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French Castles : Azay le Ferron

The Château D'Azay-le-Ferron In The Indre Département Of France.


The castle of AZAY-le-FERRON looks like a typical example of the beautiful Loire castles. Located in the Indre department in France, in the village of Azay le Ferron, the Chateau is an exquisite building with a rich architecture from the XV to the XVIII century. Visiting this building is like travelling through history. From the outside, you can easily see all the different types of architecture that make up the present building. Each owner added something to this Chateau, a tower (built during the 15th century), a garden, an entire wing, or just internal corridors.

A French Castle from the from the 15th century.

The Castle Of AZAY-le-FERRON

Chateau d'Azay-le-Ferron View from Park

Chateau d'Azay-le-Ferron View from Park

AZAY-le-FERRON Castle

Azay le Ferron.  Chateau, Park and gardens.

Azay le Ferron. Chateau, Park and gardens.

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Closed during winter, the Chateau opens its doors to visitors at the start of spring every year.

This year, the opening coincided with the Easter holiday so we took our little princess and the hooligan to do their Easter egg hunt in the Chateau's gardens. But before hunting for the Easter eggs we had an educational visit to the Chateau. For me and my little princess it was like entering into a magic world of fairytales, from the mediaeval hall with its enormously long table for its knights, to the delicately decorated bedrooms fitted for royalty. Unfortunately, our little hooligan was only interested in the stuffed crocodile, turtles and other animals scattered in the building!

We visited the 18 rooms opened to the public. Each of them sumptuously decorated from different periods (Louis XVI, Romantic, etc.). Our tour guide was a fantastic lady who made our visit very interesting for the children. We visited halls, kitchens, bedrooms, libraries, dining rooms. The children were prompted by the tour guide to discover secret doors that lead to secret passages joining rooms, and they were encouraged to touch the stuffed animals and measure them.

The bedroom Of Madame Luzarche d'Azay-le-Ferron Is Furnished In Louis XVI Style, With The Original Pink Striped Wallpaper.

Chambre de Madame Luzarche at Azay le Ferron Castle.  The château is furnished as it was when occupied by the Luzarche family and George Hersant and his wife, between 1850 and 1953, when it opened to the public.

Chambre de Madame Luzarche at Azay le Ferron Castle. The château is furnished as it was when occupied by the Luzarche family and George Hersant and his wife, between 1850 and 1953, when it opened to the public.

French Castles: Azay-le-Ferron

The Owners Of The AZAY-le-FERRON Castle


The history of the Chateau dates back to 1250 with the name of its first owner, Le Chevalier Banneret, Nicolas de Turpin de Crisse. The successive owners remained Barons until 1789. After that, the Chateau was bought by a businessman and later by a banker for Napoleon.

In 1833, the Chateau was bought by the Luzarche family; master blacksmiths who had to donate the Chateau to the village of Tours in 1951 because they had run out of inheritors.

Azay-le-Ferron Gardens

The Gardens At The castle Of AZAY-le-FERRON

The Chateau has 1000 Hectares of woods. There are around 20 hectares of gardens made up into various "scenes", like the French style garden, the English style garden, the vegetable garden, the rose garden (with roses going back as far as the XIX century), topiaries, vineyards, orchards and so on.

There are different activities all year round in the Chateau. This year for example, there is a Rose conference about the evolution of the rose bush, advice on how to care for your roses and how to choose between all the varieties. The Chateau also organizes producers' markets and in their shop you can find local liqueurs, honey and other local specialities.

You can picnic in the gardens and take walks around the woods. There is a path of 4Km. that crosses the park and returns through the village of Azay le Ferron.

Topiary Garden Of The Chateau d'Azay-le-Ferron

Topiary garden at Chateau d'Azay-le-Ferron, with trees shaped to resemble chess pieces

Topiary garden at Chateau d'Azay-le-Ferron, with trees shaped to resemble chess pieces

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View of the facade of the Chateau d'Azay-le-Ferron

View of the facade of the Chateau d'Azay-le-Ferron

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Visiting times for the castle and nearby attractions

April, May, June, September : 10:00 a.m./12:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m./6:00 p.m. (Everyday except Tuesday)

July 1 through August 31 : 10:00 a.m./6:00 p.m.

Oct. 1 through Nov. 2 : every week-end 10:00 a.m./12:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m./5:30 p.m.

Nearby attractions:

Espace animalier de la Haute-Touche (AZAY-le-FERRON) You'll discover more than 1,000 animals from five continents in a 500 hectarea wooded park.

Maison du Parc Naturel Régional de la Brenne (Le Bouchet). This is a tourist information centre which also sells local produce like honey, goat's cheese with quality control labels and other specialities of the area like lentils and carp products.

The Anglin and Creuse Rivers, both slow moving rivers are a paradise for anglers and canoeists. There are many itineraries that allow for a safe descent going past castles, picturesque villages and watermills.

Azay le Ferron, France

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Comments

Jonathan Lewis from San Francisco on January 07, 2010:

I am enjoying your castle essays. Thanks.

susie que on June 16, 2009:

france rocks, eh?!

Alex on June 05, 2009:

PS Sorry, I didn't see the comment not to put the link in the comment section till I had already done so (on the interview clip of the Prince of Anjou);

I will put it in the URL section this time.

Wendy Iturrizaga (author) from France on May 18, 2009:

How lovely Chris, you must have some amazingly beautiful wedding pictures.

chris mooney on May 18, 2009:

we were married in azay le ferron in 2005 and went over the road to the chateau grounds to have our photos taken.....provided a beautiful and charming background for our special day

Wendy Iturrizaga (author) from France on May 10, 2008:

Wanderlust: I have not been in any castle on the Lyon area, but I am sure, you could find some. However, while I was there I visited a lovely little mediaeval town: PEROUGES not to be missed if you are in the area. They hold a mediaeval festival every june, but you can visit all year round. It is 35Km. from Lyon.

Hans56: Good to hear you are coming over to France again Hans. What area do you visit when you come? The Indre and Loire valley are stunning and not very expensive compared to other areas in France.

hans56 from Amsterdam/Chicago on May 09, 2008:

Oh.... I love France... and the way you write makes it even better. 8 July i'll be crossing the border again. Go On.....

Wanderlust from New York City on May 09, 2008:

Looks very beautiful and pretty affordable. I am planning to be in Lyon this summer. Any castle recommendations around there?

Wendy Iturrizaga (author) from France on May 09, 2008:

Decrescendo: you should consider it. I will have more castle reviews coming and keep in mind that when you come to France you can actually stay in a Castle for the duration of your holiday for as little as 200 euros a night!

Decrescendo on May 08, 2008:

I might consider traveling here.

Wendy Iturrizaga (author) from France on May 07, 2008:

Sounds good :-)

francetales from Toulouse, France on May 06, 2008:

I'm going to feature this Hub on my blog. I am going to do a weekly France Hubs on my blog. This is really great. I'll send the link when it is done.