Tales are told far and wide of France’s fairytale landscapes. With verdant countryside settings dotted with charming mediaeval settlements and sun-kissed vineyards, wherever you turn you’ll find destinations that appear as though they’ve leapt right off of the pages of a storybook. Sprinkling even more enchantment into these landscapes are France’s best family châteaux. Nestled in rolling hills and stretching countryside plains, these turreted and stately strongholds have each earned their place in France’s tapestry of history, and are nothing if not magical. 

Thousands of visitors flock to France annually to experience the country’s charm and quintessential beauty. But in our opinion, no visit is complete without a trip – or stay – in one of the country’s châteaux. And if you’re planning a family holiday with the kids, there’s no better experience. 

Adults will savour these castles in France for their rich history and heritage, while children will adore the grand adventures and expansive grounds they offer. Everyone’s imagination can truly run wild at these picturesque properties!

So, for those planning to visit this European gem for their next family getaway, our team at Oliver’s Travels has revealed the very best châteaux to visit in France. Why not amp your French holiday experience up a notch and choose to stay in a real-life French château? Whether your little ones are casting their castle as Hogwarts, Cair Paravel, or Camelot, we’ve chosen a selection of the very best French castles to stay in that are ideal for fun-filled family getaways with children of all ages.

The Best Châteaux to Visit in France

Wherever you are in the country, you’re guaranteed to find fascinating castles and spectacular fortresses that will captivate adults and children alike. We’ve found some of our favourite family châteaux in France to visit across the country – perfectly blending fascinating history with fun atmospheres – where explorers young and old can enjoy a getaway together. 

Château de Cheverny, Loir-et-Cher

Chateau de Cheverny

Château de Cheverny is a Loire Valley castle that blends beauty and grandeur with amazing activities that kids of all ages can enjoy! The property has been owned by the same family for over six centuries and opened its doors to the public in 1922 to share its breathtaking beauty with all. 

This Loire château’s interiors feature impressive artwork, including a 17th-century Gobelin tapestry and a Louis XIV chest of drawers – something that the adults of the family will likely appreciate! For children, taking part in this Loire Valley castle’s mystery game will keep their little minds occupied, in which they have to decode a secret sentence.  

But for all, its spectacular gardens and park take the biscuit. Offering stretching green space as far as the eye can see, its lawns are beautifully manicured and its English-style park features towering redwoods, fresh lime trees, and other lovely plant species. You can even board an electric boat or car ride to discover the park and the château’s forest as a family, and race to complete the maze that is the château’s very own labyrinth if you love a bit of healthy competition!

Château de Cheverny is undoubtedly one of the best châteaux to visit in the Loire Valley, offering something for everyone.

Palace of Versailles, Yvelines Île-de-France

Palace of Versailles

One of the most famous castles in the country, the former royal residence of the Palace of Versailles is arguably at the top of the list of impressive places to visit in France with family. Attracting as many as 15 million visitors annually, its opulent rooms with intricate embellishments, frescoed ceilings, and decadent gold gilding will leave everyone’s jaws on the floor!

Featuring a whopping 2,300 rooms, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is most famous for its Hall of Mirrors. Often regarded as the château’s most important room, it features 357 mirrors and an extravagant central chandelier. Its royal apartments are also well known, which included the famed Marie Antoinette’s residency. 

Once you’ve finished exploring the Palace indoors, step outdoors into its magical gardens, filled with manicured lawns and hedges carefully crafted to create an artistic display like no other. Children will love being able to explore this outdoor area, and you can even witness events including the musical fountain shows if you want to be truly amazed, which happen annually on specific dates. 

Château de Ussé, Indre-et-Loire

Chateau d'Ussé

Another château in the Loire Valley to add to your list is the idyllic château de Ussé. This castle in France is stately and grand, with turrets and spires in abundance and gorgeous gardens which erupt into a vibrant display during the spring and summer seasons.

Children will be amazed when they hear that this famous castle in France was the inspiration for the storybook ‘Sleeping Beauty’. Nicknamed ‘Sleeping Beauty château’, once upon a time, this breathtaking stronghold inspired Charles Perrault – the writer of the much-loved fairytale – to begin crafting its storyline. 

Funnily enough, the gardener who has contributed to Ussé’s beautifully preened lawns and flourishing flower beds had a hand in those at the Palace of Versaille too! These can be viewed perfectly from its terrace alongside the fragrant orange trees of the property, which was purposefully designed to indulge in views of the garden.

Children can roam the castle and its gardens as they please and imagine themselves as the main characters in its storyline. A destination that has sparked ideas in the imaginations of even some of the most famed writers, who knows what strokes of inspiration you and your family could experience as you explore this unmissable château to visit in France? 

Château du Clos Lucé, Centre-Val-de-Loire région

Chateau de Clos Luce

At Château de Clos Luce, children and adults alike can discover Leonardo di Vinci during a family holiday in the Loire Valley. This castle in France, situated in the Centre-Val-de-Loire region, was the world-renowned designer, artist, and all-around creative genius’ residence in Amboise. He accepted the invitation to visit France from King Francis I and settled here, working on a variety of projects at the request of the king. 

The magnificent red-brick residence is one of the most beautiful châteaux to visit in France, where you can walk in the footsteps of this exceptional figure and explore its rich history, which dates back to the 16th century. Many of Di Vinci’s inventions can be found spread across its rooms, and its beautiful sprawling garden features throughout, which children can play with and manipulate themselves, much like Leonardo did when perfecting them in their time.  

Children can even have the chance to handle some of the models in the home too, and families can explore the dedicated museum area that captures a glimpse into Leonardo’s works.

Our Top Picks for Family Châteaux in France to Stay in

Where all of the family can relax, play, and enjoy a truly unique escape, there are ample family châteaux in France to make unforgettable memories. To have the family getaway of a lifetime, we offer a selection of the country’s most exquisite castles for you to book for your trip. 

Boasting everything from expansive grounds to wonderful terraces with glorious views, and featuring exceptional attention to detail in their elegant interiors and wonderful amenities, here are some of our firm favourites that we think will make for the perfect châteaux holidays in France. 

Château de Raguerniere, Loire Valley

Chateau de Raguerniere

Struggling to get the kids to play outside definitely won’t be an issue at this property! The extensive grounds of the Château de Raguerniere cater to all kinds of sports and games, including several that children have probably never tried before. 

With everything from boules to archery and golf to cycling, you can host a new tournament every day of your stay. There are nature trails to explore and even a frisbee golf course to complete. The château itself also has a children’s playroom kitted out with an air hockey table, so even rainy days can be packed full of healthy sibling rivalry.

Château Royal, Paris Region

Chateau Royal

If sightseeing and cultural expeditions are high on your list of holiday priorities, Château Royal is brilliantly situated to deliver. Located in the Parisian suburbs, this historic château was once home to Marquise de Preignes and Baron Empain. 

The 19th-century building has been fully refurbished with modern comforts like a TV room and a state-of-the-art kitchen great for whipping up a storm with your little explorers. There are plenty of thrilling sports and leisure activities, like golf courses and horseback riding,  within close premises to the property and surrounding area. Château Royal is the perfect base for introducing children to the historic wonders of Paris.

Château Serbise, Aquitaine

Chateau Serbise

Want a châteaux stay that is drenched in natural beauty? Then Château Serbise promises just this. 

This breathtaking 17th-century stately home is set within 12 stretching acres of lush parkland. Since it was built, it has been lovingly converted for families in search of a luxurious getaway where they can explore the Aquitaine region right on their doorstep – which is known for its bustling cityscapes, historically rich settlements, and even fantastic beaches. 

The very best part of this 16-person property, which features 8 bedrooms, is its private pool. Nothing short of inviting, it overlooks its vast gardens so that you can swim, paddle, and play in rural and verdant settings. The mediaeval Pons is only 6km away too, with ample historic sites and restaurants, or the golden shoreline of France is simply half an hour’s drive away. 


Venture on a journey of discovery during your next family holiday as you explore, admire, and create beautiful memories in any of the best châteaux in France to visit that we’ve highlighted in this article, which is by no means an exhaustive list!

Whether you want to explore expansive grounds featuring exquisite gardens or to be charmed by the fairytale features and storylines of these strongholds, the world is your oyster when it comes to the historic and remarkable châteaux of France. 

And for those keen to stay in a family châteaux in France during their visit to the country, we’ve got plenty more for you to pick from among our extensive catalogue of luxury holiday homes. 


So if you’re still looking for the perfect place to stay in France, give our lovely concierge team a shout who are more than happy to help make your magical châteaux dreams a reality! Looking for a full list of villas to rent this year? Explore our extensive villa holiday range to inspire your next adventure!

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