Discover Perigord : lavish heritage and cosy greenery
Old stones and architecture
Bastides : Monpazier, Villereal, Beaumont...
Equally charming but differently structured are the "Bastides": this is the name given here to XIIIth and XIVth centuries little towns. Square mapped, their streets converge to a market place, very often fringed by gothic arcades, and here too houses display timber and stone humble or grand architecture. These picturesque villages were new towns in those glorious days, and as transit and market places, they streak the soft hills every other 10 miles or so. Follow their trail for an excursion. Here are the most remarquable of them : Monpazier, Villereal, Beaumont-du-Perigord, Belves, Eymet, Castillonnes, Miramont-de-Guyenne, Monflanquin.
Castles : Bridoire, Biron, Monbazillac, Beynac....
Scenery and nature
Strolling through the country, you will enjoy rolling hills and green woods. A car will get you to the afore mentionned sites trailing on small sinewy roads. A bike is a perfect vacation slow vehicule, allowing you to relish the landscape...and muscle up your calves, as flat roads are scarse in the area.Walking trails offer the reward of secret vistas and fauna encounters.
Issigeac is an ideal gateway to varied sceneries, with many difference in so little distance. Southward are the high open soft hills of Lot-et-Garonne, somewhat aquin to, let's dare say it, Tuscanny landscapes. Heading north, you leave Issigeac's nearly flat expense of crop fields, regularly patched with copses and woods. You quickly reach the vineyards and orchards, softly sloping down up to Bergerac and the Dordogne river. For the feel of the Perigord Noir, go eastward and you quickly drive on winding roads encased in cosy hills and narrow dales, shaded by chesnust forest.
Oriols and lizards, orchids and bellfowers
Walking trails are certainly the best way to spot a roe deer or hear a lark. Get gearred up with your most confortable walking shoes and head off for these tracks, varrying in length and landscape. The most flamboyant colours are on display in spring, with vivid flowers all around, including the otherwise humble wild orchids. Riding a bike can be your choice to reach further afield while savouring a slow pace. With so much woodlands patching the meadows and fields, a shelter is always at hand. The Dordogne river streches through steep cliffs or soft bends, sometimes white swans elegantly drift along.