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15th and 16th century Chateau. Not far from Blois, the Chateau of Chaumont-sur-Loire looks over the Loire from its towers high on a hill. A mixture of gothic and renaissance styles, it is marked by the ghost of Catherine of Medici, the widow of Henri II. At the end of the 19th century, the chateau was luxuriously redecorated by the princes of Broglie. Don't miss the very beautiful landscaped park and the stables equipped with china feeding troughs.

Chateau de Chaumont-sur-loireThe Chateau de Chaumont is a French castle. It was the first château at Chaumont-sur-Loire, Loir-et-Cher, France. It was built by Eudes II, Count of Blois, in the 10th century with the purpose of serving as a fortress to protect the Blois from attacks.
The castle was burned to the ground in 1465 in accordance with Louis XI's orders and was later rebuilt by Charles I d'Amboise from 1465-1475 and then finished by his son, Charles II d'Amboise de Chaumont from 1498-1510, with help from his uncle, Georges d'Amboise.
Chateau Chaumont was later purchased by Catherine de Medici in 1560, a year after her late husband Henry II's death. She entertained numerous astrologers there, among them Nostradamus. After a short while, she forced Diane de Poitiers, Henry II's long-term mistress, to exchange Chateau de Chenonceau for Chateau de Chaumont. Diane de Poitiers only lived there for a short while.
Chaumont-sur-Loire ToursIn 1750, Jacques-Donatien Le Ray purchased the Castle as a country home where he established a glassmaking and pottery factory. He was considered the French "Father of the American Revolution" because he loved America. Benjamin Franklin was at some point a guest at the Castle. However, in 1789, the New French Revolutionary Government seized Le Ray's assets, including his beloved Chateau de Chaumont.
Madame de Stael later acquired the Castle in 1810 and then Marie-Charlotte Say, heiress to the Say Sugar Fortune, acquired Chaumont in 1875. Later that year, she married the Prince of Broglie, who owned the Castle until 1938 because of his wife, when the government took over the ownership of the Castle. Chateau de Chaumont is currently a museum and every year they host a Garden Festival from June to October where contemporary garden designers display their work in an English-style garden.

The International Garden Festival

Chateau of Chaumont-sur-Loire and gardenSince 1992, the Garden Festival has constituted an astonishing viewpoint for the situation of creative landscaping worldwide. In the space of 16 years almost 400 gardens have been created, prototypes for the gardens of tomorrow. On one hand, a mine of ideas and on the other, a seedbed of talents, the festival reenergizes the art of gardens and the interests of public and professional alike through the presentation of original arrangements, new materials, innovative ideas and approaches. The diversity, the creativity, and the quality of the projects all contribute to establish the world-renowned reputation of the festival which has now become an imperative rendezvous in terms of the unveiling of the creations of the new generation of landscapers, architects, scenographers and gardeners...
As the, community gardens of New York, Paris or Berlin, very in vogue today and renewing the tradition of family and working gardens, were at the origin of the theme for 2008, the 27 new gardens of the Chaumont-sur-Loire International Garden Festival will offer a very broad variation on the idea of, "community".
The garden is a definitive place for sharing and dividing. A ground for exchanges, enrichment and the transfer of knowledge, it is an idyllic place for the meetings of generations. Young and old find themselves in an environment in which to play or learn and to try to understand the mysteries of life, a garden is a place that is full of life, a living, breathing form of art. Divide cuttings, share seeds, advice, ancestral secrets and feelings. It is one of those unique places where division becomes multiplication.
Gardens reflect the harmonious participation between man and nature, mirror contemporary environmental preoccupations on biodiversity, and respect for ecological stability, they hold the keys to our future. The poetic, stringent and inventive gardens of 2008 will illustrate all of these aspects and invite you to share the beauty, colour, shade and light, to share a perfect moment.

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