Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Châteaux Ussé et Chinon

Another double château day, and once again without Robbie, who was studying or taking tests. Our first château was Ussé, which was the inspiration for the story of Sleeping Beauty. It's beautiful, easy to imagine as the setting for a fairy tale.

The chapel there is unique because it has a portrayal of God the Father above the entrance.

In the wine caves:

And the carriage house:

The grounds and surrounding countryside were beautiful too. We were a little early in the year for most of the flowers, but we were told it's breathtaking in late spring.

Going into the Sleeping Beauty tower:

They had wax figures telling the story in the rooms:

And the attic was set up to look like it would have looked if it were storing the family's unused belongings. The bats were totally authentic. :)

We loved this enclosed portico off the courtyard. We decided a courtyard would definitely be an important element in our dream house, all surrounded by French windows and doors.

Mixing fairy tales now...Ellie would kiss the frog. :)

Château number two for the day was Chinon, which is more of a ruin. Here's what it would have looked like in its day, very much a fortress:

The gatehouse is still standing, and the exterior walls.

The girls had a chance to be grateful for indoor plumbing...they didn't like the idea of the toilet simply opening onto the ground below. :)

You can see multiple levels of the interior with the floor missing.

As usual, the town and countryside around the château is picturesque.

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