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Tip 9 for the summer is the tallest castle in the Loire valley, the Château de Brissac, 41 km from our place.

Castle_Brissac_2007_02

The Castle of Brissac, East elevation. Photo by Manfred Heyde – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Wikimedia Commons

The castle is situated in the charmful town Brissac-Quincé, right outside of the city of Angers. Originally constructed as a fortress by Fulk III, Count of Anjou, 970-1040 (Foulques Nerra, or Fulk the Black). However, it has been heavily rebuilt later.

Nerra

The Seal of Fulk III, by Georges de Manteyer — Mémoires de la Société nationale des antiquaires de France, Public Domain CC0 1.0, Wikimedia Commons

The castle as it is today, is a true medley of building styles from different centuries with its seven floors and 204 rooms! It is open to the public, and inside you’ll find antique furniture, family souvenirs, Flemish tapestries and theatre of the Belle Époque period succeed one other during the visit. (As well as some rather grim boar heads on the walls.)

The castle is surrounded by a magnificent 70-hectare park with hundred-years-old trees – the perfect place for a stroll.

At the entrance to the park, you’ll find a small café. However, we recommend that you take your refreshments at one of the establishments in the centre of town instead, as they are much more charming!

The guided tours end in the castle’s wine cellar where you can taste and buy wine from the castle’s own vineyards. Here you will also find a gift shop selling books, souvenirs, and local delicacies.

Fun fact

In August of 1620, King Louis XIII and his mother, Marie de Medici, met to discuss their differences in the “neutral” territory of the Château de Brissac. A temporary truce between the two was reached, but it did not last long, and the Queen Mother was eventually banished.

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