Archive for February 9th, 2020

February 9, 2020

Maison de la Magie , Blois!

Ok so I am still around Blois, did it shows is one of my favorite cities of my belle France. You know the town now come to see its sights must often overlook due to the wonderful castle (already post on it).

Now let me tell you a bit more on a magical house museum of master Houdin  ,and he is from Blois! Hope  you enjoy it as we did!

The Maison de la Magie is fantastic, and my kids favorite, go figure it ::)  Lots of magic and special effects in this place, you can get lost lol!  The entrance is down a ramp across the place du chateau practically facing out from the castle.


The Robert-Houdin Magic House is located at 1 Place du Château facing the castle and was inaugurated in 1998; the museum highlights the life and multiple works of Jean-Eugène Robert-Houdin, famous illusionist, inventor, watchmaker and manufacturer of French automata born in Blois under the First Empire in 1805. It is 2000 m2 of magical attractions, extraordinary shows, fun museography, optical illusions and souvenir objects in tribute to the illustrious conjurer Blésois (local citizen of Blois). It is the only public museum in Europe to present collections in one place. of magic and a permanent live show, different every year.


The city of Blois buys Maison Massé, a large bourgeois house built in 1856 and located opposite the castle, to present the private collection of the illusionist given to the city in 1981 by Paul Robert Houdin, his grandson, who had opened a private museum there. This collection was gradually enriched The collections of magic art and posters allow you to discover the history of magic in one place!

You must see the Rotonde showing the evolution of magic, the Salle des Illusions, kaleidoscope illusions with mirror games, optique illusions etc, the Passage des mystéres oriental magic and the vitrine du magicien with instruments magician used. Passarelle Harry Houdini, the king of evasion (b 1874 d 1926), into the Salle Robert Houdin the father of modern magic (b1805 d 1871), the Hallucinospe, to go into the Jules Verne world, the Foyer du théatre, objects of magiciens and posters and guillotines, the Grand Théatre, a magic show on site, and the boutique exposition for souvenirs shopping. A magical place for old and young indeed me think.

You can’t missed if going to the castle as most folks do; this is a must for the whole family. Hope you enjoy it

The webpages as usual from me to help you plan your trip are

Official Maison de la Magie in English

City of Blois on the Maison de la Magie in French

Official Tourist office of Blois-Chambord on the House of Magic in English

And there you go now fun for the whole family in a magical spot square of the castle we enjoyed all around there even eating in grand style see my previous posts on Blois.

And remember happy travel, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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February 9, 2020

A staircase in Blois!

This is very obvious but because folks hurry up to see the castle it can be considered for me in any case as an off the beaten path thing to see in lovely Blois. You know Blois is in the department 41,  Loir et Cher of the Centre-Val de Loire region of my belle France.

On this post will tell you a bit more on a curiosity in Blois that if you do walking in towns to really see the feel of daily life and get to know places like this one then it should be a must to see. The rue Denis Papin and its wonderful escalier or staircase.


Now, let me tell you something about it ok, hope you enjoy it as we did

Since the 19C, the escalier rue Denis-Papin staircase has linked the upper town and the lower town. At the end of 120 steps, interrupted by four landings, the perspective in good weather can extend over ten km, leading to the Jacques Gabriel Bridge, spanning the Loire and beyond to Saint-Gervais-la-Forêt. The Denis-Papin staircase is a monumental stone staircase and the perspective offered from the Jacques Gabriel bridge crossing the Loire is remarkable.

On the highest landing, a statue represents Denis Papin. Sculpted by Aimé Millet and inaugurated in 1880, even if later renovations were done that came out not the same as the original idea. It pays tribute to the inventor Denis Papin of Blois, who notably imagined the steam engine and whose street below bears his name.

Since 2013, the steps of the staircase rue Denis Papin are regularly dressed in giant visuals echoing the news of Blois. This design, which is highly anticipated each year, allows art to take over public space, energizes the city center, promotes awareness of the city’s cultural highlights, encourages participation and increases the reputation of the city of an original and fun way.

The past year 2019 marks both the 500th anniversary of the death of Leonardo da Vinci at the Château du Clos Lucé in Amboise, the 500th anniversary of the birth of Catherine de Medici and the 500th anniversary of the start of construction of the Château de Chambord were celebrated. To celebrate these anniversary and to pay homage to Leonard de Vinci, the steps of the Denis-Papin staircase were completely covered with the famous Mona Lisa painting, from April to October 2019.

The city page of Blois has most of the information translated above : City of Blois on the escalier rue Denis Papin

And there you go another nice walking experience in lovely Blois, a must to do with the whole family or a romantic walk indeed. Enjoy Blois!

And remember, happy travel, good health, and many cheers to all!!!




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February 9, 2020

The garden of a king, Blois

And I am staying around Blois for good reason. Needless to repeat the bounties of things to see and do in my belle France, and the world is here. However, most come for the castle and then the magician museum house or the Cathedral but Blois has a lot of wonderful streets to walk full of history and architecture that I like.

Let me tell you a bit more on the Jardin du roy or Royal garden of Blois.

Around the Royal castle, the Royal gardens reflect the history of the place thanks to the atmosphere of the three eras that they evoke on the different facades: Medieval, Renaissance and Classic. Originally created by Louis XII, these gardens were entirely redeveloped in 1992 into contemporary architectured and flowered gardens. Its beds of lilies, iris and daylilies but also its aromatic, condiment and medicinal plants are to be discovered in addition to its splendid panorama.


A bit of history I like

These gardens were built to the west of the Château, on the side of the Arrou valley. Completely independent of the castle, they were ordered unrelated to it. They essentially consisted of three terraces which were stepped but were drawn without links with each other. Below, a garden that appears to have been the former Bretonnerie garden (first garden of Blois) appears to date from the time of Charles of Orleans, a century before the intervention of Louis XII. The lower garden or the Queen’s garden which overlooked the Bretonnerie garden.


The jardin de la Reine or Queen’s garden was soon deemed insufficient in these dimensions, however colossal for France at that time. So an extension of the gardens was decided. In 1505, Louis XII bought from  merchants of Blois, a garden which he added to his own. Around the same time Theodore de Pavia, doctor of the king, gave him a garden which he owned in the same place. Thus were formed the high gardens or gardens of the king of an area of ​​two hectares. The content of the king’s garden is not well known although it seems to be a useful garden rather than a pleasure garden, there are large vegetable plots , but also large vines. A well seems to have been dug in this garden for the most pressing water needs.

When Louis XII dies, François Ier undertakes little work in the gardens After him his son Henri II launches works of embellishment of the garden. The King’s garden is decorated with green cradles that echo those of the Queen’s garden. Around 1554, there are also cross aisles with four cabinets at the intersection of the four aisles. An artificial pond was also built at a place called Bornaz around 1556. Following him, François II undertook to facilitate the connection between the gardens of Blois and the nearby forest, he created paths, the marks of small frame pavilions, the emphasize by planting elms and creating ditches.

The gardens of the Château de Blois gradually disappeared during the 17C, due to lack of maintenance, and in the 19C gave way to Avenue de l’Embarcadère ( c 1847) in order to facilitate work on the train station.


So what you have today is something call the Jardin du roy or Royal or King’s garden of Blois on a plateau high up you can see the sides of the Château of Blois like on a hill but very nicely decorated and very pleasant spot to rest after a long visit to the castle or a long walk in the quant streets of Blois. Hope you enjoy it as we did.

The tourist office of Blois-Chambord on the gardens: Tourist office of Blois Chambord on the gardens of Blois

And remember, happy travels, good health,and many cheers to all!!!


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February 9, 2020

The markets of Blois!!!

So let me tell you something in off the beaten path Blois, what!!! well most folks visiting the city goes for two thing maybe 3. The Castle, the Houdin magic museum and the Cathedral. However, there is a lot more to see and do in wonderful Blois.

Of course, have written several posts on Blois in my blog, just search. However, today will tell you briefly about the markets of Blois. Their schedules and location are

Marché du Centre Ville or city center/Downtown market, place Louis-XII: Tuesday from 8h30 to 13h15 (approximately four businesses), Saturdays from 8h30 to 13h15 (around a hundred shops),


Place de la République market: Saturdays from 8h30 to 17h45. (around twenty businesses);

Coty market, rue Pierre-et-Marie-Curie: Wednesdays from 8h30 to 13h15 (between 130 and 200 businesses), except Wednesdays December 25, 2019 and January 1, 2020;

Quinière market, Quinière shopping center: Thursdays from 8h30 to 13h15. (fifteen shops);

Organic market, place Rol-Tanguy: Friday from 16h to 20h (fifteen stores);

Place Lorjou market: Sunday from 8h30 to 13h15 (between 60 and 120 businesses).

Of course, the most central and wonderful if you come on Saturday is the Place Louis XII and we even got some goat cheese here as well as wine; if you read my blog we are all over the markets in France.

The market at Place Louis XII is just a couple of steps from the Castle. You go thru several aisles to load your bag with cheeses (goat we love it), farm eggs , season vegetables etc. On sunny days you can find the wonderful Sologne strawberries, which are famous for their quality. Enjoy shopping at Blois

Some webpages to help you plan your trip to the markets of Blois

The city of Blois on their markets in French

Tourist office of Blois Chambord on markets

And remember, happy travel, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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