A classic tour designed to give a taste of the Perigord Noir – castles, caves, prehistory, the Vezere and Dordogne rivers, beautiful villages, towns and countryside, gastronomy…
Day 1: Terrasson Lavilledieu – Montignac (16km)
Begin from the town of Terrasson Lavilledieu, gateway to the Perigord Noir region, situated to the north of Montignac and the world famous Lascaux Caves.
The town is situated on both sides of the Vézère River and is known for its blue slate tiled roofs which are uncommon in the Dordogne. A short ride on the 1st day, following the picturesque route alongside the old railway and staying within the river valley, allows time to visit Lascaux (the official visit is 2h30mins). Overnight in Montignac.
Day 2: Montignac – Les Eyzies via St Leon sur Vezere (23km)
Cycle south towards your second night stop at Les Eyzies, one of the most popular villages in the Dordogne and home to the National Museum of Prehistory. Your journey follows the Vezere River to St Leon sur Vézère - an accredited ‘most beautiful village’ of France, a good place for a lunch stop. You will pass directly under the incredible troglodyte dwellings at Roque St Christophe. From here a steady climb onto the ridge which will then gently undulate it’s way to an exhilarating downhill ride into Les Eyzies. Overnight in Les Eyzies.
Day 3 - Les Eyzies – Belves via Limeuil & Cadouin (45km)
Visit the Musee National de Prehistoire in Les Eyzies, (worth taking the guided tour).
Cycle along the valley and into Le Bugue. From here it’s a direct route into the ‘plus beau village’ of Limeuil where the Vézère and Dordogne rivers converge. There are plenty of cafes and restaurants to choose from in both towns. A gentle ride along the river from here towards Cadouin, where the abbey cloisters are definitely worth a visit
A final hop from Cadouin into the medieval ‘plus beau village’ of Belves.
Image of Belves, Cadouin. Overnight in Belves
Day 4 – Belves – Castelnaud-la-Chapelle (22km)
A gentle climb up to the ridge with amazing views across the Dordogne valley. Take some time to enjoy this lovely ride along the river which will take you directly to the Chateau de Milandes, home of the late Jospehine Baker and explore the plus beau village of Castelnaud-la-Chapelle and its famous Chateau.
From here you might choose to visit several beautiful villages all nestled close together – including La Roque Gageac, on the northern banks of the Dordogne River, nestled into the foot of cliffs and hills, and the medieval towns of Domme. Overnight in Beynac, Roque-Gageac or Castelnaud.
You may want to choose to stay another night to take in all the sights, fit in a Gabarre ride along the river or canoe along the Dordogne!
Day 5 – Roque-Gageac / Castelnaud or Beynac to Sarlat via Carsac Aillac
Take some time to explore the town if you haven’t already before setting off to the ‘capital’ of the Périgord Noir. Visit the Jardins d’Eau at Carsac and enjoy an easy ride along the converted railway line 'Voie Verte' into Sarlat-la-Canada.
Day 6 – Sarlat to Souillac.
After a night in Sarlat, it’s an easy days cycling to the town of Souillac along the Voie Verte - a wonderful traffic free converted railway line and a respite from some of the ups and downs of the Dordogne! End your tour just over the border into the Lot, where there are excellent rail links.
All suggested visits are optional – they are merely our recommendations but you are free to spend your non-cycling time as you please! We are always happy to make other suggestions for places to see.
This tour can be reduced to 5 days by omitting the night at Montignac for those not wishing to spend time at Lascaux.
Extra nights can be spent at any point along your route – just let us know when booking.
Nearby airports are BERGERAC , BRIVE, LIMOGES & BORDEAUX . All have good rail links to Terrasson.
There are good rail links from Paris or from Bordeaux & Limoges if you are flying. Routes include:
Paris Austerlitz - Brive direct with a quick change to Terrasson
Bordeaux – Perigueux – Terrasson
Limoges – Brive – Terrasson
A useful railway map of France can be found here.