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Walks Along the Banks of the Dordogne

Walks Along the Banks of the Dordogne

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  • Holiday typeSelf-guided walking
  • Duration8 nights
  • Accommodationhotel-to-hotel
    and
  • Activity level
  • From $2015per person, tour only
  • Departures
    Every two days from 19 Apr '19 to 16 Oct '19
  • What your holiday price includes
  • 8 nights hotel-to-hotel accommodation in a mix of and hotels
  • Continental breakfasts and all evening meals
  • Services of your local Headwater Representative
  • Headwater Wine Collection Service
  • Route directions and maps
  • Luggage transfers between hotels
  • Optional Upgrades
  • Room upgrades and extra nights at selected hotels
  • City break add-ons in Paris and Toulouse
  • Excellent choice for
  • Food lovers, wine lovers, flora & fauna, art & history, swimming opportunities, solo travellers, couples, lake & river routes
      from 18 reviews

Mr Ekers says...
Wonderful trip! Everything was so well set up for- transfers, trip notes etc. The walks themselves were stunning, and it was amazing to jump into the pool ...
Read reviews »

Gallery

Walks Along the Banks of the Dordogne

  • Unspoilt scenery, woodland valleys, well-marked tranquil riverside paths
  • Pretty mediaeval villages; traditional Perigourdine markets, fairytale chateaux
  • La Roque Gageac, one of 'Les Plus Beaux Villages de France'
  • Wonderful river wildlife: heron, coypu,kites, kingfishers, buzzards and dragonflies
  • Friendly, family-run hotels, all with pools and good food

Perigord is one of the largest and most picturesque areas in France. It is divided into two by the River Dordogne which founded the historic frontier between France and England during the Hundred Years War (1337-1453). Along its banks you'll find over a thousand castles steeped in legend and history, and witness to centuries of conquests and conflict. Today the rich and varied culture of this land is still here for you to discover. You will meander along paths that follow the twists and turns of the valley and you will climb through fields and shaded woodland to hilltop towns and fortified strongholds with impressive views.

You're never far from the River Dordogne, the walks will take you past dramatic limestone cliffs, along tranquil riverside paths and through quiet mediaeval villages and sleepy hamlets - you might walk for miles and see no one but the occasional farmer or angler!

The Perigord is renowned for its traditional gastronomy and at the end of each day you'll experience a delicious Perigord feast, perhaps washed down with fine Cahors or Bergerac wines. Try the gourmet fare of foie gras, truffles, confits d'oie and the walnut liqueur eau de noix. You will stay in characterful *** and **** hotels throughout, including a grand country manor set in its own private parkland, two beautifully preserved chateaux and a traditional family-run auberge. All hotels have private swimming pools.



We're here to help

If you have any questions about this holiday call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347, use our live webchat or email usa@exodustravels.com

Day-by-day itinerary



Walking information

Peaceful well-marked walks mainly through forests, sunflower fields and along riverside paths. Rolling hills, so no need for a head for heights. Walking poles are recommended.




We're here to help

If you've any questions about this holiday call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 , or email usa@exodustravels.com

Day 1 - Arrive in Martel

Arrive at your hotel in Martel, a picturesque town also known as 'la ville aux sept tours' or the town of seven towers. Your Hotel is a former convent school in 7000m2 of private gardens. (Staying at Le Relais Sainte-Anne, Half Board)

Day 2 - Martel to Meyronne 10km/6.5mi/2.5hr

Before leaving Martel, take time to enjoy its mediaeval streets, in particular the Palais de la Raymondie and the Place de la Halle. Martel is where the son of Henry II, (called Henry Court-Mantel for the new short cloak he made fashionable) died during the Hundred Years War; the house where he died is still visible today. Enjoy wonderful 360° views of the Dordogne Valley from the summit of Mont Mercou, before arriving at your C11 chateau hotel. (Staying at Hotel de la Terrasse, Half Board)

Day 3 - At Meyronne

You have lots of choices today. Either relax by the hotel pool or walk south of the river to Rocher Sainte-Marie and the Grottes de Lacave. If you prefer, head to the town of Rocamadour, home to the shrine of the Black Madonna and one of France's most venerated religious sites. Alternatively, travel by taxi to the Gouffre de Padirac, an enormous chasm where you descend into an underground cave system that you then explore by boat along the subterranean stream. (Staying at Hotel de la Terrasse, Half Board)

Day 4 - Meyronne to Souillac 19km/12mi/5hr

Leave Meyronne following the rewarding path along the Roc de Monges with spectacular panoramic views along the river and buzzards and kites soaring overhead. Take the GR6 path through sleepy hamlets and lush farmland, rejoining the river at Chateau de la Treyne before continuing on to the atmospheric small town of Souillac. (Staying at La Vielle Auberge, Half Board)

Day 5 - At Souillac

Wander around this delightful town or visit the Musee de l'Automate, which holds the largest collection of mechanical toys and dolls in France. Alternatively, walk to La Durantie for more stunning views along the Dordogne Valley. (Staying at La Vielle Auberge, Half Board)

Day 6 - Souillac to Carsac 13km/8mi/3.5hr or 16km/10mi/4hr

Take a transfer to Roufillac then head along the south bank of the Dordogne River into the heart of the Perigord Nord. You can also take a short detour to visit Chateau de Fenelon en route to Carsac. (Staying at La Villa Romaine, Half Board)

Day 7 - At Carsac

Walk along the disused railway line that is now a 'voie verte' into Sarlat and explore this mediaeval town, the capital of the Perigord Noir. Wander the warren of old lanes and charming courtyards with their Renaissance facades and richly ornamented buildings, now protected by law. (Staying at La Villa Romaine, Half Board)

Day 8 - Carsac to Saint-Vincent-de-Cosse 21km/13.5mi/5hr or 19km/12mi/5hr

Today's wonderful day of walking takes you along one of the historically interesting sections of the Dordogne River. Pass stone bories (dry stone huts) and small country hamlets as you walk between Chateau de Montfort, Vitrac port and La Roque-Gageac, with incredible views. With the fortifications of Castelnau just across the river from you, stroll into the incredible towering stronghold of Beynac with its quaint cobbled lanes, once besieged by Richard the Lionheart. Take a short but steep detour up to the Chateau de Beynac - perhaps enjoy a refreshing drink on a cafe terrace, with stunning views over the river, then continue through the serene countryside to your hotel. (Staying at the Domaine de Monrecour Chateau Hotel, Half Board)

Day 9 - Leave Saint-Vincent-de-Cosse

Where you stay

During your holiday you stay at the following hotels. If you'd like to extend your time at any of these or, if you'd like to enhance your stay with an upgraded room, just let us know at the time of booking.

To find out more call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347, use our live webchat or email usa@exodustravels.com

Le Relais Sainte-Anne, Martel

Swimming Pool IconNEARBY:

The rooms in the charming Relais Sainte-Anne are tastefully decorated with antique furniture. The grounds include a pool and extensive gardens to wander and relax in. Evening meals can be taken on the terrace in good weather.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

DatesSuperior Room Junior SuiteSuite with terrace
11/05/2018 - 30/09/2018£13£13£52

All prices shown above are valid from 30/08/2018. Prices are per person per night based on 2 sharing.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

Hotel La Terrasse , Meyronne

Swimming Pool IconNEARBY:

The Hotel La Terrasse, ideally situated overlooking the Dordogne, is a converted C11 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!

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

DatesSuperior RoomSuite
02/06/2018 - 30/09/2018£20£98

All prices shown above are valid from 18/11/2017. Prices are per person per night based on 2 sharing.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

La Vieille Auberge, Souillac

Swimming Pool IconHair dryer iconNEARBY:

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.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Room upgrades are not available at this hotel.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

La Villa Romaine, Carsac

Swimming Pool IconHair dryer iconNEARBY:

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 C15 and developed in C19 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.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

DatesSuperior RoomLuxe Room
11/05/2018 - 30/09/2018£12£26

All prices shown above are valid from 18/11/2017. Prices are per person per night based on two people sharing.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

Chateau de Monrecour, Saint Vincent de Cosse

Swimming Pool IconHair dryer iconNEARBY:

The Chateau de Monrecour is located in Saint Vincent de Cosse, just a few kilometres from stunning Beynac. Guest rooms are traditionally decorated and equipped with a private bathroom, free Wi-Fi access and TV. The hotel also has a swimming pool and a large south-facing terrace.

Breakfast is served in the chateau's ballroom, which is decorated with tapestries and features a large stone fireplace. During good weather, guests can enjoy breakfast on the terrace, which has a view of the C15 Chateau des Milandes. Evening meals are served in the hotel restaurant and are a real treat: be prepared to sample sumptuous local dishes, prepared with fresh products.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

DatesLuxe Room
02/06/2018 - 30/09/2018£9

All prices shown above are valid from 24/11/2017. Supplements are per person per night based on 2 sharing. Luxe rooms are larger rooms with 4 poster bed and jet shower.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

Extending your stay

If you'd like to extend your trip with extra nights at the start or end, or if you'd like to arrange a stop off point en-route, then we recommend the following hotels.

Hotel Le Senat , Paris

Hair dryer icon

The 4* 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.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Room upgrades are not available at this hotel.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

Hotel Pere Leon, Toulouse

Hair dryer icon

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.

Find out more on the hotel website and read customer reviews on Tripadvisor.

Dates

All prices shown above are valid from 26/03/2018. Supplement is per person per night based on 2 adults sharing. The deluxe room is larger than the standard room.

Please contact us for extra night prices.

Travel

Transfers included from Souillac train station at 16:30 Mon-Thurs & Sat, 15:18 Fri and 18:34 Sun and back to Souillac train station at 10:30 Mon-Sat & 07:30 Sun.

Please call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 or email usa@exodustravels.com to arrange connecting flights.

Reviews

Everyone who goes on a Headwater holiday will be emailed a link to our post-holiday questionnaire where they can give us an honest assessment of all aspects of their holiday - everything from how quickly we answer the phone to how clean the hotels were - plus an overall rating and comments about their holiday.

Any feedback collected is posted to our website, so that people can make an informed decision based on past experiences before heading off on holiday. We don’t edit the reviews, the only thing we do is proofread them and alter any typos, where necessary, to ensure they are easy to read for everyone. All reviews will be published (except in certain extreme circumstances), and a member of the Headwater team will respond to any constructive criticisms/comments under the reviews, at their discretion. So, for the real tales, twists and turns of our holidays, look no further than the reviews from our previous travellers.


Mr Ekers, 06/09/2018

Wonderful trip! Everything was so well set up for- transfers, trip notes etc. The walks themselves were stunning, and it was amazing to jump into the pool at the end of the day. A great way to see the Dordogne and experience a different part of France.


Mrs Loaring, 07/06/2018

Very well planned and organised by knowledgable and helpful staff. Route notes generally accurate and helpful, although the wording can at times be confusing and imprecise as can some of the distances between way marks. The degree of difficulty on some days is under estimated and had we not been as fit as we are,we may have struggled with some of the climbs.. The local reps were superb, always charming, helpful, patient and totally reliable. Nothing was ever too much trouble for them. All of the hotels were excellent and two in particular were superb, both in terms of the cuisine and the rooms that we were accommodated in. However, in two hotels the menu did not change from day to day, and therefore, as non meat eaters we were limited to having the same meals on consecutive evenings; particularly as there were no vegetarian options and only one type of fish (which my wife does not like) available. The walk routes were glorious, beautiful scenery, varied terrain, and wonderful spring flowers (particularly many and varied orchids).


Mr Mepham, 22/05/2017

The holiday is an excellent combination of interesting, good length walks, fine hotels and great food. The lack of restaurant facilities at the Renoir was more than made up for by the quality of the food at the nearby Bistro L'Octroi. The finest food was undoubtedly at the Hotel Les Glycines but all were very satisfactory. There was plenty to do on all the rest days and we would particularly recommend visiting to Marqueyssac Gardens in Beynac, the museums dedicated to the amazing pre-historic finds around Les Eyzies, and lounging by the pool at the Laborderie.


Mrs Clark, 15/08/2016

The booking process was simple and supportive. The holiday exceeded expectation; not something I have said before. The accommodation was superb, food wonderful, welcome huge and help available when required.


Mrs Triger, 11/07/2016

We had two varied weeks in France, interspersed with the 8 day walking holiday. I think we have come to the conclusion that staying based in one hotel (i.e. Kandersteg) is probably better for us than walking from hotel to hotel. We missed having a car on our 'rest' days in order to explore the surroundings. We also found 23kms rather too much for us! We got lost a couple of times following the instructions - better signposting in Switzerland! However, the food, wine and the beautiful countryside was much appreciated. Not often one walks only hearing birdsong and nothing else!



Thanks Headwater for all your arrangements.


Mr Normand, 24/06/2016

Good varied walking, with clear directions. But we were pleased the weather was not hot because, aged about 70, we found the walking days quite full. Timing was as predicted though torrential rain had turned some of the tracks into an obstacle course.

Hotels were excellent, all very special in different ways. Chateau de Monrecours is magnificent, feels very expensive, with a talented chef and friendly helpful Maitre d'.

Monrecours and Les Glycines provided special menus for Headwater, Meysett and Laborderie scored by saying 'here are all our menus, have what you like'!

Nearly all staff spoke very good English.


Mr Hamilton-Viall, 23/05/2016

We enjoyed it and had a lot of fun, but it could have been even better with a few tweaks. Some of the walking notes certainly need reviewing as we wanted to enjoy the walking, not stand scratching our heads wondering if we had the right path. An explanation of the GR markers would have been really useful as we had to find out what they meant by trial and error. Also there were markets or events on some days that it would have been nice to know and arrange our days off to coincide with.

As regards hotels the Monrecour was superb, the labourderie very good and the Meysset OK. Les Glycinees we found varied. The location was great, the room ok. The food at the hotel varied from some of the best ever eaten to some of the worst. Our picnic sandwich was inedible. Generally it did not have the same feel as the other hotels. Also tea or coffee making in all hotels would be appreciated.


Mr Blunt, 13/09/2015

Lovely locations. There is so much choice of what to do on your spare days.

Although the walks are not too strenuous you do need to have enough food and water with you as there are few places on route where you can stock-up.

Do take your time following route instructions as markers are not always immediately obvious and can become difficult to see or disappear entirely.




Mrs Carrington-Bro, 13/09/2015

This was our second holiday with Headwater and again we had an excellent holiday. It was very well organised and the walking notes were easy to follow. The holiday certainly lived up to its name of being a gastronomic walking tour - the food was delicious throughout and all four hotels were very friendly.

The walking was pleasant but suffered a little in comparison to our first hoiday with Headwater (Umbria) as the Dordogne is a busier area than Umbria.

Our top tip would be to visit Le font de Gaume when staying in Les Eyzies - there are a limited number of tickets issued each day and 52 of these go on sale each morning at 9.30am. The receptionist at the hotel suggested we shoud be there by 7.30am, as September isn't peak season and as she predicted we weren't the first, we joined the very orderly queque as nos 11 and 12; it was a magical experience seeing original paintings that are 14,000 years old.

We came home feeling very relaxed and ready to book another Headwater holiday.


Mr Powell, 11/07/2015

Well organised and did what it said on the can!


Mr Strong, 02/07/2015

Beautiful region of France. Didn't see a soul whilst walking and the hotels were quiet which suited us! Representative was very friendly and helpful.


Mrs May, 11/07/2014

On this itinerary the length and gradient of the walks are not so suitable for the over 65s - we experienced them as three-boots rather than 2 on account of our age.

Your notes are very well written, congratulations. We never went wrong and rarely used the maps.

The menus on this gastronomic holiday were surprisingly limited - should have guessed they would be though. There was one evening when we could not face the foie gras and duck again so crept out for a cheap Italian despite having paid for the gastronomic bore. We cannot blame Headwater for this, please note.

Throughout the service was very good. The landscape and local attractions were outstanding. The routes were creatively chosen. Thanks!


Mr Hall, 26/05/2014

Wonderful countryside for walking and great walks - with a spectacular meal at the end of every day.


Mrs Cornelissen, 08/10/2013

There should be more information on the routes available early in the process. We had a 23 km walk, which was fine for us but it was not clear that there were any walks of this length and it could cause problems for some guests.


Mr Ingram, 28/09/2013

The Dordogne is a very good area for a holiday, with plenty to see and do in all weathers. The Headwater walking holiday is a very good introduction to the many varied facets of the region - geography, towns and villages, food and places of interest. We enjoyed experiencing different styles of hotel - they all have their own individuality - and all looked after us extremely well. The walking notes were faultless and the maps some of the best I've encountered on the nine Headwater holidays I've taken. The rep was very informative and helpful and although we required only the routine service we were confident that if exceptional circumstances arose they would be dealt with professionally.


Mr Stebbing, 27/09/2013

The Dordogne is a great area for walking with fantastic views and places to visit such as Chateau and cave/rock attractions. Mostly small hamlets along the route and limited facilities for refreshments so a picnic was essential. The walks were very strenuous in places with steep climbs and descents along stony paths. It was the toughest series of walks that we had undertaken (we live in Norfolk but have walked up Snowdon and other hills!) but we did it. Food at hotels in Beynac and Tamnies in particular was substantial and excellent but the walking helped burn off the calories. We flew from Norwich to Toulouse via Amsterdam and it was nice to be home within 40 mins of touching down in Norwich. Headwater helped us find a route to the Dordogne which didn't involve a long trip to and from London and didn't break the bank either.


Mr Petch, 24/08/2013

The accommodation was excellent, it was great having meals already arranged so no need to go in search after a long walk. Walking was as described in the brochure and route notes very good with a couple of minor hiccups. Our rep Claire was 1st class and made some helpful suggestions which added to the enjoyment of the holiday. All in all we had a great holiday and would definitely recommend it.


Ms Barton, 23/08/2013

We thoroughly enjoyed our walking holiday in the Dordogne. Accommodation and food were for the most part excellent. Walking notes were detailed and accurate. Our rep. was helpful and very informative.



Dates and prices

You can be confident that our pricing includes all the standard requirements of your holiday and many additional extras. Always ensure that you are comparing like for like when booking your holiday. Find out about The Headwater Price Promise to ensure you're getting the very best value for money.

For further details, or to check availability, speak to our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 or complete our holiday enquiry form (we'll contact you at a time that's most convenient for you).

To enquire about this holiday, or for further information, call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 or complete our holiday enquiry form.

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The prices quoted for each individual departure supercede those published in our current brochures. Air prices are subject to change and we advise early booking to obtain the best prices. Please see our Planning your holiday and What's included in the price? pages for additional information.

Holiday details

Children
Please contact us for child prices.

Holiday type
Self-guided walking Managed locally by Headwater appointed rep.

Departures
Every two days from 19th Apr 2019 to 16th Oct 2019, for 8 nights.

Meals
Continental breakfasts and all evening meals

Other details
Shuttle Bus from Toulouse Blagnac Airport to Toulouse Matabiau Station payable locally cost approximately 5 Euro per person per one way journey.

Tailor-made travel

Tour only
Transfers included from Souillac train station at 16:30 Mon-Thurs & Sat, 15:18 Fri and 18:34 Sun and back to Souillac train station at 10:30 Mon-Sat & 07:30 Sun.

How to book

For further details, or to check availability, speak to our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 or complete our holiday enquiry form (we'll contact you at a time that's most convenient for you).

To enquire about this holiday, or for further information, call our sales team on 1-800-267-3347 or complete our holiday enquiry form.

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We've been creating high-quality relaxed activity holidays since 1985 and our wealth of experience means we're able to build the perfect tailor-made tour for you. Our 'Gold Trusted' rating on Feefo, the independent review site, underlines our exceptional levels of customer service, and our ATOL bonding and ABTA membership guarantees your holiday is safe with us.


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