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Last updated: 10 November, 2022
Expert travel writer: Anna Brooke

Considered by some to be the world’s most beautiful garden, the grounds of this UNESCO-listed chateau are a must-see.

Created and owned by the Carvallo family, the terraced Renaissance gardens include an ornamental garden, with sculptured hedges, a medicinal herb garden, and a tranquil water garden.

The undisputed star of the show, however, is the stupendous kitchen garden, transformed into a geometrical feast of cabbages and pumpkins, zigzags of leeks, patches of peppers and other colourful vegetables.

Don’t miss 

Although the gardens take pride of place, also stop by the 16th-century chateau, which has a marvellous carved wooden mudejar ceiling brought from Toledo.

Time it for Millefeux

For two nights in July or August, the fabulous gardens at the Villandry chateau are illuminated by thousands of candles – an event known as the Nuits des Mille Feux (Nights of a Thousand Lights). It’s a magical night-time spectacle, culminating in fireworks.

Recommended itineraries by our writers that include this experience

Price from: £6
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 18+
When: All year around

Getting there & doing it

Villandry Chateau is 15km west of Tours, and close to the Loire à Vélo (Loire by bike) cycle route. It’s about an hour by train from Paris to Tours station.

Audio guides in English for the gardens and chateau are available at the entrance (small fee). The chateau’s restaurant, La Doulce Terrasse, serves up excellent food employing Villandry’s own fruit and vegetables, alongside local cheeses and home-made desserts.

When to do it

The gardens are open all year round, seven days a week. The chateau is open between mid-February and mid-November. The Nights of a Thousand Lights event takes place over two nights usually in July, sometimes in August.

Our selection of the best Viator tours of this attraction or activity

Loire Valley Half Day with Villandry and Azay-le-Rideau Castles from Tours

Loire Valley Half Day with Villandry and Azay-le-Rideau Castles from Tours


During this morning, visit the elegant must-see Chateau de Villandry and its unique gardens as well as the lovely Chateau of Azay-le-Rideau....

€102 | Rating 4.7 / 5 [20 ratings]

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Loire Valley Day from Amboise : Azay le Rideau, Villandry and 2 Vouvray Wineries

Loire Valley Day from Amboise : Azay le Rideau, Villandry and 2 Vouvray Wineries


Enjoy a complete discovery of Loire Valley with the visit of must-see Azay-le-Rideau and Villandry castle and its remarkable gardens. Benefi...

€176 | Rating 5 / 5 [16 ratings]

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Our writer’s picks of the best places to stay near this experience, closest first

Chateau de Beauvois

Saint-Etienne-de-Chigny, Centre-Val de Loire, France[6.3 miles]

Stately chateau hotel in a magical woodland setting where Louis XIII once came hunting.

Official star rating:

Domaine de la Tortiniere

Veigne, Centre-Val de Loire, France[15.4 miles]

Relaxed, stylish family-run chateau hotel, well located in the heart of the Loire Valley.

Official star rating:

Les Hautes Roches

Rochecorbon, Centre-Val de Loire, France[21.1 miles]

A cosy hotel just outside of Tours, with luxurious ‘troglodyte’ rooms carved into the neighbouring cliff.

Official star rating:

Destination guides including or relevant to this experience

Our writer’s recommendations of other bucket list experiences our writer says you must do in this destination, closest first

Other worthwhile experiences near this experience if you have time or interest..

View of some stalls with white canapes under trees on the festival grounds


Tours, Centre-Val de Loire, France[14.6 miles]

This annual wine fair in Tours, held at the start of June, celebrates local wines with wine workshops, music, fireworks and countless opportunities to taste and buy direct from producers.

Best for ages: 18+ | Free | One weekend

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