The Château de Vaux-le-Vicomte will astonish you (mandatory online booking)! Find out why:
1.The founding French Formal Garden that inspired Versailles
André Le Nôtre, gardener of the King, created at Vaux-le-Vicomte the seminal expression of the Jardin à la française, the French aesthetic of formal gardens that swept Europe in the 17th century. The strong lines and nobility of the garden design, its changing vistas and hidden charms, and the symphony of fountains… all combine with theatrical majesty to make of Vaux-le-Vicomte a masterpiece of the French Formal Gardens.
Nicolas Fouquet commissioned the most important artists of his time: the architect Louis Le Vau, the painter Charles Le Brun, and the landscape gardener, André Le Notre, to execute jointly the entire project. The result of this fraternal union was a work of unparalleled harmony and beauty. Louis XIV will hire the same team to build the Château de Versailles.
2.The largest private estate listed as a Historical Monument in France
From its creation in the 17th century onwards, four successive families have owned the estate. First envisionned as a private home before opening to public in 1968, the château has kept an inhabited spirit, welcoming each visitor as a guest.
3.An unforgettable family day
Wooden games are available every opening day in the gardens and treasure hunts are organised for Easter and the Christmas holidays.
Electric car rental – to amuse all ages, 4-person electric buggies are available to roam the 33 hectares of French Formal Garden.
4.A unique and romantic evening
Now considered as one of the most beautiful examples of Vaux-le-Vicomte’s audacity, the château was the first to offer evening visits lit by candles…a unique moment that cannot be missed. Every Saturday evening from June to October and every Friday in July and August, 2000 candles illuminate the château and the gardens, enhancing a moment out of time and place.
5.A château near Paris
Located 50 kilometers southeast of Paris, the estate can be accessed by car, public transportation or by shuttle. MORE INFORMATION
6.Events throughout the year
All year long, the château offers animations to rediscover the estate under many ways:
Easter – a giant Easter egg hunt in the gardens (April 3, 4, 5, 2021)
Candlelit evenings – every Saturday evening from June to October and every Friday in July and August, the château and its gardens are lit by 2000 candles.
Water show – some days, all the fountains of the garden are switched open for a unique moment
Grand Siècle Day – once a year, a period costumed day takes you back to the 17th century (May 29, 2021)
Vaux-le-Vicomte’s illuminations – a thousand and one decorations and illuminations will transport you into a magical world of marvel and wonder (from November 20, 2021, to January 2, 2022)
7.An entirely decorated and furnished château
The visit of the château is organised around four levels, decorated and furnished as if Nicolas Fouquet and his family had recently left the place. Vaux-le-Vicomte is one of the rare decors that has remained intact back from the 17th century.
8.A 360° visit
Discover a panoramic view of the entire estate from the lantern located at the top of the central dome. A breath-taking view, 25 meters above the ground. (5 € extra fee – minimum height: 4,4 feet)
André Le Nôtre at Vaux-le-Vicomte – The seminal work of French Formal Garden housed in the basement of the château, is a large audiovisual display, in which Le Nôtre himself explains to Nicolas Fouquet the different stages of landscaping the estate.
10.The Carriage Museum
A rare collection of beautiful antique carriages and their equipment are on display in the stable block. More information.
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