Ploubezre Castle – Chateau Kergrist
Sometimes taking a wrong turn on the country roads brings you deep inland, and to some very surprising scenery. One of them, after having taken a wrong turn in Brittany was this amazing castle; the Chateau Kergrist.
Hidden away from big roads, this is a castle that merits a detour. Built in the 1400’s by the Kergrist family (Ker means House, Grist means Christ), it has seen many different owners over the centuries, and several major modifications.
The first thing you get to see when visiting the castle are its immense gardens. The gardens are well maintained (by its 85 year old owner himself) and in pretty good shape.
Around the castle are different style gardens and many trees (although many disappeared when a hurricane hit France in the late 80’s).
You are able to wander around the gardens at free will, enjoying the different gardens.
There’s even a vegetable patch to feed to castle. In the old days, the castle was totally autonomous, even generating its own electricity through a nearby watermill.
The main garden, a French Garden, is the one in front of the castle itself, and reminds you of a smaller Versailles castle garden.
It is located just in front of the castle.
There are 6 towers in the castle, dating back to different centuries.
The South part of the castle.
In the North part of the castle you can see if you look carefully in the photo that there were several additions made to the castle.
That is because in 1400 the castle was just a fortified farm, which went on to become a fortified manor in the 17th century. In the 18th century the fortifications were removed and the castle became a “chateau”.
So in fact, these are three buildings blended into one.
Inside, the current owners since 1789 (after the French revolution), the Huon de Penanster, have been restoring the castle and keeping it in top shape. The tour of the castle will show you many of the furniture and items that originally belonged to the castle.
The photo above shows you the kitchen. The floor has a slight slope towards the door’s gutter, since they cleaned the kitchen by throwing water buckets over the floor. This way the water ran towards the gutter.
The main part and one wing of the castle can be visited. Apart from the kitchen, you get to see the pool room and library. The pool table is an original table belonging to the castle.
The living room overlooking the French Gardens is big and has an enormous original Rubens painting on the wall.
The stairs to the 1 floor are all inside the towers.
The dinning room is in implacable state, and is located above the kitchen. To spare the butler from having to carrying up the food from downstairs, they built in a dumbwaiter inside the left closet.
The dumbwaiter mechanism has been removed, but the hole is still there.
One of the bedrooms, including all original furniture and items from the current family, including praying chairs.
The hallway that joins several of the rooms. But each room has hidden service entrances.
This is a castle that merits a visit. Take about 2 hours off your schedule and visit it.
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