When relaxing on the beach is not your purpose, you may think about traveling to historical places. When traveling in France, we decided to try an atypical route for us. There is an amazingly beautiful castle in the Savoy region, built in the 11th century on the shores of Lake Lac du Bourget – Chateau de Bourdeau. In addition to historical attractions, this castle is also a hotel where you can book a room (although there are only 8 rooms, and each of them is thematic).
The thousand-year-old (!) history of the castle remembers various French families, including those who emigrated to the Russian Empire in the 19th century, and were jewelers of the Romanov dynasty for some time. The castle was also associated with representatives of the “creative intelligentsia”, represented by Michel Montaigne, or Honore de Balzac. The works of the French poet Alphonse de Lamartine made especially strong influence on the castle (one of the rooms in the current hotel is dedicated to him). So, it is not surprising that the castle made such an impression on bright historical figures – it is surrounded by very beautiful places.
When we had the idea to visit the “French Chateau”, of course, we were talking about winemaking 🙂 However, specifically this castle is quite limited in terms of winemaking. The previous owners constantly produced wine thanks to the vineyard located in the castle. However, according to the hotel manager, production of good wine requires more grapes than the adjacent plot can provide, that is why the production was stopped. After the recent change of owners (I suspect that they are Russian :)), attempts to produce wine resumed, but we had no chance to try the finished product – the new crop was just ripening on the vine.
In general, the surroundings around the castle strongly resemble the novels of Alexander Dumas, according to which Soviet schoolchildren imagined places where the adventures of heroes took place. Such castles as the Chateau de Bourdeau give you an opportunity to see how the lands of influential French people of earlier times might have looked like. The road from the hill, on which the castle is located, goes down to Lake Lac du Bourget with a small pier for boats. A perfect place for fishing or leisurely contemplation of local beauties. Only the vineyard remained of all the luxurious grounds of the castle, but, apparently, all the surrounding villages were somehow related to the possessions of the local nobleman in the past. The remains of the gardens are still visible somewhere – you can find apple trees and other fruit trees on empty areas around the castle. Relatively speaking – long-faded grandeur.
We got the most pleasant experience of visiting the castle. At the same time, the time of year is not quite important for the visit (well, probably, the cost of living during the unpopular tourist season will be lower). But we had the desire to visit other French castles that host guests, when we have a chance. I have already written a separate post about one of these castles – Chateau de Mazan.
P.S.: Worldwide beach ratings: The best beaches in the world.