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The quaint village of Blangy-le-Château, tucked away in the heart of the Pays d’Auge, has just been awarded the official ‘Plus Beaux Villages de France’ (Most Beautiful Villages in France) Label. A well-deserved recognition for this beautiful place!

In the heart of the famous Pays d’Auge, Blangy-le-Château has been located in the Chaussey Valley since the Middle Ages. Dominated by seven hills – earning it the nickname of the “Little Rome of Calvados” – the village invites visitors to travel back in time. It has just become the seventh Norman village to receive the official title of ‘Plus Beau Village de France’.

Blangy-le-Château © Thomas Le Floc’H

Half-timbered houses and historic monuments

In this beautiful village, you’ll find half-timbered houses galore, revealing exceptional architectural details, such as the former pharmacy, adorned with carved woodwork, or the 16th-century Auberge du Coq Hardi, one of the oldest and most opulent houses in the village. You can still admire the historic sign depicting a rooster… perched on a fox! Once a coaching house, it became an inn during the Revolution and remained so until 1936. Now in private ownership, the house is listed as a Historic Monument, as are other buildings in the village, such as the manor house, built in the mid-seventeenth century, its two pavilions to the north of the garden, and the church of Notre-Dame. The latter, built in medieval times, was completely destroyed during the Hundred Years’ War before being rebuilt during the 14th century in Gothic style.

Half-timbered house in Blangy-le-Château © Thomas Le Floc’H

Where the water flows…

Water is still omnipresent in Blangy-le-Château, even though the moat of the old castle has disappeared. In addition to the street names that refer to it (chemin des Fontaines, rue du Vieux Lavoir, chemin du Puits…), the village still has its corn mill, whose presence has been attested since 1150 and which is supplied by the Chaussey, its wash-house. You’ll also find a ditch in the main street that links the two fountains in the village. To avoid getting your feet wet, the latter is lined with small wooden footbridges symbolising the castle’s old drawbridges.

The historic Auberge du Coq Hardi, Blangy-le-Château © Thomas Le Floc’H

History and legends

Nestled between Pont-l’Évêque and Lisieux, Blangy-le-Château owes its name to the local white stone, but also to its ancient castle, to avoid any confusion with other Blangy villages. Built on a mound of earth by Gilbert 1st de Crespin around the year 1000, the castle consisted of a square wooden keep, which became a stone keep. Surrounded by a palisade and moat, the castle was badly damaged during the Hundred Years’ War, burnt down and then completely devastated in 1410. Today, all that remains are two sections of the main wall… and the vivid belief that a ghost exists at the foot of the old keep. The ghost of a young woman called Claire, dressed entirely in black, is said to roam the grounds in the evenings… Watch your back!

Blangy-le-Château, ruines du château © Thomas Le Floc’H