We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

How long at Chateaus?

Texas
Level Contributor
46 posts
1 review
Save Topic
How long at Chateaus?

I am planning on visiting Chenonceau & Chambord in May. How long should I allow for visiting each Chateau?

Paris, France
Destination Expert
for Paris, Loire Valley
Level Contributor
22,238 posts
4 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: How long at Chateaus?

The more you understand about each location's history and architecture, the more meaningful will be your visit and the longer you'll want to stay.

Many people visit these locations with no idea of their significance and leave no better informed than when they arrived. For those who may find themselves in this category, spending an hour may seem like all day.

I recommend no more than 2 châteaux in one day.

Limerick, Ireland
Destination Expert
for Limerick, Killarney
Level Contributor
27,145 posts
85 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: How long at Chateaus?

We visited both Chambord and Chenonceau last July.

Both were quite busy. Both were very beautiful, both were very different.

I would suggest you consider allowing yourself 3/4 of a day each, if you have the time. Chambord is outside Blois, Chenonceau outside Amboise, so there is also travel time between chateaux to be considered.

We also loved Chateau Cheverny.

The Double Helix Stairway and the Gardens of Chambord are wonderful. The Chambord Estate is great for walking in and climbing to the look out points to see the wild boar.

In Chambord, do take the time to visit the grave of the lady who's name eludes me currently, but was responsible for the salvation of the chateau during the revolution.

While in Chenonceau, also factor in time for visiting the wooded area between the chateau and the road. This area is lovely. If you like ducks, then bring some bread for the ducks swimming in the moat area near the car parks. It is also possible to hire a pedalo or take a boat ride on the river in Chenonceau, and to visit the wine cellars.

As Sarastro has intimated, perhaps do some research on the Chateaux before you visit. It tends to make the exploration more interesting.

Limerick, Ireland
Destination Expert
for Limerick, Killarney
Level Contributor
27,145 posts
85 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: How long at Chateaus?

Correction - Oh how I wish there was an edit button. PLEASE TA take note.

The grave of the lady who saved the chateau during the revolution was in CHENONCEAU. Apologies.

California
Destination Expert
for Grasse
Level Contributor
8,444 posts
68 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: How long at Chateaus?

Chenonceau is usually very crowded with individual visitors and tour groups. Try to arrive early so you can visit the château before it becomes a mob scene, then explore the lovely gardens.

Chambord is huge; so there are fewer problems with the crowds.

Loire Valley
Level Contributor
6,984 posts
7 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: How long at Chateaus?

I usually plan between 2 and 3 hours at each chateau.

These are plans only, of course - a bloke can get distracted and be there for 4 or 5 hours (Actually, this bloke's wife is more likely to do this...) Then again, last time I visited Chenonceaux I was ready to leave after 90 minutes or so - and so were my in-laws, who were on their first visit. This gave us more time for looking at scenery as we drove home.

Simon

http://daysontheclaise.blogspot.com/

Texas
Level Contributor
46 posts
1 review
Save Reply
6. Re: How long at Chateaus?

Thanks to all for your recommendations. I will devote a day to each, as originally planned. This will leave time to possibly explore the towns nearby, if I choose not to stay all day.

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
25,401 posts
60 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: How long at Chateaus?

Let me put in a plug for the gardens at Villandry which should be coming well into spring by then and will be magnificent. The photo here was later in the year and the first flush was over, so they were replanting, but they were truly wonderful gardens which we would not have visited were it not for a word from a fellow tourist the evening before.

nickbooth.id.au/NickWeb/Images/Villandry3.JPG

nickbooth.id.au/NickWeb/Images/Villandry2.JPG

The chateau is interesting, in private hands as are many in France, but the interior is not a "must see". The gardens are.

Le Grand Pressigny...
Level Contributor
156 posts
14 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: How long at Chateaus?

Hello

I agree with your hunch to allow a day..

There are so many things to see or get distracted by en route, including a stop for coffee in the morning and something cold in the afternoon...

You are on holiday go slooow! you will then enjoy and notice more of the villages you pass though.

Also agree with an earlier post...allow for how long it takes to get to each chateau, in particular I personally prefer the roads around the land on the way to Chambord than the chateau itself! Fantastic forests a and parkland.

At Chenonceau too the walk to the chateau often takes up as long as the chateau...forest, maze, walled garden play area, river, gardens....coffee shop...

What about on of the smaller privately owned chateaux? There are many to choose from often close by to larger well known chateaux...if you find you have a couple of hours to spare after the main event they are a welcome change..smaller scale, more intimate, quieter and often beautifully presented.

9. Re: How long at Chateaus?

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 12 August 2009, 01:18