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Medieval fortress of Crozant

Medieval fortress of Crozant

At the confluence of the two rivers the Creuse and the Sédelle, stand at the top of a rocky promontory, the vestiges of the ancient fortress of Crozant. Considered one of the most powerful strongholds of France in the Middle Ages, you will discover these vestiges nestled in an incredible landscaped setting. You will appreciate the soul of the place and the magnificent panorama on the valley from which many artists were inspired, such as the impressionist painters Claude Monet and Armand Guillaumin or the writers and virtuosos George Sand and Frederic Chopin.

A bit of history…

While the origin of the ancient fortress of Crozant seems to date back to the 6th century with the building by the Visigoths of the first fortifications,the castle had its heyday during the medieval period when the powerful Lusignan family who built it in its final form tried to organize a principality in the west center of France.

Troubled by the Wars of Religion, the fortress saw its ruinous state accentuated by an earthquake in 1606. In 1640, Louis XIII sells the castle in the state. Then the changes of ownership follow one another until the acquisition of the site by the town of Crozant in 1994.

Convinced of the heritage, historical and artistic potential of the site and the need to continue the preservation and development of the remains, the communities concerned decide to pool their resources bycreating a mixed syndicate in 2009 with the main objective: to make a major heritage site a lever for local development by contributing in particular to a tourist dynamic of the entire Valley of the Painters.

… and the remains still to be discovered

The chateau, oriented north south, occupies the top of a rocky promontory at the confluence of the Creuse and Sedelle rivers. The remains attest that at that time, the fortress consisted of an oblong area of rough terrain 380 m long and 25 to 75 m wide. This area was divided into three successive courtyards, surrounded by ramparts, surrounding 10 towers (6 on the Creuse side – 4 on the Sedelle) and measuring about 1 kilometer. The interior was quadrilateral between the Fox Tower and the Tower of Isabella.

None of these buildings has retained its former splendor, the roofs have disappeared, the ramparts have collapsed. However, it is easy to imagine the formidable impression of power that would have emanated from this fortress perched on its rocky promontory.

Practical information:

Schedules & opening periods

  • December 1-31
    every day
    from 8am to 10pm

  • during spring break,
    July 1-September 30
    and during fall break.
    presence of seasonal staff
    from 1:45pm to 6:15pm

Fees

  • Adult visit: €4
  • Visit (8-15 years old): €3
  • Group visit (10 people): €3

    Pets are not accepted.
    The site is not accessible to people with reduced mobility, nor to strollers

George Sand - Vallée des peintres - La CreuseGeorge Sand - Vallée des peintres - La Creuse

“Everything there inflames the imagination… everything clutches the heart” said George Sand, amazed when discovering Crozant. This landscape is “so rich that the painter does not know where to stop” she said then.

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