Travels

The best castles of the Loire Valley from Tours

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Within a tour of the stretch of Loire Valley declared World Heritage by Unesco there are many places worth knowing within walking distance of Tours. Here we recommend three visits very different from each other.

Amboise Castle

Loire Valley, Amboise

The first one will be Amboise. Tours is at the confluence of the Loire and Cher rivers and the first suggestion would be to follow the road that runs along the right bank of the Loire to, upon reaching Amboise, find yourself facing the spectacular view across the bridge and stand on the river island of Oro that is right in front of the city. The castle, which is a true fortress, dominates the panorama. Luis XI, Carlos VIII and Francisco I were some of the kings linked to this place and those who dedicated themselves to making this castle an island of luxury in nature. The conspiracy of Amboise and the slaughter of Protestants of 1560 put an end to this process. Although it was partially destroyed it still offers a lot to visitors. Especially the dazzling exempt chapel of Saint Hubert, a jewel of the Gothic.

When Francisco I lived in Amboise he had as a guest nothing less than Leonardo da Vinci, which gives us an idea of ​​the level of cultural (and luxury) concerns that existed at that time in the French court. Leonardo worked and lived in the nearby Clos Lucé, a mansion located a few hundred meters away. The mansion is interesting for its rooms, for the enormous strength of its most famous resident and, above all, because it shows the models of 40 of his mechanical inventions. A walk through the garden also allows you to find many of these devices built to life size, and it is interesting to act with them to appreciate their possible usefulness.

Chenonceau Castle

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