5 Must-See Chateaux in France

Photo by: Bigstockphoto
Photo by: Bigstockphoto

France is renowned for its rich culture, powerful monarchy, old world glamor and the most beautiful castles in history. After all, France is known for its romantic landscapes and sprawling chateaux. It’s no surprise that the country attracts millions of tourists from around the world. In today’s post, we are listing down some of the best French castles you ought to see on your next visit:

Chateau d’Amboise

Located in the Centre Val de Loire Valley in the town of Amboise is the Chateau d’Amboise. The chateau itself was erected in the 9th century. Because it sits on the River Loire, the Chateau d’Amboise offers a panoramic view of the Amboise landscape. It served as the home of King Charles VIII and King François. During the 16th century, the chateaux were abandoned, most parts were later demolished. Still, the government restored the Chateau d’Amboise into its full glory, complete with its outer defensive circuits of walls and towers!

Chateau de Chenonceau

Built in the 11th century, the Chateau de Chenonceau is one of France’s most majestic castles. It sits in the River Cher in the Loire valley. This chateau’s intricate designs and opulent furnishings hint the wealth of its owners. The Chateau de Chenonceau is loved by some of the most historic women in the French monarch.

The chateau was given as a gift to Diane de Poitier, the mistress of King Henry II. She also saved the castle from being destroyed during the French Revolution. Because of its location, the Chateau de Chenonceau became significant part of local trade and commerce. It served as the only bridge across the river for miles.

Chateau de Chantilly

Located in Chantilly, Paris, Château de Chantilly is one of France’s most historic castles. It was built in 1528 to 1531  by Pierre Chambiges. The chateau features two buildings: the Petit Chateau and the Grand Chateau. The Petit Chateau was built in 1560 for Anne de Montmorency. The Grand Chateau was rebuilt in the 19th century after parts of the castle were destroyed during the French Revolution.

Every other year, Nuits de Feu, a fireworks competition is held in Château de Chantilly. The event attracts thousands of spectators from around the world.

Chateau de Chambord

Another lavish castle in the Loire Valley, the Château de Chambord is located in the center of Europe’s largest enclosed wooded park. The castle was a hunting lodge for King Francis I. Château de Chambord was also meant to make the king closer to his mistress. The castle is unique because of its fantastic French Renaissance architecture. The Château de Chambord’s façade is a mix of French medieval and classic Renaissance designs.


Palace of Versailles was built in 1624 in the French capital Paris. Although Versailles is a small village, it was home to Paris’ most affluent.

The chateau served as a hunting lodge for Louis XIII in the 17th century. His successor expanded the castle. These changes made Versailles Chateau one of the world’s largest palaces. The Versailles castle tops this list because it represents the French monarch’s Ancien Régime.