Dordogne
UNESCO Sites

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Our most recommended Dordogne UNESCO Sites

From Sarlat-la-Canéda: Lascaux IV and Cave Art Full-Day Tour

1. From Sarlat-la-Canéda: Lascaux IV and Cave Art Full-Day Tour

Dordogne is the world capital of prehistory. Here, Cro Magnon, the first early modern humans, settled and left some of the most fascinating artwork inside caves created by thousands of years of erosion. This 8-hour tour will take you to the most famous caves at Lascaux, and to admire the drawings and etchings of Rouffignac Cave. The tour begins at Les Eyzies de Tayac, where the first 5 skeletons of the Cro-Magnons were discovered in 1868. You will take a guided tour of the National Prehistory Museum, which opened in 2004, and possesses the largest collection of prehistoric artifacts in the world. Continue to Montignac, where you will visit the famous Lascaux IV Cave. A perfect reproduction of the original cave and its cave art, Lascaux IV opened in 2016 as a triumph of technology, unique in the world. Rigorous scientific and artistic methods were used to recreate the incomparable atmosphere of the original cave. A reinforced concrete shell was created using shipbuilding techniques, and the relief of the cave was reconstituted down to the tiniest detail. The polychromatic paintings were executed just as the originals were 17, 000 years ago, using natural pigments. End your tour at Rouffignac Cave, to see original etchings and drawings. The Renaissance poet and author François de Belleforest mentioned the Rouffignac Cave as long ago as 1575 in his “Cosmographie Universelle.” The cave paintings proved a popular tourist attraction back in the 19th-Century. Famous archaeologists, such as Henry Breuil, André Glory, and Martel, had visited the cave in the early 20th-Century, but it was only in 1956 that 2 historians from the Pyrenees confirmed the cave art as from the Upper Paleolithic period. Rouffignac Cave, which had once served as a shelter for Resistance fighters in World War 2, was officially opened to the public in 1959, and declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979.

Sarlat-la-Canéda: Dordogne Valley Half-Day Sightseeing Tour

2. Sarlat-la-Canéda: Dordogne Valley Half-Day Sightseeing Tour

Discover the great sites of the "Golden Triangle" on this unique sightseeing tour with live commentary. After meeting in Sarlat-la-Canéda it's only a short drive to the Dordogne Valley, where you'll visit many fascinating historic sites. Admire Richard the Lionheart's castle at Beynac, and stop at the foot of Castelnaud Castle, an impressive fortress occupied by the English during the Hundred Years' War. Then take a guided tour of La Roque Gageac, one of the most beautiful villages in France, built into the cliffs along the Dordogne river. Afterwards, continue to the hilltop village of Domme for breathtaking panoramic views over the surrounding area. Walk around the village to get a feel for the local atmosphere.  Visit an incredible troglodytic chapel built in a cave and stop at the medieval village of Montfort and its castle, built in the 11th century. Stop at a romanesque church from the 12th century, built on an ancient site of Celtic worship, before returning to Sarlat-la-Canéda.

From Bordeaux: Lascaux and Dordogne Valley Private Tour

3. From Bordeaux: Lascaux and Dordogne Valley Private Tour

See the famous prehistoric cave paintings and explore the Dordogne region with a private English-speaking driver-guide. Depart from Bordeaux, and drive about two hours east, into the heart of the Dordogne. The first visit is to the Grotte de Rouffignac, the cave of 1000 mammoths. For this visit you'll tale a ride on a small electric train deep into the cave to see some phenomenal drawings of horses, aurochs, bison, horned sheep and mammoths. Then head to Les Eyzies-de-Tayac, a UNESCO World Heritage Site where the first five skeletons of Cro-Magnon, the earliest known examples of homo sapiens were found. This is a good place to stop for a quick lunch. Next, drive to Lascaux to see the incredible new Lascaux international center for cave art, a truly impressive place.

From Sarlat: Rocamadour Half-Day Tour

4. From Sarlat: Rocamadour Half-Day Tour

Climb aboard a comfortable van in Sarlat and after a 1-hour trip punctuated by photo stops through the majestic landscapes of the Dordogne Valley, you will reach Rocamadour. Rocamadour is one of the most beautiful medieval villages in France, built in a vertiginous setting against a cliff face nestled in the heart of the Alzou canyon, a thousand-year-old historic UNESCO site. During this guided tour you will learn about the legends at the origin of this sacred place. After crossing the main street of the village, you will discover the sanctuary and its chapels by climbing the 216 steps of the Grand Pilgrim's Staircase (elevator also available). You will admire the miraculous chapel and its black virgin, the sarcophagus of St. Amadour dug into the rock of the cliff, and the legendary sword Durandal. On the way back, you will cross the majestic and wild landscapes of the Causses du Quercy and make a stop to visit a unique place either the Cougnaguet medieval watermill or Souillac Romanesque church.

Bordeaux to Dordogne: Castles & Villages Private Tour

5. Bordeaux to Dordogne: Castles & Villages Private Tour

Enjoy a private full-day tour of Dordogne and discover the history of the King’s Musketeers, learn about Eleanor of Aquitaine, and visit prehistoric cave paintings. After the pick-up from your hotel in Bordeaux, Sarlat, Limoges, Toulouse, Agen Bergerac, or elsewhere nearby, you will head off on an exciting day filled with history, magnificent panoramic vistas, the finest gastronomy, and wine tasting. Whatever you desire can be incorporated into this private tailor-made tour. One of the places you can visit on this tour is Les Eyzies-de-Tayac-Sireuil, a lovely town which has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site partly because of its proximity to the famous Lascaux Caverns and partly because of the newer site of Grottes de Cougnac. Here you can visit the caves and see the original art. Les Eyzies is also home to the National Prehistoric Museum. You also have the option of visiting Sarlat-la-Canéda, one of the most attractive and alluring medieval towns in south-western France. The town was developed around a large Benedictine abbey of Carolingian origin. Its town center of impeccably restored stone buildings – now a pedestrian zone – is perhaps the most representative of 14th century France. Discover another UNESCO World Heritage Site – Château de Rocamadour – perched up high on the side of a gorge of one of the Dordogne River’s tributaries, famous for its sanctuary of the Blessed Virgin Mary. You can also explore the Château de Castelnaud-la-Chapelle, with magnificent views over the landscape. Among other castles you can visit is the Château de Beynac, one of the best preserved and best known castles in the Dordogne region. Its austere appearance perched on top of a limestone cliff, dominating the town on the north bank of the Dordogne River over the sheer cliff face. It boasts double crenelated walls, double barbican, and double moats, one of which was a deepened natural ravine. Another castle to visit is the Château des Milandes, once the home of the Josephine Baker, an American dancer, singer, and actress who found fame in her adopted homeland of France. Josephine Baker and her husband renovated this beautiful castle, installing central heating, electricity, and running water. They lived here with 12 adopted children from 9 different nationalities to create what they tenderly call the “World Village”. You can also explore Domme, another typically charming Bastide village built on the cliffs overhanging the Dordogne River. It was here that many of the Kinghts Templar were imprisoned and you can still see some of their graffiti on the tower gates. Another option on this tour is to visit the Jardins de Marqueyssac, an amazing garden filled with topiary creation and a picturesque promenade with panoramic views over the Dordogne River. Visit the Eyrignac gardens, the French garden inspired by the 18th century Italian design. They were entirely modified into an English romantic garden in the 19th century. On this private tour you also have the possibility of visiting Chateau de Commarque, Chateau de Jumilhac, Monpazier, Puymartin, Eyrignac, Monbazillac, La Roque Gageac, Montfort, and Salignac.

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What people are saying about Dordogne

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David is very knowledgeable, outgoing, and will tailor the tour to fit your needs.