A weekend in Château Landel

IMG_0236.JPGI was never the kind of little girl who dreamt of princesses and castles.Though I did own enough Barbies to populate a tiny island, it wasn’t until recently that I got the idea to spend a night in Cinderella’s abode.

IMG_0379Apart from the many palaces and castles kept as historic landmarks and museums, France has hundreds of castles used as a hotel space where you can book your wedding or just spend the night. I chose Château Landel – a small getaway between Paris and the town of Rouen (where Gustav Flaubert the author of Madame Bovary is from).

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IMG_0513The bedroom was small with rose pattern wallpaper, a circlular window that opened to the gardens and lamps whose yellow light made me feel I was in an abbey. The bed squeaked and the wooden beams were ancient, but this is what sleeping in an old French home is like – quaint, cozy, and 18th-century-ish. Of course, it was traumatic when the WiFi wasn’t working, but it was nice to step away from the digital world and spend an evening gazing at the stars. After all, the place describes itself as ‘le relais du silence’.

IMG_0441.JPGHow beautiful it was when the light of morning peaked through my window, and my breakfast was brought to my bed. I dipped into flaky croissants, orange juice, tea and pain au chocolat. Everything is so fresh in the countryside – the food is warm, the air is clean, the people are kind. A weekend in a castle is a lovely break from Paris.

Château Landel: http://www.chateau-du-landel.fr/fr/

 

 

 

 

Castles in Loire Valley

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Château de Chenonceau

For Easter weekend I traded noisy Paris for the quaint and quiet French countryside of Le Val de Loire. This area is known for its many castles, among the most beautiful are Château de Chenonceau, Château de Chambord and Château de Blois.

 

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It was special to see the lovely Château Chenonceau, which I had dreamt of visiting ever since I saw a picture of it in my grandfather’s French book years ago. Though it resembles a princess castle, it didnt’t belong to royalty! The couple who built it were bankers.

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Magnolia tree in Château de Blois

 

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Château de Chambord

 

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I stayed not in a castle, but a bed & breakfast in the middle of a forest without Wi-Fi. The next morning I woke up to croissants, granola and hot milk overlooking the woods of which I have no decent photos except of this souvenir. It is lovely to detach from social media and get away for the weekend!

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