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Castle that has a moat? Daytrip from Paris?

Castle that has a moat? Daytrip from Paris?

Jul 19th, 2003, 03:15 PM
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Castle that has a moat? Daytrip from Paris?

We'll be staying in Paris for four nights and would like to do a daytrip from Paris. I've always dreamed of seeing a castle with a moat. Does anyone have any information on this? Can I do a day trip from Paris? Any information would be greatly appreciated. Thank you. A compromise would be seeing a beautiful chateau and french country side.
tetrabit is offline  
Jul 19th, 2003, 04:14 PM
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You might consider Azay Le Rideau or Chenenceaux but whether they could be considered daytrips from Paris ,I don't know since we saw them whle staing in the Loire over a week or more several times.
jody is offline  
Jul 19th, 2003, 04:25 PM
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Chenonceau is fabulous and looks like it would be a fairly easy day trip from Paris. Check out this link: http://www.chenonceau.com/indexENG.html
Mary_Fran is offline  
Jul 19th, 2003, 04:56 PM
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A castle or two could be a doable day trip, if you take the TGV to Tours from Gare Montparnasse (I think). Tours would be the most convenient base to explore the châteaux from, but they are also accessible from Amboise & Blois, even. Here is a handy URL for more info:
withglasses is offline  
Jul 19th, 2003, 05:46 PM
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Chantilly is a nice choice - has moat, lake, parkland, castle, and horse stables (as big as the castle!) The train ride is approx. 1/2 hour and I walked from the train station by the race track, visiting the stables first and then on to the castle. Also, lovely countryside on the train trip.
nancy is offline  
Jul 19th, 2003, 08:16 PM
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I'd head to Chantilly. Fairy-tale-type castle, beautiful moat with swans, lovely furnished interior, beautiful museum of miniature portraits, very easy trip from Paris. Make sure you go when it's open. We drove there years ago on a Tuesday only to gaze at it from outside the closed iron gates.
You can combine it easily with a trip to the nearby town of Senlis, which has some lovely medieval architecture.
StCirq is offline  
Jul 19th, 2003, 08:23 PM
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There's a moat, it's close to Paris, and wonderful to visit, especially evening candlelight tours. Highly recommend.
djkbooks is offline  
Jul 20th, 2003, 03:05 AM
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St. Cirq, my experience exactly. If it's Tuesday--Chantilly is closed. I learned a very valuable lesson from that experience. Never plan a trip without listing opening/closings of attractions.
jmv is offline  
Jul 20th, 2003, 08:16 AM
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I also would recommend Chantilly as the best choice for that. I would not recommend Vaux-le-Vicomte myself. I didn't find it nearly as attractive in several ways and it's difficult to get to. It doesn't really look like a castle like Chantilly, either, and the gardens are not nearly as pretty.
Christina is online now  
Jul 20th, 2003, 12:54 PM
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We took a day long bus tour of 3 castles in the Loire valley. It covered Chenonceau, Cheverny and Chambord. Each of these 3 has its own unique charms. The tour guide was very well informed, and made the history come alive with intersting tidbits. Tour company was called, Paris Vision. It left from a location near the Louvre and the day trip included lunch in a quaint country inn. I would highly recommend it.
Mich55 is offline  
Jul 20th, 2003, 06:13 PM
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This site rocks. Thanks for your question and thanks for the answers! We had no interest in leaving Paris while we're there for 5 nights in Sept and go anywhere else... until we looked at this post, went to the web and checked out Chantilly Castle just for the hell of it - then saw what it looked like. I thought to myself, "we're THERE!"

I showed my wife the pics and we're all set to go! We are doing 5 nights in Paris Sept 13-18, 3 in Avignon, and 7 in Nice. I checked out that all day trip to the 3 castles someone had mentioned, but my wife thought she'd be too tired to do a 7am-730pm trip to the castles, and she's the boss!

Steve R
Silver Spring MD USA
stever is offline  
Jul 21st, 2003, 02:22 AM
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Overlooked and lightly-visited (off the beaten path I guess) is Sully s/Loire, moated and picturesque. Interesting inside too. Also off the path, and the subject, (not moated, it's hilltop) is Montreuil-Bellay, south of Saumur and well worth a visit.
TuckH is offline  
Jul 21st, 2003, 04:31 AM
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We did the same day trip that Mich55 mentions, to the Loire with Parisvision. Surprisingly, Steve, I found the 7AM-7PM bus tour far less tiring than another day walking around museums in Paris. We took the van, not the bus, which was more expensive, but very comfortable. I napped a bit during the early morning ride out to the castles.

Tetrabit, Chenonceau doesn't actually have a moat, it's built right over the river though, so it's surrounded by water. It's really stunning.
china_cat is offline  
Jul 21st, 2003, 06:45 PM
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Thank you so much for everyone's comments! I checked out the website of the Chantilly and it looks great. I did some more research and would love to go to one of the castle tours (bus)but it looks pretty expensive...Perhaps we will come back and stay in Loire valley and surrounding areas, some day. Thanks again. Does anyone know the exact way to get to Chantilly by public transport? Easiest/quickest? We'll be staying in the Latin Quarter district. Thank you very much for your help!
tetrabit is offline  
Aug 1st, 2003, 01:49 PM
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One of my favourites is Pierrefonds - see http://www.castles.org/castles/Europ...ierrefonds.htm

Easily done in a day
AnnM is offline  
Aug 1st, 2003, 07:24 PM
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From my day trip file:

Château de Chantilly - Musée Condé (http://www.chateaudechantilly.com/index_en.html) (http://www.gardenvisit.com/ge/chant.htm) Michelin *** sight. This beautiful Renaissance château with its surrounding Le Nôtre designed park is considered one of the major sights in France. The Grand Château houses the country's largest private museum and includes the "Très Riches Heures" by the Duke de Berry and works by Raphaël, Poussin, Ingres, and Delacroix. The great apartments and the private apartments of the Duke and Duchess of Aumale in the Petit Château are well worth touring. The Musée Vivant du Cheval, a magnificent horse museum and stables (www.emroll.fr/mvc/accueil_us.html), is five minutes from the château. The Château is at 17, rue du Connétable, 60635 Chantilly (Oise). Wed - Mon 10:00 am - 6:00 pm from Mar to 31 Oct; otherwise 10:30 am -12:45 pm & 2:00 pm -5:00 pm. SNCF rail access from Gare du Nord (30 min) or RER Ligne D from Châtelet-les-Halles (45 minutes): Station Chantilly-Gouvieux.

Note from RZ: For the equestrian minded, the stables and museum are a must. You can walk to the chateau from the station or take a bus, which goes on to the town of Senlis, which can be combined with the visit. Here?s a nice article:


Message: We had a great visit at the Chateau de Chantilly in the off-season a few years ago. Here are a few notes from my trip journal:

"The Chateau of Chantilly and the surrounding grounds are extraordinarily beautiful; it's one of the loveliest chateaux we've seen in France. The Conde Museum with paintings from different centuries provides a fascinating tour. Among its many works are three magnificent paintings by Raphael, some exquisite miniatures, and a fascinating collection of 44 stained glass windows relating the loves of Psyche and Cupid.

We also loved the wonderfully decorated rooms in the chateau. In the morning we took the tour of the larger apartments. Highlights were the library with its copy of the 15th century book of hours ? Les Tres Riches Heures du Duc de Berry ? and rare book collection, the chapel with its fascinating, beautifully carved inlaid wood portraits, and one particular room, La Singerie Galerie, with it paintings of monkeys on boiserie were particularly amazing. We also took the special tour of the private apartments of the Duke and Duchess of Aumale on the ground floor of the chateau. The private rooms contained some wonderful pieces of furniture, a number with marquetry, gilt paint and intricate detail. The small ?singerie,? another monkey gallery, was even more charming than the one in the larger apartments. The room is entirely covered with painted panels depicting the antics of aristocratic monkeys in various entertainments of the seasons."

Whether you wish to use one of your days in Paris this trip for a visit to Chantilly depends on your interests and priorities, but if you don't go this time, I'd definitely recommend it for the future.

RonZ is offline  
Aug 1st, 2003, 10:20 PM
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I'd highly reccomend Chenonceau as well or some of the other Chateaus in the Loire Valley. You can easily do a day trip from Paris. We rented a car and went to Chambord (which I didn't care for but everyone has different opinions), Chenonceau (which is dressed up very nice, but the wine they produce there is awful, or maybe it was just last years becuase they hadn't aged yet) and wound up in a couple of the smaller cities along the Loire River. You can easily take the train or a Coach tour as well. 3 of the Castles/Chateaus is a pretty full day.
cf5657 is offline  
Aug 18th, 2003, 08:08 PM
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How would you like to actually stay overnight in a castle with a moat that is an easy trip from Paris? If that interests you, check out Chateau d'Etoges, just south of Reims and Epernay(www.etoges.com). We stayed there 2 nights last September and really enjoyed it. Even put a couple of our travelers in the turret!

Happy travels.

John H.
jh6000 is offline  
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