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“Watch a Medieval Castle Being Built!”

Chantier Medieval de Guedelon
Ranked #1 of 4 things to do in Treigny
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Deep in the forests of northern Burgundy, a team of master-builders is building a C13th castle from scratch.
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children, Food available for purchase, Bathroom facilities, Wheelchair access, Lockers / storage
Seattle, Washington
Level 4 Contributor
48 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Watch a Medieval Castle Being Built!”
Reviewed May 26, 2014

You'll need a tour or a car to get to this site, but it's well worth a few-hour visit if you are interested in learning how medieval castles were built. This project has been going on for a few decades, with workers building a castle using period materials and tools. You can visit several locations to watch them quarry and shape the stones, forge metal tools, weave rope, and raise building materials using hand-operated lifts. Then tour the castle that has been completed so far. We started our two weeks in France at this site and found it very helpful in understanding the medieval churches and Roman structures that we visited later.

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
3 Thank Gail T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Roanoke, Virginia
Level 5 Contributor
65 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Fascinating and authentic”
Reviewed May 16, 2014

It seems a lot of people don't know about Guedelon, but I highly recommend it to those who have never visited. My daughter and I first visited it at 5 years then we returned 11 years later in April to see the progress made. It should take about 25 years in all. At 5 years, the building was really just in a beginning phase and there were little pigs running around free, rather like a village. Much progress has of course been made now to the buildings and fencing for the animals and even an outdoor tavern for lunch and a beer. It is a fun place for children and adults as well, especially if you love history.

Guedelon is beautiful and it is fascinating to watching the skilled craftsmen work with their hands. There is also a very nice gift shop with plenty of books and handmade pottery. Hope to go back again, at least to see the finished castle. Oh, the pigs are bigger now but still very cute.

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
4 Thank kikis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
92 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“Nice place to visit”
Reviewed May 15, 2014

We visited this medieval village that is actually being built in front of us while we wonder around from building to building. The workers are building everything with 13th Century tools like it used to be built - they just integrated 21st century security mesures like glasses to protect the workers. It is a beautiful site and lots to see and discover. Allow yourself a good 2 hours minimum to do the visit.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Timeport
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charlotte, North Carolina
Level 2 Contributor
9 reviews
4 attraction reviews
“Worth a detour”
Reviewed May 14, 2014

We all loved this one - kids and parents equally. Fascinating, well-done, and a very worthwhile day. Allow at least 3 hours and just stroll.

Visited May 2014
Helpful?
Thank Ashley M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Paris, France
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Medieval history fans will be in heaven!”
Reviewed April 6, 2014

If you or your children are even remotely "into" medieval history, this is a must-visit attraction that brings history to life. The French workers use only the techniques available in the 13th century, so even years afterward you will think of all chateaux, chapels and cathedrals differently. The period actors truly embrace their "inner medievalist," whether they are making ropes, blowing glass or generating energy in the "human hamster wheel." (Most of the workers speak only French, but you will still learn quite a bit from observing everyone in costume.) Guedelon is the closest thing that France has to England's Warwick Castle or Hampton Court -- with a cool twist because every time you go, you can check on the building's progress. Only caution: If you have the option, try to go during a dry spell. The entire site, particularly the village area where the goats, chickens and pigs are kept, can get incredibly muddy if you go after a summer storm. Or else prepare to get muddy -- and enjoy the fact that, unlike in the medieval era, you have quick-dry fleeces and waterproof boots.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank Paris2Patagonia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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