Hear Loire Valley

  • © Atout France/Maurice Subervie

    © Atout France/Maurice Subervie

Hear Loire Valley

Son et Lumière at the châteaux

Every summer the major Loire Valley châteaux come to life with light and sound for spectacular open-air experiences. These evening performances, known as sons et lumières, take place at Amboise, Azay-le-Rideau, Clos-Lucé and Chenonceau among others, providing an insight into the little-known aspects of these famous monuments in spectacular fashion. Highly recommended for families with children.

Music festivals

Music lovers won’t be disappointed by the Loire Valley, with its vibrant calendar of festivals. Don’t miss…

  • Le Printemps de Bourges, Rennes (April)
  • Sully Festival (May-June)
  • Orléans Jazz (June)
  • Jazz en Val-de-Cher (July)
  • Loches en Voix (July)
  • Rock festival, Yzeures-sur-Creuse (August)
  • Jazz en Touraine (September)

Poetry, novels and plays

The writers François Rabelais and Honoré de Balzac took great inspiration from the Loire Valley and the area is home to two museums honouring their lives and work. Rabelais was born at a 15th-century farm, La Devinière, in Seuilly-sur-Loire – and the Chinon countryside was an inexhaustible source of inspiration for him. Take a tour of the eponymous museum and listen to literary excerpts.


A Touraine native, Balzac stayed at a friend's château in Saché in the Indre valley for seven years, and today it houses a museum dedicated to him. Built in the Middle Ages and remodelled during the Renaissance, it became a comfortable residence in the 19th century, surrounded by a tree-planted garden. The sitting room still has its original wallpaper, and the little room where the prolific writer wrote part of Père Goriot and the beginning of Illusions perdues is a delight.



Additional resources

Things to see