Chateau de Chambord Derek Foglein French III – 1 Ms. Kurtz
Overview Chateau de Chambord is the largest of the Loire Chateau. It is a magnificent sight, for its symmetry when seen from the north, and its large 50 square kilometer game reserve. It is also known for its central staircase, which is a double helix spiral staircase, one of few in the world.
History This castle, although the biggest of the Loire Chateau, was originally built as a hunting lodge for King Francois I. It took over two decades to build this magnificent palace. After the death of King Francois I in 1547, the castle remained unused for almost 100 years.
History Gaston d’Orleans was given the castle by King Louis XIII. He started major renovations on the castle, including huge barns that housed the several hundred horses needed for a royal hunting trip. The castle was then abandoned in 1750, and stayed empty until the early 19th century.
History Then a French military leader was then given the property by Napoleon. After another forty years, the chateau was pressed into service as a hospital during the 1871 Franco-Prussian war. In the middle of the 20th century, the castle passed into government ownership.
Special Events/Guided Tours When visiting, you can explore over 100 of the castle’s rooms. There are no tour guides to guide you through the rooms, but an explanatory leaflet will describe some historic rooms and architectural masterpieces.