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Darling Dordogne

Darling Dordogne

$4950 per person
7 days & 6 nights

No region in France epitomizes the country more than the Dordogne, also known as the Périgord. It is a land of dense oak forests, slow flowing rivers, medieval villages and chateaux everywhere! Step back in time as we enjoy an old fashioned welcome at our privately owned accommodation, with decorated bedrooms, and the famously rich Périgord cuisine. This region is known for dense forests, green rivers, trickling waterwheels, and some of the officially rated “Most Beautiful Villages” of France. The area has the highest concentration of pre-historic art in the world and we’ll get inside hidden caves painted by Cro-Magnon man and learn more from an expert. We’ll meet a truffle hunter who inspired the author of the bestselling “Bruno, Chief of Police” novels, visit a family owned walnut oil mill, meet artisans in their workshops and wander all the colourful markets of the region. We’ll enjoy a nature walk in a Perigordian forest with a resident guide, where we may find mushrooms, animal tracks and troglodyte cave houses. Cliff-top Medieval castles and gardens hanging over the Dordogne are also on the program. Are you working up an appetite? We’ve got that covered too. We’ll relax at riverside picnics, sip hearty local red wines, and dine in wood-panelled rooms enjoying “Grandmère’s cuisine” such as foie gras, duck, potatoes gratin and local strawberries. There is no doubt that this region and our off-the-beaten path experiences will give you a true taste of the heart of France and its people.

 

Prices:

$4950 per person – private room

$4450 per person – shared room

 

2020 Dates:

July 4th – 10th

September 5th – 11th

Can’t make these dates? Let us know using the enquiry form.

2 Reviews
  • Departure/Return Location
    Perigeux or Sarlat train stations
  • Departure Time
    Collection from Meeting point from 3pm
  • Return Time
    Departure transfer from 11am
  • Included
    Accommodation
    Comfortable vehicles
    Experienced Tour Director
    Group Transfers
    Local Guides
    Most Meals
    Private Tours and Outings
    Regional Wines
    Tips & Gratuities
  • Not Included
    Flights
    Travel/Health Insurance

Tour Plan

1
Our Hand Picked Location
In a region that is as French as French can be, you can’t get much more authentic than beautiful medieval Sarlat. This golden stone town was bypassed by the industrial revolution, and remained preserved in its original state, holding the record for the highest concentration of classified historic monuments in France. It is an ideal base for exploring all the highlights of the heart of the Dordogne, also known as the Perigord Noir. And with every other restaurant proposing the local treat of foie gras, you’ll be certain to discover delicacies the region is famous for.
2
Your Home-Away-from-Home
With a plethora of stone buildings, gentleman’s manor houses, and even mini chateaux nestling in and around the forests and riverways of this lush region of France, we will be spoiled for choice in accommodation. Typically, we find cosy, bedrooms, richly decorated in walnut wood and “toile de jouy” fabrics, with patterns made popular during the reign of King Louis 14th – oh so French! The common rooms tend to be spacious and grand. We’ll have views out the windows of forests and green gardens, often complemented by a kitchen garden. We’ll likely see fruit trees, and a glimpse of the local stone village or watermill is even possible. Either way, you will be guaranteed a warm welcome and a feeling of stepping back into history with traditional surroundings. Depending on your choice, you’ll enjoy a private room or double room, and live like a local for a week in a wonderful, hand selected private residence, along with your new female friends.
3
What You'll Enjoy
Having been bypassed by modernisation, the Dordogne is a place for slow travel. The tourist season is relatively short and the residents are so happy for the visitors; you will receive a warm welcome! They are delighted to share their passions for the region and we will meet plenty of locals with interesting livelihoods. All this happens in a backdrop of landscape that could be part of a fairytale. The forests host mushrooms, chateaux, and artisans’ workshops. Most significantly, there are caves to explore with specialist guides; hidden within are rare works of prehistoric paintings created over 20,000 years ago! 12th century fortresses perch over the river valley, along with Renaissance hanging gardens. This unique combination of traditional French culture, friendly locals and sites from every era of mankind is waiting for you to enjoy with your new girlfriends.
4
What We’re Cooking up for You
We’ll offer a mix of hands-on activities, meeting local artisans in their homes and places of work, and opportunities to visit special places most visitors don’t have access to. Here’s just a little taste of what we are busy digging up and planning for you (most, but not all, will be worked into the itinerary depending on availability):
  • rubbing shoulders with the locals at colorful farmers markets
  • searching for treasure at the Sunday Sarlat flea market
  • a rare opportunity to visit a cave of outstanding pre-historic art limited to only a few visitors per day, guided by an expert in the subject
  • cooking Perigourdian cuisine with a private chef
  • a picnic riverside
  • meeting craftspeople and learning their traditional skills, such as a cabinet maker or upholsterer
  • strolling in a unique garden known for its topiary
  • a private experience with a truffle hunter, learning how to hunt this rare mushroom with trained dogs
  • immersing yourself in Perigord traditions at a local festival
  • a workshop on cell phone photography (for our Instagram followers)
  • a sensory walk in a local nature area with a specialist guide, learning about traces of animals, flora & fauna and evolution, potentially on the grounds of a private chateau
  • touring a medieval fortress with a history guide who is a former teacher
  • discovering a walnut oil mill with its family owners and learning all uses of this iconic tree (oil and wood)
  • a noisy(!) visit to a goose farm, understanding how these flocks are traditionally raised and enjoying their products
  • who can forget sipping a sampling (several!) of the region’s iconic red wines?
  • on this trip we might meet people who have inspired characters found in the popular novel series, Bruno - Chief of Police, by Martin Walker
  • lastly, we are also including personal time for you to get lost down little village lanes, to sit in a café and watch the world go by, and to relax with a book in our pretty French villa’s garden.
5
Wining & Dining
Did we mention fantastic, delicious meals, using fresh seasonal ingredients, accompanied by regional wines? But of course, “oui”! Every morning, you’ll be fuelled up with a privately catered breakfast at our manor home before setting out on our adventures. Lunches will be a combination of picnics, tastings, and meals in local bistrots. Dinners offer a variety of experiences, from a catered welcome dinner at home, to joining in with the chef preparing your own meal under his supervision, from meals at hand-picked restaurants with wonderful terraces and views, to a celebratory meal at the end of our week together. On a few occasions, you’ll also have the time to wander and make your own discoveries for lunch or dinner.
6
How to Secure Your Place
We’ll only take from 7 – 14 lucky guests. In this unique way of travel, we will initially gather a list of 7 committed travellers, and then take a waiting list. Once we have formed this group, we will reserve our private home and put our final plans in place. We may also be able to extend rooms to women on our waiting list according to the accommodation available.  A description of the accommodation will be provided to our guests once secured, along with a detailed itinerary 2 months prior to departure. If you want to be part of our Darling Dordogne…for Women experience, don’t hesitate.
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