Things to do Chantilly Chateau France Looking over the watercourse to Chateau de Chantilly France

What to do at Chateau de Chantilly France

From the moment that you see Domain Chateau de Chantilly France with its reflection on the water, you are automatically captured by its beauty. Set amongst 115 hectares of gardens the stunning Chateau de Chantilly is only a 25 mins train ride from central Paris making it perfect for a day out.

Looking over the fountain to Chateau de Chantilly
Chateau de Chantilly from the gardens – France

The history of Domain Chateau de Chantilly

The Chateau de Chantilly comprises two buildings, the Petit Chateau and the Grand Chateau, which were originally destroyed during the French Revolution and rebuilt in the 1870s. Apart from this it has survived through the centuries and remains as it was when the Duke of Aumale left it to the Institut de France in 1886 (who still own it today), making it a great place to take a journey back in time.

The beauty does not stop at the outside, the interior is well preserved and because of the Duke of Aumale’s devotion to collecting fine art and books, the exhibits of paintings, antiques, porcelain, miniatures, weapons and furniture are fantastic. The galleries are considered to be one of the finest in France and are open to the public.

Chateau Chantilly entrance bridge
Chateau de Chantilly Entrance over the bridge

Not to mention, The Reading Room (library) and Private bedrooms also stand-out.  You could lose yourself here for hours, especially if you enjoy art and antiques.

Main things to see in Chateau de Chantilly

Musée Condé

The Duke of Aumale had two great passions in his life, fine art and books and he devoted his entire life to both of them. This is very visible when exploring the Chateau de Chantilly, especially when in Musée Condé the private art gallery.

The Musée Condé houses the second largest collection of antique paintings in France after the Louvre museum.

There are various rooms that display the fine art like the Stag Gallery or Psyche Gallery but many of the works are displayed in the Tribune Room. And in keeping with the Duke of Aumale’s wishes the layout of the paintings has remained unchanged since the 19th century.

 antique paintings covering the museum wall
Tribune Room- Chateau de Chantilly France

Reading Room

If there is one room in a place I always love to visit it is a library, there is just something about them that always lures me in and fascinates me. The Reading Room in Chateau de Chantilly is no exception and The Duke of Aumale was definitely a man after my own heart.

As soon as you walk into the room you notice straight away the two level metal structure and stunning ceiling painted in gold trimming. There are colourful books that line the shelves on both levels of the library and in the centre of the room is a glass cabinet display, showing some of the rare pieces owned by the Chateau de Chantilly.

psyche gallery stained glass window
Psyche Gallery – Chateau de Chantilly France

The Duke of Aumale was a very wealthy man and was able to acquire a large number of books from all over Europe, from booksellers and at auctions. Over time he put together a rare collection of precious books and manuscripts that accumulated to around 60,000 volumes.

Read More –  Best Things to do in Chambery France

There are 19,000 volumes of these books and manuscripts exhibited in the Reading Room, including 1,500 manuscripts and 17,500 printed documents. The oldest manuscripts in the Reading room dating back from the 11th century.

How to get there & Location

Located in the town of  Chantilly, Chateau de Chantilly is only 40 klms away from central Paris, making it very accessible for a day trip.

There are direct trains from Gare du Nord SNCF to Chateau de Chantilly  but you will need to get off at Chantilly Gouvieax, which is the local station. The train journey should roughly take 25mins and cost around €16 return.

You can check the pricing and timetable on the train website here Tickets & Times

From the station, you can either walk to Chateau de Chantilly (about 20mins) or catch the free shuttle. Please note though that the Free Shuttle is only available from July 2 to October 2, 2016, on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays.

If you are driving, there is car-parking available and I understand that it is about €4

Mel in front of Chantilly Chateau
Me outside Chateau de Chantilly France

Tips for visiting Chantilly

  • Chantilly is a really pretty town, I would suggest taking the free shuttle to Chateau de Chantilly and then walk back to the station admiring the town and explore the many little cute shops.
  • You can skip the line and buy your tickets online which is valid for up to a year from the date of purchase. Online Tickets
  • Do not take an organised day tour here if you are a confident traveller, as it is super easy to get to and look around yourself. Not to mention it is also a lot cheaper doing it on your own.
  • For an additional €3, you can do the Private bedroom tour, which is worth it if you have the time.

Helpful Information

  • Price: – 17 Euro’s per adult for entrance to the chateau and gardens (NOT including the private rooms)
  • Type: – Full Day
  • Duration: – 2-3 Hrs depending on what you see

Thank you for reading my article ‘Domain De Chantilly Chateau France’, I hope it helped you to decide where to go for a day out in from Paris. This is such an interesting place to visit especially if you love history and art.

Looking across the watercourse to the chateau
Chateau de Chantilly France

Discover more about France and Europe

If you are interested in discovering more about France or other destinations in Europe, feel free to read my following articles. All are great options for groups of friends or family.

Thank you for reading this article ‘Chateau de Chantilly France’, I hope it helped you in deciding to take a visit out there.  Domain Chateau de Chantilly France truly is a beautiful place to explore, especially for a weekend.

Have you been to Chateau de Chantilly France before? Please feel free to share your experience in the comments below or if you know any other places to see in the area?



Disclaimer: I paid to go to Chateau de Chantilly, France. All views are my own and based on my own experience.

“This post contains affiliate links, which means that at no additional cost to you if you click on one of the product links, we may earn a commission.”  For further details, you can view our Privacy Policy, Terms & Conditions or contact me directly. 

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48 thoughts on “What to do at Chateau de Chantilly France

  1. Daphne says:

    The Chateau de Chantilly makes for a great day out for those of us who love history and culture. I’ll be in the magnificent reading room, trying to decipher the titles of the books. 🙂

    • melbtravel says:

      I love these types of places and I am always amazed how they are built. The book collection in there is amazing and some of them are in glass boxes so you can try to read them.

  2. ourhappyimperfection says:

    The pictures on this post are breathtaking! As an art lover you’ve really piqued my interest for traveling to this area, the architecture is exquisite. My husband would be in heaven with the rich history behind everything. Thank you for sharing!

    • melbtravel says:

      Thank you very much, I took so many pictures I had a problem deciding which ones to post. Definitely recommend it if you are in Paris as it is not far and town it is in is worth a visit to.

  3. Abby Salter says:

    Mel great pictures are always. I had not heard of this place before and surpriseduring it us so close to Paris.

    • melbtravel says:

      I only heard it about it from the local people that I worked with in France. I am surprised that it is not more popular because it is so beautiful. Thank you in regards to the pictures.

  4. Jennifer says:

    Those pictures are gorgeous! I love that you included the time, cost and other information in your post. Safe travels?

  5. Jurga says:

    So many beautiful castles in France. How come I never heard of this one?! Noting it down for the next visit, love the look of the gardens and the library room!

    • melbtravel says:

      You know the only reason I knew about this place was from the locals who I worked with over there. It really is beautiful there and it is not very far away from Paris either.

  6. Suze - Luxury Columnist says:

    This is one of my favourite French chateaux too, especially as the art collection is so fantastic

  7. Tracy Collins says:

    I never need any excuse to visit France its such a beautiful country. This chateau is gorgeous – beautiful outside and inside. And that library!!! Lovely photographs Mel!

  8. Sarah says:

    Those are really beautiful photos! And wow, I can probably spend hours just marvelling at the wonder – that is the reading room! I always dream of having something like this! Haha! Maybe once I have amassed wealth like the Duke’s! 😉

    • melbtravel says:

      We are definitely on the same wavelength, I love libraries so much and I wish one day that I have one with fine books 🙂 There is just something about them that you can get caught up in the moment.

  9. Sarah says:

    Oh my gosh, this is amazing! I’d love to see this Chateau in person someday. The reading room is spectacular. I’m a sucker for stained glass, and I just love that it looks like pages out of a book – the black and white illustration-style. Amazing.

    • melbtravel says:

      They have a whole corridor full of stained glass pictures and when the light came through, it truly looked amazing to see. I wanted to take pictures of it but there were too many people in my picture.

    • melbtravel says:

      I have been to Paris numerous times before as well for work and I didn’t know about the place until my local colleagues from the office. Definitely go and explore the little town that it is in also as the buildings there are just as stunning.

  10. Alex says:

    It’s a stunning place, and wouldn’t you just love your own reading room – it’s the first room I’m converting once the kids move out 😉
    Great informative post Mel.

    • melbtravel says:

      I love libraries and they amazing how beautiful they are, I could get lost in them for hrs or even days 🙂 I wanted to get some pictures of the whole room but it was way to hard with everyone in there exploring.

  11. Christina says:

    I’d so get lost in that reading room – that is paradise! 60.000!! Awesome! And great pictures, seriously 🙂

    • melbtravel says:

      I wanted to get lost in there also especially with the 17ht century books, the only problem is that I wouldn’t understand what they say but I would love to just look at the words and the pictures.

    • melbtravel says:

      I love Versailles and I have to admit it reminded me a little bit of it also, especially in the gardens. I have informed my husband that when we get a bigger house the first thing we are having is a massive library with a giant world global in the middle.

  12. Deni says:

    What an absolutely stunning chateau! The detailing on the outside walls is incredible! And the amount of artwork on the inside is very true to the Renaissance era (which is when I assume it was built). I would definitely want to spend lots of time in the private reading room- I’m a sucker for books and libraries!

    • melbtravel says:

      I am a massive sucker for books too and really is my favourite room to visit. One day when I win the lotto I will be a bit library with a giant world global in the center.

  13. Allison says:

    Looks like there is plenty to explore at the Chateau. I love the manicured gardens. Your title photo with the reflection in the water is amazing!

  14. Tamie says:

    I love the galleries with all of the paintings, I could probably sit there all day long admiring them one by one.

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