Chenonceaux!

Oh yes mighty Chenonceaux , really! well folks come here for the castle of Chenonceau, and I have written a post on it . However, in my road warrior endless walker side we did went around the town of Chenonceaux. Yes notice the X, is in my previous posts.

I like to tell you a bit more on the village of Chenonceaux.

Chenonceaux is located in the department of Indre-et-Loire,37 in the Centre-Val de Loire region. Specifically,in the heart of the Loire Valley, just 10 km from Amboise, less than an hour from the prestigious castles of Blois, Chambord, Azay le Rideau or Chinon, barely two hours from Paris and 30 minutes or 35 km from Tours. An ideal and central destination for exploring the many Châteaux of the Loire.

The village of Chenonceaux is bordered on its southern flank by the Cher river which constitutes its town’s limit. The Cher river , with a total length of 365.5 km, rises at 714 meters above sea level in Mérinchal, in the Creuse and flows into the Loire at Villandry, 40 meters above sea level, after crossing 117 towns. The neighboring towns to Chenonceaux are Civray-de-Touraine, Francueil, Chisseaux, Saint-Georges-sur-Cher, and Chissay-en-Touraine.

There is a gare or train station here believe or not. It is on the line from Vierzon to Saint-Pierre-des-Corps, between the stations of Chissay-en-Touraine and Bléré – La Croix. Chenonceaux is served by TER Centre-Val de Loire trains which carry out trips between Tours and Saint-Aignan – Noyers, Vierzon-Ville, Bourges, Nevers or even Lyon-Perrache. Car parking is available. More info in French here; TER gare train station of Chenonceaux

By road the way I have come here from Paris is the A10 direction Bordeaux; by exit or sortie 18 take the N10 road which quickly becomes the D31 road direction Chateau Renault/Amboise, taking you around the latter town where you link up with the D81 road direction Civray-de-Touraine and here turn bearing left onto the D40 road direction Chenonceaux. 

Chenonceaux would mean: the little house of Chenon and counts only 353 inhabitants. Some things to see in this village are the obvious Château de Chenonceau as well as the Church Saint Jean Baptiste (st john Baptist), built in the 12C and renovated in the 16C; The house or maison du garde barriére next to the train station built in 1847 with openings reminiscent of the Gothic windows of the neighboring castle, and the house or maison des Pages, built in the 16C.

A bit of additional  history of the town of Chenonceaux that I like and historical lineage on the château de Chenonceau to follow

Chenonceaux was erected as a chatellenie in 1514, with the union of various areas that surrounded it. It came under Amboise by faith and homage-line. All the millers, fishermen and fish merchants, residing in the district of the châtellenie, from the mill of the Etourneau to the defeat of Chenonceau, were required to be, on the day of Pentecost, after vespers, below the Moulin-Fort, to break three poles against a pole planted in the middle of the Cher river. This feudal solemnity was announced several times in the pulpit by the priests of Chenonceau, Francueil, Saint-Georges and Chisseaux. A certain quantity of wine had to be supplied by the lord or by the lord’s farmer to the vassals who took part in the quintaine. In the 16C, the land of Chenonceau included the stronghold of Argy and the farmhouses or closeries of Bois-de-Pont, Baiserie, La Grange, Coulommiers, La Bruandière, La Chevrière, La Grange-Rouge , Port-Olivier, de la Touche, Vrigny, Deffais, Les Houdes and La Berangerie.

chenonceau

The castle of Chenonceau,(see post) built on a bridge that crosses the Cher river, is one of the most beautiful residences in France. Its reputation is wordly. It was built in the first part of the 16C by Thomas Bohier and Catherine Briçonnet, his wife. Diane Poitiers and Catherine de Medici, who owned it, made great embellishments. The chapel adjoining the manor also belongs to the 16C. Guillaume Marques, knight, first known lord of Chenonceau, is cited in Marmoutier charters of 1234, 1243 and 1248. Thomas Bohier, baron of Saint-Ciergue, lord of Chenaie and de la Chapelle-Bellouin, took possession of Chenonceau on February 10, 1513, and three days later paid homage to the king for this land. He was the son of a bourgeois from Issoire and Béraude du Prat. He became chamberlain and secretary to the king, general of finances, lieutenant-general in the Milanese and was mayor of Tours in 1491. On January 27, 1515, he paid homage to the king for his châtellenie de Chenonceau. He died on March 24, 1524 and was buried in the Saint-Saturnin Church in Tours. Katherine Briçonnet, widow of Thomas Bohier, lady of Chenonceau, paid homage to the king for this land on June 6, 1524. She died on November 3, 1526, and had her burial near her husband. François Ier, king of France, took possession of the Châtellenie de Chenonceau on September 27, 1533 against payment of the debt of Antoine Bohier. He died in Rambouillet on March 31, 1547.

chenonceau

Diane de Poitiers, mistress Henri II king of France; widow of Louis de Brezé, grand seneschal of Normandy, and daughter of Jean de Poitiers, count of Saint-Vallier and Jeanne de Bastarnay; received by letters patent of June 1547, the châtellenie of Chenonceau. In 1559, she ceded it (not willingly) to Queen Catherine de Medici, in exchange for that of Chaumont. Catherine de Médicis owned Chenonceau until her death, arriving on January 5, 1589. She bequeathed this land to Queen Louise de Lorraine. By letters sent to Moulins on February 8, 1566 and registered in Parliament on March 21 of the same year, King Charles IX had given Chenonceau to Henri, his brother. This donation has so far remained unexplained and it is unknown how the châtellenie in question could have come into the possession of the king. What is quite certain is that Catherine de Medici did not stop enjoying Chenonceau and acting as owner there from 1559 to 1589. Louise de Loraine de Vaudémont, daughter of Nicolas de Lorraine, count of Vaudémont, and Marguerite d’Egmont, married king Henri III on February 15, 1575. By letters of October 15, 1598, she gave the land of Chenonceau, reserving the usufruct, to César, duke of Vendôme, to the occasion of his marriage to Françoise de Lorraine, niece of the donor in July 1609. .César de Bourbon, duke of Vendôme, d’Étampes, de Mercœur, de Beaufort et de Penthièvre, comte de Buzançais, took possession of Chenonceau on February 20, 1601. This land, put up for sale at the request of the creditors of Catherine de Médicis, was auctioned, to Marie de Luxembourg, widow of Philippe-Emmanuel, duke of Mercœur, on November 15, 1606. Marie de Luxembourg, duchesse de Mercœur, Étampes et de Penthièvre, died in Anet on September 6, 1623. Chenonceau’s land passed to her daughter, Françoise de Lorraine, and to César de Vendôme, her son-in-law. César de Vendôme took possession of Chenonceau in 1624. He died in Paris on October 22, 1665. His wife, Françoise de Lorraine, died on September 8, 1669.

chenonceau

Louis-Henri, Duke of Bourbon, Prince of Condé, Duke of Bourbonnais, peer and grand-master of France, son of Louis III, Duke of Bourbon, and Louise-Françoise de Bourbon, legitimized of France, died on January 27, 1740 . On June 9, 1733, he sold Chenonceau to Claude Dupin and Louise-Marie-Madeleine Fontaine, his wife. Louise-Marie-Madeleine Fontaine, widow of Claude Dupin, had the land of Chenonceau in the division which was made in 1772, between her, her grandson Dupin de Rochefort, and Dupin de Francueil, She died in Chenonceau on November 20, 1799. And kept the castle from the ruins of the French revolution by declaring was part of the town as with the story of the X. Therefore not royal grounds. Bravo Madame!

Seized as national property, at the French revolution, the land of Chenonceau passed, by inheritance, to François-René Vallet, count of Villeneuve, grand-nephew of Mme Dupin, married, in 1795, to Adélaïde Charlotte-Appoline de Guibert, daughter of Jacques-Antoine-Hippolyte , count of Guibert, and Françoise-Adélaïde de Valmalette de Courcelles. Commander of the Legion of Honor, senator, honorary chamberlain during the reign of Napoleon III, knight of the order of the crown of Bavaria and member of the General Council of Indre-et-Loire, the count of Villeneuve died at Chenonceau on February 12, 1863. On June 15, 1889, following a bankruptcy, Marguerite Pelouze ceded the Chenonceau estate to Crédit Foncier de France (bank) during an auction.   In 1891 Crédit Foncier sold the entire estate to José Emilio Terry, (family of Cuban origin, born and died in Paris) son of Tomas Terry (Of Irish paternal descent, Terry was born in Caracas Venezuela died in Paris) and by Teresa Dorticos (born in Cienfuegos Cuba died in Rome Italy). The estate remained in this family until 1913. On April 5, 1913, Henri-Emile Anatole Menier, famous for their chocolates, acquired the estate and the Château de Chenonceau by public auction .The castle has been in this family (Laure Menier now) since that date.

Chenonceau

And some recommendations for your pleasant stay in Chenonceaux town is to go and get some potteries at Poterie Agny ,11  Rue du Château, artisanal creation of decorative and utilitarian glazed stoneware pottery. Workshop and adjoining store. Facebook page here: Facebook page of Poterie Agny

Le Relais Chenonceaux; beams and fireplaces decorate the restaurant room. They offer quality traditional cuisine. The crêperie will delight gourmet appetites. You will appreciate the sunny and flowery terrace. English / Spanish spoken. More info in English here: Le Relais Chenonceaux

The  l’Amandier, 500 meters from the Château. This pretty, quiet house with its garden entirely enclosed by walls will be particularly pleasant for you to rest with family or friends L’Amandier is a comfortable house with 1 large living / dining room with fireplace and access to the outside, the kitchen is well designed and spacious with washing machine, dishwasher, coffee machine and kettle.  Upstairs, the house consists of 2 double bedrooms, a large bedroom for 4-5 persons and a small TV lounge. More in French here: L’Amandier gite Chenonceaux

And for me another reason to be here is the La Cave de Vouvray is the cooperative of winegrowers and traditional know-how for 60 years. From this alliance are born the finest fine bubbles Vouvray and the still wines of Vouvray. The guide will accompany you through ther 3 km of cellars’ galleries and will deliver the secrets of the wine making. A commented and convivial tasting will be offered to you and you will be able to discover the shop and let yourself be tempted by the regional products and the cellar items. The Cave des Producteurs de Vouvray is located in the town of Vouvray,  about 28 km from Chenonceaux along the D140 road . This agricultural cooperative is made up of 43 AOC Vouvray winegrowers who manage around 350 hectares of vines. Different spaces: boutique space (sale and wine tasting), Cooperage Museum space (exhibition of objects + projection of a film “The four seasons of the vine”), accessible by a staircase or a gently sloping secondary access , cellars dug in the tufa – 2 km (accessible only by guided tour), hangar dedicated to disgorging and dressing of bottles, inaccessible to people in wheelchairs,but compensated by the viewing of a film in the accessible projection room. More info in English here: Cave des producteurs de Vouvray wines

And more on the wonderful wines of Vouvray from the official wines of the Loire valley specifically Touraine-Chenonceaux  in English: Wines of the Loire valley on tourain chenonceaux wines

vouvray

More on the tourist office Bureau de Chenonceaux located at 1 rue Bretonneau, 37150 Chenonceaux. Tourist office of Chenonceaux

And there you go nice area not too many pictures on the castle even in that post and none found on the village of Chenonceaux, but worth mentioning in my blog for future reference and yours too. Hope it helps your planning.

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

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2 Comments to “Chenonceaux!”

  1. Shall we buy it as a weekend retreat? I love the Loire chateaux…

    Liked by 1 person

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