Basic information about the Dordogne-Périgord region
If you look for the Dordogne-Périgord region on the map, you probably won’t find it. Nevertheless, the Périgord region, which is located in the south-west of France, is almost identical in area to the Dordogne region and is therefore the third largest region of France. The region is about 100 kilometres east of Bordeaux and about 500 kilometres south of the capital Paris. The third largest region received part of its name from the 483-kilometre-long Dordogne river of the same name, which flows through the southern region from east to west. The Périgord, also known as Périgord Noir, is a historical province that is crescent shaped around the municipality of Sarlat. In general, one will find a particularly multifaceted interplay of the Mediterranean influences of the south and the rugged foothills of the Massif Central.
On our walking holiday Dordogne Périgord, 8 days you will explore the beautiful region in France in a particularly slow and climate-friendly form of travel – on foot. So you have enough time to enjoy the diverse natural scenery and to try the delicacies of the region. The starting point of your hiking holiday and the destination of your first circular hike is the idyllic municipality of Sarlat-la-Canéda. The following day, the route takes you on the banks of the Dordogne to Domme, a particularly beautiful village with historical roots. On the fourth day you will march on the beautiful hiking trails to Beynac and will then be brought to the day’s stage destination Les Eyzies in a pre-organised transfer. A wonderful circular hike to the valley of the Vézère river awaits you the very next day. The journey continues on the sixth day upstream to Montignac. The crowning glory of your hiking holiday is a wonderful circular hike to a UNESCO World Heritage Site – the Lascaux Caves, with the oldest cave paintings from around 36,000 – 19,000 BC. You can enjoy that certain extra comfort on our walking holiday Dordogne Périgord with Charm, 8 days.
Our Eurohike moments in the Dordogne-Périgord region
- Visiting the Acropolis of Périgord: Domme is also known as the Acropolis of Périgord. And for good reason – the small community is an absolute highlight on your hiking holiday and is considered one of the most beautiful villages in all of France. The bastide (village complex) from the Middle Ages was built on a ledge.
- In the footsteps of the Neanderthals: On the fifth day of your hiking holiday you have the opportunity to follow the traces of the Ice Age and the Neanderthals in the National Museum of Prehistoric Times in Les Eyzies, which is located in the former Tayac castle.
- Picnic with French delicacies: Take time for picnic in between. The combination of the wonderful natural scenery and the incomparably delicious specialities from the region will be remembered for a long time.
Facts and details
- Location: Located in the south-west of France in the Sarlat area and also known as Périgord Noir
- Area: 9,204 km² and the third largest department in France
- Regions/zones: The Dordogne-Périgord area is divided into four zones, also known as “Les quatre Périgord” or the four Périgord, using colours.
- Population: 413,418 inhabitants (also known as Périgourdins)
- Capital of Périgord Noir: Sarlat with around 9,030 inhabitants
- Official language: French
- Highest mountain: Saint Pierre de Frugie with a height of 479 metres
- Season: The best climate for hiking holidays in the Dordogne-Périgord region is from March to October
- Special feature: At around 483 kilometres, the Dordogne is the tenth largest river in the entire country, flows westwards from the Auvergne across the Périgord and later flows into the Garonne near Bordeaux. In general, the Dordogne region is relatively sparsely populated with a population density of 45 inhabitants per km².
Climate in the Dordogne-Périgord region
The Périgord region is influenced by the Atlantic westerly winds and is dominated by a temperate climate. Due to the Gulf Stream, pleasant temperatures prevail almost all year round, with the Périgord lying exactly between the two climatic influences of the Piedmont of the Massif Central and the temperate oceanic climate. So it can also rain in the mild spring months. The months from March to October are particularly ideal for a successful hiking holiday and the more than 2,000 hours of sunshine in this region guarantee a wonderful break in the fresh air.
Cuisine in the Dordogne-Périgord region
The Périgord is one of the most forested regions in France and so the regional cuisine is also characterised by this feature. From wonderful dishes with mushrooms, game meat or poultry, as well as the excellent wines of the region, you will find a true paradise for gourmets here. Furthermore, the cuisine of the Périgord is one of the best in the country. The use of duck and goose fat and the use of regional herbs, such as in the Pommes (French fries) sarladaises, are particularly popular: potatoes fried in goose fat with mushrooms, garlic and parsley. Another culinary specialty are the black truffles, which are also very popular internationally and are used in numerous dishes in a variety of ways.
Walking holidays with luggage transfer in the Dordogne-Périgord region
With Eurohike you will experience your hiking holiday in the most comfortable way possible – because we ensure a smooth luggage transfer during the entire holiday so you are carefree during the day stages with only your daypack. Everything else is also taken care of: the detailed travel documents and route descriptions, personal on-site support, cosy hotels and accommodation and availability on the Eurohike service-hotline.
- Read more about why a hiking holiday with Eurohike is the perfect type of active break.