Attractions

Top Choice Historic Site in Fontevraud-l'Abbaye

Abbaye Royale de Fontevraud

The highlight of this 12th-century abbey complex is the vast but movingly simple church, notable for its soaring pillars, Romanesque domes and polychrome gisants (funerary effigies) of four illustrious Plantagenets:…
Top Choice Farm in Saumur

École Nationale d’Équitation

One of the world's premier equestrian academies, the prestigious French National Riding School is home to the Cadre Noir, an elite group of riding instructors that's also an equestrian display team. Superb tours tak…
Top Choice Chateau in Angers

Château d’Angers

Looming above the river, this forbidding medieval castle – seat of power of the once-mighty counts of Anjou – is ringed by moats, 2.5m-thick walls and 17 scarily massive round towers. The centrepiece is the stunning…
Top Choice Chateau in Anjou

Château de Brissac

Owned by the Brissac family for 18 generations (since 1502), this seven-storey castle, the tallest in France, has 204 rooms, many of them sumptuously furnished with antique furniture, Flemish tapestries and twinklin…
Top Choice Museum in Angers

Musée Jean Lurçat et de la Tapisserie Contemporaine

Inspired by the Apocalypse Tapestry in the château, Jean Lurçat (1892–1966) began his epic tapestry masterpiece, Le Chant du Monde (Song of the World; 1957–61), just 12 years after the slaughter of WWII; scenes depi…
Château in Saumur-Champigny AOC Area

Château de Brézé

Brézé sits on top of a network of subterranean rooms and passages, 1.5km of them open to the public, that include a boulangerie, wine cellars, defensive bastions and a troglodyte dwelling dating from at least the ti…
Historic Site in Angers

Quartier de la Cité

One of the earliest examples of Angevin (Plantagenet) architecture in France, Gothic Cathédrale St-Maurice is distinguished by its striking Norman portal and nave (mid-1100s), 13th- to 15th-century stained glass, hu…
Chateau in Anjou

Château de Serrant

Owned and lived in by the same Irish family and its descendants since 1749, this elegant Renaissance-style castle, built on medieval foundations, is notable for its 12,000-tome library, huge kitchens, domestics' din…
Church in Angers

Cathédrale St-Maurice

Angers' austere, mainly 12th- to 13th-century cathedral has a striking Norman porch and nave (mid-1100s); the latter's three convex vaults, forming a perfect square, are outstanding examples of mid-12th-century Ange…
Museum in Saumur

Musée des Blindés

Housed in a one-time cigarette factory, this non-profit museum displays more than 200 blindés (tanks) and other military vehicles – some in working order – from 17 countries. For anyone interested in military histor…