A TYPICAL WEEK WITH A GROUP TOUR *
DAY 1- SUNDAY: Group meets/ hotel check-in/dinner together
- Arrival in Brive-la-Gaillard Rail Station, which connects you directly from Paris. You will be welcomed by us at the scheduled group pick-up time.
- We will make our way to our small farm hotel in Meyrals, a charming little village of 474 inhabitants, in the heart of the Périgord Noir not far from the famous Lascaux Caves. This quaint family-run accommodation with pure tradition perigordine will be your home for the week.
- After settling into your rooms we will meet as a group at the Terrace of the hotel for a welcome aperitif drinks what gives us the opportunity to get to know each other and discuss our plans for the week.
- You will have some time for a swim, a walk through the countryside or simply relax before dinner
Dinner: as a group at the restaurant of the hotel.
DAY 2–MONDAY : Beynac/Boat Trip/La Roque Gageac
Beynac Castle and Village: We start our day after breakfast heading to Beynac. Perched on the top of the cliffs overlooking the Dordogne Valley since 1115, the Castle depicts five centuries of the history of France. Overhanging the river at a height of 140m, the Castle of Beynac has earned the name of “Eagle’s Nest”. We will visit the Castle and make our way down on foot to be able to appreciate the lovely village of Beynac-et-Cazenac, one of France’s designated “Les plus beaux villages de France” or Beautiful Village, with narrow lanes that wind up through the traditional Dordogne white and yellow stone buildings with its cafes, art galleries and souvenir shops.
Lunch at Marqueyssac
We carry on now with a different theme … Beautiful Garden!
Gardens of Marqueyssac: The beautiful gardens of Marqueyssac have been developed by many generations of the same family since the 17th century. It is the most visited garden of the Périgord. A listed site, the romantic and picturesque gardens of Marqueyssac offers more than six kilometers of shaded paths bordered by 150 000 hand-pruned box trees a hundred years old.
We continue our tour with a peaceful cruise on the Dordogne River on board an authentic Gabarre.
Gabarre: Aboard the Gabarre you will experience the epic period of Riverboats on the Dordogne River; enjoying exceptional scenery at the foot of the Castle and Cliff built village of Beynac sailing up river towards the five most prestigious Castles in the Valley.
Dinner at the Hotel
DAY 3–TUESDAY: Atelier/St Léon/Losse Castle/Roque St Christophe
Foie Gras ‘Atelier’: You will have a tour of the farm where you are staying and Marie-Rose will show us how the famous delicacy of this region, ‘The Foie Gras’ is made. This is a time to really taste Périgord and understand how the famous local dishes evolved.
Saint-Léon-sur-Vézère: Not to be missed is this authentic medieval village of Périgord noir. Winning the accolade of one of the most beautiful villages in France, it boasts an 11th century Gallo-Roman church and the 16th century Chateau de Clérans along with its many stone built cottages.
Lunch: Picnic (provided by us) in Saint Léon Sur Vézère.
Chateau Losse: A Listed historical house that dates back to the 16TH century; it is a beautifully preserved medieval castle occupying an exceptional site on the banks of the Vézère River. We will enjoy a private group tour of the chateau with its fine collection of tapestry, paintings and furnishings of the XVI and XVII century. The Gardens in Renaissance style are also listed Grade I and you will be able to visit it at your own pace. Making our way back, we stop at an amazing Troglodyte Fort and Town…
Roque Saint-Christophe: A remarkable fortified cave with a vast natural terrace, one of the largest in Europe, this site encompasses everything for lovers of prehistory and archaeology as well as being classified along with the surrounding valley as a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Dinner at the Hotel
DAY 4–WEDNESDAY: Atelier/Market/Lascaux
TRUFFLE ‘Atelier’: After breakfast we will visit the neighboring farm to find out more about the black diamante as it is known, “La Truffle”. To find them, truffle farmers traditionally used pigs, whose natural instinct for rooting behavior helped to locate the fancy fungi, but in our day man’s best companion took over that task not just because they’re easier to train but also because pigs love to eat truffles! We leave the farm and drive to Montignac to enjoy the market.
Montignac Market: You will have some free time for personal discovery of this vibrant outdoor market. Here you can enjoy the pleasures of browsing through local produce, fresh fruit and vegetables, organic food from the bio-food producers and of course taste some of the local specialties.
Lascaux IV: A perfect reproduction of the original cave that was discovered in 1940 by four young boys and their dog. The cave is the finest of all prehistoric painting caves. Most of the paintings depict animals found in the surrounding landscape, such as horses, bison, mammoths, ibex, aurochs, deer, lions, bears, and wolves. Lascaux is a jewel of prehistoric art and a major archaeological revelation.
The complete replica of the original cave is the culmination of three years of work in the Perigord Facsimile Studio. This new space welcomes visitors, inviting them to contemplate the works and experience the authentic emotion felt at the discovery of the cave, to observe, to enquire into the reasons for its existence and to reflect on the environmental and cultural context in which it was decorated.
The architecture of the International Centre forms an integral part of the visitor’s experience: a half-buried building at the foot of the Lascaux hill, it is perfectly integrated into the landscape.
Day 5 –THURSDAY: Wine Tasting experience
Monbazillac: The Castle of Monbazillac, property of the Monbazillac Cellars Company since 1960, is a unique and original architectural blend of medieval defensive fortifications and Renaissance exuberance, set in the heart of the prestigious vineyard of the same name, the Château de Monbazillac’s garden terraces afford stunning views across the Valley.
Lunch at local restaurant
Bordeaux: After lunch we drive to the famous village of Saint Emillion. Listed by UNESCO as world heritage site, this medieval is world renowned for its high quality red wines. Its history stretches back to the 2nd century when the Romans planted the first vines. The visit gives us a better understanding of the chemistry & technical complexity involved in wine making.
DAY 6 – FRIDAY: Rouffignac Cave/Les Eyzies de Tayac/ Free Time
Les Eyzies de Tayac: A brief stop at this quaint village at the heart of the Vézère Valley known as the world’s prehistoric capital. Here you will have chance to explore the village, souvenir shops and market artesanal.
Optional: Visit the National Museum of Prehistoire
Lunch: Today a special treat! A meal back in time in a Farm “Auberge” that offers dishes typical of the region and fresh from the farm, this will be an experience you will never forget!
Free time for optional activity (extra cost): canoeing, horseriding, Touristic train trip, etc…
Dinner at the Hotel
DAY 7 – SATURDAY: Sarlat Town & Market/ Domme Town amp;
Sarlat market: This is a must for food lover. Here you can find foie gras, the famous cepe mushrooms, magret (duck breasts) & confit (conserves of duck or goose), truffles, walnuts, strawberries and countless other delicious local products to tempt the visitor’s taste buds.
Lunch in the main Square as a group
Domme: Drive to the village of Domme, a fortified medieval town classified as one of the “Most Beautiful Villages of France”. Constructed on a plateau overlooking the Dordogne Valley, the acropolis of Domme, a town built for war, is an architectural and aesthetic masterpiece.
Milandes Castle: The Castle of Milandes is one of the prettier of the chateaux in this area, and is surrounded by attractive gardens. The exterior of the chateau has everything – turrets, pointy roofs, mullioned windows, stained glass windows, gargoyles – but it is all put together in a beautifully harmonious way.
Francois de Caumont, owner of castle Castelnaud, had the Chateau des Milandes built in the 15th century for his young wife, who found Castelnaud rather cold and unwelcoming. It is a fine example of Renaissance architecture, with attractive stonework and period features.
The Castle of Milandes fell into ruin after the French Revolution but was famously restored by the legendary music hall star Josephine Baker – unusually among Dordogne chateau, the most famous era in its history is the 20th century.
Final dinner at the hotel
DAY 8 – SUNDAY: Transfer to Brive Station
Say good bye to our new-found friends. No doubt you will travel back home with plenty of beautiful memories and tales to tell!
* We have designed this itinerary to make the most of your time in this beautiful region of France. We recognize that every group is different and has different requirements. While itineraries are pre-planned, there is some flexibility. Whether you are traveling alone, with friends, or a as couple, Périgord Tours offers you the opportunity to meet new people and ‘taste’ new places in a unique way.
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