Chateaudun Castle

Overview Of Chateau de Chateaudun

Chateau de Chateaudun is a magnificent castle located in the Loir-et-Cher department of France, in the heart of the Centre-Val de Loire region. This castle is famous for its impressive medieval and Renaissance architecture, which is a combination of several architectural styles. The castle is perched on a hill overlooking the Loir River and offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside.

The Chateau de Chateaudun was originally built in the 12th century by the Counts of Blois. Over the years, the castle underwent several modifications and additions, with the most significant changes made during the Renaissance period. The castle has a rich history and has been home to several prominent families, including the counts of Blois, the dukes of Orleans, and the Montpensier family. The castle has survived wars, revolutions, and other significant historical events and has been listed as a historical monument since 1840.

Today, the Chateau de Chateaudun is open to the public, and visitors can explore the castle's various rooms, including the Grand Salon, the Chapel, and the Gothic Hall. The castle also features a beautiful French-style garden that is worth visiting, as well as a museum dedicated to the history of the castle and the surrounding region. With its stunning architecture and rich history, the Chateau de Chateaudun is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in French history and architecture.

History Of Chateau de Chateaudun

  • The original castle was built in the 12th century on the orders of Count of Blois, Theobald IV.
  • The castle was seized by King Philip II of France in 1194 after he defeated Count of Blois, Theobald V.
  • In the 15th century, the castle was inherited by the Dunois family, who added the Gothic chapel and other structures.
  • During the French Wars of Religion, the castle was used as a prison.
  • In 1723, the castle was sold to the Duke of Bourbon who began extensive renovations.
  • The castle was seized during the French Revolution and later used as a prison and barracks.
  • In the 19th century, the castle was restored and renovated by the architect Felix Duban.
  • Today, the castle is owned by the town of Châteaudun and is open to the public for tours and events.

Things To See At Chateau de Chateaudun

Gothic Chapel

The Gothic Chapel is the oldest part of the Chateau de Chateaudun and features an impressive display of stained glass windows. These windows, dating back to the 13th and 14th centuries, showcase biblical scenes and heraldic motifs in vibrant colors.

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Keep Tower

The Keep Tower, also known as the Tour de l'Horloge, is a square tower that dominates the skyline of Chateaudun. Visitors can climb the tower to the top for panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. The tower also houses a collection of medieval weapons and armor.

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State Apartments

The State Apartments are located in the Renaissance wing of the chateau and offer visitors a glimpse into the opulent lifestyle of the aristocracy in the 16th century. These lavishly decorated rooms feature ornate furniture, tapestries, and paintings.

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Underground Cisterns

The underground cisterns were once used to store rainwater for the chateau's inhabitants. Today, visitors can explore these vast chambers, which are illuminated with eerie blue lights and give a unique perspective on the castle's history.

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The chateau's gardens, located on the banks of the Loir River, offer a peaceful oasis in the heart of Chateaudun. Visitors can stroll through the gardens, which feature manicured lawns, flower beds, and fountains, and enjoy the stunning views of the castle and the river.

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The chateau's dungeon, also known as the oubliette, was once used to imprison enemies of the state. Visitors can descend into this dark and foreboding space and imagine what it must have been like to be locked away in the castle's bowels.

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Know Before You Go Chateau de Chateaudun

How To Reach:

  • By Car: Chateau de Chateaudun is approximately a 2-hour drive from Paris. Take the A10 highway towards Orleans, then the A11 towards Chartres, and finally the A10 towards Chateaudun.
  • By Train: The nearest train station to Chateau de Chateaudun is in Chateaudun town, which is located on the TER regional train line. The journey from Paris Austerlitz train station to Chateaudun takes approximately 1 hour 40 minutes.
  • By Bus: There are several bus routes connecting Chateaudun to nearby towns and cities, including Chartres, Orleans, and Tours. The bus station is located near the train station in Chateaudun.
  • By Air: The nearest airport to Chateau de Chateaudun is Tours Val de Loire Airport, which is approximately 65 km away. From there, you can hire a taxi or rent a car to reach the Chateau.
  • By Bicycle or Foot: Chateau de Chateaudun can also be reached by bicycle or foot via various cycling and hiking trails in the area.

Best Time To Visit: The best time to visit Chateau de Chateaudun is during the summer months, from June to September, when the weather is warm and sunny, and the gardens are in full bloom. This is also the time when the castle hosts a variety of events, such as outdoor concerts and theatrical performances, providing visitors with an opportunity to experience the castle's rich cultural heritage. However, as it is a popular tourist destination, it is advisable to avoid the peak tourist season and visit during the quieter months of April, May, and October to avoid crowds and long queues.

FAQs For Chateau de Chateaudun

What are the opening hours of Chateau de Chateaudun?

The opening hours of Chateau de Chateaudun vary depending on the season. Generally, the chateau is open from 10:00 AM to 5:30 PM from April to September, and from 10:00 AM to 12:30 PM and from 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM from October to March. However, it is best to check the official website or contact the chateau directly for the most up-to-date information.

Is there an admission fee for Chateau de Chateaudun?

Yes, there is an admission fee to enter the chateau. The fee varies depending on the age of the visitor and whether they are part of a group. It is best to check the official website for current admission fees.

Are guided tours available at Chateau de Chateaudun?

Yes, guided tours are available in both French and English. They are included in the admission fee and provide a deeper understanding of the chateau's history and architecture.

Is Chateau de Chateaudun wheelchair accessible?

Yes, the chateau is partially wheelchair accessible. The ground floor, gardens, and park are accessible, but some parts of the upper floors are not. It is recommended to contact the chateau beforehand for further information.

Are pets allowed at Chateau de Chateaudun?

No, pets are not allowed on the chateau grounds, with the exception of guide dogs for the visually impaired.

What are the other popular castles which you can see in Loire Valley?

The following are the best castles which you can see in Loire Valley:

  1. Château de Chaumont
  2. Château de Blois
  3. Chateau de Villandry
  4. Chateau Azay-Le-Rideau
  5. Chateau de Loches

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