Over the weekend I went on a little trip to the Loire Valley for the first time! The first stop was the town of Blois, which has its own château as well as a shuttle bus to the nearby estate of Chambord. Chambord and its grounds are huge – it’s the largest château in the Loire Valley – and it was constructed by Francis I as his hunting lodge for use while he was staying at Blois. The unique rooftop architecture of this château is possibly its most famous feature, with 11 different kinds of towers and three different types of chimney arranged asymmetrically between the two main towers. After Chambord, I had a quick walk around the gardens at Blois while waiting for my train to Amboise. I got a couple of nice shots from the town but unfortunately I didn’t make it inside Blois’ own château, itself a royal residence during the Renaissance.
Above is a statue of Diana (goddess of the hunt), found in the gardens of Blois but also in many of the châteaux associated with Henry II (son of Francis I) as tribute to his favourite mistress, the influencial and prominent courtier Diane de Poitiers.