My husband and I were delighted with our recent tour of the Dordogne with France Today Travels. The tour was very well organized, the activities were varied and interesting, the hotel choices were enchanting and our tour guide Jennifer was friendly, attentive and very professional. We had experiences that we would never have discovered on our own,. The tour was well-paced and included special dinners, casual picnics, visits to historic sites and interactions with residents of the area including a lesson on truffle hunting and an invitation to visit the kitchen of an up and coming chef. Our visits to Lascaux 4 and Fond de Gaume to view the prehistoric cave paintings were certainly a highlight, but the special personal touches throughout the tour made this experience uniquely memorable. We loved every minute!
France Today Tours
We went on this year’s “Delightful Dordogne” tour organized by France Today Travels. Everything was carefully planned and faithfully executed by the tour director, Jennifer Dugdale. The lodgings, Le Manoir de la Malartire, right across the street from the Dordogne river in Vézac, and the Moulin du Roc in Champagnac de Bélair, situated on its stream to power the walnut mill, were wonderfully comfortable and centrally located to our various excursions. The food of the region is renowned throughout France, and France Today Travels organized a wonderful sampling, from a Michelin one-star restaurant, to a visit to a Friday village market in Brantôme, where some of the shops are dug into caves. While our restaurant excursions will be with us for a long, long time, we also enjoyed picnics. A major highlight was the visit to the sites of prehistoric cave paintings at Lascaux and Font de Gaume, where we were among the 70 visitors permitted that day. We cannot speak highly enough of the experience.
France Today Travel's first Provence tour was a terrific experience for anyone who wants to learn more about the flip side of Provence, beyond the Peter Mayle clichés, and see how the real folks cook, pick and distill lavender, hunt for truffles and unwind with a game of pétanque. Highlight: standing in a pungent lavender field with a sweeping view of the Alpilles, and one lone oak tree. As if that weren't enough, there was a homemade surprise for the group--a lavender ice cream sandwich thrust into my hands, which I promptly devoured. My idea of bliss.
I have always wanted to see the lavender fields of Provence so my friends and I jumped at the chance to join the France Today Tour. We were lucky in many ways. For one, it seems we were the first tour for this region so we were sure that the tour would be well thought out including as many interesting aspects as possible. Secondly, we were only a group of eight travellers in all so we were well taken care of. The fact that the group was compatible and got along was an added bonus. And lastly we had a gem of a tour guide in Jennifer Dugdale who was efficient, thoughtful and made sure all our needs were met. I learned so many things on this tour and got to see things I would not have had an opportunity to see or do like go truffle hunting with Johann, Jean Marc and their dogs, had meals cooked especially for us by Joyce and Mathilde and saw lavender fields that stretched to the horizon. I especially enjoyed roaming around the farmers' market. I definitely would recommend this tour to anyone interested in exploring this region.