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If you would like to buy
the guidebook I have written
about the Dordogne
CLICK HERE

CONTACT INFORMATION

 
Jane E A Hanslip
Mobile: ++44 7768 747 610
++33 6 32 62 43 15
E-Mail: jhanslip@aol.com
Address:
Le Bourdil Blanc
24520 St Sauveur de Bergerac
FRANCE
Tel: ++33 5 53 22 76 08
Fax: ++33 5 53 23 96 10
 

About the Dordogne


Things To Do - Things To Eat - What To Buy To Take Back - Market Days - The weather

Things To Do

First and foremost it is an area of outstanding natural beauty, one of the most beautiful in Europe, not dissimilar to Tuscany. This is a green land of farms, lovely wooded hillsides and gentle winding rivers.

It is still unspoilt, it is really rural France at its best. Long let it remain this way.

It is one of the gastronomic centres of France after Lyon, famous for its foie gras, duck, truffles, mushrooms and seafood. There are many excellent inexpensive restaurants in the area using traditional cooking recipes.

It is also well known for its wines. The world famous vineyards of Medoc and St Emilion are close by and the local wines of Bergerac, Yquem, Monpazier and Cahors are also excellent.

The area is rich in pageantry. The English ruled Aquitaine for 300 years in the Middle Ages under the Plantaganets and there are many castles, bastide towns and fortified churches to visit.

The Dordogne and Vezere valleys are world famous for the art of prehistoric man at Lascaux, known as the 'birthplace of art'.

Bergerac

Around Bergerac

Visit the old town and take a small trip on the Dordogne by boat. Market days are Saturday and Wednesday until 12 noon. Antique market the first Sunday of the month until 12 noon.

The 13th century bastide villages

Drive to Lalinde, then to Molieres, Abbe de Cadouin, Beaumont and Monpazier.

In Monpazier there are two marvellous shops: Intermede for Provencal material and lots of lovely presents (opposite the Hotel des Anglais) and the clocksmith who sells and repairs antique clocks in the village square. Eat at La Bastide.

Then go to Biron to see the chateau, eat or have a drink in the restaurant opposite the chateau.

Then go to Villereal, Castillones (you can eat at Les Remparts), Castillones and then back via Mouleydier.

If you have the energy you can also go to Eymet (eat at le Restaurant Italian des Arcades) and back via Bergerac.

Périgueux

Visit the old town , the cathedral and the Roman theatre. Market days are Saturday and Wednesday until 12 noon. You can combine Perigueux with a trip to Brantome and Bourdeilles.

Brantome and Bourdeilles

Brantome is known as the Venice of the Dordogne. Very lovely. Don't forget to go early evening so you can dine at Moulin des Abbayes and the nearby village and chateau of Bourdeilles is well worth a trip.

The Dordogne Valley

Go to Lalinde, Mauzac, Tremolat, Limeuil, Le Buisson, Siorac, Beynac, Roquegageac, Domme, Sarlat and then back via les Eyzies, Le Bugue, Pezuls, Sainte Foy de Longas and Liorac. Market day in Lalinde is Thursday am until 12 noon, one of the prettiest markets in the area. Lunch at la Forge. Sarlat has won a prize as the best preserved mediaeval village in France. Wonderful but best out of season as it gets very crowded. Market day is Saturday until 12 noon. Dine in Domme at L'Esplanade, which has marvellous views. You really need to do the Dordogne in at least two separate trips, since there is such a lot to see. Le Chateau de Beynac at sunset is spectacular (dine well at the Hotel du Chateau).

The Pre-historic caves

Drive via Liorac, Sainte Foy de Longas, Pezuls, Le Bugue to Les Eyzies and the caves then on to Lascaux, back via Tremolat and Lalinde.

The vineyards of Bergerac

Drive via Bergerac to Montbazillac (visit the chateau) and then to Pomport to a wine tasting at Chateau Belingard (Comtesse Sylvie de Bosredon) (call her before arriving on 05 53 58 28 03), Sigoules, Saussignac, Duras and then back via Eymet, (eat at Restaurant des Italians), then F14 and Mouleydier.

Visit chateaubelingard.com

A day of golf at Chateau des Vigiers, Saussignac (27 holes)

Lunch at Saussignac if you want something nearer try the nine hole golf course at Mouleydier (Chateau des Merles)

Click here to visit the web site.

St Emilion and the vineyards

Drive via Bergerac and Saint Foy Ia Grande to St Emilion, stopping on the way at Velines LFB to buy Limoges porcelain at good prices. Just behind the gardens les Jardins de Sardy. Visit a lovely shop selling leather bags and belts right in the center of St Emilion. Lunch at L'Hostellerie de Plaisance in St Emilion or if not on the way back at Port Sainte Foy (Au fil de l'eau)

Additional sporting activities
Tennis: Mouleydier, Lamonzie Montastruc, Lembras, in most small villages
Horseriding: Grand Vignoble, Saint Julien de Crempse, Chateau de Tirgand, Creysse
Canoeing: On the Dordogne or Vezere
Lake with Slides, Paddle Boats, Beach: Pomport, Lanquais
Tenpin Bowling Bergerac on the way to Bordeaux
Bicycling: Hire mountain bikes at Lalinde. Instructress can accompany you for an extra charge.
Parachuting: Bergerac airport.
Nightlife: Discos: Le Windsor, Bergerac
  Cafes: Old town Bergerac and Lalinde.
Fishing: Dordogne river with license, purchased in Bergerac or at Moulin de Saint Pierre for trout.

Things To Eat

All of these restaurants, unless otherwise specified, offer Perigordian cuisine, e.g. foie gras ,confit de canard, magret de canard, crepes, truffles. All offer fixed price menus and a la carte. I have tried them all.

The Best, but Expensive

Tremolat 30 minutes drive
Le Vieux Logis Part of the Relais and Chateaux chain Tel: 05 53 22 80 06
Les Eyzies 40 minutes drive
Hotel du Centennaire Another Relais and Chateaux establishment Tel: 05 53 06 97 18
Brantome 40 minutes drive
Moulin de l'Abbaye   Tel: 05 53 05 80 22
Moulin du Roc   Tel: 05 53 02 86 00
Charbonnel Freres   Tel: 05 53 05 70 15
Domme 45 minutes drive
L'Esplanade   Tel: 05 53 28 31 41

Good for an Evening Meal

Bergerac
L'Enfance du Lard For all kinds of meat cooked on an open fire, old town Tel: 05 53 57 52 88
L'Imparfait Good for fish, old town Tel: 05 53 57 47 92
Le Plat dans l'Assiette Great for lunch Tel: 05 53 24 25 26
Sainte Foy Ia Grande 20 minutes drive
Au fil de l'eau Terrace looking out over the river Tel: 05 53 24 72 60
Tremolat
Le Bistro d'en face Very well run brasserie Tel: 05 53 22 80 69
Lalinde
La Forge Old style French Tel: 05 53 24 92 24
Hotel du Perigord Classic French cuisine Tel: 05 53 61 19 86
Monpazier
La Bastide Traditional style French cooking Tel: 05 53 22 60 59

Local, cheaper restaurants - but good!

Clermont de Beauregard 10 minutes drive
Moulin de Saint Pierre Trout and duck specialities, lovely ambiance in old mill; children can fish for trout Tel: 05 53 82 91 09
Creperie des Ramparts Excellent for small children, situated in a lovely hilltop village. You must book Tel: 05 53 82 98 90
St Marcel du Perigord 10 minutes drive
Lou Peyrol Very good cuisine Tel: 05 53 24 09 71
Lembras 5 minutes drive
Relais de la Ribeyre good for a quick lunch Tel: 05 52 27 0l 92
Bergerac
Il Colosseo Good pizzas and pasta etc. (opp. LeClerc) Tel: 05 53 57 39 78
Le Cuvier On the N21 after Lembras, great grills Tel: 05 53 58 21 99
Paunat
Julien Lovely atmosphere looking over the abbey Tel: 05 53 63 21 08
Eymet 20 minutes drive
Restaurant Italian des Arcades Fantastic pizza in this beautiful old bastide town. Tel: 05 52 23 90 O5
Castillones 25 minutes drive
Hotel des Remparts Very romantic, eat in the garden if possible. Tel: 05 53 36 80 97
Monpazier
Les Peyrouliers   Tel: 05 53 22 66 10

What To Buy To Take Back

Food Specialities Foie Gras, Confit de Canard, Huile de Noix, Crepes, Honey, Royal Jelly, Garlic.
Wine Say no more, perhaps also Armagnac, Pineau des Charentes.
Soap From the markets.
Baskets From the markets.
Porcelain From LFB between Sainte Foy and Castillones.
Antiques Various shops and markets.
Material Provencal material from shop Intermede in Montpazier.

Market Days

As a general rule markets operate from about 08.30 to 12.30 on the days stated. If the day happens to be a public holiday the markets tend to be reduced in size.

Fruit and vegetables are always good value and fresh.

Monday Ste. Alvere
Tuesday Le Bugue
Wednesday Bergerac
Perigueux
Thursday Lalinde
Mouleydier (small)
Friday Vergt
Le Buisson
Saturday Bergerac
Le Bugue (small)
Lalinde (small)
Perigueux
Sunday Pressignac (July and August only)
Bergerac (bric-a-brac first Sunday of the month)
Castillones

Public Holidays

1st May
8th May
5th June
14th July
15th August
1st November
11th November

The weather

The Dordogne in Southwest France shares the same temperate climate as central western Europe. Mild Winter, coolest month above 0ºC (32ºF), but below 18ºC (64ºF), warmest month above 10ºC (50ºF).

for a more detailed report from CNN, click here


Jane E A Hanslip - jhanslip@aol.com - Le Bourdil Blanc 24520 Saint Sauveur de Bergerac, FRANCE

Mobile : ++44 7768 747 610 & ++33 6 32 62 43 15 - Tel : ++33 5 53 22 76 08 - Fax : ++33 5 53 23 96 10

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