NOTICE: There are four new posts today. I got behind during our travels but a day on the train from Paris to Hamburg has given me time to almost catch up.
This morning we drove to the Chateau de Fontainebleau and found clusters of police on every corner, roads blocked every way we turned. The GPS worked overtime to get us around to the west side of town where the Chateau is located. It turns out Nicholas Sarkozy, the President of France, was in town for a brief meeting! Lucky for us he was not meeting at the Chateau.
Fontainebleau is a huge palace where all the sovereigns of France have lived since the Middle Ages. It began as a hunting “lodge” in the 12th century and was transformed in the 16thby Francois I, who left his initials all around the place. He also had the huge gardens designed to rival what he had seen in Italy. Napoleon had the palace restored after the Revolution.
The tour leads through room after amazing room.
This is the Chateau Chapel.
The gardens are immense so we just walked through the area close to the chateau.
We have one more Chateau to go.
Vaux le Vicomte is a beautiful chateau with lovely gardens done on a slightly smaller scale than Fontainebleau. It was built in 1641 by Nicolas Fouquet. He was loyal to King Louis XIV and hoped to become the prime minister so he held a “fete” for the King. It was such a successful lavish display, with even fireworks finishing off the evening, that the King’s self esteem was threatened and Fouquet was arrested two weeks later. Fouquet was imprisoned for the rest of his life, over 20 years. It’s not a good idea to “show up” the king.
We had time to walk all around these gardens.
I think this chateau is my favorite.