Fontainebleau’s history: its etymology, kings and reconstruction
A French commune located in Seine-et-Marne, Fontainebleau covers 17,000 hectares of forest land. The charter of succession of Louis VI is the first written document mentioning the name of this name. The Fontainebleu appellation would be taken from the Gallo-Roman Fontana which means fountain or stream, followed by a Germanic name, Blitwald. From the Latin Fons Bleaudi in the twelfth century, Fontem blahaud in 1137, Fontainebleau or otherwise Fountain beautiful water in 1630, according to popular etymology, the etymology of Fontainebleau continues to be the subject of discussions among scientists.
This town houses the castle of Fontainebleau that the kings, from Francis I to Napoleon III chose as their main residence. The Capetians, the Valois, the Bourbons, the Bonaparte and the Orleans successively resided in the castle. Philippe le Bel was born here in 1268, and died here in 1314. On October 18th, 1685, Louis XIV signed the Edict of Fontainebleau, revocation of the Edict of Nantes, at the origin of the exile of many Protestants. Louis XV got married in 1725 in this castle. 34 French sovereigns stayed here. From Francis I to Louis XV, these kings undertook works, displaying the harmonized extravagance of the French kings. This former hamlet was particularly appreciated for its hunting aspect, notably by King Louis VII. Later, Louis IX came to set up a hospital here. Becoming a hamlet until 1528, Fontainebleau was rebuilt by Francis I, back from the year of captivity, with the assistance of Italian artists.
Today, the city has nearly 7,000 inhabitants. In the 17th century, some thirty private mansions were erected by princes and great lords. During these centuries when the sovereigns paid particular attention to the municipality, the latter had hostels, restaurants and hotels at prices of gold. The centuries of reconstruction have truly forged the population and the economy of Fontainebleau. Artists and workers have succeeded each other. Théodore Rousseau and Jean-François Millet painted their landscapes and scenes of life in the mid-1800s. During the French Revolution, the commune bears the names of Fontaine-la-Montagne and Fontaine-le-Vallon. The revolution did not have any notable effects on Fontainebleau, strong in the infallible support of royalty. On October 29th, 1807, a treaty authorizing the invasion of Portugal by the Spanish troops was signed at Fontainebleau. On June 20th, 1812, Pope Pius VII remained imprisoned in the castle, without leaving his apartment until 1814. Barracks were built to house the regiments of Hussars and the Imperial Guard. Napoleon I also created the Saint-Cyr military school before it was relocated. In 1946, the Franco-Vietnamese conference in Fontainebleau was held. Aiming to settle the Indochinese conflict, this meeting ended in failure.
Tourist attractions of Fontainbleau: castles, history, art, jazz festival and biodiversity
The castle of Fontainebleau
UNESCO World Heritage Site. One of the biggest French châteaux that audio commentaries will perfectly describe, it is absolutely necessary to walk there, in particular in its immaculate gardens. The exploration of the palace, its gardens and the pond is particularly recommended for landscapers. The heterogeneous architecture and the famous horseshoe staircase are the main attractions to see in this castle. Inscribed on the World Heritage List, the castle of Fontainebleau allows to discover the following attractions:
1500 rooms (dining rooms, galleries and ballrooms)
130 hectares of parks and gardens
During the visit of this castle, the sculptures will leave you no marble. The eagle of the castle, the kouros with very evocative postures and the statues of the alley of the sphinxes, very observers, will give a plus to your stay in this castle.
The Carp Pond
In this pond live tercentenary carp, of which about sixty specimens were offered to King Henry IV by Charles of Lorraine. According to local guides, 3 hours of walking are necessary to discover the wonders of the tourist site of Fontainebleau, during a walk. You can also let yourself go to visit the castle by train, carriage or hot air balloon.
Festival of the history of art
The National Institute of Art History, the Fontainebleau’s Castle and the relevant ministerial officials have been preparing the Festival of Art History every year since June 2011. Conferences, debates, concerts, exhibitions, screenings, Readings and meetings in the castle and several sites in the town of Fontainebleau will be honored during these meetings.
The Jazz Festival
Every year, the Django Reinhardt Jazz Festival takes place in the castle of Fontainebleau. A festival of young talents and jazz lovers from around the world, this festival is an opportunity to discover the castle in all its splendor, the good music in addition. Ask the guides to find out when the next installment will take place.
The naturiales of Fontainebleau
Events dedicated to biodiversity and local fauna.
Hotels in Fontainebleau: comfort rooms at low prices, tasty dishes and professional staff
Ibis Chateau de Fontainebleau
3-star hotel with 6 non-smoking rooms, the Ibis is classed as a bronze-style Eco leader. The staff at the Ibis Chateau de Fontainebleau is very professional, catering to all your needs in the quickest possible way. The rooms on the 2nd floor have just been restored, the breakfast is very tasty. Choose comfort at a low price at Ibis Chateau de Fontainebleau.
The black Eagle
Holding a certificate of excellence, this hotel is ideally located. Among the old mansions of the castle, the black eagle has been transformed into a hotel of tourism. The hotel offers a guide to the attractions of Fontainebleau. You'll know which places are right for you, and if it's the right time to go.
Very spacious rooms, bathroom equally welcoming, free Wi-Fi connection, this hotel is a stone's throw from the castle. In this old hotel without an elevator, the meals are particularly tasty and abundant.
How to get from Paris to Fontainebleau
To get from Paris to Fontainebleau, take the A6 by minivan. 61 kilometers separate the two cities. This journey lasts on average one hour. If necessary, take the A6B in the direction of D637 to Cély, then take the D637 in the direction of the Paul Séramy street in Fontainebleau.