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The town of Fontainebleau was home to François I’s hunting “lodge,” and every subsequent King up to Louis XV also left his mark on the 1,900-room château, largely built in opulent Renaissance style. Visit the château, then hire a bike and tour through the lovely gardens, or the adjacent Barbizon forest, which lent its name to the 19th-century Barbizon school of art. Artists such as Millet, Corot and Thomas Rousseau came here to paint outdoors, en nature. Trains depart from the Gare de Lyon.

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Fontainebleau

The town of Fontainebleau was home to François I’s hunting “lodge,” and every subsequent King up to Louis XV also left his mark on the 1,900-room château, largely built in opulent Renaissance style. Visit the château, then hire a bike and tour through the lovely gardens, or the adjacent Barbizon forest, which lent its name to the 19th-century Barbizon school of art. Artists such as Millet, Corot and Thomas Rousseau came here to paint outdoors, en nature. Trains depart from the Gare de Lyon.