The garden at the Chateau du Champ de Bataille in Normandy is a phenomenal achievement. Created by its interior designer owner, Jacques Garcia, over the past 25 years, the garden is an elaborate but marvelous Baroque pastiche, with miles of perfect topiary, intriguing garden rooms, and a canal lake so long it took 20 minutes to reach the far end. Walking round, it seems amazing that these immaculate gardens weren't laid out by Le Notre in the 17th century! I came across this garden almost by accident. Staying at the nearby Manoir de Surville, southwest of Rouen, and planning a trip to Monet's Garden at Giverny the following day, I was tipped off by the young hotel owners, who couldn't believe I wasn't going to visit the Chateau too. I got up early and dashed off to see the garden, meaning to stay there only an hour, and ended up wandering round for three or four hours. It is well worth a visit if you are in the area.