Treat yourself to a day out, a weekend break or a longer holiday in Angers, only 1½ hours from Paris and the Atlantic Coast.
It is impossible to be in Angers without spotting its castle, the Château des Ducs d’Anjou with its 17 towers, one of the most imposing and emblematic buildings in the city. The fortress has amazing gardens on either side of the ramparts, while inside the castle is a superb treasure of medieval art : the Tenture de l’Apocalyse, a huge tapestry more than 100 metres long.
Just a stone’s throw from the castle entrance, a walk along the Promenade du Bout du Monde is an enchanting experience by day or night to admire wonderful views of the city.
In this beautiful wine-growing region, a little halt at the Maison des Vins opposite the castle is an absolute must ! Here, friendly wine professionals are delighted to share their knowledge and recommendations with you. You can try a whole host of wines from Anjou and Saumur (dry or sweet white and rosé wines, characterful reds and sparkling wines) : in Anjou there’s something to suit all tastes !
Next, have a wander through the mysterious cobbled streets and take time to visit the Cathedral of Saint-Maurice. Stop in front of the Maison d’Adam, one of the finest half-timbered houses in Angers, look up and marvel at the different carved wooden sculptures which adorn the façade.
There are several venues for art lovers including the Galerie David d’Angers which displays works by the famous sculptor beneath a magnificent glass-roof, Musée Jean-Lurçat and its contemporary tapestry work, Logis Barrault (Musée des Beaux-Arts) and its garden, one of the favourite haunts of local inhabitants.
Le château d'Angers
Return to the Place du du Ralliement and admire the impressive façade of the Grand-Théâtre, an Italian-style theatre offering a varied programme of concerts, operas, operettas, plays and exhibitions. The district is totally pedestrianized and is perfect for strolling around the shops or having a drink at a pavement café.
Venture over the bridge and wander around the peaceful narrow streets of old stone buildings and half-timbered houses ! This district is known as La Doutre, meaning ‘the other side’. Walk along the banks of the River Maine and past the port of Savatte. Enjoy the view of the river and the castle sitting on a bench or at a pavement café in the sunshine. The port marks the starting point of many different activities including the Loire à Vélo cycle route, boat hire and river cruises.
To round of the day on a high note, make a date at one of the city’s restaurants to taste Crémet d’Anjou, a dessert made from whipped cream and stiffened egg whites, usually served with red fruits, or in a wine bar to taste Anjou wine.
You can’t leave without some local specialities in your luggage ! Choose from Quernon d’Ardoise, almond brittle coated in pale blue chocolate in honour of local slate mines, Vinaillou biscuits made from wine (Cabernet d'Anjou, Saumur Rouge), Cointreau and Menthe-Pastille, a peppermint liqueur made by Giffard !