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Chateau d Amboisetourist information guide
Address: Château d'Amboise, Amboise, 37403
Tel: +33 (0)2 47 57 20 97
Opening Times: Closed 25 Dec, 1 Jan | Admission Charge
Chateau d'Amboise has been home to some important historical figures and events. Let's start with Charles VIII who decided to undertake improvements to the chateau after a trip to Italy inspired him. Unfortunately, improvements did not include the broadening of the stairways and Charles ended up dying after he cracked his head on a low lying lintel on his way to play a game of 'jeu de paume' - the precursor to modern day tennis.
Other notorious inhabitants included Francois I and his sister Margaret of Angouleme who brought the chateau alive with lavish balls, plays and tournaments of all sorts. Catherine de Medici's 10 children were also brought up here.
The chateau and in particular the Salle des Etats was the scene of the hanging of some 1,200 Huguenots after an attempt to overthrow Francois II failed dismally in 1560.
The chateau also boasts some famous architectural features such as the Tour des Minimes or original entrance and the Chapelle-St-Hubert where Leonardo de Vinci is said to be buried.
You'll also want to investigate the numerous son-et-lumière shows that take place throughout the summer season at the chateau and a spot of wine-tasting at the Caveau des Vignerons d'Amboise just within the castle walls.
Getting Here: Amboise is situated 15km to the east of Tours on the D751 or the N152 or via the A10 motorway (Paris-Bordeaux) exit 21. Amboise is also well served by trains and buses on the Blois-Tours line.