulous kitchens constructed in the piers of the bridge, the Green Cabinet of Catherine de Medici...Step by step, Chenonceau takes you back in time to share its dreams and reveal its secrets.
3, Royal Château of Amboise
Situated in the Centre Val de Loire region in the town of Amboise, the medieval fortress of Amboise was replaced by a royal residence during the reigns of Kings Charles VIII and François I (late 15th - early 16th century). A number of men and women of letters from Europe, as well as artists, stayed at the Court of Amboise at the sovereigns’ invitation (including Leonardo da Vinci, who was eventually buried in the château’s chapel).
Château d'Amboise was characterized as a great shelter for the royal family. In October 7, 1461, the King Louis XI came to greet Queen Marie d'Anjou, his mother, after her coronation in Reims. After that she remained in Poitou, so that the Queen Charlotte of Savoy and her daughter Anne of France could settle there. Indeed, in 1433, threatened by the allies Bourguignons, the Dauphin Louis who was educated in the castle of Loches found here for refuge in Amboise. Now because of its security, the castle became the residence and school of princes and princesses, including Charles VIII, Louise de Savoie, finally François 1st of France.
1. English Guide (Tour guide interpretive is prohibited inside the castle. The interpretive device is available to rent);
2. Aircondition bus;
1. Admission fees to castles
2. Interpretive Device;
3. Meals and personal expenses;
5. Service fees for tour guide and driver；
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