Visit the Chateau Fenelon in Dordogne, Aquitaine
Chateau Fenelon is an attractive castle in an attractive location - among the most lovely in the whole Dordogne region. It is set on a raised rock platform near the village of Saint Modane between Sarlat and Souillac in the eastern Dordogne region, and has far reaching views across the countryside.
The original construction of the castle was around the 13th century, but it was substantially refurbished and modified during the 16th century by a local landowner. In the meantime the castle had passed to the English, and been regained during the Hundred Years War. After the revolution the chateau was used as a factory for silkworms.
The castle is modest as castles go - more 'luxury manor house' than 'medieval fortress' - and looks fine in the local yellow stone typical of the Dordogne region. It retains aspects of medieval defensive design in parts, while other sections are more Renaissance 'good living' in style.
The chateau has three towers with pretty turreted rooves, with tiles in lauze (stone) - unusual and attractive. The castle is further surrounded by double walls and terraces, has a grassed internal courtyard, and a couple of smaller buildings associated with the castle. The terraces accentuate the views from the raised position the chateau holds.
Particularly noteworthy is the well, still to be seen on a visit, and carved 90 metres deep through the rock - a fine achievement in the 13th century!
Within the chateau there are collections of furniture, armour and weapons from the 15th to the 18th centuries. There is also a curious collection of oddities such as a 'giant's tooth' that will amuse the children.
Map showing location of Chateau Fenelon