Monday, November 28, 2011

France - Sept 23 - Tours Chateau's

Tours is an excellent place to stay when visiting the many fabulous chateau's (castles) of the Loire Valley.  You would think we had the best French speaking tour guide...  oh wait....  we did!!!  We still can't thank Annie enough for all the planning, translating and hard work that she put into this trip to make it so wonderful.

The first chateau on tour today is Langeais.  It was a short drive from Tours.  It was built in the middle of the 15th century and is the historic site of the secret marriage of Charles VIII and Anne of Brittany in 1491.

The front gate of Langeais

The rear view of chateau Langeais is fantastic!

Look at all those happy grins as we get set to enter our first chateau of the day.

Gathering around to start the tour.
What a fantastic door - doesn't it look secure and so very french?
And yet another secure looking door - maybe you would think twice about attacking this castle?
Given how cold and damp it was in here in September, I can imagine these fireplaces were huge for a reason.
Our next chateau was Azay-le-Rideau with its beautiful central stairway.  This chateau was built in the 16th century and you could tell that it was not built to be defended, but as a show of wealth and comfort.

Getting ready to start our tour.

Beautiful chateau with its foundation rising right out of the Indre River.
Our last chateau of the day was Amboise which is the location where King Charles VIII hit his head and died at the age of 27.  It was home to several of the french monarchs including King Henri II and Catherine de' Medici who raised their childrenand with Mary Stuart, the child Queen of Scotland who will marry the future French King Francis II (sorry but my love of British history is showing through here).

The beautiful views of chateau d'Amboise perched high above the Loire River.

Ted, Annie and I enjoy the views from the castle walls overlooking the Loire River.

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