Château de Montpoupon in the Loire Valley, just 10 minutes from Château de Chenonceau, is an excellent example of what can be done to make a small family château attractive to the public. A recorded conversation between a young girl and her father, for example, is used to take the visitor through the living and dining rooms downstairs and the bedrooms upstairs. The extensive 19th century outbuildings contain several exhibitions relating to the Hunt, which was and still is, one of the main activities of the various owners. In particular there is a large display of Hermès scarves which were originally part of the hunting scene. Definitely worth a visit.
Château de Montpoupon 37460 Céré-la-Ronde, tel 02 47 94 21 15 Open every day from April to September, 10 am to 7 pm; October to 11th November, 10 am to 1 pm and 2 pm to 5 pm; 16th February to 31st March, weekends and school holidays from 10 am to 1 pm; closed in January and December.