Are you planning to visit the magnificent Château de Chantilly? Here’s everything you need to know to prepare for your visit.
Château de Chantilly and Musée Condé: a fascinating visit!
Located in the French department of Oise, the Château de Chantilly is a jewel of architecture and history. The château, with its two distinct buildings, the Petit Château built in the 16th century and the Grand Château rebuilt in the 19th century, offers a fascinating insight into the evolution of French architecture.
But there’s more to Château de Chantilly than its impressive architecture. It is also home to the Musée Condé. This museum boasts an impressive collection of historic works of art.
Add to this visit the sumptuous French, English and Anglo-Chinese gardens, and you’ve got a truly exciting activity on your own or with friends and family.
This French château has the merit of being less crowded than others like Versailles.
What can you see at Château de Chantilly?
A visit to the Château de Chantilly offers a plethora of enriching and varied experiences. The past meets the present in striking fashion, creating a mosaic of activities to discover. Here are some of the highlights.
The Condé Museum
This museum is a treasure trove for art lovers. It boasts one of the largest collections of early paintings in France after the Louvre.
You’ll find masterpieces by Raphaël, Watteau, Poussin, Ingres and many others.
In addition, the museum’s library contains over 13,000 volumes, including medieval manuscripts and precious books.
Le Petit et le Grand Château
The architecture of these buildings reflects the evolution of the art of building in France over the centuries. The Petit Château, built for Anne de Montmorency in the 16th century, is an example of the French Renaissance. The Grand Château, rebuilt in the 19th century for the Duc d’Aumale, is classical in style.
The château’s gardens are an invitation to stroll. The French Garden, designed by André Le Nôtre, Louis XIV’s gardener, features perfect symmetry and large flowerbeds.
The Anglo-Chinese Garden, with its Île d’Amour and Hameau, offers a more intimate, romantic setting. Finally, the English garden, with its gentle curves and majestic trees, is enchanting.
It’s a recreation of a small, rustic village with half-timbered houses, a mill and a farm. It was inspired by the Hameau de la Reine at Versailles.
Les Grandes Écuries
A must-see for horse lovers. The Grandes Écuries, built by the Prince de Condé in the 18th century, now house the Musée du Cheval. Horse shows are organized on a regular basis.
With its 115 hectares, the park is an ideal place for a stroll or a picnic. As with Château de Chambord, some visitors come just to enjoy the park, and do not enter the château.
How much does it cost to enter the Château de Chantilly?
Several prices are available:
- 1-day ticket for the castle, park, gardens and stables: €17 per adult / €13.50 per child (7 to 17 years)
- 2-day ticket for the castle, park, gardens and stables: €23 per adult / €18 per child (aged 7 to 17)
- Park tickets: €9 per adult / €7 per child (aged 7 to 17).
Temporary exhibitions and shows (particularly equestrian) may require payment of a supplement.
Guided tours are also available. The private apartment tour, for example, costs €7 and lasts 45 minutes.
How long does a visit to the Château de Chantilly last?
A complete visit to the Château de Chantilly, gardens and museum takes an average of 4 to 5 hours.
Where is the Château de Chantilly?
The château is in the small town of Chantilly, in the department of Oise, north of Paris.
How do I get to Château de Chantilly?
To reach Château de Chantilly by car from Paris, take the A1 freeway towards Lille and exit at junction 7 “Survilliers”. Follow the signs for “Chantilly.”
If you prefer to use public transport, take the RER D train from Gare du Nord in Paris to Chantilly-Gouvieux station. The château is about 20 minutes’ walk from the station.
What are the opening hours of the Château de Chantilly?
Château de Chantilly is open every day except Tuesday.
Opening hours for the château and Grandes Écuries are 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The park is open from 10a.m. to 8p.m.
Closing time is one hour before the castle.
My Opinion on Château de Chantilly: is it a good visit?
The Château de Chantilly is a testament to the quality of French architects of yesteryear. It’s big, it’s majestic and at its feet, you feel very small.
The rooms inside are meticulously preserved, and you can really get a sense of how people lived centuries ago. History is palpable in every nook and cranny, in every stone.
The library was one of my favorite places. I was amazed by the richness and beauty of this room: the antique bindings, the rare books, the shelves that stretch as far as the eye can see…
The Condé museum inside the château is also a must see. It boasts an impressive collection of works of art. Even though I’m not a great art connoisseur, I enjoyed seeing works by the great masters and discovering artists I didn’t know.
The château’s gardens were another highlight of my visit. They’re vast and well maintained, with paths for strolling, benches for resting and even picnic areas.
The Château de Chantilly is not as impressive as other French châteaux, but it makes for a pleasant and interesting visit.
What else can you do near Château de Chantilly?
After your visit, why not explore more of this historic and cultural region? Here are a few suggestions:
- Visit the Pavillon de Manse and discover its historic mill
- Take a walk in the Forêt de Chantilly
- Discover the charm of downtown Chantilly with its boutiques and cafés
- Test your swing at Golf de Chantilly
- Attend a race at Chantilly racecourse
- Fun at Parc Astérix, a theme park for the whole family
- Visit the Chantilly Lace Museum
- Discover the Children’s Kingdom in Coye-la-Forêt, a playground for the little ones.