Located about half-way between Paris and where most of the castles are, Chartres often gets overlooked. Its main attraction, the magnificent Cathedral ♥♥♥ is more than worth a visit, even if it is a bit out of the way for anyone based in the castle heartland. It is arguably the greatest Gothic cathedral in all of Europe, remaining virtually undamaged and unaltered since the middle of the 13th century. The glorious stained-glass windows are absolutely spectacular, but there are many other architectural delights to be found here.
The town itself is a pleasant jumble of cobbled streets, flanked by half-timbered houses. There are several interesting churches, none of which we visited, and great views of the surrounding countryside from various vantage points.