Until November, the Loire Valley celebrates its gardens. Chambord, Chenonceau, Maulévrier, Terra Botanica… In all, some 70 gardens in the region are concerned. Festivals, events, novelties, here are the highlights of this exceptional edition of “Gardens in the Loire Valley”, with some ideas for visits.
Loire Valley: the garden of France
The Loire Valley is the story of an exceptional natural territory, which spans 280 km and two regions (Center-Val de Loire and Pays de la Loire). The conducting wire ? The Loire. His little nickname? The "garden of France"!
And for good reason: in addition to a wild nature of incredible beauty, it is home to sumptuous gardens shaped by man over the centuries. Moreover, if the Loire Valley has been listed in Unesco World Heritage under living cultural landscapes, it is in particular because it brings together “the combined works of man and nature”. Among them, many gardens: public, private, English or French castle gardens, town and village gardens, theme parks ...
This year, to help us discover them, the Loire Valley is dedicating its “cultural season” to gardens, with “Jardins en Val de Loire”. From the arrival of spring and until autumn, more than 70 gardens in the Loire Valley we have magnificent blossoms in store, new openings, guided tours day and night, exhibitions, music and garden art festivals ...
But that's not all: 2017 also marks the arrival of two new gardens, in the emblematic châteaux of Chambord and Chenonceau!
The highlights of Jardins en Val de Loire
New castle gardens, festivals, exhibitions ... we can say that 2017 is a rich year for the gardens of the Loire Valley, from the beginning of spring to the arrival of autumn.
April 1: inauguration of the new gardens of the Château de Chambord
The Sun King would have much to be proud of: the magnificent French gardens he had commissioned are finally emerging from the ground! For more than 40 years they have only looked like simple expanses of lawn ... At the same time brand new but three centuries old, they extend over some 6 hectares at the level of the north and east facades. This reinforces the prestige of the largest of the Loire Valley châteaux!
April 1 and 2: Terra Botanica springs
The Terra Botanica plant attraction park celebrates spring for two days with a plant market, a garden, exhibitions and activities. From April 8 to October 31, there is also an exhibition entitled “The parks and gardens of Anjou over the course of history”.
April 20: 26th international garden festival in Chaumont-sur-Loire
As every year since 1992, the International Garden Festival is taking place at the Château de Chaumont-sur-Loire. Talented landscapers from all over the world magnify the gardens with surprising creations, around a common theme (this year: "Flower Power, the power of flowers"). The promise of a chimerical stroll, in the heart of an open-air contemporary art museum. To discover until October.
June 1: exhibition on the gardens at the Château d'Angers
Launch of the exhibition "Château garden ... history, innovation and sustainable development" at the Château d'Angers.
June 2, 3 & 4, 2017: 15th edition of the "Rendez-vous aux jardins"
The Loire Valley is obviously participating in this major national event! For the occasion, a multitude of parks and gardens, both public and private, are revealed around the same theme; this year: “sharing in the garden”. Through guided tours, activities, exhibitions and demonstrations, they reveal their diversity and wealth. The occasion, also, to discover gardens closed the rest of the year, like those of the castles of Jarzé, of the Baronnière, or of the manor of Constantinière, in Anjou.
June 3: exhibition at the Château de Villandry
Until September 18 at the Château de Villandry, the exhibition “Vilmorin / Villandry, a lineage in the service of plants” invites us to discover the Vilmorins. It was a large family of learned botanists and seed producers, from the time of Louis XV to the 20th century.
July: Blade of Grass Festival
Piano concerts in four majestic gardens: the Parc floral de la Source in Orléans (Loiret), the royal castle of Amboise (Indre-et-Loire), the castle of Valmer (Indre-et-Loire) and the castle of Villandry (Indre-et-Loire).
8 July: end of work at the Château d'Azay-le-Rideau
An exceptional day to rediscover your garden, in particular through a brand new application.
Autumn 2017: new garden at the Château de Chenonceau
The Château de Chenonceau is adorned with a brand new garden. Created from unpublished drawings by Russell Page, a great English landscape painter of the 20th century, it takes place alongside other splendid French-style gardens.
And throughout the year: 5 vegetable gardens at the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud
The majestic abbey is unveiling 5 vegetable gardens this year: vegetable garden, educational vegetable garden, local vegetable garden, oral vegetable garden and cloister vegetable garden.
5 favorite gardens in the Loire Valley
The Renaissance gardens of the Château de Villandry
Grandiose, splendid, majestic… Words are not enough to describe the beauty of the gardens of the Château de Villandry. It is an experience to be lived, through four levels of gardens. At the lowest level, we first find the vegetable garden: a veritable multicolored checkerboard of flowers and vegetables! Then, on the second level, the ornamental garden with, among other things, its magnificent love gardens. Finally arrive the Water Garden on the third level and, on the fourth, the Sun Garden. For a breathtaking view of the whole, go to the belvedere.
The Oriental Park of Maulévrier
Welcome to the largest Japanese garden in Europe, created at the start of the 20th century. On 29 hectares, it brings together no less than 300 plant species, including 180 from the Far East ... In other words, we really believe it, in the land of the Rising Sun! The spiritual stroll is a real enchantment: we marvel in turn at a small red bridge, a mysterious pagoda, a tree cut into clouds, a peaceful lake (the water represents a third of the park) ... From May to September, you can even discover the Maulévrier park through night walks, all in music and poetry.
The Nantes plant garden
7 hectares of greenery in the city center! And not just any greenery: trees that are several hundred years old (like the Hectot magnolia, since 1807), exotic plants that came by boat from North America (a big story like that of the port of Nantes ...), greenhouses of cacti and orchids, a collection of camellias unique in France ... All embellished with sculptures, fountains and other plant installations by Claude Ponti.
The gardens of the Château de Cheverny
The Château de Cheverny (which inspired the Château de Moulinsart, in the adventures of Tintin) is home to four remarkable gardens: the vegetable garden, the apprentice garden, the tulip garden (come in March-April) and the labyrinth (currently closed) . In the park, we also go into ecstasies in front of the hundred-year-old trees (sequoias, cedars ...).
The gardens of the Château de Chenonceau
Emblematic, the Château de Chenonceau, which is reflected in the Cher, is a wonder in itself. However, its French-style gardens are just as enchanting! We like to stroll in the garden of Catherine de Médicis and in that of Diane de Poitiers (in the incredible parterre), but also to get lost in the circular labyrinth ...
Official site of Jardins en Val de Loire
Official site of the Loire Valley
Getaways to the gardens: the gardens of the Loire Valley divided into 9 themes: romantic, medieval, family, art, chewable, colorful, festive, curiosities, natural.
Meet at the gardens on June 2,3, 4 and XNUMX.