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Hilltop Villages of the Dordogne

8 Days & 7 Nights 4.5 Read 18 reviews
  • Walking through quaint hilltop villages
  • Enjoying the traditional, local French wine and cuisine at your overnight hotels
  • Viewing awe-inspiring medieval chateaux's
  • Strolling through mixed woodlands
  • Visit local markets and enjoy locally grown produce
Explore the very best of rural France with a self-guided walking tour in the Upper Dordogne Valley, an area of wonderful food, wine, and walks through quaint and unspoilt villages and towns. As you follow trails through the countryside you will discover the perfect rural landscapes of the this region and some of the ‘Most Beautiful Villages of France’ (Les Plus Beaux Villages de France). Stroll, relax and soak in the local traditions and timelessness of this characterful area. The Upper Dordogne region is a walker’s delight, from hill top chateaux to woodland forest walking, you will be surprised at every turn by the variety and contrast of the walking here. Feast your eyes on the fabulous views from the quiet hill top villages and taste the local rich, red wines and mouth-watering French cuisine from the local family run hotels en-route. Dordogne is famous for its truffles and foie gras so make sure you build in time for a long gourmet lunch or dinner each day. Begin in the little market town of Meyssac and walk along lush country lanes to Collonges La Rouge, a village built entirely of red sandstone. This tour also has two days built into it so that you have a choice to relax and explore picturesque Beaulieu-sur-Dordogne and Loubressac, or take optional loop walks and discover mixed woodlands and vineyards, perhaps with an obligatory wine tasting! Continue towards the medieval village of Carennac with its typical Quercy architecture and visit the impressive underground limestone caverns of Gouffre de Padirac, before spending your last two nights in the enchanting village of Loubressac, which has fantastic views from its hillside setting.
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What To Expect

What more could you ask for than wonderful French countryside and quaint villages, combined with tasty local French cuisine and optional rest days or loop walks. This walking tour will appeal to those who are looking to escape from city life and travel at a relaxed pace through the hill tops and valleys of the rural Dordogne region.

Trip Style:

Self Guided | Go at your own pace on an independent active holiday.

Activity:

Inn to Inn Walking | A classic point to point walking trip, staying in a different location each night

Ideal if you have an interest in:

Foodie Adventures, Wine, Whisky & More..., Luxury & Unique Stays

Grade & Terrain

This walking tour is graded moderate. Daily walks are a mixture of country paths and forest trails. A couple of days are long and some of the trails have some short steep climbs. You should be a regular walker and have a good level of walking fitness to get the most from this tour.

Navigation

Some of the routes on this walk are not way-marked but we provide you with detailed route notes and maps for you to follow.

Accommodation Information

We specifically select your accommodation in local, family-run 2* hotels, to ensure that you enjoy every minute of your stay in France.  They all offer a warm welcome to walkers, traditional hospitality and delicious local food. Some of our accommodations have swimming pools (although not always guaranteed), so remember to take your swimming costume/suit for a relaxing dip at the end of the day!

Solo Walkers & Single Rooms

This tour is available for solo walkers but we would recommend that you are experienced in walking and navigating alone. If you are travelling solo the tour is slightly more expensive as some costs are not shared. If you require single rooms within your party we would be happy to accommodate you, a single room supplement payable.

Meals

A delicious breakfast is included each morning and 5 dinners are included on Days 1, 3, 5, 6 & 7.  On Days 2 and 4 dinner is not included which gives you the option to choose from one of the many local eateries. You can buy lunch in the village patisserie before you depart each morning, or buy it en route. Your route notes have details for each day including rest stops and places of interest.

Included
  • 7 Nights in 2* handpicked & traditional hotels
  • 7 Breakfasts
  • 5 Dinners
  • Daily luggage transport
  • Information pack, route notes and maps
  • 24-hour phone assistance
Excluded
  • Travel to Meyssac
  • Travel from Loubressac
  • Dinners on Days 2 & 4
  • Lunches
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal expenses such as phone calls, extra transfers, tips, etc.
Extras
  • Airport/taxi transfers
  • Additional nights during the walk

When To Go

Summer months July and August are likely to have hot days with temperatures rising into the high twenties/start thirties degrees celsius. We would, therefore, encourage you to travel in spring, early summer and autumn when the temperatures are more pleasant for walking.

If traveling during high summer, please make sure to always carry at least 2L of water per person, wear sunscreen and a sun hat.

Getting to the Start

Your first night’s accommodation in Meyssac is approximately 20km from the closest train station at Brive-la-Gaillard. It will cost approximately 45 euros in a taxi to your hotel and the journey will take around 20 minutes depending on the time of day.

By Air: There is an airport in Brive-la-Gaillard However the choice of flights is limited. There is also an airport in Toulouse which is serviced by many low-cost airlines including Easyjet and Flybe.  Alternatively, you can fly to Paris and take the train to Brive-la-Gaillard from here.

By Train: From Toulouse Airport you can take a shuttle bus to the centre and then a train (2hrs 15mins) to Brive-la-Gaillard.

For more information about train times and schedules please visit the SNCF website.  

Getting from the End

You can book a taxi  to Brive-la-Gaillard (55 mins) and then all onward travel can be taken from there. 

It is also possible to take a less expensive taxi fare to the train station in Puybruns which is a 15 minute ride from Loubressac and then a train to Brive-la-Gaillarde. However please bear in mind that there are only about 3-4 trains per day. You can ask the hotel to call a taxi or we can assist in booking one in advance.

Baggage Transfer

All your belongings will be transferred between accommodations. We do ask you to keep your baggage to one bag per person (maximum weight 20kg).

General Information

The distances and ascents/descents are approximations of the recommended routes.
Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example. proper rain gear, sun hat, sunscreen. Your information pack has detailed advice and a kit list on what to take. This includes good waterproof gear, walking shoes/boots, and lots of other useful bits and bobs.

Travel Insurance

It is a requirement of booking this tour with Macs Adventure that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the activity and emergency evacuation and hospital care.

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Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive Meyssac Day 2 Loop Walk via Collonges-la-Rouge 8 miles / 13 km Day 3 Walk to Beaulieu Sur Dordogne 7.5 miles / 12 km Day 4 Circular Walk or Rest Day 7.5 miles / 12 km Day 5 Walk to Carennac 10 miles / 16 km Day 6 Walk to Loubressac 8.5 miles / 14 km Day 7 Circular Walk around Loubressac or Rest Day 7.5 miles / 12 km Day 8 Onward travel

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