Photo of Chateau d'Amboise

Visit Chateau d'Amboise

This was one of our favourite chateaux in the Loire Valley. It has an attractive castle, pretty gardens and lovely views and the town of Amboise is charming too.

Explore the gardens of the Chateau d'Amboise

Whilst the gardens of the Chateau d'Amboise are not extensive they have been beautifully planned and are a charming mix of immaculately clipped box balls and cones and a looser infill planting that is so fashionable at the moment yet suits the historic chateau wonderfully.

Extending in front of the chateau are symetrical lawns and paths and where the ground slopes upwards at the side and far end of the garden a river of box balls topped with clipped spherical trees gives life and drama to the slopes.

Box cones at the Chateau d'Amboise

Clipped box cones and tall slender Italian cyprus add height and interest and at their feet the beds are planted with a relaxed mix of plants including geraniums and salvias. In some areas taller including white roses have been added to the beds and there is also an area of muscat vines.

The colour scheme is a simple mix of green, grey and white with occasional blues and pinks to brighten the mix.


Like so many gardens in France the box tree caterpillar is a menace and pheromone traps can be seen dotted throughout the box planting. The caterpillar of the box tree moth (Cydalima perspectalis) are causing lots of damage in French where box topiary is a key component of many gardens and traps and sprays are very much in evidence.

However at Amboise they obviously have it very much under control and the box balls and cones are in excellent condition!

garden of the Chateau d'Amboise

As you walk through the gardens you always have great views of the beautiful Chateau d'Amboise and also over the defensive wall to the River Loire and the town of Amboise below the castle. Both the castle and the town are well worth a visit.

A new garden has been added in 2005, created by the artist-sculptor Rahid Koraichi and paying tribute ot Emir Abd al Kader's companions who died at Amboise. The geometric pattern of stone slabs is traversed by a green line of plants pointing to Mecca. Rosemary, jasmine, cyprus and laurel have been planted as these are evocotive of both sides of the Mediterranean.

Interestingly the Chapel in the grounds is the burial place of Leonardo da Vinci who lived in Amboise from the age of 64 and asked the king if he could be buried in the St Florentin church in the chateau grounds. His request was granted and a bust in the spot marks the site. This church was demolished in the early 1800s and Leonardo's body moved to the Saint Hubert Chapel.

Chateau d'Amboise gardens visitor guide

The castle and gardens are open every day except Christmas Day and New Years Day.

January, February, end-November and December: 09.00-12.30 and 14.00-16.45

March and early-November: 09.00-17.30

April, May, Jun, September and October: 09.00-18.00

July and August: 09.00-19.00

Prices are 11.50 € for adults and 7.70 € for 7-18s.

Places to visit nearby

The beautiful Chateau de Chenonceau is nearby and well worth a visit for its beautiful design as well as for its gardens. Every year the Chateau de Chaumont holds its International Garden Festival and draws thousands of visitors. The show gardens remain for most of the year but are best visited early on.

You can find more local travel ideas in the Central France guide,

See also: 

Photos of Chateau d'Amboise

Click any picture to start the gallery

  • borders
  • box-balls
  • box-cones
  • entrance
  • garden
  • grey-leaves
  • summer-planting
  • symetry
  • topiary
  • views
  • vista
  • walks

Map of Chateau d'Amboise and places to visit


Chateau d'Amboise places to visit

Chateau de Chenonceau Gardens

Chateau de Chenonceau Gardens

The Chateau de Chenonceau is one of the most beautiful and its formal gardens set it off to perfection.

Chateau de Chenonceau Gardens guide
Garden Festival of Chaumant sur Loire

Garden Festival of Chaumant sur Loire

The International Garden Festival of Chaumont with new show gardens created every year.

Garden Festival of Chaumant sur Loire guide
Gardens of the Chateau de Villandry

Gardens of the Chateau de Villandry

The Chateau de Villandry has a world famous formal vegetable garden as well as parterres full of flowers.

Gardens of the Chateau de Villandry guide
Gardens of Chateau Cheverny

Gardens of Chateau Cheverny

The gardens of the Chateau de Cheverny were one of our favourite gardens of the Loire Valley chateaux.

Gardens of Chateau Cheverny guide
Gardens of the Chateau de Valencay

Gardens of the Chateau de Valencay

The gardens of the Chateau de Valencay include both formal parterres and a contemporary meadow garden.

Gardens of the Chateau de Valencay guide
Gardens of the Chateau d'Azay-le-Ferron

Gardens of the Chateau d'Azay-le-Ferron

The gardens of the Chateau d'Azay le Ferron have a collection of topiary considered one of the best in France.

Gardens of the Chateau d'Azay-le-Ferron guide