Curiosities of Amboise!!!

And by the valley of the kings I was again, this is like my backyard really the farthest is just 4 hrs away from home. I try harder with the family left and of course my dog Rex and Dad in wheelchair, its a family effort nowdays. Amboise is nice we used to come here several times a year to our favorite house wine and the castle, the market, Christmas etc. We moved to the Morbihan, Bretagne and felled behind a bit. Now trying to catch up, its a task France is a mouvable feast as a whole. Let me tell you some curiosities of Amboise; and hope you enjoy it as we did.

You have the mini chateaux park or sort of a miniature castles of the Loire park, it has 2 hectares or 5 acres showing 45 castles of the Loire. Located at La Menaudière on the road D81 very close to AmboiseThe parc Mini-Châteaux is a miniature park located in Amboise, Indre-et-Loire dept 37 in the Centre Val de Loire region. It shows a landscaped with some 2,000 bonsais, for a 1.5 km route. complete with gardens, figurines, boats and trains. The models presented are on a 1/25th scale. The parc is arranged with some 2,000 bonsais, 10,000 figurines, 6 railway networks and miniature boats, On the landscaped park, more than 44 faithful reproductions, in miniature, of the high places of the Loire Valley. A giant stride to discover, in a few hours, all the architectural treasures of the region: Chambord, Chenonceaux, Amboise, Villandry and many more…It could be use as an introduction to the region if time is of the essence, me think.  The official Mini Chateaux

Amboise Parc Mini Chateaux front jan22

The former castle of Chanteloup was an 18C castle located precisely in the heights of the city of Amboise,  which was built on behalf of the princess of the Ursins, and was considerably embellished and expanded by the Duke of Choiseul, Louis XV’s minister Destroyed in 1823 , there remains in the domain of Chanteloup only the Chanteloup pagoda and its park, built in 1775 on behalf of the Duke of Choiseul , and open to the visit since the late 1990s by the André family.

A bit of history I like

The Duke of Choiseul , disgraced in 1770 because of his too close proximity to the parliaments and his sometimes public opposition to the king’s policy, as well as his jokes about Madame du Barry, the king’s favorite, was « retired » to the Château de Chanteloup by order of the king until the death of the latter in 1774 , While there he received visitors from all over Europe, holding a real court and giving sumptuous receptions. Thanks to him, Chanteloup became a magnificent country residence, surrounded by beautiful gardens, which one did not hesitated to compare to Versailles. In 1792, it became national property, and in 1794, it was seized and emptied of its furniture, partially transferred to the Museum of Fine Arts in Tours, It was sold at auction in 1802 to Jean-Antoine Chaptal, Count of Chanteloup, chemist and Minister of the Interior of Bonaparte (he resigned at the coronation of Napoleon 1st).  Chaptal grew beets in the park to produce sugar but, following the bankruptcy of his son Jean-Baptiste-Marie, Viscount Chaptal de Chanteloup, he commissioned the sale of land and buildings from 1823 to 1829. Having failed to find lessee, the castle was finally sold to a demolisher. The residence was thus completely destroyed in 8 weeks, with the exception of the Pagoda, acquired on March 13, 1823 by the Duke Louis-Philippe of Orléans, with 228 hectares of forest, However, all that remains today is the so-called Concierge pavilion and two pavilions of the forecourt framing the gate.

The Chanteloup pagoda ,located to the south of the castle at the top of a hill, it formed the meeting point of seven long avenues traced in the forest of Amboise. This construction, and the development of a large half-moon water mirror terminated by a large canal in which it is reflected, completed the transformation of the gardens of Chanteloup; it was intended for nocturnal celebrations. On the first floor, Choiseul would have had the names of his visitors engraved on white marble tables, then turned face up against the wall, which rest on a peristyle of the purest circular Louis XVI style of sixteen columns and sixteen pillars, It has seven floors, the entrance staircase has seven steps, it is surmounted by a golden globe symbolizing the sun and the pond at its feet is in the shape of a half-moon.
The pavilion of the Concierge of the Pagoda, built at the entrance to the esplanade of the Pagoda, now houses a small museum in which there is an exhibition of reproductions of maps of the castle and gardens of Chanteloup, as well as paintings and portraits of famous people from Chanteloup. 
The official Pagoda de Chanteloup:


And to do all these ramblings in our road warrior tour of the valley of the kings, I decided to once again use nostalgia and stayed at an Ibis hotel, a chain of Accor of France. Very nice hotels I have used extensively both personal and business in various levels going from the old Sofitel to the old Etap and of course the Ibis’s. This was two rooms at the Ibis Budget Amboise hotel just before going into the city center off the D31 road. The rooms were clean, restaurant for breakfast great all you can eat!! 6.60€ can’t beat it and the staff very friendly, a top stay for sure. Ibis never fails and we will be back to them. The hotel is located at 1 Rue du Clos Bourget sharing the lot with a Novotel also of the same chain Accor. From here we went to all the castles and places we saw and was very pleasant indeed. webpage:

And of course, other than some snacks along the way we had our formal lunch stay in a wonderful one star Michelin restaurant in Amboise on the guide since 2017.  This was the Lion d’Or at 17 Quai Charles Guinot, right alongside the Loire river,nice indeed. And to boot on street parking for free!! We had the bargain menu Découverte for 22€ entrée ,plat and dessert all with a bottle of  Sauvignon blanc and expresso coffees and teas total 29 € per person for a MIchelin perfect!! For the memories I had (easy off the menu!) Crispy puff pastry of chanterelles with dried tomatoes, dried ham, mushroom purée.
Trout confit with Tandoori spices on green cabbage and buttered chestnut, white butter with cardamom.
Plate with 3 pieces of cheese. Touraine-Amboise Sauvignon Blanc Xavier Frissant. Awesome experience, the official webpage:

Amboise le lion d or resto front jan22

Amboise le lion d or resto dining walls jan22

Amboise le lion d or parking on street jan22

Amboise le lion d or resto dining windows jan22

The Amboise Val de Loire tourist office on Amboise

The city of Amboise monuments to see

There you go folks, another dandy family road warrior tour in my belle France! This is a fact France is a mouvable feast as a whole. We like Amboise and do again, until next time with so much to see will see when back but it is a must while visiting France me think. Hope you enjoy the post and the others coming and going.

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

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