Angers & l’Anjou

Anjou is an area rich in history, with archaeological sites dating back to the Neolithic and a culture around the vineyards and the Loire River.


The city of “Angers” is the capital of Anjou and it took me a while to stop to get to visit it; but I was amazing as soon as I had the opportunity to explore it and discover the giant Tapestry of the Apocalypse (Unesco Heritage) that is hidden in its Fortress.

Tapestry of the Apocalypse

I recommend spending at least one day in this city. If you enter the castle it is worth taking an audio-guide that explains the Tapestry in detail. If you can eat or have a coffee in the garden-restaurant of the castle, you will see that it is a very peaceful place.

Martigné Briand’s Church

In the surroundings of Angers there are several historical sites: “Château du Plessis-Bourré”, the “Château de Brissac” known to be one of the highest in France and the ” Martigné Briand’s Church”shown in the photo above.

Château du Plessis-Bourré
Château de Brissac

History of Angers

Angers is part of the department of “Maine-et-Loire “and its region is “Le Pays de la Loire”.

It is interesting to know that the oldest remains found in the city date back to 4000 BC.

The Roman Empire passed through the ancient city and they called it “Juliomagus. Even Julius Caesar speaks of Angers in his memoirs of “La Guerre des Gaules”.

Neolithic remains

The city acquired great importance during the Middle Ages thanks to nobles like the Duke of Anjou. This one allied with neighboring provinces (such as Maine, which I talk about in my article about ” Le Mans “) and, all together,they form the Dynasty of the Plantagenets. Imagine the power this family got: they were kings of Jerusalem and England as well as Dukes of Normandy and Aquitaine. This name of Plantegenet dates back to the 12th century, the name by which “Geoffroy V, Count of Anjou and Maine” was known between 1128 and 1151. The name of Plantegenet was passed on to his descendants, among others, to Duke Richard de York and to King Edouard IV of England.

I am going to focus a little on the history of the castle:

In 1230 it was a fortress built by Blanche de Castilla Queen and her Son Saint Louis. Over the centuries, the architecture of the castle was modified depending on who was living in it and, as well, according to the usefulness they gave to the castle. For example, at the end of the 16th century the “Cannon” appeared as an artillery weapon, which made the architecture of the castle to get adapted to its incorporation and thus acquire the silhouette that we can see nowdays.

The Dukes of Anjou resided in it during the 14th and 15th centuries and as “art lovers”,they ordered the construction of the chapel and other parts of the building that gave a refined and luxurious life inside.

Duke Louis I of Anjou was the one who ordered the manufacture of the Apocalypse Tapestry in 1375. The fortress was also used as a prison and barracks until 1947, when it was opened to the public to be visited.

Gastronomy of Anjou

  1. The wines of Anjou. Taste at the “Maison des Vins d’Anjou et de Saumur “if there is no time to visit the vineyards.
  2. The » pateé aux prunes» (a paste, pie or loaf filled with a forcemeat & plums).
  3. “Bistrot des Ducs Restaurant”, good value for money but you have to reserve because it is usually full (and the service does not give away the tables).
  4. “Chateau de Tigné”, whose owner is the actor” Gérard Depardieu”. It is a vineyard and winery with tasting and sale of the wines they produce.
Chateau de Tigné & Gérard Depardieu

5.It is also nice to stroll through the “Jardin du Mail” in Angers and enjoy a delicious “Cremet d’Anjou”, sitting on one of the terraces near to the kiosk inside the park.

Other addresses

1.Abbaye Toussaint, Galerie David d’Angers. Chapel of the XIII century renovated with contemporary stained glass.

2.The Hotel Spa Loire & Sens,20 minutes from Angers.

Château de l’Epinay

3.”Chateau de l’Epinay”, in Saint Georges sur Loire.In the garden they have a jacuzzi that you can use at night and watch the stars while taking a bath.

4.Manoir de Jouralem, between vineyards. The owners are English, very welcoming and the building is completely renovated and with a very stylish decoration.They will invite you to a welcome glass of champagne!

Manoir de Jouralem

5.The elegant castle of «Château Colbert» in Maulevrier. It also has a great gastronomic restaurant and the price of the rooms is not expensive for the service and how beautiful it is inside.

Château Colbert

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *