Domme gate, france tour, cycling tour
Group in Domme, france tour, cycling tour
La Roque Gageac
Domme- Hilltop Bastide
2010 Departures- Call or email for info
2795 euros per person double occupancy

For information, phone or email

Chateau de Roumegouse, france tour
Chateau de Roumegouse
Rocamadour, france tour
Canoe trip, france tour
Padirac, france tour
Gouffre de Padirac- Boat Ride 300 ft.       
below ground
Canoe Ride on the Dordogne River
Roumegouse to Vitrac 35.6km Total- 17.6km (11.0 miles) bike and 18.0km
(11.25 miles) canoe/kayak- shuttle
Today is moving day, so we bid adieu to the Chateau de Roumegouse and make
our way toward Vitrac. Our travels include both biking and canoeing, however, and
this will be a particularly fun day. We leave the Chateau de Roumegouse and head
toward Meyronne, on the Dordogne river where we will pick up our canoes and/or
kayaks. Kayaks are for more adventurous individuals, and we recommend canoes
for groups of two or more. The bike ride is the easiest of the tour, and much of it is
a gentle downhill to the river at Meyronne. The canoe ride from Meyronne to
Souillac, where we will disembark, is the prettiest part of the Dordogne river. There
are lots of white sandstone cliffs, and now and then a chateau comes into view on
the cliffs above the river. There is even an area of caves in which one can enter in
the canoe!! Stop anywhere along the way and sit on the bank and sun, hike
around, or just enjoy the river. The boat ride takes 2 hours, and upon arrival at our
drop-off point we will enjoy an excellent picnic lunch on the river bank. Afterwards
we will shuttle the group to our next hotel, the impressive Domaine de Rochebois in
Vitrac.  For those interested, an optional bike ride to the hotel will be offered rather
than taking the shuttle.  This adds 35k of biking to the day.
Lodging: Domaine de Rochebois Route de Montfort F-24200 Vitrac-Sarlat
Features: Swimming, golf
Rochebois, france tour
Roumegouse, france tour
Aerial Views of our First Two Hotels: Chateau de Roumegouse (left)
     and Domaine de Rochebois (right)
Vitrac area Loop Basic Route- 29.7km (18.6 miles)
Today we will visit three of the "100 Most Beautiful Villages of France". We start our
trek by heading up the hill toward Domme. Sometimes called the "Acropolis of the
Dordogne", Domme is remarkably situated on a rocky crag overlooking the
Dordogne valley. From the promontory, the view embraces the Dordogne valley
from the Montfort meander in the east, to Beynac in the west. Of all the creative
artists who have come here seeking inspiration, the writer Henry Miller was perhaps
the most affected, describing the area as the nearest thing to Paradise on earth.
Domme is a bastide village that was founded by Philip the Bold in 1283, somewhat
later than other villages in the area. People at the time were encouraged to go to
newly founded towns, most of which were planned around a central covered market
area. There are numerous bastides in France dating from this general period.
From Domme we coast downhill toward La Roque Gageac. This charming village is
huddled against a cliff which drops vertically to the river Dordogne. It features
attractive little streets with interesting homes, churches, and other buildings,
including the Manoir de Tarde, a manor house of the locally famous Tarde family.
One stretch has semi-tropical plant life in abundance, as the protection of the cliff is
such that the flora there can survive even in the winter months.

A short distance away is beautiful Beynac. The Chateau de Beynac stands on a
remarkable site, rising from the top of a rock as it overlooks the beautiful
valley winding between hills crowned with castles. The village tucked at the foot of
the cliff by the river is where the recent motion picture "Chocolat" was filmed. In the
Middle Ages Beynac, Biron, Bourdeilles and Mareuil were the four baronies of
Perigord. When the Capetians and the Plantagenets were at war, the castle, which
once had been captured by Richard the Lion Heart, was used as a base by the
sinister Mercadier, master-at-arms, whose bands of men pillaged the countryside
on behalf of the king of England. In 1214, during the Albigensian Crusade, Simon
de Montfort seized the castle and demolished it. The castle was later rebuilt, as we
see it today, by a lord of Beynac. During the Hundred Years War, the Dordogne
marked the front between the English and the French, and there were constant
skirmishes and raids between Beynac under the English in 1360, then the French
in 1368, and Castelnaud under the English. There is a sheer drop of almost 500 ft.
from the chateau to the river, and the view is spectacular. The panorama includes
the nearby castles of Marqueyssac, Castelnaud, and Fayrac. A steeply sloping
footpath known locally as the Caminal del Panieraire (basket maker's path- you will
recognize it from the film "Chocolat") leads from the bottom of the village, through
rows of renaissance houses dating from the 15th to the 17th centuries, to the castle
and the church on top. We will take this path on our way up to visit the castle.
We'll plan on shuttling to Sarlat for dinner tonight.
Lodging: Domaine de Rochebois Route de Montfort F-24200 Vitrac-Sarlat
Fax: Features: Swimming, golf
La Roque Gageac, france tour, cycling tour
Domme street, france tour, cycling tour
What's Included?

Hotel fees and gratuities at the hotels
All breakfasts and dinners.
Transfers from train stations at Brive-la-Gaillard (arrival) and Souillac (departure).
All baggage transfers to and from train stations and between hotels.
All entry fees to attractions visited.

Price does not include:
Alcoholic or other bottled beverages (except at hosted cocktail parties).
Lunches (except 1 picnic lunch)
Orders off supplemental menus
Fees for optional activities (golf, etc.)
Air and train transportation prior to pickup and after drop off at Brive-la-Gaillarde
train station.
DAY 1- Welcome to the Dordogne!
9.2km (5.75 miles) Orientation Ride
We will meet at the café in the train station in
Brive-la-Gaillarde at 2:12pm.  From there we shuttle
to our home for the next two nights, the lovely
Chateau de Roumegouse. After check-in we will
gather to have a short bike/safety briefing in
preparation for the short orientation ride of 9.2km.
The route takes us through the nearby villages of
Rignac and Alvignac, as well as through nearby back
country and farmlands. Although short, the route
gives a good overview of the local terrain and
After the ride guests can explore the lovely hotel
grounds prior to an introductory cocktail. We will give
a brief overview of the Dordogne region and will
encourage everyone to get to know each other. Next
we are on to a great French dinner at the hotel
Lodging: Chateau de Roumegouse 46500 Gramat
Features: swimming, hiking
Rocamadour-Padirac Loop 38.0km (23.75 miles)
Long Option 50.9km (31.8 miles)
Our first full day of riding (and longest of the trip)
takes us first to Rocamadour. Considered one of the
most extraordinary places in France, this village, with
its slender castle keep towering above it, comprises a
mass of old dwellings, oratories, towers and
precipitous rocks on the rugged face of a causse cliff
rising about 500 ft. above the Alzou Canyon below.
The photo on the right shows a profile view of the
village which seems to incredibly defy gravity in its
construction. The village was named after St.
Amadour, a somewhat mysterious hermit who knew
the region well. The village had its zenith in the
13th century and was long one of the most famous pilgrimage sites in Christiandom.
Miraculous cures were said to occur for some who kneeled before the threshold of
the Chapel of the Virgin. Massive crowds of up to thirty thousand would come on
days of major pardon and plenary indulgence. Upon arrival, pilgrims would strip off
their clothes and climb the famous steps on their knees in only a shirt, with chains
bound round their arms and neck. A priest recited prayers of purification and
removed the chains from the penitents, who, now forgiven, received from the priest
a certificate and a kind of medal in lead bearing the image of the miraculous Virgin.
Although pillaged during the 100 years war and the Wars of Religion later, the
village was rebuilt over the years. It is essentially three levels, with the castle on top
of the cliff, the church area in the middle section, and the village far below. The
village is pedestrian only and is very quaint. An elevator is available to take visitors
back to the top level. It is one of the "100 Most Beautiful Villages of France".
After the Rocamadour visit and lunch, we head off through the countryside to an
extremely unique attraction, the Gouffre de Padirac. A splendid example of the cave
formations in the area, the Gouffre de Padirac (gouffre means abyss or chasm)
offers visitors boat rides more than 300 feet below the earth's surface. Elevators
provide access and exit from the cave, which features interesting rock formations,
and numerous stalagmites, stalactites, pools, etc. First explored by the speleologist,
Edouard Martel, in 1889, the gouffre has been open to the public since 1898. The
Grand Dome is an impressive open area, above which the earth's crust is only a few
meters thick. A fun and different attraction. It's not often one is in a boat 300 feet

After the guided visit to the Gouffre de Padirac, we meander through lovely
countryside toward the hotel. En route we pass through several villages, including
Padirac, Thegra, and Rignac.  
Lodging: Chateau de Roumegouse 46500 Gramat
Features: Swimming, hiking
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Day 5- Vitrac to Les Eyzies de Tayac-
Today is another moving day and we’ll be heading out to reach our new home for the
next two nights, the Hotel du Centenaire in Les Eyzies de Tayac.  The Centenaire has
an excellent two star Michelin restaurant, and we’ll be partaking of their superb cuisine
for the next two nights.  Before dinner, however, we have a few sights to see.  

After leaving the hotel, we'll pass once again through La Roque Gageac before
crossing the bridge over the Dordogne river and arriving at Castelnaud, the fortified
Chateau which was a key holding in the Hundred Years War and changed hands a
number of times between the French and English.  The chateau now houses the Middle
Ages Siege Warfare Museum, and this is definitely worth a visit.  

From there we will follow the meandering Dordogne river until we arrive at its
confluence with the Vezere.  From here it is a short jaunt to our hotel where another
superb dinner awaits.
Lodging: Hotel du Centenaire, 2 Ave. du Cingle, Les Eyzies de Tayac, France
Phone: 05 53 06 68 68
Fax: 05 53 06 92 41
Day 6- Les Eyzies to Grotte du Grand Roc
Today we'll be riding through some of the most important areas of prehistoric history,
as many sites have been discovered through the years near Les Eyzies.  In that spirit
we'll visit the famous Font du Gaume which features prehistoric wall paintings done
thousands of years ago.  We'll also see the famous Grotte du Grand Roc (Cave of
the Big Rock) which has spectacular views over the Vezere river valley.  Lastly we'll
stop in at the Prehistoric museum which will put the whole day into clear perspective.  
It's then off to the hotel and our farewell dinner, once again a spectacular meal in the
Michelin 2 star restaurant of our hotel.  There are only about 70 Michelin 2 star
restaurants in all of France, so we have the pleasure of dining in one of the top
establishments in the country.