Monday, April 27, 2009
LOIRE VALLEY CHATEAU de VILLANDRY
Monday, April 27, 2009 Afternoon at Le Chateau de Villandry
Our drive over to our second Chateau was much shorter; we followed directions back to the toll road and easily found our destination just down the road. Arrived there just after eleven o’clock and although there were many more tourists it still wasn’t very crowded. But, the rain had finally come so we did our tour in our poncho raincoats.
The best thing about this Chateau is the gardens. Actually the full name of the site is “Le Chateau de Villandry et ses Jardins”. Some tour books even say to pass on the building and only do the gardens but we did both and were glad that we had.
The rain was very light and we were able to do almost the entire garden area before heading into the Chateau. Then, we had the added enjoyment of seeing the views of the gardens from each of the rooms. Again, there were many fresh floral arrangements, even more than at Langeais, and a more nineteenth century décor inside. The gardens and the restoration of the inside of the home were the work of Dr. Joachim Carvallo, after he and his wife, an American heiress, purchased Villandry in 1906. It was originally built about 1536 and was the last of the large Chateaux built on the banks of the Loire during the Renaissance. There were many photos of their family in the home and it looked “lived in” as opposed to a museum. You will even see a photo of the stage for the children’s puppet show.
We even climbed all the way to the top of the tower for a view of the gardens and surrounding village from the top before heading down and out to find our new lodging for the night.
We arrived at our Formule One north of Tours about two in the afternoon; just before the rain started in earnest. A quick run to the local supermarket has us stocked for meals for the next three days! And, we’ve got free wi-fi tonight! Hope you’ve enjoyed the new format I’ve decided to use on the balance of the trip. So much information that I thought I’d give you little snips instead of lump sums! Au Revoir