Chaumont-sur-Loire, Loire Valley: tourism & sightseeing
Visit Chaumont-sur-Loire (Loire Valley, France)
The village of Chaumont-sur-Loire is on the banks of the Loire river about 17 kilometres to the south-west of Blois.
The village itself, although pleasant, would perhaps go unnoticed by visitors as they travel through this picturesque part of the Loire Valley, if it was not home to one of the most impressive castles in the region.
Note: if you are using a GPS to get here be sure to select 'Chaumont-sur-Loire' - there are lots of places called Chaumont in France!
The Château de Chaumont
The castle in Chaumont-sur-Loire stands on a raised hill just behind the village, from where it towers over the houses along the riverside.
As with many castles in the Loire Valley, the chateau was built in the 15th-16th centuries on the site of a much older castle.
The original 11th century castle was destroyed by King Louis XI because the owner had been part of a movement against the growing royal power. A few years later he regained the favours of the King and was given permission to rebuild the castle...
In the middle of the 16th century the castle belonged to Catherine de Medici from 1550 - 1560 until she 'persuaded' Diane de Poitiers to exchange it for the Chateau de Chenonceau!
The main body of the castle combines two distinctive style: defensive elements in the gothic style, and decorative elements in the renaissance style. It is an imposing building with round towers in each corner, and is entered across a drawbridge between two more towers, each feauturing a panel of decorative stonework.
There is a great deal to see and enjoy within the castle, with the rooms carefully restored and furnished. One of the most unusual highlights is the floor in the salon, which is a made from a large panel of painted ceramic tiles, and the library with its great tapestry was another of our favourite rooms. Altogether there are about 15 rooms to see, and a small gothic style chapel.
As well as the principal building you can also see the stables, the original farm and various other buildings.
The gardens of Chaumont-sur-Loire castle are officially listed as a French 'remarkable garden'. Less formal than those found at many of the Loire castles, you can stroll through the wooded parkland as well as seeing the kitchen garden.
International Garden Festival
The village is also well known for the annual 'Festival International des Jardins de Chaumont-sur-Loire' (International Festival of Gardens), held here from May to early October for each of the last 20 years.
Each year there is a different theme to the gardens such as water, colour, sensations, capital sins and about 25 different well known gardeners from around the world create their own individual masterpieces here. Certainly not to be missed if you visit during the summer, the festival attracts about 350 thousand visitors each year, every year's gardens are different and there is always something new and inspiring to discover.
There is also a new garden collection here called the Park du Goualoup where permanent gardens with modern and contemporary designs are being established.
Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire
Both the castle and the festival gardens are part of the 'Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire', which is now a government owned property.
Entrance is around 11 euros to enter the castle, 12 euros for the Garden Festival, or 16 euros for a combined ticket to enter both attractions. You can explore the castle and grounds at your own speed, or if you prefer guided tours are also available at no extra cost.
The castle is open every day of the year except for New Years Day and Christmas Day although the restaurants are closed in the winter months.
Before visiting the main highlights we suggest you cross the bridge across the Loire in the village and drive a short distance to the right at the roundabout at the far end of the bridge for one of the best views of the castle and Chaumont-sur-Loire village.
During the summer you can take a boat ride along the Loire river in the village in a traditional river sailboat.
Map of Chaumont-sur-Loire and places to visit
Visit near Chaumont-sur-Loire with France This Way reviews
... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Loir-et-Cher
Address: Chaumont-sur-Loire, Montrichard, Blois, Loir-et-Cher, Loire Valley, 41150, France || GPS: latitude 47.480833, longitude 1.186389
Plan your visit to Chaumont-sur-Loire, Loire Valley
Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby
- Domaine régional de Chaumont-sur-Loire: remarkable garden
- Fougeres-sur-Bievre Chateau: national monument (12km)
- Réserve de Beaumarchais: zoo or wildlife park (15km)
- Parc du château de Beauregard: remarkable garden (16km)
- Blois: secteur sauvegarde (16km)
- Roseraie des terrasses de l’évêché: remarkable garden (16km)
- Amboise: secteur sauvegarde (17km)
- Parc et jardins du château de Chenonceau: remarkable garden (19km)
- Aquarium du Val-de-Loire: aquarium (23km)
- Parc et jardins du château de Valmer: remarkable garden (24km)
The French version of this page is at Chaumont-sur-Loire (Francais)