Chartres & Maintenon, France/ Nov. 4-5, 2017
Where : The towns of Chartres and Maintenon
If you continue past Versailles on the TER going Southwest, you will be able to visit the towns of Chartres and Maintenon.
Chartres is mainly known for its Gothic cathedral which is one of the best preserved churches you will find in the world, and also considered a UNESCO heritage site. This city is also known for its perfume and light shows. We went here for a day trip and to spend one night, which seemed to be the perfect amount of time. Unfortunately, we had a lot of rain, so we could not enjoy it as much as one might in the summer. But it was still great to visit the cathedral, walk around the small streets, and experience the local fare.
After spending a night there, we went to Maintenon which had almost no 'town' to speak of, but an amazing chateau. What is so unique about this chateau is that it boasts an imposing aqueduct in the distance at the end of a giant reflecting pool. A chateau has existed here since the 13th century, but the latest renovations and additions were as late as the 1600s by King Louis XIV's mistress, Madame de Maintenon. Thankfully, that day the sun had come out and we had blue skies, which made the chateau and surrounding gardens so enjoyable!