After a week in Provence we hopped into our tiny Renault and headed north to the Loire Valley. If the region’s bucolic countryside and quaint villages weren’t dreamy enough by themselves, it is absolutely overflowing with châteaus. After much deliberation, we decided to visit Château de Chenonceau – an absolutely exquisite estate which is known as the Ladies Château (thanks to the many women who influenced its design and its destiny) and most notably spanning over the River Cher.
For more of my adventures in France: Provence Sunrises | Gordes in Provence | Loumarin in Provence | Fields of Poppies | The Towns of the Loire Valley | Staying in a Loire Valley Chateau | Sailing the Mediterranean | Etretat, Normady | A Chic Hotel in Normandy
We spent hours slowly wandering Chenonceau’s beautiful gardens, its lush woods, and exploring its beautiful interiors – especially it’s 60m long chalk and slate tiled ballroom, standing dramatically above the river below. I loved learning about the chateau’s history, especially that in World War I the chateau was turned into a hospital and convalescent home for recovering soldiers.
Overflowing with roses, lavender, and trimmed boxwoods, my favorite garden was that of Catherine de’ Medici. Nearby, you will find the exquisite Orangerie – home to a gourmet restaurant that serves both lunch and dinner. A friendly reminder that reservations here are a must!
We also noticed kayakers meandering slowly down the River Cher – a completely unique way to experience Château de Chenonceau and something that we will most certainly be doing when we return (it was quite hot when we were there after all).
In addition to Chenonceau, the Loire Valley is absolutely overflowing with beautiful châteaus – many of which are absolutely perfect for a destination wedding. From quaint hunting lodges to expansive estates, there is truly a property for every aesthetic and budget. If you are considering having a chateau wedding, feel free to contact me – I would be happy to assist you in locating your dream destination wedding venue in France and connecting you with a team of vendors who can turn your chateau wedding dreams into a reality.
Images by Molly Carr Fine Art Photography | Contax 645 | Fuji 400h Film