Tour of the villages of Périgord’s ‘Golden Triangle’
The Périgord Noir contains the so-called ‘Golden Triangle’, which is roughly demarcated by the valleys of the Vézère and Dordogne rivers. Périgord’s Golden Triangle is packed with fascinating top tourist attractions like the troglodyte sites of la Madeleine and Saint-Christophe, the various underground habitations and prehistoric shelters in the Vallée de l’Homme, the Château de Commarque, the village of dry-stone huts of the Cabanes du Breuil, the fortified village of Castelnaud, the Château de Beynac, the village of la Roque-Gageac (partially built into the cliff face) and the Bastide de Domme (a fortified medieval town). The Golden Triangle is classified as a ‘Site Majeur d’Aquitaine’ (awarded to places of particular heritage value). This beautiful journey through peaceful countryside is well worth the effort when next you come to stay in the Périgord Noir!
A trip along the Dordogne River in a traditional Gabarre (scow)
A guided river trip on a traditional gabarre (scow) down the Dordogne River is one of the absolute musts during your stay in the Périgord Noir.
Set off on a cruise to explore the Dordogne and the Périgord Noir and enjoy stunning panoramic views of the superb Marqueyssac hanging gardens high above the river. This trip will also offer unbeatable views of the Château de Beynac, Château Castelnaud, Château Marqueyssac and the Château de Fayrac. It’s a great way to get away from it all for a while and really unwind. The tour guide will also tell you all about the incredible story of river boat transportation on the Dordogne River during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Going down the Dordogne River by canoe and kayak
If you want to take a more unusual approach to exploring the Dordogne Valley and the Périgord Noir, what could be better than taking a canoe or kayak trip down the river? Descending the Dordogne in a canoe, whether as a family or with a group of friends, is a great way to discover the Périgord Noir region in a way that’s both fun and which enables you to educate yourself on the local heritage. Accompanied by a professional guide, you’ll be kitted out with a canoe or kayak, paddles and a life-jacket – destination: rest and recreation central! Between paddling, drink in the stunning countryside of the Dordogne Valley, including Domme on its cliff-top location, the Château de Castelnaud, the Château de Fayrac and the Château de Beynac, not to mention the village of la Roque-Gageac and many other gems of the Périgord Noir!
Walks around Sarlat
Hiking has figured prominently in many tourists’ accounts of their stay in Sarlat. Such was the case of Harrison Baker, the famous English traveller who narrated his journey by foot and by boat through the Dordogne Valley. There are two main starting points for walking trails: Sarlat train station and Sarlat’s historic town centre. You’ll pass in front of the Maison de la Boëtie, Saint Sacerdos Cathedral and the church of Sainte Marie before joining the walking and cycling path that’s been constructed along the course of a disused railway line. This makes for a very easy and thoroughly enjoyable journey on foot through beautiful rural landscapes in search of the historical and cultural wonders of the Périgord Noir.
Hot-air balloon flights above the Dordogne Valley
Get yourself a bird’s-eye view of things and experience incredible views over the whole Dordogne Valley and the Périgord Noir region. Ensconced in the basket of your hot-air balloon, prepare for your breath to be taken away by the incredible spectacle unfolding beneath you: Sarlat’s medieval old town, the glorious countryside of the Périgord Noir, the splendid villages of La Roque-Gageac and Domme. It’s an experience that will really see your stay in the Périgord Noir take off! You’ll also have the chance to see the Château de Beynac, the Château de Marqueyssac and the Château de Castlenaud from a completely new perspective as they slide beneath you in glorious technicolour.