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Camping Holidays Dordogne

All of France has a wonderfully preserved history, but the Dordogne somehow feels older than many neighbouring regions. While most famous for the prehistoric cave paintings at Lascaux, there are many ancient towns and villages to discover, to say nothing of the many grand châteaux that dot the landscape. Yet alongside all the history, there is wonderful countryside in which to make the most of the present, making it a perfect place for walking, cycling, fishing and almost every outdoor pursuit you can imagine.

dordogne

In Aquitaine, in Southwest France, and just an hour’s drive to the east of Bordeaux, sits the Dordogne area. This is one of the most picturesque areas of France, it probably has the highest number of listed and historic buildings and although it’s peaceful now, in the past it has been far from peaceful. You’ll find caves and castles throughout the area and they are all part of the history and culture that makes Dordogne so special.

On top of all this history is some stunning geography as well. Beautiful meandering rivers with forested valleys, tiny villages nestling amongst the hills and of course some of France’s loveliest châteaux are part of what makes this area so delightful. The region is also dotted with limestone caves that were once the homes of prehistoric communities and their art frequently on display. It’s not just 20th century visitors who love the Dordogne it was clearly popular in prehistoric times as well.

A particularly good example are the Caves at Lascaux, where you can see some fine examples of prehistoric which offer not just some of the finest surviving examples of prehistoric paintings, but also Prehiosto, a theme park dedicated to all things prehistoric.

The lovely cliff-side town of Rocamadour, built on a gorge cliff on a tributary of the Dordogne really does give an idea of the history and culture of this part of France. Known as the Jewel of the Dordogne, it is one of the most spectacular places we know. There are many other towns and villages, all worth visiting for their markets, cafes and restaurants.

Out and about in the countryside you’ll come across great chances for wildlife spotting, some great fishing on the region’s rivers and of course canoeing and kayaking. The canoeing and kayaking are especially good as the rivers are slow running and make an easy place for beginners to take part and be involved in the stunning scenery. There are plenty of organised excursions to take part in.

You have to talk wine because they make some fantastic wines here, not all of which are known back in the UK. Juicy reds such as Bergerac and sweet whites such as Monbazillac go so well with the rich food from the area. Food here is sophisticated as well as rich and you should get to sniff out some truffle dishes and of course the famous foie gras.

Holiday Parks in Dordogne

Dordogne holiday parks are a great mix of top class facilities and amenities and are amongst the friendliest you’ll find anywhere in France. Set amid lovely scenery, river valleys, green woodlands and peaceful lakes you’re bound to get a great holiday in Dordogne. You can see a bit more of what’s on offer by clicking the Dordogne campsite reviews below;

St Avit Loisirs

One of the best family campsites in Dordogne, tasty onsite restaurants and fantastic onsite activities for the whole family all under the beautiful Dordogne sunshine.

Les Grottes De Roffy CampsiteLes Grottes De Roffy

Beautiful traditional looking campsite nestled in the beautiful region of Dordogne, a small and peaceful family focused campsite with a great onsite animation team to keep the kids entertained.

Le Paradis

A great family campsite perfectly placed for exploring the natural beauty of Dordogne. Hire a canoe and hit the river, relax soaking up the sun onsite or explore the charming local towns and villages.

Le Port De Limeuil

A very pretty campsite with a stunning backdrop to match, go swimming in the 2 pools onsite, paddle in the two nearby rivers or simply relax the day away under the Dordogne sunshine.

Le Moulin De PaulhiacLe Moulin De Paulhiac

A petite and beautiful campsite but by no means sleepy, expect a pleasant yet lively family atmosphere where you can relax by the swimming pool or the river bank during the day and join in the family fun during the evenings.

Les Peneyrals

A popular, cosy and yet lively campsite located in the picturesque Dordogne countryside. The well run onsite activities will keep the kids entertained leaving you to relax, perhaps with a glass of regions well known wine.

Soleil Plage CampsiteSoleil Plage

Soleil Plage campsite is located on the banks of the River Dordogne and is popular with families who return year after year due its great onsite features, pretty scenery and lovely food.

Independant campsites in Dordogne

Things to do in Dordogne

Bergerac

A visit to the old town, with perhaps a boat trip on the River Dordogne are a good way to start in this 13th century town. Probably the highlight is the twice weekly market on Saturday and Wednesday but remember to get there early to see all the best food stuffs. There is also an antique market on the first Sunday of the month until 12 noon.

Prehistoparc

What was life really like for Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon man who lived in the nearby caves. The park is set in several acres of ground, throughout which are scattered scenes of prehistoric life as well as various life-sized animals hidden amongst the trees or looking down on you from rocks which the children enjoy spotting. They also runs daily workshops on flint napping, making fire and spear throwing which is bound to be a great success with the kids.

Gardens of Marqueyssac

The gardens of Marqueyssac are listed as a National Historical Monument and you’ll find over 6 kilometers of paths wandering in the woods. The gardens have a more formal side with 150,000 hand-pruned boxwoods that are over 100 years old. If you’re looking for inspiration for your own garden then this is a must see. It’s been designed so that you get the benefit of sweeping views across the Dordogne valley and its cliffs.

Aquarium de Perigord Noir

This is Europe’s largest privately owned aquarium and houses more than 200m of tanks with fish from all over the world. With additional attractions such as the iguana park and the anaconda displays there’s more than enough to keep the whole family busy. They’re so organised they’ve even got a cafe/restaurant (do you think they serve fish).

Getting to Dordogne

We’re a little further away from home now but with a car journey in the region of 8 hours from Calais it’s still just about possible to drive it thanks to the great French road network. Head from Calais towards Perigueux and you’re going in the right direction. Of course, regular breaks and perhaps an overnight stop make it all the more easy.

Getting to France itself sees a great selection of ferries from Dover – Calais, Portsmouth – Caen, Cherbourg and St Malo, Poole – Cherbourg, Plymouth Roscoff. It’s about choosing the one that’s most convenient for you and don’t forget the channel tunnel from Dover to Calais – great at only 20 minutes duration making your onward journey much easier.

No frills airlines have rally opened up areas such the Dordogne. You can get flights from various regional airports including Birmingham, Exeter, Edinburgh, Manchester and Southampton into airports such as Bergerac, Bordeaux or Limouges and it’s only a quick car journey from there.

Eurostar from London has to be the starting point by train and before you realise it you’re in Paris and then onto the TGV for the journey to Perigueux where you can pick up a hire car for your onward journey.

Written by of Family Camping Reviews

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