Travel to France
Day 4 Sambin - Chenonceaux - Amboise - Sambin (71 Km.)
(in 24 Km.) Chenonceaux: The Château de Chenonceau, also known as the Castle of women, is a residential-style castle of the sixteenth century. The present castle was built on the river Cher, on the pillars of a fortified mill and the former fortified castle that was bought from the family of Marques. This latter was demolished, except the main tower (the Marques tower, which was adapted in renaissance style) and the adjacent well. The square residential body which constitutes the original castle was built between 1513 and 1521 by Thomas Bohier.
Château de Chenonceau - Pont de Diane
Diane de Poitiers commissioned Pacello da Mercoliano that conditions on the right bank of the river Cher the garden that still bears his name; at the same time commissioned its usual architect, Philibert de l´Orme, the construction of a bridge that linked the castle of Bohier to the right bank, in order to establish new gardens there. The Château de Chenonceau has two main gardens: Diane de Poitiers´ garden and Catherine de´ Medici garden, located each one of them next to the Marques tower.
Château de Chenonceau - Tour des Marques (Marques tower)
The castle has a square floor plan with a central hall that opened to four rooms, one on each side. On the ground floor there is a chapel, next to Diane de Poitiers' room and work room of Catherine de Medici. From the end of the hallway you can access the gallery that is over the river Cher. On the ground floor there is also the room of Francis I and Louis XIV salon. The kitchens are located on the pillars of the mill prior to the construction of the castle. They are equipped with a dock shortcut to them, allowing the arrival of the goods for them directly, without going through nobles dependencies of the castle.
Château de Chenonceau - Gardens
On the first floor there are four other rooms: the Five queens´ bedroom, Catherine de´ Medici´s bedroom, Cesar of Vendôme´s bedroom and Gabrielle d´Estrées´ bedroom, King Henry IV´s favourite. On the second floor, the Louise of Lorraine´s bedroom still has the look of mourning for the death of the wife of Henry III, highlighting the dominant black color of the coffer, macabre paintings that adorn the walls, the prie-dieu facing towards the window and the diverse décor reminiscent of a religious mourning for Louise of Lorraine-Vaudémont.
Pagode de Chanteloup
(in 16 Km.) Amboise: Before we enter to the center of this town we visited the Pagode de Chanteloup, a Chinese pagode 44 meters in height built in between 1773 and 1978. It has seven floors, each one of them slightly smaller than the previous. An interior staircase reaches all levels and it is open to the public (you must buy a ticket). The views from the top are magnificent. It is surrounded by 14 hectares of park and a lake with crescent-shaped. Its builder was the Duke de Choiseul, Grand Minister of King Louis XV.
The Château d´Amboise overlooks since a promontory the Loire river at it passes through Amboise. This building houses the tomb of Leonardo da Vinci, who lived in a mansion in the same location (Castle of Clos-Lucé). The fortifications of the castle of Amboise have been built since the thirteenth century. King Charles VIII made there the first notable buildings: The Saint-Hubert chapel, built on a large rock between 1491 and 1496, the wing called "Charles VIII", also in late Gothic style, which includes the homes of King and Queen, Louis XII wing in Renaissance style, Where are the apartments of the nineteenth century, two large circular towers: Minimes and Hurtault, etc.
Château de Chaumont-sur-Loire
(in 18 Km.) Chaumont-sur-Loire: The first château-fort on this site was a primitive fortress built in the 10th century. It was rebuilt by Charles I d´Amboise from 1465–1475. The duc de Beauvilliers bought the chateau in 1699, modernized some of its interiors and decorated it with sufficient grandeur to house the duc d´Anjou on his way to become king of Spain in 1700. The castle has been classified as a Monument historique since 1840 by the French Ministry of Culture. In 1938 the government took over the ownership. The Château de Chaumont is currently a museum and every year hosts a Garden Festival.
(in 13 Km.) We returned to Sambin.