Full of medieval towns, elegant cities and stunning countryside, Dordogne is a beautiful region to explore...
Bergerac is a medieval town with half-timbered buildings and cobbled streets leading down to the picturesque Dordogne river. The Maison de Vins Bergerac is worth a visit which is a beautiful old cloister and dates back to the 12th century. Wine-tasting is available where you may taste Bergerac wine which includes 13 appellations.
Perigueux dates back to the Roman Empire where the Byzantine Cathedral sits prominently at the top of the city. It's cluster of domes can be seen all around the city and it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The cathedral was designed by the same architect as the Sacré Coeur in Paris and has a greek cross plan similar to St Mark's cathedral in Venice. The Roman Empire is still evident in the Gallo-Roman-Museum Vesunna, a unique archaeologiacal site, where you can truly appreciate the age of this city. Wander through the medieval streets admiring the half-timbered houses and beautiful residences of rich Perigueux merchants in the 15th century. The cobbled streets lead to many pretty squares full of bars, cafes and restaurants.
There are many superb local restaurants within a 10 minute drive to Gites Boutique where the set lunch menus are excellent value. A typical lunch menu (excluding weekends) consists of homemade soup, a starter, main course, dessert, a carafe of red or white wine and coffee. The whole meal only costs between €13 and €15 per person.
Within an hour's drive is the famous old town of Saint Emilion surrounded by the famous vineyards where you can visit one of the many chateaux for wine-tasting.
Further on, toward the coast, is the beautiful, elegant city of Bordeaux. The view from the river as you approach the city, is breathtaking, with the 18th century Versailles style buildings lining the Garonne river. Bordeaux has everything, from the longest pedestrianised shopping street in Europe, with all the international and French chains, elegant boulevards lined with
designer shops, squares full of cafes and brasseries and museums and theatres.
The Grand Theatre is one of the oldest theatres in Europe, a beautiful 18th century concert hall. When in Bordeaux, you could easily be mistaken that you were in Paris, but without the crowds and small enough to walk around and enjoy in one day. Bordeaux is known as the wine capital of the world and is surrounded by the world's most famous wine areas, including Pomerol, Margaux, Medoc, Sauternes and Saint-Emilion. Therefore, before you leave make sure you go into one of the wine shops to purchase a bottle of wine.
Only 35 minutes west of Bordeaux, is the longest stretch of sand in Europe, the Cote d'Argent ,which is 200km long. One of the many attractions along this stretch is La Grande Dune du Pilat which is the highest sand dune in the whole of Europe. There is much to see in the Bassin d'Arcachon including the town of Arcachon. This was a popular destination with Parisians in the 19th century, and is still full of restaurants today, where oysters are a speciality as it is home to the largest oyster farm in the world.
Please click on the links below, where it is highlighted in blue, for more information.
Monday - Villamblard
Tuesday - Le Bugue
Wednesday - Bergerac, Perigueux
Thursday - St Astier
Friday - Vergt
Saturday - Bergerac, Perigueux, Mussidan
Sunday - Issigiac
Place de la Comedie at Bordeaux