Château des ducs de Bretagne

The Château des ducs de Bretagne -: Castle of the Dukes of Brittany, is a large fortified château located in the city of Nantes in the Loire-Atlantique département of France; it served as the centre of the historical province of Brittany until its separation in 1941. It is located on the right bank of the Loire, which formerly fed its ditches. It was the residence of the Dukes of Brittany between the 13th and 16th centuries, subsequently becoming the Breton residence of the French Monarchy. The castle has been listed as a Monument Historique by the French Ministry of Culture since 1862. Today the castle houses the Nantes History Museum.

Starting in the 1990s, the town of Nantes undertook a massive programme of restoration and repairs to return the site to its former glory as an emblem of the history of Nantes and Brittany. Following 15 years of works and three years of closure to the public, it was reopened on 9 February 2007 and is now a popular tourist attraction. The restored edifice now includes the new Nantes History Museum, installed in 32 of the castle rooms. The museum presents more than 850 objects of collection with the aid of multimedia devices. The castle and the museum try to offer a modern vision of the heritage by presenting the past, the present and the future of the city. Night-time illuminations at the castle further reinforce the revival of the site. The 500 metre round walk on the fortified ramparts provides views not just of the castle buildings and courtyards but also of the town.

The Castle, Nantes and Brittany back to the 17th century

  • Nantes, daughter of the river and the ocean
  • Commerce and the black gold in the 18th century
  • Nantes in Revolution
  • A colonial and industrial port (1815–1940)
  • A new city takes shape (1940–1990)
  • A great Atlantic city, today and tomorrow

The exhibition ends with a vision of the city, a multimedia creation by a contemporary artist, occupying the entire area of the 32nd room.

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