26 October 2012

Le château de Chémery

Here's another château, even closer to Saint-Aignan than Fougères-sur-Bièvre, Chambord, or Chenonceau. It's in the town of Chémery, which is on the road between Contres and Selles-sur-Cher, just 15 kilometers (9 miles) northeast of Saint-Aignan. Instead of elegant and grand, Chémery is rustic and fairly small.

The château de Chémery is privately owned.

Chémery, unlike Chambord and Fougères, is not owned by the French government but by a couple who live in it and who have been working to restore it for about 30 years now. They operate a B&B (chambres d'hôtes) in the château and rent out reception rooms for parties and meetings. I've never actually been inside, but I've walked all around the outside and taken photos many times.

The Château de Chémery's web site says that there were fortifications on the site as early as the 12th century, replaced by a small château in the 13th. Other wings and buildings were added on in the 15th and 16th centuries, along with renovations. In 1729 the owners of the château de Chémery converted it into a working farm.

The moat and bridges — after the dry August and September
we had this year, the moat was nearly dry a month ago.
I bet it's full now though...

The architecture is a mixture of medieval and Renaissance styles. The château is still surrounded by its moat, and there are two little bridges for access to the buildings and courtyards. When I was there a few years ago in summertime, the moat was full of croaking frogs. For years there were big holes in some of the rooftops where the framing had collapsed and tiles had fallen in.

When I looked at these photos that I took a month ago, I searched my blog to see how many times I had posted photos of Chémery since 2005. I was surprised to find just one or two pictures. Here I'm posting five more.


  1. Fabulous. I especially like the bridge over the moat to the back gate.

  2. When reading your posts on Fougères, I was thinking about Chémery and, sure enough, here it is. To me these “small” châteaux are more appealing than their bigger counterparts. They’re scale is more human.

    On the same subject, I was disappointed to find out recently that the château d’Angé is not as genuine as I thought from the glimpse we had from the road.

  3. Charming. I like the idea of
    living surrounded by a moat
    but perhaps not having to carry
    the shopping across the bridge.

    Your Mom must be battening down
    the hatches in preperation for
    Sandy. Hope the power stays on.

    Now that you're in Virginia, chm,
    stay safe!

  4. Thank you Sheila, I’ll try my best. Hope the wind won’t be too bad. I’ll stay put.

  5. I remember seeing Chémery with my nephew's "flat Stanley" in 2005. It is lovely.

  6. This is lovely too... totally different from Fougères-sur-Bièvre... but I agree totally with chm in that the scale is more human... and with Susan about the bridge over the moat... what a way of dealing with the unwanted salesman... tell him to "drop-in" via the back door! Then let him swim home...

  7. Hi Evelyn, glad you mentioned Chemery and Flat Stanley because I enjoyed looking at those pictures again. Also Amboise that same day with you, Lew, Marie, and Florence. Cannot believe that was more than six years ago...

    I will post more Chemery pictures tomorrow.

  8. Sheila, I'm tracking the storm and I have talked to my mother on the NC coast. No big worries so far, but we will see.

    CHM, I hope you don't get too much wind, but just the right amount of rain. It's finally dry here -- but very foggy. Tomorrow, we are supposed to see temperatures drop to near freezing. Tu aimerais...

  9. You are so right! J'aimerais...


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