About Roquetaillade Castle
The 14th century Château de Roquetaillade is a Renaissance castle in Mazères near Bordeaux, in the département of Gironde, France. A popular visitor destination, Roquetaillade has been listed since 1976 as a monument historique by the French Ministry of Culture.
Roquetaillade Castle history
Charlemagne, on his way to the Pyrenees, built the first fortification there although of this old castle nothing remains but imposing ruins. In 1306, with the permission of the English King Edward I, Cardinal de la Mothe, nephew of Pope Clement V built a second fortress (le Château Neuf).
This new castle was square in plan with six towers and a central keep. The entire structure was restored and transformed by Viollet-le-Duc and one of his pupils, Duthoit, between 1860 and 1870. The extraordinary interior decorations, with its furnishings and paintings were created by Viollet-le-Duc and are listed as French Heritage.
Roquetaillade Castle today
The château park includes remains of the medieval curtain wall with the barbican, the Pesquey stream and its banks, the 19th century chalet, and the Crampet pigeon loft. Roquetaillade Castle has been lived in by the same family for over 700 years (since 1306). The castle has been open to the public since 1956 and is the most visited in the Bordeaux region. Open all year round, guided visits in English with the owners are also possible.
Getting to Roquetaillade Castle
The easiest way of reaching Roquetaillade Castle is by car. Just off the N524, Roquetaillade is a 50 minute drive from Bordeaux or a 2 hour drive via A62 from Toulouse.