The Dordogne, or Perigord is one of the most beautiful areas in France and has plenty to offer everyone, whether it be sightseeing, activity holidays or just to relax and enjoy the ambience, sunshine and wonderful French food and wine. With numerous chateaux in the area, gardens galore and many historical sites there is plenty to visit whatever age you are, and many activities for those who wish a more active holiday. Canoeing down the River Vezere, Trips in montgolfier balloons, horseriding, golf or walking are all catered for close to Meyrals and Gite Le Bois Vert.
Meyrals is a small pretty French village, situated between the Dordogne and Vezere rivers and well suited to touring the villages and sites nearby. The village itself has a small bar and restaurant in the centre with other good restaurants nearby. There are many artists galleries in the villlage and a small weekly summer market. The village is surrounded by beautiful woods and fields and you shouldn’t be surprised to see deer frequently.
St Cyprien is a charming large village with a large 12th century Augustinian Abbey at the centre. A weekly Sunday market is a joy to visit and there are many bars and places to eat. There is a busy main street with various shops and there are supermarkets and banks in the centre.
Sarlat, is a medieval town with a famous Saturday market and is a short drive away (15km). The centre of the old town is largely car-free and is full of restaurants, bars and shops. There is also a tourist office in the centre of the town. Summer evenings are usually brought alive with street prerformers in the market square.
Beynac, on the northern bank of the river Dordogne, is an ancient village of yellow stone buildings and narrow lanes that meander up to a wonderfully preserved château. There are many places to eat and drink and riverfront parking. You can take trips along the river on the gabarres from here, watching out for kingfishers and black kites.
Domme is a bastide town offering stunning views across the Dordogne valley. In 1307, the Knights Templar were imprisoned here during the trial against them, and their Templar graffiti can still be seen on some walls. There is even a little ‘train’ to take you round the town if you desire. The gardens of Marqueyssac are very close by, between Domme and Gite le Bois Vert and well worth a visit.
La Roque-Gageac is a breathtakingly beautiful village built into the cliffs along the banks of the Dordogne river. In the 19th century, the famous gabarres (flat-bottomed boats) would pass by laden with goods. Today, visitors can embark on a leisurely gabarre river trip from here or you can have the trip of a lifetime and fly over the Dordogne in a montgolfier balloon!
Les Eyzies is a short drive away and houses the National Museum of Prehistory, Font de Gaume caves, Grotte du Gand Roc as well as many restaurants, bars & a few hotels. Its set on the Vezere River and offers canoeing, horseriding and walking routes.
St Léon-sur-Vézère is situated on the site of an ancient Gallo-Roman villa and you can see traces of this on the side of the church. A small and beautiful riverside town with a chateau right in the centre. There are excellent restaurants and you may hire canoes to paddle down the Vezere River, seeing many of the fabulous rock formations and villages at a leisurely pace. One of our favourite days out is to have a 2 hour canoe trip in the morning, followed by lunch in the village and then a lazy afternoon relaxing.