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Dordogne: Périgord Noir & Sarlat in Style

Cycling the Magical Valleys of the Périgord

Overview

Riding along the Dordogne and Vézère Rivers, you will discover the heritage and beautiful countryside of the Périgord Noir. Quiet backroads and tracks take you through majestic forests and meadows, leading to exceptional monuments and buildings, most notably the castles of Commarque, Puymartin and Beynac. Each village has a unique character and specific local flavour, inviting you to explore the winding streets that take you on a journey back in time. The famous Périgord gastronomy adds an important ingredient to this wonderful circuit.

This is a centre-based cycling holiday, suitable to both beginner and intermediate cyclists, wanting to have an in-depth experience of an authentic corner of France. You will conveniently stay in the same accommodation all week, but ride a different itinerary each day. The Périgord is particularly well suited to this type of tour, as its cultural and natural attractions are concentrated in a relatively small area. Our accommodation is in the heart of the Périgord and also offers a number of off-the-bike activities.

Highlights

  • Beautiful scenery, exceptional heritage, and delicious cuisine
  • Gentle rolling hills, offering a relaxed itinerary
  • The same accommodation all week, ideally located, offering comfort and flexibility

Click to view map

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival Vézère valley 

Check in at your accommodation and enjoy a free afternoon.

Day 2: Périgord Countryside | 25 – 50 km

Discover the Périgord countryside, cycling through the villages of Valojoulx, Montignac and La Chapelle Aubareil, as well as the Lascaux Caves.

  • Cycling Option 1: Between 25 and 35 km with an average of 500 m of altitude gain
  • Cycling Option 2: Between 35 and 50 km per day with an average of 800 m of altitude gain

Day 3: Vézère Valley | 25 – 50 km

Today you can discover the valley of the Vézère and the Castel-Merle archaeological excavation site.

  • Cycling Option 1: Between 25 and 35 km with an average of 500 m of altitude gain
  • Cycling Option 2: Between 35 and 50 km per day with an average of 800 m of altitude gain

Day 4: The Castle of Puymartin | 25 – 50 km

Explore the local dry stone huts and heritage sites, as well as the ghost of ” the White Lady” at the castle of Puymartin.

  • Cycling Option 1: Between 25 and 35 km with an average of 500 m of altitude gain
  • Cycling Option 2: Between 35 and 50 km per day with an average of 800 m of altitude gain

Day 5: Dordogne Valley and Sarlat | 25 – 50 km

An unforgettable day, with a visit of Sarlat, and a ride in the Dordogne Valley.

  • Cycling Option 1: Between 25 and 35 km with an average of 500 m of altitude gain
  • Cycling Option 2: Between 35 and 50 km per day with an average of 800 m of altitude gain

Day 6: Dordogne Valley and Domme | 25 – 50 km

The village of Domme, its holm oak forests, and its wonderful views of the Dordogne Valley.

  • Cycling Option 1: Between 25 and 35 km with an average of 500 m of altitude gain
  • Cycling Option 2: Between 35 and 50 km per day with an average of 800 m of altitude gain

Day 7: Dordogne Valley and Castelnaud | 25 – 50 km

La Roque-Gageac, Castelnaud and Beynac: a tour of 3 spectacular sites.

  • Cycling Option 1: Between 25 and 35 km with an average of 500 m of altitude gain
  • Cycling Option 2: Between 35 and 50 km per day with an average of 800 m of altitude gain

Day 8: Dordogne Valley & Departure | 25 – 50 km

For this last loop in the Périgord, the route will take you on long wooded back roads and numerous local heritage sites. Departure on your own.

  • Cycling Option 1: Between 25 and 35 km with an average of 500 m of altitude gain
  • Cycling Option 2: Between 35 and 50 km per day with an average of 800 m of altitude gain

What to Expect

Accommodation

The standard accommodation we use for this tour is Hôtel-restaurant Laborderie***, located in the commune of Tamniès. The hotel has an outdoor swimming pool. All rooms are en-suite and overlook the village. They are equipped with free Wi-Fi access, a safety deposit box, and a TV. A breakfast buffet is available daily, and guests can also enjoy this meal served in the rooms. The restaurant offers traditional cuisine with regional specialities. Free parking is available on site and the Hotel Restaurant Laborderie is an hour’s drive from Brive-la-Gaillarde and highway A20/ E09. Upgrade to park-side rooms is available upon request.

Click to view hotel pictures

Meals

Six breakfasts are included. The tour is offered without dinner, the hotel has a great restaurant, and you can also drive to nearby Sarlat (15 km – 20 minutes by car) to have some variety. As for lunches, you will have plenty of options for charming country restaurants along your daily rides.

Difficulty & terrain

This holiday is appropriate for both beginner and intermediate cyclists in good physical shape. The daily distances vary between 25 km and 50 km, with a minimum altitude gain; you can optionally extend most rides. The route goes mostly on secondary country roads, with limited traffic and scenic surroundings (read more about difficulty grades). It is also possible to rent an electric bike, so this way the tour would accessible to everybody.

When to go

This trip is available from mid-April until early October. 

The flexibility of self guided holidays means that there are no fixed dates and you can start your trip on any date within the season.

Route Navigation

You will receive an email 2 weeks before departure, containing all the information necessary for your upcoming tour, including the following navigation tools:

  • Dedicated smartphone app on which you can download the full tour itinerary, view tour maps and route profiles, access the list of booked accommodation and services, useful contacts, etc.
  • Detailed Road Book (in digital version only) containing full colour maps with highlighted routes, step-by-step route description, and route profiles
  • GPS tracks compatible with all GPS devices/apps

Getting there

FCO up-to-date travel advice

Click to view travel options

By plane

The best arrival/departure points are Toulouse airport and Bordeaux airport

By train or bus

Train connections from the UK
Take the Eurostar from London St-Pancras International to Paris (Gard du Nord) and then continue to Libourne. Please check the SNCF website for more details on schedules and prices. Total journey time is about 10 hours.

Inclusions

Included

  • 7 nights in a 3* hotel with swimming pool, in double/twin rooms with en-suite facilities
  • 7 breakfasts
  • Navigation app for smartphones, a detailed roadbook including maps (digital format) and GPS tracks
  • 24/7 phone assistance by our local office/representative

Excluded

  • Lunches and dinners not mentioned as ‘included’
  • International flights
  • Travel insurance (required – get a quote online)
  • Arrival transportation to the meeting place
  • Drinks at the accommodations
  • Additional travel related to changes in the programme due to bad weather
  • All personal expenses
  • Everything not explicitly mentioned as ‘Included’

Options, extras & supplements

  • A supplement applies to members of a group who require a single room
  • This holiday is not available for solo travellers
  • Extra nights before the tour, along the way and at the end of the tour can be booked on request
  • Bike rental (standard or e-bike)
  • Half-board supplement (7 dinners)
  • Picnic Lunches (day 2 to day 7)

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