Three of Dordogne’s best attractions April 26, 2018 9:04 am
Whilst in Europe the Dordogne is most famous for its fine food and local wines, for the rest of the world the area is known primarily for its historical attractions. This is because the department is riddled with prehistoric caves – and some unique examples of Paleolithic (stone age) art.
The Lascaux caves, located near the village of the Dordogne department, are filled with cave paintings that are thought to be 16,000 years old. One of the more famous UNESCO world heritage sites, thousands of tourists visit the caves every year to see the nearly 2,000 pieces of prehistoric art that fill the room. Other caves in the region contain less well-known pieces of art, as well as some astonishing examples of natural processes.
As well as this, the area’s settlements are famed for their medieval architecture – and the 1,500 castles dotted throughout the region. Majestic fortifications like Chateau De Beynac sit above towns that largely retain the same structure they had eight centuries ago; medieval market places, town squares and even marinas are almost commonplace in the area.
Food and Drink: The gastronomic heart of France
The Dordogne has a well earned reputation for fine food and drink. As one of the most unspoiled areas of France, it boasts a huge market for local produce, as well as a thriving local industry offering luxurious traditional French food. Fois Gras is produced throughout the region and the plump, waddling figure of the Dordogne’s free-range farmed goose has become a symbol of quality for local food shops in the area and further throughout France. The river is also home to France’s four largest caviar producers, who stock local shops and markets with their own products as well as supplying brands throughout Europe with the famous delicacy.
However, the Dordogne’s reputation is built upon one particular delicacy – the Perigord Black Truffle. This rare type of mushroom is found exclusively in Europe and the Dordogne is the main producer for the entire continent. Local markets and small festivals spring up throughout the month of January, in the heart of the truffle season of late autumn/winter. These offer visitors the chance to sample truffle-based delicacies, purchase the rare truffle oil or, of course, buy the truffles themselves. These are so prized that in December 2009, black truffles were sold at between 1000 euros a kilo from a local farmers market, to 3,500 euros a kilo from a retail seller.
Outdoor activities: Through the valleys and along the Riviera
Deep forests filled with quiet streams and hidden ponds, a majestic river that winds its way through peaceful valleys, a pastoral landscape that benefits from the best weather the French south has to offer – any visitor the Dordogne will be struck by the natural beauty of the region. The fine weather and the natural geography of the area isn’t just something to see though, it’s also to experience.
The river offers family-friendly rafting and kayaking thanks to it’s relative shallowness and calm waters. You can also book passage on a tour of the riverside on a canal boat, experiencing life on the French Riviera with frequent stops at marinas whilst observing the natural beauty of the area.
For the more adventurous, it’s possible to boat down the entire length of the region and back again, camping along the shores and the islets. In a similar fashion, the area is also extremely friendly to cyclists; a massive cycle route from the neighbouring departments of Gironde, to the west, and Lot, to the east, stretches across the Dordogne. Passing near the major town of Perigueux, it has become a favourite journey for cycling enthusiasts throughout Europe.
FR108 Chateau de Queynac
Chateau de Queynac is located near picturesque Limeuil by the river Vezere. This beautiful Chateau offers accommodation for 8 people, perfect for enjoying peace and tranquillity. With a swimming pool and tennis court in the grounds and nearby activities including river fishing, canoeing and horse riding this is a perfect residence for experiencing the Dordogne.
Short lets of 3 days minimum are available at Chateau de Queynac and we are currently offering a discount of 20% on the published rates.
FR178 La Lavatre
New to our portfolio, this delightful and much loved property accommodates 8 people. Situated on the edge of Parc Naturel of Perigord – Limousin and on the outskirts of Sarrazac. Nearby villages and towns offer the rich local produce of the area.
La Lavatre stands in 17 hectares with garden incorporating a tempting heated swimming pool, tended parkland and woodland areas, a hidden treasure perfect for the family to enjoy. An introductory offer of 10% is being offered on the published rates.
A lovingly restored 18C Manor House in Pays de Duras offering accommodation for 10 people. Enjoy the peace of the rural countryside, visit the local market towns or perhaps the Cathedral town and wine centre of Saint Emilion, only 50km away.
FR109 Chateau Le Soulac
An enchanting Château which stands in 8 hectares, located in an elevated position above the meandering Dordogne. A family retreat perfect for entertaining guests accommodating up to 16 adults and 5 young. A gated and walled heated swimming pool and a hard tennis court are there to be enjoyed. The nearby market towns and regional wine centre of St Emilion provide plenty of opportunity to enjoy the regions produce.
FR156 Le Bournaguet
Located only 6km from the medieval jewel and bustling market town Sarlat la Canada, Le Bournaguet is perfect for exploring this area rich in produce and prehistoric sites. Spacious and comfortable, the property can accommodate 12 adults and 3 young and has plenty to keep everyone occupied with heated swimming pool, tennis court, home cinema and a games room. Discount on published rates are sometimes available, please contact the office for latest information.
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