When you are looking for the perfect villas to rent in France, you may not know where to start your search, but the picturesque and historic Loire Valley region is ideal.
As well as stunning scenery, you will also find a host of interesting landmarks and other monuments to visit, but the area is undoubtedly most famous for its castles.
With so many chateaux to choose from when staying in French villa rentals, you will want to narrow it down to the most impressive options, so here are three of the best castles to visit during your time in the Loire region.
Top of the list should certainly be Chateau de Chambord, the largest such structure in the Loire area and the most impressive.
Fans of French renaissance architecture will love the building, which was constructed as a hunting lodge by Francois I, who took the opportunity to combine his two favourite passions – hunting and architecture.
A wall stretching for 32 km surrounds the castle and the forest within its grounds – providing the perfect destination for hunting parties in years gone by. The centrepiece of the chateau is its double-helix open staircase that joins three floors, but neither side of the spiral ever meet. Another must-visit castle in the region is Chateau d’Angers, which is located in the centre of Angers.
Fortresses have been recorded in this location before the ninth century, so it is little wonder that the structure sits prominently in the middle of the thriving city. You are sure to be struck by its imposing walls, which feature 17 towers, while behind the escarpments you will find some beautifully kept gardens, as well as an exhibition where the Apocalypse Tapestry is on show. The tapestry stretches for 100 m and the design is based on the story of the apocalypse from the Bible’s Book of Revelation.
Finally, your third castle to visit while staying in villas in Loire should be Chateau Royal de Blois, which has been a residence to 17 French monarchs.
The chateau is now considered a museum because it is home to over 35,000 works of art, while the refurbished rooms could be considered artworks in themselves.
Ornate decoration is the predominant feature with intricate patterns on show across both walls and floors, while the furniture on display fits in perfectly with its opulent surroundings.