We’ll transfer you from the Brive-la-Gaillarde or Souillac train station to your first hotel in Montignac. Montignac, a pretty town on the banks of the Vezere River, has been made famous as it is the home of the renowned prehistoric cave painting site of Lascaux. You’ll be able to visit the astounding Prehistory centre and the Lascaux IV reproduction, just on the outskirts of town while here of course. The winding Vezere splits the town in two and on each side of its banks have sprung fountains, washing places, houses and half-timbered buildings. Looking up, admire the castle, former haunt of the Counts of Perigord, perched on its rocky spur and overlooking the town nestling below. Our Trip Manager will go over your trip package with you, and then leave you to explore, with the small self-guided walking tour we provide.
Climb away from the banks of the Vezere River to start your day; you’ll be playing hide-and-seek with its meandering curves for much of the ride today. You’ll love the tiny roads and gorgeous countryside, dotted with hamlets and crumbling golden-stoned buildings, along the river valley. Detour early in the ride to the pretty gardesn and castle of Losse, overlooking the river. Pedal through St Leon-sur-Vezere, one of France’s officila “prettiest villages” (but not the last you’ll see this trip!). Pass by the incredible troglodyte site of La Roque St Christophe, before continuing into Les Eyzies. This small town is home to the National Prehistory research centre and museum, as well as a plethora of cafes and restaurants where you can find lunch. The ride from there passes more sites: Commarque and Puymartin castles, as well as the unique collection of local stone huts at the Cabanes de Breuil, before bringing you to your destination, medieval Sarlat. This incredible UNESCO heritage site, the largest Medieval ensemble in Europe, is best explored in the evening, when the beautiful “lauze” stone roofs and tiny cobblestoned streets are lit up beautifully by the municipality.
The loop ride for the day is one of the most picturesque, passing through several more of the “prettiest villages of France”. Early in the ride start with La Roque Gageac, built flat against the cliffside overlooking the Dordogne, and with original troglodyte dwellings. Today you enter the heart of the Hundred Years’ War, and you’ll see medieval castles lining the river that warred across from each other… Take a short detour to Beynac, with its imposing castle built by the Barons of Beynac. Cross the river, and decide if you’d like to visit the castle Les Milandes, the castle of Josephine Baker, with its grand gardens and falconry. Climb up to the war museum at Chateau Castelnaud. And then, up a final hill to Domme, a spectacular example of the “Bastide villages” (fortified villages) of Medieval France. It was built in the 13th century by Philip the Bold and there are still examples of medieval graffiti by the templar knights, and a spectacular panorama to the valley below! Return to Sarlat for a second night.
Leaving Sarlat behind, you start today on a fantastic bike path, following the curves of the Dordogne River. You may decide to detour briefly off the path in the village of Carsac, to visit the 3 hectare water-garden there (filled with ponds and rushing streams, lotus, lily pads, and small bridges), or simply to find a refreshing drink in a local café. You leave the bike path at last to take advantage of the bridge at St Julien de Lampon, and then climb away from the riverbank up to see the impressive and beautiful Chateau of Fenelon. As with so many of the region’s castles, the site was attacked, damaged, and rebuilt a multitude of times over the centuries. Continue on through sleepy villages, and truly beautiful views, and decide whether to take the small detour to the Cougnac caves – with incredible mineral formations, as well as some of the oldest cave paintings in Eruope. You may find lunch overlooking the small lake in Payrignac before continuing on to finish the ride in the beautiful Causses Regional Park area.
Your final ride is a loop ride, taking you through the heart of the Causses de Quercy national park (a UNESCO Global Geopark). The route provides wild and contrasting scenery from the tamer lushness of the previous days. The solid limestone block of the causses (dry stony plateaux) is gashed by the majestic, green valleys of the Lot, Dordogne, Célé, and Vers rivers, as well as the impressive canyons of the Ouysse and the Alzou. Your ride through these vistas brings you to Rocamadour. In 1166, an incorruptible body was found buried where the Sanctuary of Rocamadour now lays. This discovery propelled the village to become one of the 4 most important pilgrimage sites of medieval Christiandom, attracting Kings and paupers alike. The 216 steps that make up the Great Staircase separate the lower town from the complex of religious structures set halfway up the cliff, including the 8 chapels of the Sanctuary. Explore the ancient streets snaking one above the other in this vertiginous site, before turning back to your hotel for your final night, passing the Lacave grottos – where you can visit the underground galleries with their incredible stalagtites and stalagmites.
After a final breakfast, say goodbye to Dordogne until next time. We transfer you to Souillac train station for your further travels. Bon Voyage!
- 5 nights’ accommodation of the comfort level of your choice * CLASSIC, CLASSIC + or DELUXE
- All breakfasts, 3 dinners (drinks not included with dinners)
- Fully equipped high quality Carbon road bike
- Orientation with our Trip Manager
- Detailed maps and step-by-step route instructions
- Regional information and advice
- Uploadable GPS file of the route to use on a free APP in your smartphone or a Garmin (device not provided)
- Luggage transfers from hotel to hotel
- Transfer from Souillac train station to the first hotel
- Transfer to Souillac or Brive train station on departure day
- Phone call support 7 days a week
* Can be used without international internet plan (offline)
1150 € / pers.
Hotel le Lascaux – Montignac
Hotel la Couleuvrine – Sarlat
Hotel le Petit Relais – Cales
Classic + Tour
1450 € / pers.
Hotel la Roseraie – Montignac
Grand Hotel Pavillon Selves – Sarlat
Le Pont de l’Ouysse – Lacave
2250 € / pers.
Hotel Bouilhac – Montignac
Hotel Plaza Madeleine – Sarlat
Chateau de la Treyne – Lacave
The high quality, BULLS light-weight aluminum-frame road bike is the default bike included in our Challenge tours in the Dordogne. They are the classic drop handlebar style, and include a small front handlebar bag for essentials, tire repair kit (with hand pump and new inner tube), lock, water bottle holder and new water bottle.
Upon request, you can have a touring bike or a pedal-assist touring-style electric bike – ask us for details.
Ahead of the tour, we will ask you if you wish to use our helmets, and if you want toe cages on the pedals or wish to bring your clip-in shoes with your pedals.
Each of our regions has its own bike fleet, often with a couple of different bike makes depending on sizing – if you want to know the specific bike details for your tour, just contact us, and we’ll be happy to send you the specs!
ROAD (racing) bike (included in trip cost)
Touring Bike - Men's Frame
Touring Bike - Women's Frame
E-bike - Men's Frame
E-bike - Women's Frame