7 nights/8 days
On our newest tour of Dordogne we’ve brought you a new way to discover the area in full. You’ll discover the quintessential Perigord and Quercy regions and all they have to offer. You’ll witness historical landmarks dating back to the prehistory ages. You’ll be up close and personal with the varied landscapes of rivers, cliffs, caves, rolling hills, farms and forests to name a few. You’ll dine as the locals do, with rich and hearty portions of foie gras, goose, duck, walnuts, mushrooms and boudin noir. You’ll witness some of France’s most beloved castles along with cycling through several towns that hold the esteemed title of, “Les Plus Beaux Villages de France,” or one of the most beautiful villages of France. All in all, we’re ready to present you with a tour of Dordogne that will enlighten you to some of our personal favorite locations from one of France’s most underrated regions. Voila… c’est Dordogne, c’est magnifique!
Day 1: Arrive in Souillac.
Whether you arrive by train from Paris or Toulouse, we’ll meet you at the station in Souillac and transfer you to your hotel located in the heart of the medieval part of Souillac. You are at the crossroads of Perigord and Quercy, two areas that you will explore in the next few days. In the afternoon, you’ll meet our local representative, Christine, who will brief you over the next few days’ itinerary and outfit you with bikes. Once she departs, you won’t see her until the end of your tour, as this is a self-guided trip. Don’t worry though! You won’t be stranded. If you have any questions or need assistance while on the road you can contact her by phone. We understand everyone bikes at different paces and have different interests which is why we believe the best way to experience an unfamiliar land is with a self-guided tour setting.We’ll provide suggestions but by no means do you have to have any obligations. Your first night’s meal will get you in the mood for the day’s ahead… rich and hearty gastronomy is a part of this region’s heritage!
Day 2: Souillac to Montignac (Options A and A+) or Lacave to Coly (Option A++) -(approx. 44 km/ 27 miles)
Following breakfast you have the freedom to pack light when setting off on your adventure. We provide a luggage service throughout the entirety of the trip, which involves transferring your luggage to and from each hotel so you don’t have unnecessary items weighing you down. When you arrive at your next destination, your luggage will be waiting for you at the front desk. All of our rental bikes come with removable panniers that are handy for storing place personal items or anything you may purchase along the way. Today’s itinerary will take you on quiet roads—away from the touristy crowds—through Perigord farmland. On your way, we recommend that you stop by the magnificently landscaped Jardins d’Eyrignac—an ideal spot if you choose to picnic that day--before proceeding through the quaint villages of Salignac and Saint-Amand-de-Coly. Your final destination is the lovely village of Montignac, made famous in 1940 when four school kids stumbled upon the entrance of what became known as the Lascaux cave. It contains some of the oldest and best-known prehistoric cave paintings in the world and is an official UNESCO World Heritage Site. Although the original cave is restricted to a handful of scientists, we recommend you visit an exact replica on a guided tour… an excellent introduction to this part of France.
Day 3: Montignac to Sarlat (Options A and A+) or Coly to Sarlat (Option A+) -(approx. 49 km/ 30.5 miles)
If you’ve followed our recommendation and visited Lascaux the previous day, the prehistoric sites along today’s route will be more meaningful to you. You will discover another UNESCO World Heritage Site… the Vezere Valley! This valley is known as the cradle of prehistory. It contains a museum, numerous caves, and ancient rock shelters (among other natural attractions). We highly suggest you visit this mysterious and archaeologically significant area. If ancient caves and shelters spook you out or you’re just not interested, no worries! The great thing about choosing a Cyclomundo self-guided tour is you have the freedom to do what you want, when you want, with no tour group or guide to slow you down. As you cycle further you’ll head to Les Eyzies, the world capital of prehistory and home to the Font-de-Gaume cave and the Natural Museum of Prehistory. On your way you will pass the unusual cliff-hanging site of “La Roque Saint-Christophe,” which is a multi-tiered, natural rock shelter that housed inhabitants from prehistory through The Middle Ages. Afterwards, a ride through picture-perfect duck and geese farms will give you time to contemplate what you just witnessed. The afternoon route is no less scenic. You will ride through Sarlat, which we highly recommend you visit. It was the biggest medieval town in Europe and definitely an extraordinary place still. If you decide on our Option A+ version of this tour, note that your hotel is set in the countryside atop a short climb (well worth it!).
Day 4: Loop around Sarlat -(approx. 47 km/ 30 miles)
Remember to charge your camera battery before today’s ride! Although the mileage isn’t too demanding, the route is packed with extraordinarily breathtaking sites for you to stop at if you wish. The first one is the visually mesmerizing village of La Roque Gageac, carved and set against the base of a clay cliff. Further on you’ll cycle through Beynac and have the opportunity to visit its medieval castle. Keep in mind, the castle is set at the top of the cliff overlooking the town, so you’ll need to be ready for a bit of a climb but it’s completely worth it for the view of the town and Dordogne River. The Beynac castle is one of the most iconic and well preserved in Dordogne. Across the river, we also recommend you take the opportunity to visit the medieval fortress of Castelnaud. Further on in your ride is the medieval village of Domme and its views over the Dordogne tributaries. Domme holds the proud recognition for being one of “Les Plus Beaux Villages de France,” or one of the most beautiful villages of France. On the way back, you will ride by the Chateau de Montfort… Quite a day!
Day 5: Sarlat to Rocamadour-(approx. 54 km/ 34 miles)
The first part of the ride will be done on a traffic-free bikeway… This day’s mileage is the longest, but quite a rewarding adventure! The whole ride is done on quiet roads through authentic villages. You’ll pass from the tranquil forested Perigord to the bare limestone “Causses,” or plateau of Quercy, which offer spectacular perspectives of the region. Today you have the same freedom as each day to spend lunch as you wish, but let us suggest a lunchtime picnic somewhere along your route as you’ll have plenty of ideal locations to choose from. In itself, it is an extraordinary ride. Add that to it the fact that you end up in Rocamadour, and you have an extraordinary day. In fact, the ride is a personal favorite of Cyclomundo, but don’t tell that to your friends who are going to another destination! Rocamadour beautifully cradles the side of a cliff overlooking a tributary of the Dordogne River. Your hotel is in the upper part of town, which is linked to the main medieval street via a walking path that will take you among the town’s historic, holy sanctuaries.
Day 6: Loop around Rocamadour -(approx. 56 km/ 35 miles)
As you will be staying at the same hotel again in Rocamadour, you have the option to take the day off or cycle the loop that we have gladly prepared for you. As always with Cyclomundo, it’s up to you! The town is full of amazing sites but if you wish to cycle you’ll visit the 100 meter deep Padirac Chasm, one of this regions most extraordinary sites (It actually includes a ride along an underground river). You’ll also cycle through the small villages of Carennacand Loubressac that also have both been recognized with the sought-after title, “Les Plus Beaux Villages de France” (One of France’s prettiest villages). An early return to Rocamadour will allow you to explore the town or enjoy a relaxing time by the hotel swimming pool.
Day 7: Rocamadour to Souillac (or Lacave for Option A++) -(approx. 41 km or 25.5 miles)
Your last day consists of a relaxed bike ride alonga scenic route to the Dordogne River and its magnificent viewpoints of the postcard worthy Chateau de Belcastel. From there, the river will guide you right to Souillac. On this day we can accommodate longer routes if you so desire.
Day 8: Departure
After breakfast, we will transfer you to the Souillac train station.
Price: From 785 euros per person based on double occupancy. This trip is offered in three different versions:
Option A: Using 2- and 3-star properties
- 785 euros per person April & October. Single supplement is 255 euros
- 850 euros per person May, June & September. Single supplement is 260 euros
- 880 euros per person July & August. Single supplement is 265 euros
Option A+: Using 3-star properties “of character”
- 930 euros per person April & October. Single supplement is 290 euros
- 990 euros per person May, June & September. Single supplement is 295 euros
- 1015 euros per person July & August. Single supplement is 300 euros
Option A++: Using 3- and 4-star properties "of character"
- 1600 euros per person April & October. Single supplement is on request.
- 1755 euros per person May, June & September. Single supplement is on request.
- 1870 euros per person July & August. Single supplement is on request.
These prices include:
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Europe France Outdoor: Land Rambler Bicycle Touring
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