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France, Loire Valley – Chateaux and Wine I

Published: 7.10.2016
Loire Valley spans 280 kilometers in the middle stretch of the Loire Valley southwest from Paris. This area is world-renowned wine-growing region the history of which dates back to the 1st century B.C. Loire Valley is the second largest region behind Champagne in producing sparkling wines in France.

In Loire Valley, there are over 350 wine cellars specially designated for tourists (Caves touristiques du vignoble de Loire). They have regular opening hours, wine tasting (for free which is pleasant) and you get a commentary to it. Of course, you can buy wine here too. What you can look forward to here as well is opportunity to talk with professional wine producers.

vinné sklípky

Loire Valley is also known for chateaus, cathedrals, cloisters etc. The valley consists of three historical regions – Orleáns in the north, Berry in the southeast, and Touraine in the southwest.

Majority of castles some of which are the most famous in France were originally medieval fortresses rebuilt into chateaus during the 15th and 17th centuries. Their owners, therefore, enjoyed much more comfortable life than living in cold and dark castles. Many of these chateaus were plundered during the French Revolution.

Loira

When you travel to Loire Valley for the first time there are chateaus which deserve to be seen as first. For example, Château de Chenonceau, který je po zámku ve Versailles is the most visited chateau in France. The first written note dates back as early as to 11th century. The chateau was built only in the beginning of the 16th century. Its architectonic style combines late Gothic and early Renaissance by the design of Philibert de l'Orme.

Château de Chenonceau

The chateau is often called Château des Dames. King Henry II gifted the chateau to Diana e Poitiers, his mistress. král Jindřich II. jej daroval své milence Dianě de Poitiers. Když se o tom po Jindřichově smrti dozvěděla jeho manželka Kateřina Medicejská, Dianu ze zámku vyhodila a sama se na něm usadila.

The chateau holds a vast collection of medieval masters such as Rubens, Nicolas Poussin or Murillo. Moreover, there is an exhibition of 16th century Flemish tapestries. On the chateau grounds you can find a hiustorical farm farmu showing the 16th century farm life.

letecký pohled   Château de Chenonceau

A labyrinth and several gardens will add to your there. There are also several restaurants and a souvenir shop. Should you arrive next year in August you can enjoy the opportunity of a night tour with Arcangelo Corelli’s music, the master of Italian classicism, playing in the background.

GPS: (Château de Chenonceau) 47°19'28.7"N 1°04'13.3"E

 

Text: Maxim Kucer

Photos: Wikipedia.org: Touriste, Peter Dutton, Ra-smit, Raph, Spsergio, Dennis Jarvis



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