Montsoreau, Pays de la Loire: tourism & sightseeing

Photo of Montsoreau in Maine-et-Loire

Visit Montsoreau (Pays de la Loire, France)


Montsoreau is a classified 'most beautiful village of France' situated between Saumur and Chinon in the Maine-et-Loire department of western France.

Montsoreau is a lovely little village not to be missed if you are exploring the Loire Valley near Saumur. The village is on a quiet stretch of the River Loire near the confluence of the Loire and Vienne rivers and at the base of a cliff. At this point, the Loire is classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It is the largest area to be designated a UNESCO site in France.

Explore Montsoreau

Park your car in the Place du Mail and walk along the river front towards the château which rises up majestically above the water. Indeed this is the only one of the Loire castles which has its 'feet in the water' of the river itself.

Make your way up to the higher part of the village which lies along the edge of a main street parallel to the river. The village is charming and it is quieter here away from the road which runs next to the river.

You have some superb views of the château which is now promoted as the 'Château de la Dame de Montsoreau' after the novel by Dumas that revolved around the love life of two ladies who lived in the castle during the reign of Henri III (based on real events), and has recently been renovated and opened to the public.

Montsoreau castle is unusual in that it includes architectural elements from a fortified chateau and other elements of being a renaissance period chateau built as a home rather than with a military purpose.

Next to the castle is the Hotel le Bussy which has a terrace with a superb view of the château and the river. A perfect place to stop for a drink before continuing your walk into the adjoining village of Candes St Martin which like Montsoreau is classed one of the most beautiful villages of France.

You can also visit the old troglodyte village, with homes, doors and windows cut into the cliff and which as recently as the end of the 18th century provided homes to most of the villagers. More recently, mushroom growers have taken over some of the larger man-made caves and a restaurant at the site specialises in stuffed mushrooms.

Boat trips in traditional boats and fishing are popular activities in Montsoreau, which has most facilities.

You can find more local travel ideas in the Maine-et-Loire guide and the Pays de la Loire guide.

See also:

Map of Montsoreau and places to visit

Visit near Montsoreau with France This Way reviews

... or see ALL recommended places to visit in Maine-et-Loire

Tourist classifications

Montsoreau is classified as a one of the most beautiful village in France (plus beau villages)

Address: Montsoreau, Saumur-Sud, Saumur, Maine-et-Loire, Pays de la Loire, 49730, France || GPS: latitude 47.215, longitude 0.058

Plan your visit to Montsoreau, Pays de la Loire

Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby

  • Candes-Saint-Martin: most beautiful village
  • Collegiale Church (Candes-Saint-Martin): religious monument
  • Loire-Anjou-Touraine: regional natural parc (3km)
  • Fontevraud Abbey: national monument (4km)
  • Abbaye Notre Dame de Fontevraud (Fontevraud Abbey): religious monument (4km)
  • Saumur: secteur sauvegarde (12km)
  • Chinon: secteur sauvegarde (15km)
  • Montreuil-Bellay: recommended detour (18km)
  • Aquarium de Loudun: aquarium (23km)
  • Loudun: recommended detour (23km)

Market days in Montsoreau, France

Regular market(s) are held in Montsoreau each Sunday. (Markets are held in the morning unless stated.)

The French version of this page is at Montsoreau (Francais)