Here’s a list of the most sublime castles in France. Most of these are famous and will appear in every guide, but some are a bit more recherché and out of the way.
All of our picks are rich in history, but everyone has their own idea of beauty: Some of the most handsome buildings were the sites of notorious sieges, and others have always been plush escapes for royalty and aristocrats.
It’s inevitable that many should be in the Loire Valley, where all the renaissance châteaux are inscribed as one World Heritage site.
Lets have a look at the most beautiful castles in France:
1. Château de Chambord, Loir-et-Cher
Kicking off the list is the most beautiful and prestigious château in the Loire, which is saying something for this part of France.
It was constructed in the 1500s for King Francis I and is instantly recognised by that emblematic crowd of cupolas and turrets on the roof.
Pictures don’t do justice to the size of the building, until you realise that the tiny specks on the main facade’s terraces are people! Leonardo da Vinci is rumoured to have had a hand in the most acclaimed interior feature; a central double-helix staircase that twists gracefully up three floors and is lit from above by a skylight.