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Bucket list experience:

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

A short walk from the Amboise’s atmospheric chateau is the atmospheric red brick manor house where Leonardo da Vinci stayed for the last three years of his life, as a guest of the king.

Today the beautifully restored house is dedicated to Leonardo’s talents – not as painter, but as an engineer and inventor of,among other things, the helicopter, armoured tank and swing bridge. It’s an engaging insight into this enigmatic and remarkably talented man.

Price from: £3
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 13+
When: All year around

Getting there & doing it

Clos Luce, in the small town of Amboise, is a ten-minute walk from the Chateau Royal d’Amboise, and is a popular stop on the Loire à Vélo bike route. Amboise is about a 2-hour drive from Paris or TGV train ride.

Guided visits are available in July and August. Visit the website for a free interactive iPhone app.

For food & drink, there are plenty of places to eat in Amboise, such as L’Epicerie. If you’re just after a snack try the La Terrasse creperie and tearoom, or the Table du Moulin in an attractive water mill setting. For something much more unusual, the Auberge du Prieure restaurant (high summer only) recreates historic recipes from the time of Leonardo da Vinci.

When to do it

Open daily, all year round. Interactive outdoor exhibits are installed from mid-March to mid-November. In winter, not all the exhibits are in action and the restaurants are closed, but you may have the park almost to yourself. It’s crowded during the July-August school holidays.

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

Day tour of Chateaux of Chenonceau, Amboise, Da Vinci Clos Lucé & Caves Ambacia

Day tour of Chateaux of Chenonceau, Amboise, Da Vinci Clos Lucé & Caves Ambacia


Enjoy a small group day tour in the heart of the Royal Valley: tour three of the major chateaux of the region and taste some of the excellen...

€215 | Rating 4.76 / 5 [13 ratings]

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

Le Clos d’Amboise

Amboise, Centre-Val de Loire, France[0.6 miles]

An attractive family-friendly hotel, with great staff and a perfect small-town location for exploring the Loire.

Official star rating:

Les Hauts de Loire

Veuzain-sur-Loire, Centre-Val de Loire, France[15.9 miles]

Uber-romantic hotel in a former hunting lodge, with a spa, outdoor pool & Michelin-starred restaurant.

Official star rating:

Les Hautes Roches

Rochecorbon, Centre-Val de Loire, France[16.4 miles]

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

Official star rating:

Domaine de la Tortiniere

Veigne, Centre-Val de Loire, France[24 miles]

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

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

Hot-air balloon flights over the Loire Valley

Amboise, Centre-Val de Loire, France[2.1 miles]

Hot air balloon flights offer a serene, crowd-free way to appreciate the Loire’s spectacular landscapes and chateaux, as you drift silently above treetops and turrets.

Best for ages: 6+ | £180 | 3 hours

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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[22.6 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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