To discover - Le(s) Périgord

Discovering the Périgord Noir

What sites to visit in the Périgord Noir?

Get ready to be spoilt for choice!

Depending on what you want to do and when, discover the wonders of Périgord with your family or friends. Known for its cultural and historical riches, the region is also the perfect place for gourmets.
From the 1001 castles of Périgord to the caves to visit, it's impossible to visit the region without succumbing to the local gastronomic delights

The most beautiful villages

Sarlat-la Canéda

Located in the Périgord Noir region, Sarlat is a medieval city that grew up around a large Benedictine abbey of Carolingian origin. A monastic seigneury, it reached its apogee in the 13th century. The origins of the abbey are lost in legend. The Carolingian abbey of Sarlat was the only one to have been spared by the Vikings, as it was located away from the Dordogne and its tributaries


10 km southwest of Sarlat, on the banks of the Dordogne River, Beynac-et-Cazenac boasts an imposing château, once besieged by Richard the Lionheart, at the foot of which rest houses with lauze roofs and blond facades.

Beynac-et-Cazenac has been the setting for numerous films and TV movies: from Josée Dayan's La Rivière Espérance (1995) to Ridley Scott's Le Dernier Duel (2021) with Matt Damon and Ben Alfleck, not forgetting Jean-Marie Poiré's Les Visiteurs 2 (1998), Luc Besson's Joan of Arc (1999) and Lasse Hallström's Le Chocolat (2001)..

La Roque-Gageac

The village of La Roque-Gageac, classified as one of France's Most Beautiful Villages, nestles between its cliff and the Dordogne River. It enjoys a microclimate, almost Mediterranean, thanks to its southern exposure.

Next to the church, halfway up the cliff and thanks to this natural solarium, an astonishing exotic garden of palms, banana trees, agaves, fig trees, cactus, bamboo... is in full bloom

The most beautiful gardens

Les Jardins d'Eyrignac

Located high above Sarlat-la-Canéda in the Dordogne, Eyrignac and its gardens of greenery, water and flowers delight visitors all year round.

The site boasts a unique collection of 300 plant sculptures, hand-crafted with art and patience by the estate's gardeners.

Les Jardins de Marqueyssac

Listed for its 22-hectare historic park, Marqueyssac offers over 6 kilometers of shady walks through a maze of 150,000 centuries-old, hand-trimmed box trees

Carsac Water Gardens

The remarkable Périgord garden, a veritable aquatic arboretum, featuring Nile lotuses, exotic tropical water lilies and papyrus on the water features, ponds between streams, waterfalls, Japanese bridge and flush footbridges. Unique in Europe, aquatic labyrinth with over 500 meters of footbridges, free for children, Koi carp feeding.

The most beautiful castles

Castelnaud castle

The Château de Castelnaud, listed as a Historic Monument in 1966, is built on a rocky spur and offers a magnificent panoramic view over the Dordogne valley. Since 1985, it has housed the Musée de la Guerre au Moyen Âge (Museum of War in the Middle Ages).

A collection of weapons and armor, life-size reconstructions of war machines (mangonel, trebuchet, couillard, pierrière, bricole) will introduce you to the art of warfare in the Middle Ages and to certain aspects of the life of the lords of Castelnaud, with the medieval-inspired garden and furnished keep.

Beynac Castle

Château de Beynac is one of the best-preserved and most famous castles in Périgord.

It was built in the 12th century by the barons of Beynac, who controlled the road and waterways of the Dordogne from here. Transporters had to pay a right-of-way fee to the Seigneur de Beynac, reinforcing the latter's economic power.

During the Hundred Years' War, it was used as a French stronghold, with the Dordogne serving as a border between France and England, facing the English-taken Château de Castelnaud.

The château consists of a square Romanesque keep adjoining a dwelling. It was listed as a historic monument in 1944

Château des Milandes

A visit to Château des Milandes in Castelnaud is a marvellous plunge into château life in the days of Josephine Baker, whose destiny remains extraordinary.

Built in 1489 by François de Caumont, Seigneur de Castelnaud, on the initiative of his wife Claude de Cardaillac, this Renaissance château enjoys a marvellous panoramic view over the Dordogne valley.

The most beautiful sites

Lascaux 4

The most famous cave in the Périgord is renowned for its many prehistoric representations. It's not unusual to find a cave with paintings or sculptures dating from prehistoric times in Europe, but Lascaux has a variety and countless features that make it a must-see during your stay in the Dordogne.

The original ornate cave has been closed to the public since 1963 to preserve its exceptionally rare works. However, the Centre International de l'Art Pariétal Lascaux IV offers a faithful reproduction. Open your eyes wide and you'll find a prehistoric sign, a painting, an engraving..

There are no fewer than 357 horses on display, and even 1 human figure! An extremely rare representation in prehistoric art.

The troglodyte village of La Madeleine

The troglodyte village of La Madeleine has been home to man for thousands of years.

World-famous for its eponymous Magdalenian prehistoric site (-17,000 / -12,000 B.C.), this large natural site is made up of caves developed since the early Middle Ages and inhabited until the end of the 19th century. Home in turn to nobles and peasants, this limestone village today bears witness to the ingenuity of the "cliff dwellers", who lived in harmony with their environment without ever altering it.

Today, the site is brought back to life by a passionate team of young people, who are committed to showcasing the ancestral crafts of the Périgord, workshops for children and festive events such as the traditional Madeleine ball.

La Maison Forte de Reignac

Listed as a historic monument, this extraordinary "château-falaise" is undoubtedly the most secret, unusual and mysterious in Périgord. Some even say it's haunted..

Preserved in exceptional condition since the XIVᵉ century and entirely furnished in period style, the Maison Forte de Reignac is the only monument of its kind in France to have survived completely intact.

Of rare historical interest, this noble lair is infinitely larger than one might suspect from the outside. Behind the façade lie impressive underground and airy rooms: the Great Hall, the Arms Room, the Great Men's Room, the kitchen, the chapel, the bedrooms, the dungeon..

At the end of the tour, an internationally renowned exhibition on the theme of "Torture in the Middle Ages"


Périgord foie gras

In Sarlat, foie gras comes in an infinite variety of forms!

Whole foie gras, blocks of foie gras, mousses, pâtés..

And let's not forget the many specialties that contain foie gras: stuffed necks and duck breasts, medallions, galantines (with 50% foie gras) to vary the pleasures!

For a certified Périgord origin, opt for the IGP label Canard à foie gras du Sud-Ouest

The Périgord black truffle

While the Périgord black truffle (Tuber Mélanosporum by its scientific name) is the region's best known, did you know that there are two other varieties to enjoy?

These are the brumale truffle (found in winter) and the summer truffle, eaten fresh and raw.

To find these little jewels of Périgord, you need a trained eye!

The first clue is that truffle trees (also known as "burns") must not be surrounded by vegetation. To unearth them, cavers are often accompanied by dogs who can smell the truffles up to 30 cm away. For the curious, fly-fishing is the most unusual!

When a truffle fly lands and takes off from the same spot... this is the place to dig!

Porcini mushrooms

The cep, a highly prized mushroom in Périgord Noir, is part of our gastronomic heritage.

Fresh, in jars, or cooked in our many restaurants, in pan-fried dishes or in omelettes, there's something for every taste, in every season.

Although this name designates several species of mushroom, some Perigordians will claim that there is only one cep: the Périgord cep! By this, we mean the cèpe known as the "Bordeaux" or the boletus known as the "tète de nègre".

Highly prized, many people in the south-west of France enjoy picking and selling it as a sideline.

It is generally eaten mixed with Sarlat potatoes or in omelettes.

The Dordogne and the 04 colors of Périgord

Black Périgord

The 4 colors of Périgord include the designation Périgord Noir, which was given in 1702, when Périgord was divided into only two symbolic parts: Périgord Blanc and Périgord Noir.

Périgord Noir takes its name from the many dark-green oak forests that give this part of south-eastern Dordogne its very dark appearance.

The Périgord Noir is famous for its many must-see tourist attractions, from beautiful villages to castles and exceptional gardens.

White Périgord

It owes its name to the limestone plateaus, hills and wide valleys criss-crossed by the Auvézère and Isle rivers that make it up.

If you come to visit Périgord Blanc, you'll find the city of Périgueux, but also the villages of Vergt, Mussidan, Neuvic, Saint Astier, Montpon-Ménestérol and Sorges, well worth a visit if you want to discover the distinctive characteristics of Périgord Blanc

Green Périgord

The name "Périgord vert" comes from the fact that this area is dotted with meadows, forests, plains and so on.

As you may have guessed, it's the vegetation of this area in the north of the Dordogne department that gives it its name.

The most famous and unmissable communes of the Périgord Vert are : Nontron, Brantôme, Ribérac, Lanouaille and Saint-Pardoux-la-Rivière, where vegetation and architectural riches intermingle to attract many tourists to the area every year.

Purple Périgord

The name "purple" was coined towards the end of the 20th century, in 1990 to be precise, due to the fact that this geographical area is dominated by vineyards, giving its natural landscapes the purple color we recognize.

Périgord Pourpre is located in the south-western part of the Dordogne department. Bergerac is its symbolic capital. It's also a region with a rich architectural heritage, known as the Pays des Bastides, which you'll find in the towns of Beaumont du Périgord, Issigeac, Monpazier, Lalinde and Eymet