Places To Explore
what you can visit
Chateau de Puyguilhem
This incredible Chateau was built during the sixteenth century by a courtier of Francois I. Designed to rival and in the style of the great Loire Chateaux. It is today the best preserved Chateau in the Perigord. Rich in sculpture and decoration it provides a record of the enormous talents of its builders.
Le Grotte de Villars
The caves here at Villars are a maze of some 13 kms of tunnel and form the largest underground network in the Périgord. Inhabited since prehistory, there are fine examples of Aurignacian painting, bison, antelope and witches and the famous Magdalenian white horse. The stalactites and stalagmites are spectacular. The intimacy of the caves make the Grottes a special place to visit!
The Cistercian monastery, founded in 1145, is a ruin in the hollow of a small valley between woods and meadow - but romantically charming in the fields that surround it. Mass is still held here once a year on August 15 under the superb overhanging cupula, and the site is often used for music and other events. An annual Jazz concert in June, for example.Most of the old stones went to build the adjoining farming community of Boschaud many centuries ago, after its last abbot Dom Perignon in 1791
The Venice of the Perigord. Due to the convergence of two rivers an Island was formed, Brantôme occupies this island. Undoubtedly a highlight of the area. Friday is market day and in the morning stalls fill the town, even stretching across some of the many bridges. This clears in the afternoon to reveal a truly picturesque sight. Brantôme has many interesting shops, the Abbey with the oldest bell tower in France, troglodyte caves and much more.
An incredibly quaint village set on the banks of the river Dronne. An ancient bridge crosses the Dronne past the water mill, built in the shape of a boat. The village clusters on the hillside with the castle compound on the summit. The compound consists of a medieval castle and a beautiful renaissance Chateau. The Chateau is full of remarkable furniture and tapestries.
St. Jean de Côle
Classified as one of the Most Beautiful Villages in France, St Jean de Cole is justly proud of its 11th Century Byzantine church, the Chateau de la Marthonie, the cloisters, stone bridges and picturesque houses and roofs. In May it hosts a renowned flower show and during the summer months there are musical concerts and recitals held in the church. It’s a lovely place to browse around, with craft and gift shops and some good restaurants.
The present Chateau was built in the 17th century and impressively dominates the Auvezere Valley below. It is surrounded by formal French gardens and an English style park. Extensively restored, nevertheless a visit to Hautefort is a ‘must’. Below in the town, the ancient hospice hosts a museum of medicine. The tours are self-guided.
Capital of the Dordogne, the city has been a major centre since Roman times. Roman ruins are scattered throughout and a new museum highlights the best. After the Hundred Years War the city enjoyed prosperity brought about by the many rich merchants who lived here. The beautifully preserved Medieval old town is full of charm. Narrow alleys packed with boutiques, bars and cafes lead onto many attractive squares where one can observe local daily life. There is a market most days but those on Saturday and Wednesday are the largest.
The Chateau dates from the 13th century. It stands in the centre of the village, dominating the Vezere valley below. Its roofline attests to the interest its first count had in Alchemy in the 16th century. It has remained in the same family since that time. The extensive tour is guided and informative.
Activity and fun
Tree-top-walking : in Nontron
Walking and hiking : hikes in Brantôme and around -,- Périgord-Limousin regional nature park , Périgord-Limousin regional nature park or randogps.net
Canoeing : Brantôme Canoë -,- Allo Canoës oe Canoës Bourdeilles Loisirs
Brantôme Police Horses : Reservation in advance through Facebook page, telephone or e-mail. Visit Brantôme Police Horses website
Horse riding : les Ecuries de Milhac-de-Nontron -,- les Ecuries de Puynadal in Brantôme -.- Centre de Tourisme Equestre de Beaurecueil in Saint-Sulpice-de-Mareuil: +33 5 53 60 99 84 -,- La Ferme équestre du Naudonnet in Bourdeilles: +33 5 53 08 66 74 - email@example.com -,- Centre équestre Club Point Vert in Tocane St-Apre: +33 6 25 15 04 05 -,- Elevage du Riol in Jumilhac-le-Grand
Our selection of the best places to eat in the area
Villars : Le Pas de Chat
Brantome: Coté Rivière, Les Saveurs, Charbonnel
Champagnac de Belair: Moulin de Roc
Saint Pardoux de la Rivière: Hôtel de France
Périgueux: L'Essentiel, Chateau Reynats (Restaurant and Bistro), L'Atelier
Bourdeilles : L'Atelier des Sens
St jean de Cole: Le Temps des mets , La Perla Cafe , Restaurant Le St Jean
Colourful markets take place weekly in:
Brantome (Friday), Thiviers (Saturday), Piegut-Pluviers (Wednesday) and Perigueux (Wednesday and Saturday).
From 9am - lunchtime, you can pick up local specialities and fresh fruit and vegetables as well as souvenirs or sit and have a coffee and watch the world go by.