The royal Château de Chambord is the largest and most majestic of all Loire Castles. The reason for this is simple: it was never intended to be a dwelling place, but was ordered by King Francis I of France after the victory at the Battle of Marignano as a symbol of power and magnificence.
Listed on UNESCO’s world heritage since 1840, the Chambord castle hosted many famous figures from King François 1, who only stayed there 40 days in his entire life, to Louis 14 who completed the tremendous construction that had started 2 centuries earlier. Château de Chambord is also famous for its extensive park, as big as Paris city center, and was known as a perfect setting for amazing hunting games as well as splendid parties.
Great artists are also linked to the name of Chambord, like the French playwright Molière who performed one of his most well-known play in front of the King: The Bourgeois Gentleman (Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme).
Leonardo da Vinci is often mentioned as well, although his involvement in the design of the building is still not clear today. He is said to have imagined one of the major architectural highlight of the castle: the complex and spectacular double spiral staircase.
So, if we put Château de Chambord in a nutshell, we get:
- 28 years of construction work starting 1519
- 1.800 workers
- 220.000 tons of stone
Quite stunning, isn’t it ?