Castles in France – 190 amazing Castles, Chateaux and Palaces to visit in France
Castles in France – Amazing list of 190 castles, chateaux, palaces and fortresses to visit in France with great photos and map! France is renowned for its magnificent castles, which stand as architectural marvels and historical landmarks. From the fairy-tale-like Château de Chambord in the Loire Valley, with its intricate spires and vast gardens, to the medieval stronghold of Carcassonne, boasting formidable walls and towers, each castle tells a captivating story of the country’s rich past. These iconic structures offer visitors a glimpse into the grandeur and opulence of French nobility, making them an essential part of any cultural exploration of the nation.
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There are hundreds of castles in France, many of which were built in the Middle Ages. Most tourists visit at least one of them! And here we have prepared a long list of 190 castles so that you know which one to visit! 🙂 Of course, the most famous and most visited is the castle in Versailles, but others also offer a very interesting spectacle.
France is a country of castles, it would be a pitty not to stay in one!There are lots of castles in France you will want to visit, but there are a few you can even spend a night at!
Book a 13th-century room e.g. at Château de Mercuès and make your France expedition a special one!
Feel like a royal (regardless of your blood’s colour) at this 13th-century castle!
France is known for many different things, including its remarkably old but stunning castles and palaces. If you are planning a holiday in France, you will most likely look at some of them!
Castles in France
1. Château d’Abbadie
The Observatory Castle of Abbadia (Château d’Abbadie) has a neo-gothic architectural style that is quite striking at first glance.
It was constructed in the late 1800s allows visitors to walk through the expansive castle itself as well as the nearby park, which is filled with all sorts of beautiful plants.
2. Fortress of Aigues-Mortes
The fortress of Aigues-Mortes was built in the 13th century with the explicit purpose of promoting trade with Italy. It is a classic medieval fortress that you can walk through to see its centuries-old rooms. Constance Tower is the highest in the fortress, standing a total of 30 meters tall.
3. Château d’Ainay-le-Vieil
Surrounded by a beautiful green park, this castle dates back to the 12th century. A moat goes around the outer wall, and it has been used by many important historical figures throughout the years. Visitors are free to walk around the grounds as well as inside the castle to see its many interesting artefacts.
4. Château D’Alleuze
Located in south-central France, this castle was constructed in the 13th century and was once owned by the bishops of Clermont. It is one of the oldest ruins in the country, and those who are interested can visit. The towers of this castle once housed prisoners, and they have been very well-preserved.
5. Chateau d’Amboise
Construction of the Chateau d’Amboise first started in the 1400s and ended in the early 1500s. Amazingly enough, this castle is still mostly intact with some incredible architecture. There are numerous old Renaissance furniture pieces inside that you can look at, as well as Gothic art pierces from some of the old masters.
6. Château d’Ancy-le-Franc
This is another castle that has stunning Renaissance architecture, and it dates back to the 16th century. It is a protected historical site and features four separate residential structures as well as a large courtyard that visitors can stroll through. There are also numerous galleries with old works of art.
7. Château d’Anet
Château d’Anet has been around since the 1500s, and it was designed by Philibert Delorme. It overlooks some fantastic and vibrant gardens like an old chapel. Those who come here can walk through the grounds beside the canal to see just how beautiful this historic attraction really is.
8. Château d’Angers
Château d’Angers can be found just beside the River Maine, and it is a beautiful 14th-century structure that attracts many visitors from all over the world. There is a cathedral that also has some very striking architecture. You can visit the Tapestries museum to see some fascinating historic pieces.
9. Château d’Anjony
Château d’Anjony can be found near a beautiful old Romanesque church, and it has four towers that really make it an impressive sight, to say the least. Tournemire Castle is also close by, and it is just as impressive. These structures have endured for over 300 years, and they are in spectacular condition overall.
10. Château d’Argy
Château d’Argy has some incredibly detailed and well-preserved architecture that dates back to the 15th century. It has an art gallery with all kinds of pieces from Italian and French artists. There are also some expansive gardens and meadows that you can walk through when you come here for a tour.
11. Château d’Aubenas
In Aubenas you will find Montlaur Castle, which has some very unique Ardeche architecture. It is paved with smooth varnished tiles and boats two large pepperpot towers that overlook the beautiful surrounding landscape. Guided tours of this castle are given on a regular basis throughout the year, and it is a great historic attraction.
12. Chateau d’Aulteribe
Chateau d’Aulteribe is a 15th-century castle that has been impressively preserved, and it contains a lot of old furniture that ranged from the 1400s to the 1800s. There are numerous historic artefacts that you can learn more about from a knowledgeable tour guide. This is one place you should really stop by when visiting France.
13. Château d’Auzers
The castle that you will find in the commune of Auzers is located in south-central France. It has many relics that will teach you about French history. The architecture of this old castle is classic medieval, and it is in very good condition. It is a must-see attraction for history buffs who are visiting this country.
14. Château d’Azay-le-Ferron
Azay-le-Ferron lies on the border of La Touraine, and there is a beautiful old castle with many old and important works of art inside. Construction on this castle started in the 15th century and was completed by the 1700s. There are many hectares of gardens for you to walk through around the structure.
15. Chateau d’Azay-le-Rideau
Azay-le-Rideau is a very important structure from the Renaissance period. It is located on the Indre River, and there are many intricate designs carved into the structure itself. When you walk through this castle you will be able to see all of the elegant old furniture pieces. This is a beautiful area to visit in general.
16. Château de Balleroy
Château de Balleroy was built in the 17th century and houses a museum that is all about hot air balloons. Its Victorian architecture is just one of the many great things about this castle. There are guided tours that you can take to walk through and discover many interesting facts about France over the years.
17. Fort de la Bastille in Grenoble
Bastille is a 17th-century fortress that was built for the sole purpose of defending the Daphine from their enemies. It is now a cultural centre with numerous art pieces that you can walk through and see. There is also a museum that is devoted to the history of soldiers who served in these mountains. Definitely one of the best places to visit in Grenoble. Standing on the hill you can get there on foot or by cable car.
18. Château de Bazoches
Château de Bazoches sits atop a densely wooded hill, and it was built all the way back in the 12th century. The impressive furniture pieces and historic artefacts that fill this castle are very impressive. The Church of Saint-Hilarie, which is located just down the hill, hosts a music festival each year.
19. Château de Beaumesnil
Constructed in the mid-1600s, Château de Beaumesnil is a very important historic structure in France. There are moats surrounding it, which once served as an important obstacle for enemies. The 80-hectare park that makes up the nearby area includes many beautiful gardens, and it is the perfect place for an evening stroll.
20. Bénédictine Palace
Bénédictine Palace is located in the town of Fecamp, which is known for its historic attractions and art galleries. Anyone who wants to learn more about the history of this country should think about visiting this place. It includes a boat and fishing museum with lots of interesting old objects on display.
21. Berzé-le-Châtel castle
Berzé-le-Châtel castle is a medieval fortress that has a total of 13 towers. Each of the rooms in this fortress is furnished with old pieces from up to two hundred years ago. There are regular tours given throughout the week. It is one of the more famous historic sites in France, and it’s one you do not want to miss.
22. Château de Beynac
The castle that can be found in the village of Beynac-et-Cazenac is truly stunning. There is a music festival here that has numerous classical performers. The castle itself sits along the Dordogne River, and it is open to the public in the summer months. This is a great place to visit all around.
23. Château de Billy
Château de Billy was constructed in the 12th century, and it is a very well-preserved structure from the Middle Ages. Tours of this castle are given from April through October. When you go to the top of this castle, you will get a spectacular look at the entire Allier Valley. It has a large watchtower that you can walk up as well.
24. Château de Blandy-les-Tours
This castle has been standing since the 14th century, and it is in very good shape. There are five towers that stand over 30 meters tall. It is owned by the local council, and there are guided tours available every single day of the week. There are numerous cultural events that take place here throughout the year.
25. Blaye Citadel
The Blaye Citadel is situated above the Gironde estuary, and it was once home to a prison as well as fortified barracks. You can come here to learn more about the structure itself as well as the surrounding region. The Museum of Art and History of the Pays Blayais is located on the grounds.
26. Château de Bonaguil
Bonaguil castle’s medieval style is truly amazing to behold, and it is really something that you have to see up close. This castle was constructed in the 13th century. While it was built to withstand enemy attacks, it was never actually subject to one. This is one of the best-preserved old structures in France. The landscape that surrounds this castle is also incredibly beautiful.
27. Château De Bonneval
Built in the early 1300s, Château De Bonneval has a number of unique antique furniture pieces on display inside. You can take tours of this structure, which is in great shape inside and out. It has tall rounded towers and an interior courtyard that you can stroll through as well.
28. Bordeaux Vineyard
The Bordeaux Vineyard is made up of over 115,000 hectares of land that is used to grow wine. The entire area boasts an amazing number of 8,000 castles, chateaux and palaces. So if you would like to see some of the French castles this is perhaps one of the best places to visit!
29. Château de Bouges
Château de Bouges is a fairly large palace that was built in the 18th century and has an incredibly elegant aesthetic from the inside out. When you step foot in this palace, you will find some truly beautiful antique furniture pieces and hundreds of year old works of art. There are a wonderful garden and a small hedge maze out front.
30. Boulogne Castle
This medieval castle can be found in Saint-Michel-de-Boulogne tucked away in the Ardeche Mountains Regional Nature Park. The structure still stands strong and is considered one of France’s best historic sites to visit. The entire region is quite beautiful and a lovely place to see. Those who love nature and history should see this place.
31. Château du Bourg-Saint-Léonard
Construction on Château du Bourg-Saint-Léonard finished in the late 1700s, and it is made up of numerous stables and a large park. Visitors are welcome to walk the grounds with or without a guide. It is one of the better places to go if you wish to learn more about the history of France and this particular historic structure.
32. Château de Boussac
Boussac castle was constructed in the 12th century, and it had to be rebuilt a few hundred years later due to damage from enemy attacks. It has long been thought of as a very romantic place, and it has been the inspiration for numerous novelists and poets. There are exhibits for Aubusson tapestries in the summer months.
33. Château de Breteuil
Château de Breteuil can be found in Upper Chevreuse Valley Regional Natural Park. This Choisel palace was built in the 1600s and is made entirely of stone and brick. It has a number of amazing furniture pieces in its various rooms. There are also multiple wax figure tableaus that will help you learn more about the history of this area.
34. Château de Brézé
Château de Brézé has a number of deep moats that stretch along the perimeter of the castle. This structure includes a subterranean fortress that was once used in the event of attacks from foreign countries. There are multiple wine cellars that you can walk through, as well as a silkworm farm.
35. Château de Brissac
Château de Brissac has the unique distinction of being the tallest castle in the entire country. Inside you will find numerous historic objects from the families that lived here hundreds of years ago. There are over 200 different rooms that you can walk through on guided tours every day of the week.
36. Burgundy Vineyards
Burgundy Vineyards are made of more than 9,000 hectares of land. Here you will also find several castles that were built back in the medieval times. Wine tasting is one of the best activities you can try here while exploring French chateaux.
37. Château de Busset
Château de Busset dates back to the 13th century, and it was once the residence of France Henry IV before he became royalty. It has a large drawbridge and can be toured by the public from the months of May to September. When you walk around this old structure you will see the bedroom that Henry IV stayed in, as well as some interesting old artefacts.
38. Château de Cadillac
Château de Cadillac was built in the 16th century, and it was commonplace for King Henry IV to stay at. It was taken over in the midst of the French Revolution and eventually turned into a prison for women in the early to the late 19th century. If you come here to visit, don’t forget to check out the park and garden on the grounds.
39. Cité de Carcassonne
The castle in the town of Carcassonne was once home to many different counts. The stained-glass windows and towering statues outside of this structure are very impressive. Inside you will find a museum that is dedicated to masonry, which is quite interesting. The entire town has a lot to offer for visitors.
40. Château de Carrouges
Château de Carrouges was completed by the 17th century, and it can be found in the centre of Normandie-Maine Regional Nature Park. This park is quite large and features an orchard as well as plenty of beautiful gardens. The castle itself has been preserved well over the years and has seasonal tours.
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