I spent whole day sorting through travel photos and materials from first half of this year and suddenly I saw photos of a French town that are still fresh in my memory. I don't know how to write this, I feel like I have too much to say, so write where you think about it.
I have heard about beauties of Loire Valley for a long time, and I especially miss castles there. Traveling there has always been a dream of mine with my husband for many years. During a trip to Europe in May of this year, I finally got to Loire Valley I was thinking about.
French President Charles de Gaulle once said that Loire Valley is place where spirit of France was born. One side of water and soil supports one side of people, and beautiful Loire Valley feeds all kinds of good scenery. In a beautiful and peaceful atmosphere, Loire Valley gave birth not only to castles and wineries, but also gave rise to French modern novels and many famous writers. Balzac's The Human Comedy was created here. Rabelais, father of modern novels, once said: "It was French garden in Loire Valley that gave birth and raised me." Balzac once described Loire Valley as follows: “There is a valley that starts from town of Montbazon and extends to Loire River. The mountains are undulating on both sides, and castles on mountains are scattered. The whole valley is like an emerald bowl... Come in spring, Appreciate, like a bride, beautiful and chaste natural landscape, Or in late autumn, in silence and vicissitudes of landscape, Satisfy your lonely sadness.
The Loire River, largest river in France, is also known as mother river of France. The river is very long and hundreds of unique castles are scattered on both sides of river. Most of these castles were built during Middle Ages and Renaissance, they are magnificent, richly decorated, with deep courtyards. The castle is also surrounded by charming countryside. On evening of second day after arriving in Loire Valley, sky cleared up after rain, and I saw a rainbow hanging quietly in sky.
There are six major cities in Loire Valley, and we have chosen to live in Amboise, center of Loire Valley. The small town is close to castles of Chambord and Chenonceau, which we want to visit. We only had two days, and it was impossible to visit all castles of Loire Valley. On other hand, viewing too many castles at same time can cause aesthetic fatigue. We have selected three castles that we think deserve a closer look: largest castle of Chambord, most beautiful castle of Chenonceau and castle of Clolus, where Da Vinci spent his last years. The idyllic scenery on both sides of Loire Valley is very beautiful, quaint little towns and towns are built along river, the best choice is a self-guided trip.
Actually, this trip to Loire Valley in France began after a trip to Italy (we'll deal with a trip to Italy later), and we went to France after a trip to Italy. Passing through Dijon, France, after a night's rest, next morning drive to Loire Valley. The scenery along way is beautiful, with green trees on both sides of expressway, sometimes emerald green farmland, sometimes yellow canola flowers, sometimes dotted with farmhouses, making people feel relaxed and happy. We soaked up pleasant moments, admiring scenery while driving, completely forgetting that car needs gasoline. We didn't realize car was out of gas until gas tank warning light flashed red. Since I had already left highway at that time, I was walking between small roads in Loire Valley. I did not see a gas station on small road. I finally found it, but it was changed and was no longer used as a gas station. We were worried like ants on a hot pot, and then we decided to go straight to town of Amboise, where we spent night. When I arrived in town, I never saw gas station. I questioned several passers-by on road, turned left and right, and drove around town. Finally, I saw a gas station in distance. At a turn before entering a gas station, fuel tank display shows zero oil level. When I pulled up to gas station, gas ran out and car stalled. If car stalls in a place where there is no shop beyond former village of Buda, I don't know what to do!
The car was filled with gasoline and it was too late to put luggage. We breathed fresh air after rain and came to visit Chateau du Clos Luce (Chateau du Clos Luce) in small town of Amboise, where Leonardo da Vinci spent last three years own life.
In 1516, 64-year-old da Vinci was invited by French King Francis III to take three of his favorite paintings (Mona Lisa, Madonna and Child with St. Anne and John Baptist) on a mule, he crossed Alps and came to France, where he spent last three years of his life in castle of Clos Luce.
The Clos Luce Castle is an inconspicuous castle that looks like a country house. Compared to other castles in Loire Valley, it is much less imposing. King Francis I of France and his sister grew up here. It is a typical fifteenth century building with pink brick and white travertine exterior walls, elegant and beautiful.
We went up to observation deck, walked along embankment and started our visit from second floor.
This is Da Vinci's bedroom.
View of back garden from Leonardo da Vinci's bedroom.
Da Vinci workshop and workshop on ground floor. Francis I treated Leonardo with great courtesy, appointing him chief painter, architect and engineer of king. He allowed da Vinci to live in Clolus Castle, gave him same salary as prince, and sponsored him to complete his works. The king's hospitality and attention to Da Vinci gave him freedom to imagine, think, create and paint without any worries.
Da Vinci's kitchen.
The layout of kitchen is both aesthetic and full of life, and with sunlight streaming in from window, the whole picture is like an oil painting. Da Vinci is a vegetarian, he once had this famous saying: "If you want to keep your health, please follow this advice: when you are not hungry, do not be greedy for food and drink."
The Renaissance Hall, here is the da Vinci living room, where da Vinci received visitors from Francis I, royal nobility, ambassadors and artists from different countries.
On ground floor of castle, sketches, manuscripts, sketches, models, inventions and works by Leonardo da Vinci based on his drawings and ideas are exhibited. Da Vinci's creative design includes many fields such as military, optics, water conservancy, aerospace, civil engineering and so on. The more I look at these works, the more I feel that Da Vinci is great and I have to respect Xiao Ran for this unique genius and thinker.
The garden behind castle.
After that, we went to Da Vinci Park next to castle. Along a well-designed path, you can not only admire landscape, but also see a mechanical model invented by Da Vinci scattered among trees and flowers.
Shortly after entering park, you will see Leonard Arboretum. This one-of-a-kind botanical garden features plants, flowers, and herbs from da Vinci's sketches, sketches, and paintings.
The two-row oak bridge across river was designed by Leonardo da Vinci. This triangular structure is still widely used in bridge construction today.
Several da Vinci paintings are photocopied on a translucent curtain three to four meters high.
Under three high plane trees in park, we met da Vinci as an anatomist.
Da Vinci was not only an artist, but also an inventor, engineer and military expert. Throughout garden, you can see successive generations making machines and military equipment by studying his manuscripts and sketches.
From Leonardo da Vinci Gardens, on your way to hotel, drive past Leonardo da Vinci's resting place, Chateau Royal d'Amboise. The castle is built along river and is located on a hill with high walls on all sides. It overlooks entire small town of Amboise and beautiful Loire River. It is also one of most beautiful castles in photo. Since it was late, we did not visit.
Today I came here for first time during my trip through Loire Valley in France. There are a lot of photos and content here, which are divided into two parts, and next part will be posted later.
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