03 March 2006

Aiguevives abbey near Montrichard

Prelude: Here's the full-size version of the Blois panorama I tried to post yesterday. Click the thumbnail to display the full-size view and then use the horizontal scrollbar to pan across the whole picture.

Panorama of Blois taken from the south bank of the Loire river

Yesterday afternoon I went to see the ruins of an old abbey church called Aiguevives, near Montrichard. (I was on my way to visit the friend who had that attack last month when we were driving to Blois. She was in the hospital for more than two weeks, and now she is going through a month of rehabilitation in a clinic in Montrichard. She seemed to be doing well yesterday. Her daughter was there when I was. They had just come in from taking a walk around the grounds of the clinic.)

Aiguesvives abbey wasn't a spectacular sight but I took some pictures of it and other things. First, here's the church, built in the 12th century and pillaged during the Revolution at the end of the 18th.

Aiguevives abbey near Montrichard

The old church is in a nice setting, down a dead-end road a couple of miles from the highway and in a forest. There's a big house (it might even qualify as a château or at least a manoir or manor house).

The big house across the road from the Aiguevives church

The people who live there keep horses and other animals. When I stopped the car to take a picture of the church from a distance, two of them came running over to see what I was up to.

The steeple of Aiguevives church is visible in the background

And these two were in an enclosure on the opposite side of the little road.

Horses at Aiguevives

Here's a picture just to give you an idea of what the countryside south and west of Saint-Aignan looks like. It's rolling hills with forested areas and a lot of open fields where crops including canola, sunflowers, and wheat are grown.

A route départementale south of Saint-Aignan in Touraine

Finally, here are a couple of pictures of the old town in Montrichard. The old castle keep dominates the town's main shopping street and the banks of the Cher river.

Montrichard, 10 miles south of Amboise

The Hôtel Bellevue is a much more recent building that sits right on the banks of the Cher and on the edge of the old town. Those are pigeons roosting on the roof, I believe.

The Hôtel Bellevue in Montrichard


  1. Wondering about Aiguesvive vs Aigues Mort. Any relation?
    Nice photos! Bon weekend!


  2. Well, aigues means water(s). So I'm sure it's the same term. When I googled aigues-vives I found lots of places down south, in Languedoc, pretty close to Aigues-Mortes. But this one is spelled Aiguevives.


  3. Hi, I was flying over the area and wondered about the name of this and suprisingly quickly found your picture of Aiguevives Abbey. Thank you! If you'd like an aerial view of the abbey and manor, let me know.

  4. Hi, Thanks for naming this abbey--I was looking for it as I snapped an aerial photo of this intriguing cluster of buildings. Karl

  5. My grandmother was born in 1897 and raised at Castle Aiguevives (she was adament that it was a castle and not a manor). Her father and grandfather were groundskeepers and her mother was the cook for the staff. She said it was an English widow that lived there and she had 2 sons and they were into horses. Wonder if it's still the same family? She had a postcard of the abbey and I was able to locate it by satellite map and see the surrounding area but the castle was hidden by trees so THANK YOU for sharing your picture of the house. That is a real treat to see. My grandmother was a WWI war bride and left France for the U.S. in 1919 and only made 2 trips back, 1928 and 1948. She died at 99 years of age.


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