One of the hidden gems of the area of Tours is definitely what remains of the Royal Château de Plessis-lez-Tours. It is located just outside Tours in the town of La Riche. It was a favourite residence of King Louis XI of France, who also died there on 30 August 1483. The original château had three wings in the shape of a U. Currently, just one wing remains. The remaining wing was used as a dairy farm and a buckshot factory. Since 1927, it is listed as a monument historique by the French Ministry of Culture.
Anne of Brittany spent some time at the château and gave birth to at least two children there, who both died in childhood or shortly after birth. Both of these children are buried in the Saint Gatien’s Cathedral in Tours. The château was also the childhood home of Jeanne d’Albret, or Queen Joan III of Navarre.
Although it appears to have been open to visitors at some point in the past, it was closed off by gates when I visited. You can enter the garden and walk around the wing but there isn’t much more. Still, it’s amazing to be able to walk into history.
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