Located in the city of Echiré, the Château du Coudray-Salbart is a a jewel of medieval architecture. Built in the 13th century, it has been admirably preserved, giving it the status of the best preserved fortress in Europe. With its imposing towers, ramparts and moat, this castle is an impressive testimony to life in the Middle Ages. Don't miss this unique opportunity to discover one of the most beautiful castles in the Deux-Sèvres department during a captivating visit that will delight young and old alike!
The history of the Château du Coudray-Salbart
The Château du Coudray-Salbart is a medieval fortress of the 13th century, built at the heart of the struggles between the Plantagenets (kings of England) and the Capetians (kings of France). Perched on the heights of the Sèvre Niortaise, the castle is distinguished by its period architecture, which has been very little altered, making it the best preserved fortress in Europe.
For many years, the castle has been a player in the many historical facts: in 1242, the Coudray-Salbart lost its strategic importance, and was then passed from hand to hand over the years until it was practically abandoned.
In 1776, a new owner took over the castle, the Comte d'Artois (future Charles X) who sold it to the Abbé Dufay de la Taillée whose descendant, the Marquis Pierre du Dresnay de la Taillée, the sold it in June 2000 to the Communauté d'Agglomération de Niort for a symbolic franc.
Classified as a historical monument in 1952 and 1954, it is the object of all the attention of The Association of Friends of the Château du Coudray-Salbart since 1961. Created with the aim of save the castle and a member of the national association "R.E.M.P.A.R.T.", the association organises from 1978 to 2000 che voluntary rescue, restoration and consolidation projects are combined with excavations.
Architectural composition of the castle
- 14 rooms in an exceptional state of conservation including 12 vaulted rooms in a variety of architectural styles;
- A powerful defence system with a peripheral shaft (corridor inside the curtain walls) unique in Europe;
- 6 rounds Bois Berthier tower, double tower, Saint-Michel tower, Portal tower, Moulin tower and the big tower with 2 almond-shaped towers ;
- 2 courses : the lower and upper courtyards (inner courtyard);
- A winch drawbridge.
Visit the Château du Coudray-Salbart with your family
Hear ye, hear ye!
The Château du Coudray-Salbart is an ideal excursion for a unique family experience. Children will love it explore the towers and dungeons of the castle, while adults will appreciate the History and architecture of this well-preserved medieval building.
You will be able to walk in the gardens, learn more about Daily life in the Middle Ages and participate in cultural events organised throughout the year by the Association des Amis du Coudray-Salbart, which will give you the opportunity to stroll through the courtyard of the castle to the rhythm of the medieval music, in disguise, by the light of a lantern or to observe the demonstrations of knightly combat!
Discover the castle with passionate guides is the best option to learn all about the fortress which contains countless mysteries and anecdotes but also details sometimes invisible to passing visitors!
The big event at the Château du Coudray-Salbart
22 July 13 August 2023