The Loire Valley, with a length of 280 km and covering 800 km2 from Sully-sur-Loire (Loiret) to Chalonnes-sur-Loire (Anjou) has been the largest site in France ever to have been registered as one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites for its living cultural landscape.
Unesco World Heritage: an exceptional universal value
This registration gave recognition to the Loire Valley for its exceptional universal value allowing it to be listed alongside the other 878 prestigious cultural and natural sites which are on the list of world heritage - among which are the Statue of Liberty in New York, the Great Wall of China, and the Abu Simbel Temple in Egypt.
The Loire Valley is a region that is renowned for art and history. It shows in an outstanding way how, over time, man has learned to settle along the river - using and adapting it to protecting himself from its excesses. The scenery in the Loire Valley, in particular its numerous cultural monuments, illustrate the ideals of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment in the way of thinking and creation in Western Europe. It is equally remarkable by the quality of its architectural heritage with historical towns such as Blois, Chinon, Orléans, Saumur, Tours, Nantes and Angers. It is also highly regarded for its heritage sites of world renown, such as: the Châteaux of Chambord, the Royal Château of Amboise, the Châteaux of Chenonceau, the gardens of the Château of Villandry, the Château of Clos Lucé, the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud...
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