Château d'Azay-le-Rideau

Loire Valley
Landmarks and Historic Buildings

Built on an island in the river Indre, the Château d'Azay-le-Rideau is one of the most famous chateaux in the Loire Valley. Originally a medieval castle which was burnt down during the Hundred Years War, the chateau was rebuilt in the 1500s with a large influence from the Italian Renaissance style, which was merged with the medieval style of its original defenses to create a unique architectural monument.

Unfinished for many years, the Château d'Azay-le-Rideau has a distinctive L-shaped design as the architect's quadrilateral design was never completed. Although a small chateau, Azay-le-Rideau makes up for its lack of stature in the sheer beauty of this tranquil setting. The elegant, ornate architecture is reflected in the water of the mirror lakes and the landscaped gardens of the 19th century make it a perfect spot to relax and enjoy the serene view.

Inside, the lavish decorations of the great hall and the Royal Apartments where Louis XIII stayed, such as the monumental fireplaces throughout the chateau, showcase the sumptuous elegance of a bygone era.

Places to visit nearby

Tours in the Loire Valley is a modern city with a history dating back to the Romans that is famous for its architecture, wines and markets.

Saumur in Atlantic Loire Valley is easily recognised by its fairytale chateau and is famous for its association with horses - the area around the town is even known as the Kingdom of the Horse.

Blois in the Loire Valley is a charming royal city with an historic château that has been home to 7 French kings and 10 French queens.

Nearby attractions

Villandry owes its fame to its 6 beautiful gardens - the water garden with its mirror-like lake, the decorative ornamental garden, the maze, the sun garden, the herb garden and at the lowest level the splendid kitchen garden...

This 15thC fairytale château belonging to the famous Beauvau family has been lovingly restored. The 12 beautiful gardens offer many delights including the Potager de Gargantua with huge vegetables, the Lavender Knots garden,...

The Jardin botanique de Tours (5 hectares) is a municipal botanical garden and arboretum, it began as a collection of about 2,000 medical and exotic plants arranged in greenhouses.