At the heart of the beautiful valley of kings, Montreuil-Bellay is a magnificent edifice which dates back to both the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. The monument erected in the heart of a walled town in Anjou is actually a fortified château which has altered several times during the Renaissance.
It was on the initiative of Foulque Nerra, Duke of Anjou, that the Château de Montreuil-Bellay was constructed. Built on the site of a Gallo-Roman village, construction began in the twelfth century and t continued to be developed over the succeeding generations. In the late mediaeval period, the château was protected by 650 m of ramparts and is overlooked by 13 guard towers.
The Renaissance brought the monument an obvious stylistic refinement, particularly with the creation of new buildings, new rooms, new kitchens and the installation of several windows. Having been in turn a refuge, a prison and a prestigious residence, the château has now become a keeper of history, with perfectly preserved furnishings beautifully displayed. The paintings, tapestries and woodwork are also in excellent condition.
65 minutes drive from the Château des Briottières, the luxurious historic residence, is the Château de Montreuil-Bellay. In addition to being an exceptional monument, this building also benefits from a prime location, not far from huge vineyards and flanked by other historic buildings, including the nearby collegiate church and the castellum.
The landscaped garden is a place where you can recharge your batteries between the different tours. In the town is the Augustinian monastery, the Porte du Moulin as well as menhirs which are other legacies of the past which deserve your attention. While you’re discovering the Anjou region, you’ll no doubt be delighted to taste the AOC wines of Saumur.
Apart from the many places to visit in Montreuil-Bellay and the surrounding area, you might also be tempted by a leisurely trip down the river in a canoe. You will see the city from a new and more impressive point of view before exploring the vast rural expanses of Saumur. Depending on the route you choose and the length of your trip, you may reach the Vieux Moulin, the Bron lock or, if you don’t have much time, Tour de la Boëlle.
Château de Montreuil-Bellay, Place des Ormeaux, Montreuil-Bellay, France