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Cendrine Marrouat Photography: Château de Blois, France

Built between the 13th and 17th centuries, the castle lies in the center of the city of Blois. It boasts 30,000 works of art, 564 rooms, including 100 bedrooms, and 75 staircases, of which only 23 were used frequently.

According to BarePockets, "In the 12th century, the counts of Blois built a feudal castle. Two centuries later, the medieval chateau was purchased by Louis, count d’Orleans, and was then passed on to his heirs. Blois witnessed some of France’s most significant historical moments firsthand. In 1429, Joan of Arc left from Blois to Orleans[after Archbishop of Reims' blessing], leading a detachment of 5,000 French soldiers, all provided by the Dauphin of France, future King Charles VII."

The Château de Blois was the residence of seven kings and ten Queens. Louis XII, who was born there, turned the city into the political capital of the kingdom. Henry III also took refuge there during the Wars of Religion.

By the mid-17th century, the castle was almost abandoned; many artefacts were destroyed or removed during the French Revolution. In 1845, the castle underwent complete restorations. It is now a museum of France.

Fun historical facts: The first etiquette code and the title of "Your Majesty" were introduced in Blois.

Château de BloisFranceBloisarchitecturetravelLoire Valley