We visited this château during the 2018 Christmas season, but 2019 marks the 500 year anniversary of the Estate of Chambord. Located in the Loire Valley, the estate contains the largest and most recognized châteaux, the Château de Chambord. It has a very distinctive French Renaissance architecture which blends traditional French medieval forms with classical Renaissance structures. The château, which was never completed, was constructed by King Francis I of France. The château was built to serve as a hunting lodge for Francis I, who maintained his royal residences at the Château de Blois and Amboise.
The main body of the castle is roughly square in shape, with a large tower at each corner. There are also two symmetrical wings to the castle, each ending with a substantial tower. The castle contains some 400 rooms with just about that many fireplaces and around 84 staircases. There is one staircase that stands out.
The central staircase is one of the architectural highlights of a visit: this stone staircase rises the height of Chambord castle, and is of a ‘double helix’ form – this means that two ‘independent’ staircases are wound around each other, such that people going up the stairs will not meet those coming down.
Chambord’s Gardens and Park
You can explore the formal gardens and take in the natural beauty of the estate and castle from the outside. Chateau Chambord has a very extensive park that is part of the estate worth taking the time to stroll, if weather permits.
There are several options for touring the chateau during your visit including:
- Self-guided option: a self-guide walk through the many rooms and floors opened during your visit. Please be sure to pickup a leaflet that details each room and item of interest.
- Phone or Tablet Apps: If you like technology, consider asking about the phone or tablet application option for touring during your visit.
Entry Fees and Hours:
- The entry fee to the chateau and the rest of the estate is around 13 euros. Parking is not free here and will cost you a few extra euros if you drove here. We took the SNCF and walked to easy walk to the castle.
- **discount alert** Mention that you arrived by train and you will get a discount off the adult ticket price.
- Opening Hours: All year except January 1 and December 25, 9:00 – 17:00 in the winter and 9:00 – 18:00 from April to October .
Visit Chambord Castle & Domain to learn more of its history and plan your visit
Visit Transportation Option to explore ways to get to Chambord Castle & Domain.
Other Attractions for Consideration
If you are planning to explore the Loire Valley further, consider taking in the Château de Chenonceau