Feature image of Château D'Ussé

Château D’Ussé: The Sleeping Beauty Castle

LocationRigny-Ussé, Loire Valley, France (Google Maps Location)
Open for VisitorsYes
Owned byThe Dukes of Blacas
Official WebsiteLe CHÂTEAU d’USSÉ
Rooms AvailableNo

Château D’Ussé is one of the most surprising castles in the Loire Valley. It was initially built as a stronghold in the medieval age but developed into a jewel of French architecture with time. The current chateau has 15th to 17th-century vibes. It can allow you to dive into the rich stories of the owners and explore furniture, tapestries, antiques, and paintings from history.

Castle of Ussé History

Château D'Ussé
Château D’Ussé, by Zairon, is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Château D’Ussé was originally built around the year 1,000 AD. During that time, the region of Touraine was the prey to ongoing fighting between its rivals. Gelduin I decided to build a wood and stone castle on the side of the hill. He surrounded the castle with a palisade on the high terrace. Later, the chateau’s site was passed to Comte de Blois, who rebuilt it using stones. However, with time, the stone castle got ruined.

In the 15th century, this ruined castle was purchased by Jean V de Bueil. He started rebuilding the chateau in the 1440s. The family stayed in the castle for a short time. Antoine de Bueil became the owner of the chateau. In 1455, he was heavily in debt and decided to sell the chateau to Jacques d’Espinay. He made some major alterations to the chateau’s architecture. This is where the Flamboyant Gothic style was mixed with Renaissance motifs.

In the 17th century, Louis I de Valentinay, comptroller of the royal household, demolished the north range of the chateau to open the interior court to the view over the parterre terrace. Various other modifications were made to the chateau’s architecture. Later, it was passed to Rohan and purchased by the Duc de Duras. After that, the owners of the chateau changed several times. The overall alterations and modifications continued till the 19th century, and each of its owners left their style presence in its interiors.

Today, Château D’Ussé belongs to Casimir de Blacas d’Aulps, the 7th Duke of Blacas and is open for visitors to explore.

Château d’Ussé Architecture

Château d'Ussé Architecture
Château d’Ussé Architecture, by Spencer Means, is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Château D’Ussé has heterogeneous architecture in tuffeau stone. The castle is located near the river Indre and the narrow winding road. It overall has fairytale vibes and is truly a delight to the eyes. The gardens of Château D’Ussé have the French style. It has a 17th-century-long terrace. It has beautiful symmetry, geometrical shapes, and perspective, designed with trees, flowers, and bushes. It also includes ornamental lakes and fountains. From the gardens to its interiors, everything is magnificent.

Château d'Ussé Jardin
Château d’Ussé Jardin, by Zairon, is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Interior Chateau d’Usse

Once you enter the Château D’Ussé, you will notice the richly decorated entrance hall. It has unique Renaissance chests of drawers and sculpted wooden panels. The wooden spiral staircase enhances the beauty of the hall.

The Guard Room has the touch of the Orient. Earlier it was the entrance of the castle with its very own drawbridge, which was later transformed into the guard room. Its ceiling has impressive work that looks like natural marble. It also houses a fine collection of oriental objects and weapons.

The Vauban Salon includes:

  • The Brussels tapestries from the 16th century.
  • The Florentine Cabinet with secret drawers from the 17th century.
  • The beautiful marble marquetry and stonework.

The Vault is the oldest room of the chateau and is decorated with 17th-century tapestries. The Central gallery includes a collection of 17th-century tapestries with everyday country life details.

The Dining room is furnished with Louis XV furniture and crested silverware. You will also see the sedan chairs and accessories used by postilions in the 17th century. The Antichamber and the King’s chamber are also elegantly decorated. You’ll notice some famous paintings and decorations in these rooms. Overall the castle has beautiful work on the walls and ceilings.

During your visit to Château D’Ussé, don’t forget to explore other parts, including the Cellars, Donjon, the Stables, and La Chapelle.

Château D’Ussé Tickets

  • Adults: €17
  • Children (8 to 16 years of age): €5
  • Children below 8 years of age: Free
  • Group of Adults: €10
  • Group of Children (Under 16 years of age): €4

Note: Audio Guide tours cost €3 per person.      

The best Château D’Ussé time is between February to November. Opening timings are as follows:

  • February to March: 10am to 6pm
  • April to September: 10am to 7pm
  • October to November: 10am to 6pm

Note: The last admission in the Castle of Ussé is 1 hour before closing.

Château D’Ussé Facts

Charles Perrault took the inspiration for the tale of Sleeping Beauty castle from Château D’Ussé.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is the Castle of Ussé?

Castle of Ussé is located in the Indre-et-Loire department in France. It is about 40 minute drive from Saumur.

Who built the Castle of Ussé?

In the 15th century, the castle of Usse was built by Jean V de Bueil. He built it with stones. Later, the castle was sold various times, and each owner made restorations in its architecture depending on their requirements.

Have you visited this castle before? If yes, why not share some beautiful pictures with us!
You can email us your pictures of the castle at castrumtocastle@gmail.com. Please use the name of the castle in the subject line.
Also, don’t forget to mention your name and social media profile link if you want the credits!

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Nitesh Kuchhal, an IIM Calcutta graduate, is more than an educator—he's a mentor. With a passion for leadership and entrepreneurship, and travel. He has explored over 20 countries. Beyond teaching, he dives into psychology and discusses social issues. Though he is not a history expert, he enjoys learning about it through books, adding a historical touch to his many interests.

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