France : The Dordogne

Canoeing on the Dordogne

Trip code: B08DO 4.9 (52 reviews)

Self-guided canoeing

8 nights,
hotel-to-hotel

9.0Kg CO2e

SUMMARY

  • One of France's most celebrated rivers: wide, peaceful, calm, flat
  • Excellent for families, easy for beginners
  • Friendly hotels, superb cuisine
  • Excellent views all along the river: picturesque perched villages and troglodyte cave dwellings

WHAT'S INCLUDED?

  • 8 nights accommodation
  • All continental breakfasts and 3 evening meals
  • Comprehensive route directions
  • Luggage transfers between hotels
  • Canadian canoes or sit-on kayaks
  • Buoyancy aid and helmet
  • Transfers to and from the river at the start and end of your holiday

TRIP DESCRIPTION

This canoeing holiday offers a leisurely way to explore one of France's most interesting waterways. The Dordogne River runs alongside glorious golden-pink limestone cliffs and passes the walnut groves and truffle woods of the Perigord; an area rich in history and striking views.

The canoeing is safe, not demanding, and we give you a lesson on handling your canoe before you set off. There are no major weirs to carry your canoe round, and the flow of the water does much of the work for you, so you can travel downstream looking out for imposing and magnificent chateaux, mediaeval villages and prehistoric sites including the Grottes de Lacave. There are plenty of diversions away from the river too; from Carennac visit the Gouffre de Padirac, or, from Meyronne, head out to Martel, the medieval 'town of seven towers'. The local gourmet markets are also a great way to experience Dordogne culture and taste amazing produce such as duck, goose, walnuts and cheeses.

We have chosen lovely, friendly hotels throughout. These include a converted 11th century chateau, a 4 star Villa that sits on the ancient site of a vast Gallo-Roman farm and a family run inn on the banks of the Dordogne.

NB: All customers must be able to swim at least 50m fully clothed. We provide 2/3 person canoes (minimum age 8 years). Single-person kayaks are also available if specified when you book. Only suitable for children over 12 unless experienced. Should the river, at any point, be deemed too high to safely canoe, we will provide Headwater bikes at no extra charge for all days affected.

Terrain

The canoeing is safe, not demanding, and we give you a lesson on handling your canoe before you set off. There are no major weirs to carry your canoe round, and the flow of the water does much of the work for you, so you can travel downstream looking out for imposing and magnificent chateaux, mediaeval villages and prehistoric sites including the Grottes de Lacave.

Read more about this holiday in The Financial Times and Time Travel Turtle blog.

See more of this trip on our Youtube channel - click here watch.

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DAY-BY-DAY ITINERARY

 

Day 1: Arrive in Rocamadour

Our family run 3 star hotel is set within its own parkland just outside Rocamadour's ancient town walls. Wander round the town's medieval alleyways before choosing a restaurant for dinner.

You stay at Hotel les Esclargies.

hotel details

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Hotel les Esclargies, Rocamadour

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The Hotel les Esclargies is set within lush parkland surrounded by oak trees, just outside Rocamadour's ancient town walls. Designed in wood and stone, it aims to be in harmony with nature, and to offer the most tranquil of stays whilst providing easy access to Rocamadour. The modern and comfortable rooms are decorated in light tones, with ensuite facilities and air conditioning as standard.

Room upgrades: Please contact us for details.

Day 2: Rocamadour to Carennac (13km/8.1mi)

After breakfast, we take you upstream to the small hamlet of Thezel, just south of Beaulieu-sur-Dordogne for the briefing and canoeing lesson. Then it's an easy paddle down to Carennac. This is one of the Dordogne's most picturesque villages, with lovely 16th century houses. Our hotel, with outdoor pool, is right in the heart of the village, overlooking the river.

You stay at Hostellerie Fenelon.

hotel details

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Hostellerie Fenelon, Carennac

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This pleasant, traditionally Quercynois hotel is on the edge of Carennac - officially one of France's 'plus beaux villages' - next to the river Dordogne. The hotel's pool and dining terrace both overlook this mighty river.

The hotel's 15 rooms are all ensuite with either shower or bath. All are also equipped with direct telephone lines, television and hair dryers.

Day 3: At Carennac (20km/12.4mi)

A fairytale village with a jumble of cottages and 16th century turreted manor houses along with the remains of the ramparts and the once-magnificent priory. Fenelon, still celebrated as the village's most famous son, was the very popular bishop here in 1681, and a local aperitif is named after him! It's fun exploring the narrow streets and alleyways and walks around the village, and on the causse, provide some of the very best views of the Dordogne. To explore further afield, you might like to hire a bike (request at time of booking) or take a taxi and visit the Gouffre de Padirac (9km away, via an uphill route), one of the region's important spectacles where you'll find amazing caverns, huge galleries, and a boat trip on the underwater lake.

You stay at Hostellerie Fenelon.

hotel details

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Hostellerie Fenelon, Carennac

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This pleasant, traditionally Quercynois hotel is on the edge of Carennac - officially one of France's 'plus beaux villages' - next to the river Dordogne. The hotel's pool and dining terrace both overlook this mighty river.

The hotel's 15 rooms are all ensuite with either shower or bath. All are also equipped with direct telephone lines, television and hair dryers.

Day 4: Carennac to Meyronne (20km/12.4mi)

On the first part of the journey you pass below massive cliffs, paddling past four impressive riverside chateaux before arriving at Meyronne and our spectacular 11th century chateau hotel.

You stay at Hotel La Terrasse.

hotel details

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Hotel La Terrasse , Meyronne

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The Hotel La Terrasse, ideally situated overlooking the Dordogne, is a converted 11th century chateau, which has survived in spite of the turbulent history of the region. It was converted into a hotel in the 1920s by the Liebus family - who still own the hotel - but it still retains many of its original features - wooden beams, exposed stone walls, stone fire places and stone spiral stairwell. Period furniture completes the impressive, yet comfortable, interior.

Your evening meal is taken in the hotel's restaurant, where the menu reflects the local specialities. If you eat on the hotel's terrace, you'll also get to savour views over the river!

The hotel also benefits from an outdoor pool.

Room upgrades: Superior Room or Suite.

Day 5: At Meyronne

Why not relax at the hotel's pool, or visit the south of the river, by the Rochers Sainte-Marie and the Grotte de Lacave? Alternatively, if you've hired bikes, pedal to picturesque Martel, one of the best preserved and architecturally integral mediaeval towns in the region.

You stay at Hotel La Terrasse.

hotel details

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Hotel La Terrasse , Meyronne

HOTEL WEBSITE      TRIP ADVISOR

Mastercard
AmEx
Pool
WiFi
TV
Minibar
Aircon
Safe


The Hotel La Terrasse, ideally situated overlooking the Dordogne, is a converted 11th century chateau, which has survived in spite of the turbulent history of the region. It was converted into a hotel in the 1920s by the Liebus family - who still own the hotel - but it still retains many of its original features - wooden beams, exposed stone walls, stone fire places and stone spiral stairwell. Period furniture completes the impressive, yet comfortable, interior.

Your evening meal is taken in the hotel's restaurant, where the menu reflects the local specialities. If you eat on the hotel's terrace, you'll also get to savour views over the river!

The hotel also benefits from an outdoor pool.

Room upgrades: Superior Room or Suite.

Day 6: Meyronne to Souillac (17km/10.6mi)

Today is an easy paddle, with lots of interesting things to see along the river, including some beautiful riverside chateaux (look out for Belcastel and the impressive Chateau de la Treyne in particular).

You stay at La Vieille Auberge.

hotel details

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La Vieille Auberge, Souillac

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La Vieille Auberge, a coach house from Napoleonic times, has been modernised to create a charming auberge in a quiet part of Souillac.

The restaurant serves traditional regional specialities with a modern twist.

Day 7: At Souillac

The prosperous farming country around Souillac was created from marshland by industrious 12th to 13th century Benedictine monks. Of the powerful abbey they built, just the abbey church remains, with outstanding bas-relief sculpture. Today Souillac is a bustling town, with good shops and a weekly local market. Visit the Musee de l'Automate, the largest collection of mechanical toys and dolls in France.

You stay at La Vieille Auberge.

hotel details

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La Vieille Auberge, Souillac

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La Vieille Auberge, a coach house from Napoleonic times, has been modernised to create a charming auberge in a quiet part of Souillac.

The restaurant serves traditional regional specialities with a modern twist.

Day 8: Souillac to Carsac-Aillac (20km/12.4mi)

Today it's relaxed canoeing down to Grolejac via St-Julien (a lovely village and a good lunch stop) through the heart of peaceful and prosperous Perigord countryside, with lots of time for swimming or lazing by the river. We pick you up from here and take you to your hotel in time for a dip in the infinity pool before dinner.

You stay at La Villa Romaine.

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La Villa Romaine, Carsac

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Dating back to the Roman occupation of the area, La Villa Romaine sits on what was once part of a vast Gallo-Roman farm. Bought by the De Bars family in 15th century and developed in 19th century into a prosperous farm, La Villa Romaine was turned into a hotel in 1948. The hotel now offers 17 large and comfortable rooms and suites, all equipped with air-conditioning, satellite TV, minibar and complimentary Wi-Fi and decorated in a modern style but with traditional twists.

The hotel's three buildings form a large courtyard and the extensive grounds hold an infinity edge pool, water gardens and terraces. There is a restaurant serving regional dishes made with locally sourced (and organic where possible) ingredients. Dinners are served in the dining room or on the terrace.

Room upgrades: Superior Room or Luxe Room.


Extra nights: Please contact us for details.

Day 9: Leave Carsac-Aillac

Please note that if hiring bikes, cycling helmets are compulsory in France for children under 12. As we are unable to provide these, we strongly recommend that you bring your own.

Please see our Planning you holiday page for full details.

Extending your holiday

If you'd like to extend your trip with extra hotel nights we recommend: Hotel Le Senat, Paris; Hotel Pere Leon, Toulouse.

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Hotel Le Senat , Paris

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The 4 star Le Senat is simply stunning! There are just 41 rooms, all stylishly furnished and a couple of suites with terraces, if you really fancy splashing out! All have satellite television, mini bar, air-conditioning, safe and hairdryer, plus Internet access.

The hotel has its own small bar - adorned with photographs of eminent artists, being in the heart of the artists' quarter - plus a reading room with complimentary internet access.

Breakfast is taken in the basement, where you'll find a copious buffet of viennoiseries, cereals, fruit salad, ham, cheese, bread, yoghurt, bacon, eggs, sausage, fruit juices, tea or coffee. If you prefer, you can have a continental breakfast served to your room at no extra charge.

Le Senat is perfectly located on a quiet side street just a stone's throw away from the Luxembourg Gardens and metro, and a five-minute walk from the vibrant Latin quarter, where you'll find a plethora of restaurants to suit all budgets.

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Hotel Pere Leon, Toulouse

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The Hotel Pere Leon is ideally situated just a short walk from the historic centre of Toulouse, with the main sights just a short walk away. Just 50 metres from the metro, there is easy access to the rest of the city. The hotel is in Place Esquirol, a bustling, lively square and in close proximity to many bars and restaurants.

The hotel itself has a modern contemporary feel, which has been recently renovated. The ensuite rooms have soundproof windows and all mod cons. Breakfast is a buffet affair with a good choice of French staples, and a hot section.

The hotel has its own bistro restaurant with seats outside where you can enjoy a drink or dinner.

Room upgrades: Deluxe room.
The deluxe room is larger than the standard room.

Extra nights: Please contact us for details.

CHOOSE A DEPARTURE DATE

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These tour only prices are based on two people sharing. Single supplement from £392.

These flight inclusive prices are based on two people sharing. Single supplement from £392.

This holiday is unsuitable for children under 8 (under 12 for kayaks) and is based on a minimum of 2 adults. For people wanting to have bikes available for all 'rest days' these can be pre-booked for you (£120 per adult and £80 per child per week) and will be waiting at each hotel for you.

OPTIONAL UPGRADES
  • Flights from Heathrow to Toulouse with British Airways, then onward rail to the region.
  • Other flights, including regional departures
  • Alternative flights, including regional departures
  • Business/club/first class fares
  • Room upgrades and extra nights at selected hotels
TRAVEL DETAILS

Our aim is to provide holidays that are unbeatable for choice and flexibility. We've listed our most popular travel options below, however you aren't limited to these - we can tailor-make virtually any holiday to suit.

Air-rail prices include our standard flights, onward rail and station transfers
Out: British Airways Heathrow to Toulouse then rail Toulouse to Souillac and transfer to hotel 30 minutes. Return: Transfer to Souillac station 25 minutes then rail Souillac to Toulouse then British Airways Toulouse to Heathrow

Business/club/first class seats are available on request.

Alternative Air Travel
Alternative flights, onward rail to your holiday area, and connecting private transfers can be arranged from most UK airports. If you would like to use one of the many 'low cost' airlines, we can book these on your behalf. We can also book UK shuttles to connect with your onward flight, please call for details and prices.

Self drive
We can arrange various channel crossings for you. Please call for details and prices.

Standard transfers
Transfers can be arranged at a supplement from Souillac train station at 16:30 Mon-Thurs & Sat, 15:18 Fri and 18:34 Sun and back to Souillac train station at 10:45 Mon-Sat and 07:45 Sun.

Alternative transfers
If you require alternative transfers (because you will be arriving at a different time to our standard flights), then we can usually arrange these for you (there may be an additional charge).

To find out more about the travel options available call our sales team on 01606 720199, use our live webchat (we're open until 4pm today) or email sales@headwater.com

Should you require overnight airport accommodation, airport parking or even a uniformed chauffeur to take your car from your departure terminal and park it for you, we can arrange this for you through Holiday Extras. You can book airport parking, airport hotels and executive lounges through their website or contact us for further details. Early booking is recommended to obtain the best availability and prices.

REVIEWS

We had a wonderful holiday in the Dordogne region of France. Headwaters created a skeleton framework based around excellent accommodation in beautiful villages, provided rental of canoes and bikes and transfers where needed. The local headwaters staff were very kind and helpful. The accommodation , food and scenery in that part of France was fantastic.

Due to the fact that it had been a very rainy spring, instead of four days of canoeing in the area of high water we were unable to canoe, and therefore had only one day of canoeing during our holiday. Headwaters rented bikes for us as an alternative, which turned out to be a great experience. Our initial disappointment and confusion around last minute changes could have been handled better by headwaters. However, we were blessed with great weather and we had a flexible group that were able to roll with the changes and had a wonderful time biking. We were happy to be able to get on the river for one day to experience the peace and beauty along the Dordogne.

We chose the month of June to do this trip because we understood that water levels could be quite low later in the season. As it turned out, the water levels were too high. I think it’s good to be aware that these things can happen and to be prepared that alternate arrangements may need to be made depending on water conditions. Out



Anne Elizabeth Hendrie, 7 Jun 2024

 

Loved the activity aspect and hotel La terrace was a real highlight

Simon De Vos, 25 Jul 2023

 

This was a wonderful holiday which cleared out many cobwebs with its alternating days of water-based activity and relaxation.

Anna Kirby, 16 Jul 2023

 

A holiday that involves fairly effortless paddling along a beautiful stretch of fairly undeveloped river is great! The lazy stoppages along the route were exceptional although these need to be planned in advance. All the hotels gave us a very very friendly welcome and all the food was of a very high standard.

Roland Knight, 26 Jun 2023

 

Superb trip on a truly wonderful river and location. Well worth the money.

MACWILLSON, 4 Jun 2023

 

Great fun very interesting and enjoyable.

Dr Thorley, 5 Sep 2022

 

Canoeing on the Dordogne was an absolute highlight of my travels in France. Headwater’s in-country representatives were outstanding in every aspect - from the moment they met my train until they dropped me back at the station nine days later. This was my first experience of a holiday kayaking trip like this and, whilst I am an experienced kayaker, I was quite nervous to be doing this on my own. The thoroughness of my first day briefing put me totally at ease and I was able to relax straight away and enjoy every moment. I also appreciated the detailed notes and activity suggestions for my stay-put days and enjoyed a couple of great walks, following the extremely accurate guiding notes provided by Headwater. I would thoroughly recommend this experience to anyone who enjoys nature and water-based activities.

Ms Ransome, 20 Sep 2019

 

Our reps Janet and Andrew were superb and they really added to the enjoyment of the holiday. Although three of the hotels were beautiful and of a similar standard (Relais St Anne, hotel La Terrasse and Villa Romaine) the other two were very much more basic.

Mrs Smith, 4 Sep 2019

 

This is our second Canoeing/cycling on the Dordogne holiday and our fourth with Headwater. We are already considering what our next will be, and whether we will do the Dordogne again in a few years.

Mr Burgess, 29 Aug 2019

 

A well organised and relaxing holiday with great canoeing, lovely hotels and a beautiful area

Mrs Fitzmaurice, 9 Aug 2019

 

An awesome canoe holiday. Headwater were very thorough in all the preparation and organising. The reps could not have been more helpful in giving local advise and support. We will definitely be using Headwater again for another holiday adventure. Thank you to all

Mr Granger, 3 Aug 2019

 

Spectacular holiday! Stunning canoe trip on the Dordogne- beautiful tranquil river. Fantastic accommodation and wonderful food! Headwater reps Andrew and Janet brilliant. Megan Wyatt at Headwater- thank you!

Mr Dickinson, 22 Jul 2019

 

Excellent experience - don't hesitate - book your holiday now!

Mrs Jones, 22 Jul 2019

 

This was an amazing holiday full of different activities but the highlight was the canoeing. The standard of accommodation was excellent and the food superb. The outstanding feature was our 2 lovely reps who could not have done enough for us. Initially Andrew collected us from Toulouse rather than have us arrive late for dinner if we had come by train. In the morning he showed us features on the river to be aware of which was a great help to a pair of novices.

He gave us a lift to Rocamadour which we would not have seen otherwise. We paid for a taxi 2 days before to go to the Goffre Padirac which cost 30€ for a 10min trip! He even brought us bikes to cycle back as the temps were in the high 30° and not fun to walk in. Overall they did a fantastic job and really made a difference to our holiday. We would contemplate doing this trip again in the future as we enjoyed it so much. Thank you.

Mrs Waller, 30 Jun 2019

 

Our canoe trip in June 2019 was excellent. The weather was very hot (France’s recent heatwave) but the river was possibly the coolest place to be if you have all the right sun protection. Surprisingly, we were just about the only canoe on the river at this time. It made for a calm, surreal experience just for us. We found that the trip notes were misleading at times. Information on landing points and weirs/chutes could be updated and the maps made clearer. We brought a foam cushion for the seats and this made quite a difference when sitting in the canoe for up to 5 hours. Andrew and Janet were the reps in Souillac and they couldn’t be more helpful and friendly, even though they hadn’t been on the contract for long. They went out of their way to change the schedule to accommodate a wet day with a visit to Rocamadour. They were also keen to show us some of the key actual day 1 landing specifics which were ultimately essential in hindsight. The accommodations were good and we found that the food for dinner was generally high standard with good choices.

Mr Haley, 12 Jun 2019

 

The holiday lived up to our expectations. Unfortunately the weather was not kind and we had a lot of rain but our reps Andrew and Janet bent themselves over backwards to make our days as enjoyable as possible. They went out of their way to juggle the itinerary and came up with great places to go on our rest day, always willing to provide transport. The canoeing was great fun and the scenery was spectacular! Most days, apart from an occasional fisherman, we had the Dordogne to ourselves! The food and accommodation throughout was very good and in some places absolutely brilliant! We both put on weight despite the canoeing! A great holiday, would thoroughly recommend.

Mrs Willock, 4 Jun 2019

 

A great holiday away from the crowds at a quiet time of year. Paddling was easy most of the time with some interesting parts where the river ran shallow or faster. Hotels and food were great with some characterful hosts.

Mr Brazier, 16 Sep 2018

 

Surpassed all our expectations because we were the only canoes on the river. Great river, great hotels and helpful reps.

Mr Nicholson, 14 Sep 2018

 

Excellent experience with outstanding food and accommodation, a gastronomic delight

Mr St John James, 8 Sep 2018

 

Wife says it was the best holiday of her life, one of my best. Accommodations were just right - small enough to be intimate yet with all the conveniences. Advise to bring an electrical adapter - one hotel was without one/one hotel gave us an extra to carry for the remainder of the trip. River was a little low in September but we didn't bottom out anywhere. The weather was about perfect - very safe and beautiful -- almost a float trip with some mild rapids thrown in. Would highly recommend others to check out the cave at La Cave - really worth the side trip - take a cab, it's worth it. And the bike path from La Villa Romaine on an old railway line, even walking, shouldn't be missed. Overall quiet and relaxing. Our first trip to Europe -- we passed on the big cities (except for London) and glad we did - though we would probably have enjoyed a couple of days in Toulouse if we had the time.

Mr Hool, 4 Sep 2018

 

Superb experience for family activity holiday; we loved it

Mr Brem, 9 Aug 2018

 

Wonderful French culture, cuisine and canoeing down the Dordogne river, enabled by an excellent riverside support team at Headwater. In a word, superb!

Mr O'Hea, 1 Aug 2018

 

A wonderful holiday to see a picturesque side of the dordogne region

Mrs Lovell, 18 Jul 2018

 

We enjoyed our holiday, the hotels, Locations were great and the food too. The canoeing was good but I feel it was a bit too isolated on the river for us.

Mrs Maile, 10 Jun 2018

 

A wonderful holiday with no issues or problems with our itinerary. Headwater got things right with a very light touch.

Mr Padfield, 16 Sep 2017

 

Excellent holiday, wonderful accommodation and food. We could not fault the reps who were extremely helpful.

Mrs Chambers, 17 Aug 2017

 

Canoeing in the Dordogne. The most picturesque river and so quiet ( even in high season). The beautiful countryside was dotted with amazing chateaux and the food at each hotel was superb - a gastronomic delight. The canoeing was straight forward and the map instructions were good.

The hotels we stqyed in were in the most delightful medieval towns which were so well preserved. It was like staying in a fairytale town.

We really felt that we were part of France - so few foreign tourists as this was a place that the Fench go on holiday so we were really immersed into the country.

Our reps (Jude and Tim) were excellent as always available if needed

Mrs Adams, 1 Aug 2017

 

Happy paddling on some quiet stretches of river in a beautiful area. Plenty of pools, good food, and all arrangements taken care of.

Mr Sheridan, 26 Jul 2017

 

absolutely lovely - from the helpfulness of the guides to the assiduity of the hotel staff - and the general friendliness

Mr Hammond, 14 Jul 2017

 

Very well organised and effectively managed, with the odd surprise/challenge e.g. Tour de France promptly dealt with, worked round.

Mainprize, 4 Jul 2017

 

Wonderful holiday, well organised but not obtrusive. Fabulous food in beautiful surroundings. Kayaking down the Dordogne was so beautiful. Will definitely book with Headwater again.

Mrs Campbell, 12 Jun 2017

 

An ideal combination of mild peril, moderate exercise and gluttony, in lovely and interesting surroundings.

Mrs Davidson, 24 Jul 2016

 

Elizabeth was friendly, efficient and helpful tour rep. The food and accommodation were generally superb, especially at Hostellerie Fenelon, where the staff made special efforts with our 9 year old. We particuarly liked reading about the experiences of others in the Headwater Blue Book, which gave us useful clues for what to do on the 'non-canoeing' days. It also helped us plan for the weather which was variable, ranging from very hot to thunderstorms. We would highly recommend canoeing and cycling the Dordogne which is a welcoming and very attractive area of France. Our children really enjoyed themselves. We are glad that we didn't try it with children any younger because after four canoeing days, our youngest (9) was tired! The pools at each hotels were a particular hit. QuercyLand, the children's water park at Souillac, proved something of a lifesaver when we realised that we weren't going to be able to cycle because of illness.

Mrs Singleton, 18 Jul 2016

 

This was an ideal holiday for our family with three teenagers. The canoeing wasn't too demanding but was fun, and the 'rest' days could be as active as we liked. The Dordogne is a wonderful part of France, fantastically beautiful, and with superb cuisine. All the hotels provided fantastic meals and really good, friendly service. The kids had a triple room in three of the five hotels and these were well-sized, proper triple or family rooms so they had plenty of space.

I would normally put our family holiday together myself but it was wonderful being able to leave all the organisation up to someone else, knowing that all the pieces would fit together. They did our flights (from Scotland) - with dates that didn't match the canoeing holiday - and also car hire for those extra days at a very reasonable rate.

Just be aware that you will have extra costs when you are there. You will, of course, have to pay for drinks with your (half board) evening meal, and these prices varied quite a bit between the hotels, and the picnic lunches provided by the hotels varied between 7 and 10 Euros per person. We could add tips to our card payments at all but one of the hotels.

Mrs Lithgow, 8 Jul 2016

 

An enjoyable holiday cycling in the beautiful countryside of the Dordogne region, visiting medieval towns and villages, castles and gardens. We were sorry not to be able to canoe as planned but nevertheless had a great holiday.

Mrs Lynn, 22 Jun 2016

 

We went for a canoeing holiday. which didn't happen.Obviously, Headwater were completely blameless.We made the most of it, with excellent help from Elizabeth (our Rep), by walking. This area, especially at this time of year, wouldn't have been my choice for walking. For us,this was a very expensive walking holiday.

Mr Richards, 2 Jun 2016

 

Wonderful holiday through a stunning and, at times, remote area of France with excellent food, drink and opportunity for activity. Very relaxing.

Mr Norman, 2 Sep 2015

 

Excellent holiday travelling through the Dordogne in a peaceful setting at your own pace and staying at well chosen establishments that provide some amazing standards of food quality relative to their star rating. The friendliness, helpfulness and availability of the reps Keith & Claire was excellent too.

Mrs Hamilton, 29 Aug 2015

 

I suggest you place the oldest persons in each group on ground floor hotel rooms. Hard for old guys to lug bags upstairs.

Mrs Woodard, 25 Aug 2015

 

Fabulous family holiday. We were very impressed by the high standard of equipment provided and managed by our two reps Keith and Clare - the kit was immaculate and in excellent condition (especially the bikes, panniers, locks etc). The canoeing was so peaceful with beautiful scenery and wildlife all the way (numerous kingfishers, herons, cormorants, little egrets etc) - the faster water was fun, the daily distances were very achievable. On our 'rest' days we were fairly active and put in many miles (steep hills and off-roading) on our bikes (we bought detailed maps online before we went) however, it would have been very easy to have complete rest and relaxation by the lovely hotel pools. Basically you can be as active or inactive as you feel - would suit nearly all abilities. Fabulous food and wine (although the wine in the hotels was quite pricey). Would highly recommend to anyone.

Mrs Peters, 24 Aug 2015

 

We as a family have canoed and kayaked in the past. I would have thought it would be quite tricky on the first day if you have never done it at all. I would suggest an hour demonstration for novices to get them try it out.

Mrs Parker, 17 Aug 2015

 

Wonderful food amazing canoeing in a brilliant location

Mr Sears, 3 Aug 2015

 

Would definately recommend this holiday to everybody! The whole package was brilliant.I was a bit nervous at first -never been in a canoe before but after a very short time i was thoroughly enjoying every minute! We loved everything about the whole trip - the region, the canoes,the hotels, the bikes - the reps were brilliant -really helpful and knowledgeable. We,ve had some great holidays over the years and this one certainly ranks as one of our best ones! I took a lot of photos along the way and friends and family were very complimentery about them - seeing what we had been up to!!

Mrs Powell, 19 Jul 2015

 

All the accommodation was good, but the Hostellerie Fenelon, and the Hotel Quercy were outstanding in all respects - superb food and very friendly and welcoming.

Local reps Claire and Keith were also outstanding - available, informative, cheerful, nothing too much trouble, very well-informed - a pleasure to have them as reps

Mr Newman, 14 Jul 2015

 

Great time Well organised and well balanced with activities.

Mr Heyes, 8 Jun 2015

 

This canoeing/ cycling holiday on the Dordogne rates as one of our best ever. In mid September, we had the river to ourselves, the weather fortunately was superb, the accommodation, locations and food were excellent and the logistics from Headwater and the support and advice from Keith our rep were outstanding. We plan to come again, especially in the quieter season.

Mr Burgess, 5 Sep 2014

 

This holiday was exactly what was described and expected. All accommodation, activities and equipment were excellent.The company reps were very friendly and helpful. It was a great experience which we will doubtlessly repeat in the next few years. Thanks.

Mr Chaplin, 7 Jul 2014

 

A wonderful holiday, alternating canoeing with walking. The hotels were all in good positions and the meals were gourmet standard - a real treat. We were very well looked after - our bags always waiting for us at each destination. Thank you for a great experience.

Mr Kilby, 29 Jun 2014

 

The right blend of activatity and relaxation in stunning scenery and beautiful locations.

Mr Flower, 2 Sep 2013

 

The combination of activity (kayaking, cycling), and moving somewhere new without the problem of carrying heavy baggage, yet also having time to explore local towns and villages was perfect for us. Wish there were more kayaking options in southern france that you offered.

Ms Martin, 3 Aug 2013

 

Friendly Dordogne, repa and hoteliers alike. Helpful at all times. Good food if a little rich and large at times. Canoeing was excellent and good safety equipment and instructions. River is variable so guide lines only approximate. Very hot in July but trees provide shade as does starting out earlier than 10.00 a.m. On the four day canoeing( out of 8 days ) important on days 1 and 2 to wear a helmet. A hazard on each of those days and helmet was useful to one person ! Lovely hotel in Sarlat on first and last day with warm pool. Market exceptional in Sarlat. Trip out by air left us in Toulouse for over 3 houirs with luggage and heat of day waiting for train to Souillac. Very hard day travelling. Advise breaking it up or take euro star and train.

Ms Dixon, 2 Jul 2013

 

Overall we enjoyed the holiday very much despite weather that was less than kind, especially for the time of year. The upside of going in June was that we had the river almost entirely to ourselves, and the faster-than-usual current made for some good entertainment and less strenuous paddling. We would certainly recommend it to people who - like us - have never canoed before. A couple of problems before we left: we were incorrectly invoiced (500 was added for flights we weren't taking) and both our surnames were misspelt. Once we got there Keith did an excellent job, including sorting out rooms with a bath to soothe our aching bodies at each hotel. He also lent me his own waterproof bag for the week, and picked us up early as requested on the final day - he couldn't have been more helpful. As far as the hotels were concerned, the weak link is St Sozy (although it's worth going there just for Bernard, who is a hoot). I suppose you have limited options around there, but it's quite a walk from the river and it's a pain that it doesn't open till 1730. Also to be told that we are only allowed one croissant each for breakfast is not really acceptable. On the other hand Bernard sorted us out an excellent taxi driver who took us by various scenic routes to Rocamadour on our rest day. One general comment we would make - especially in view of the cost of the holiday - is that Headwater might consider putting its guests in slightly better rooms - we seemed often to be in the cheapest - and preferably ones with a bath. Overall, though, an excellent holiday, though we'd be grateful if another time you could sort out the weather...

Mr Haggis, 22 Jun 2013

 


Self-guided canoeing

8 nights,
hotel-to-hotel

9.0Kg CO2e

8 nights from £1799

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Call: 01606 720199

 

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