Angers, capital of the ancient county of Anjou, is a hugely likeable, vibrant town which seems to happily straddle the ancient and modern worlds. For fans of heritage tourism, it has two stunning tapestry series, the fourteenth-century Apocalypse and the twentieth-century Le Chant du Monde and the château. Along with its interesting cultural aspects, the city has a strong collection of shops, bars and restaurants as well as some nightlife spots.
The Château d’Angers is a formidable early medieval fortress. The sense of impregnability is accentuated by its dark stone, the purple-brown schist characteristic of western Anjou. The château’s mighty kilometre-long curtain wall is reinforced by seventeen circular towers, their brooding stone offset by decorative bands of pale tufa. Inside are a few miscellaneous remains of the counts’ royal lodgings and chapels, but the chief focus is the astonishing Tapestry of the Apocalypse.