Visit the Chateau Ussé in Indre-et-Loire, Centre
To the west of Azay-le-Rideau is another lovely castle at Ussť, in the pretty surroundings of the Chinon forest.
It was constructed in the 15th century on the site of an earlier 11th century defensive castle, and then further extensively modified in the 17th century. It was at this stage that any defensive abilities were definitively lost, as the northern side was cleared away to open up the fine views across the terraces and river.
Surrounded by immaculate gardens and with views across the Loire countryside, Ussť is a true 'picture-postcard' castle, with a liberal sprinkling of fine circular turrets and chimneys set atop the gleaming, ornate building.
A substantial chateau, Ussť is on a slightly raised platform above the terraced gardens.
The chapel, a little way from the main castle, is one of the highlights of a visit and contains some fascinating objects including 17th century Aubusson tapestries.
The castle makes a great deal of being the apparent inspiration for the castle in Sleeping Beauty, and exhibits in the upper part of the castle retell the story.
Note that the castle is still inhabited, and only a part of it is opened to the public.
Map showing location of Chateau Ussé