Last Updated on 04/03/2023
The main thing to come to Loire Valley Chambord castle for is the amazing architecture. A fantastic jumble of towers, stairs, bells, carved windows, twisted railings make it look like a cake that came out from under the hands of a pastry chef with a particularly sophisticated imagination. Chateaubriand saw in him a woman with flowing hair. Victor Hugo wrote about the castle: “All sorts of magic, poetry, even madness are represented in the admirably bizarrerie of that palace of fairies and knights.”
How to get to Chambord castle
From Blois Chambord castle can be reached by bus. There are two bus options.
- During the summer season there is a tourist bus Blois – Chambord – Villesavin – Cheverny – Beauregard – Blois.
The bus leaves from the Blois railway station, it goes to Chambord in 40 minutes. Then you can visit other castles (Villesavin, Cheverny or Beauregard). The ticket costs 3 euros per trip. More detailed timetable can be found on the website www.remi-centrevaldeloire.fr.
- The Remi 41 bus runs all year round (the timetable on the same website).
History of Chambord castle
Initially, on the site of the castle were the hunting estates of the Counts de Blois. In the 14th century, the site was bought by the Dukes of Orleans. When the next Duke of Orleans became King Louis 12, the estate became the property of the crown.
Francis 1 decided to build a “slightly” larger hunting lodge and started a powerful construction with a large number of workers. It began in 1518 and ended in 1543. It is believed that the plans for the palace were also developed by Leonardo da Vinci, who died before construction began.
Francis, however, did not spend much time in the castle. Subsequent kings had little interest in Chambord. As a result, the castle passed from hand to hand until it was bought by the state in the 20th century and turned into a museum.
Chambord Castle architecture
A masterpiece of the French Renaissance is the famous double staircase located in the center of the palace and leading to the upper floors and gallery. These are two spiral staircases around one common well. Two people walking up the stairs at the same pace will periodically see each other through the windows, but they will not be able to meet.
You must definitely go up to the observation gallery – only from there you can see the wonderful roof of the castle.
The interiors of the castle are not particularly interesting – the kings lived here for a few days. You can see several rooms of Francis 1, apartments of the 18th century, a room for carriages, which were never used.
Of the decorations, attention is drawn to the frequently repeated monogram F and the salamander (emblem of Francis 1).
It is quite possible to inspect the castle in one and a half to two hours. There is no garden around. But there is a huge fenced forest park with different animals, like deer.
If you have time before the bus, you can rent a boat and ride along the canal. In the stables of the Marshal of Saxony, a horse show is shown every day from May to September. In addition, from early July to mid-September, you can see the castle lit up at night.
Other castles of Loire – #Loire