It was simply too difficult to put this trip into one blog. So today, I will wrap up this week long trip. Castles, Ancient Caves, and Yes, Bergerac, where Cyrano never lived. LeRaque-Gageac is virtually built into the side of the cliffs overlooking the Dordogne. New houses have been built at the river front, and by this I mean 1500’s is newer. Had a wonderful meal here in the heart of “Geese country”
So Castelnaud was actually in a state of disrepair when it was bought by a very successful businessman. He loved the place and spent millions to restore it. Today it is a tourist attraction ( for a fee) that is worth the effort for the information, views, and the surrounding village.
One of the highlights of this trip was the drive up to the Grote de Lascaux, the International Center for Cave Art. While no one is allowed to enter the actual caves any longer (other than specific team members doing research), the new presentation is not to be missed. The original cave was open to the public for years after the discovery, but the change in the humidity in the cave was damaging the paintings. A small exhibit was built that can still be visited, but this new version is all one needs to get the feeling of being these boys that discovered the cave and be overwhelmed by the art. The actual cave is located in the hillside above this building. Hoping to show this to my grandson’s when they visit next time
Our last few days in the regions were spent in Bergerac. A much newer town than Sarlat. It is in the heart of the wine growing region for this sector. There is a small old town, that is quite charming, has plenty of good dining choices and many interesting buildings. The new part of town is not really anything special. In fact as one drives into the town center, you almost feel you made a mistake in adding this to the trip. Do not give up. Get to the “hotel row” on the edge of the old town and enjoy a few days walk around town.