In June I fulfilled a life long dream - to visit some of the chateaux in the Loire Valley. The hardest part was choosing which ones to see and which to leave out. Finally with my list of four preferences in hand we headed out into the stunning French countryside.
Next stop - Chateau Villandry which is famous for the amazing gardens. I have never seen anything like it in my life and spent a long time gazing down on the perfectly aligned flower and vegetable beds. It's like art. and constantly attended by a small army of gardeners. Inside this enormous chateau the halls went on and on with rooms everywhere, filled with beautiful furniture and furnishings. I admit to touching walls and trying to imagine how old everything was. Impossible really.
Chambord was massive and took a lot of time to explore with so many twists and turns I reckon it would possible to stay lost for months if you wanted to.
Our final stop was at Chateau de Chenonceau which is surrounded by water. How this was built in the 16th century without modern technology amazes me. Inside is a very long gallery with windows overlooking the river surrounding the castle. The kitchen, the bedrooms, the guards' room, Louis XIV's drawing room - just breath taking. This was my favourite on the day.
Realising a life long dream couldn't have been better. All my expectations were met and more. Only problem is now I've got a taste for chateaux and want to see more! Oh, and my small house has now become miniscule. at least the housework doesn't take long around here.
Have you got a life long dream you want to achieve? Or have you already done so, and what was it?