Christmas’ Magic in French iconic chateaux, part three: Chambord Château – Meanderings through France n° 206
By Annick Dournes & Frederic de Poligny
Welcome back again to French chateaux festivities! This year for Christmas time we invite you in three different wonderful French chateaux, Vaux-le-Vicomte, Cheverny and Chambord. Each one celebrates Christmas in its own way and welcomes all Christmas’ spirit lovers to come and enjoy a festive experience. You are all welcomed, children and young at heart alike, to enjoy a very special Christmas season!
Christmas in a fairytale castle: Chambord
Once again Chambord is going to enchant us this Christmas. All through 2019 Chambord has been celebrating its 500th anniversary and Christmas is going to be its grand final! The chateau has been decorated in a Renaissance style, the classic gardens are illuminated, the Northern façade is turned into a colourful show and a huge Christmas tree exhibition invites you to elect your favourite one.
This unique chateau was born in the 16th century in the imagination of one of the most flamboyant French kings, François 1st. With the help of Leonardo da Vinci he not only built the largest and most original castle of the Loire Valley, but also filled it with enigmas and mysterious symbols that have not yet revealed all their secrets.
Figures defy the imagination. Chambord estate is as vast as inner Paris and is entirely surrounded with a 32 km long wall where wild game abounds. It took 220,000 tones of rock collected in a quarry 50 miles away from Chambord to achieve this fairy-tale castle. It has no less than 426 rooms, 282 fireplaces, 77 staircases and 800 carved capitals! Unlike many other royal castles Chambord never was furnished. When the king and his court went hunting there, a multitude of servants brought all the furniture, tapestries to cover the walls, dishes and pans for the meals, and get the castle ready for at least 2,000 people.
Wintertime is a magical season to visit Chambord. Half hidden in a cloud of mist, surrounded by high trees and its high silhouette topped with dozens of turrets, the chateau really looks like Sleeping Beauty’s castle.
Win great Christmas presents in Chambord
This year big event is the Christmas tree exhibition. You are welcome to elect your favourite one and try your luck to win a prize such as a bottle of wine from Chambord estate, a balloon flight for two to discover the estate from above, a basket filled with tempting sweets and savouries, a night for two with breakfast at the “Relais Chambord“, a luxury hotel set in the chateau outbuildings or complimentary dinners at “La Maison d’à Côté”, a gastronomic restaurant awarded with 2 Michelin stars. You can even win concert tickets for Sting concert organised in Chambord next July! All prizes will be awarded by drawing lots in January 2020. Tempted?
Once again Chambord enchants us and appeals to the child inside us! Chambord is only a 2-hour drive from Paris. You can also get there by train from “Gare d’Austerlitz” railway station in Paris, and get to Blois within 1 hour 20 from where a shuttle bus will take you directly to the chateau.
More information and online reservation at www.chambord.org/en
Text ©Annick Dournes
Photos courtesy of Chambord Château