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Dordogne-Perigord

Overview

The Perigord region is the most visited area of the Dordogne. Named after the black oak forests which are spread across the valleys of Vezere and Dordogne, the area is rich in beautiful villages, magnificent castles and impressive cave systems. Along the Dordogne are the picturesque villages of Bey…

Highlights

  • Ride between picturesque villages and castles
  • Follow medieval tracks and forest pathways
  • Journey through the Dordogne valley on horseback
  • Explore the splendid city of Sarlat in Black Perigord
  • Sample local goose/duck delicacies & black truffles

Essential Facts

  • 1 itinerary available
  • Max 10 riders per group
  • Average of 4 - 5 hours riding per day
  • Weight limit: 90kg / 198lbs / 14st 3lbs

Description

The Perigord region is the most visited area of the Dordogne. Named after the black oak forests which are spread across the valleys of Vezere and Dordogne, the area is rich in beautiful villages, magnificent castles and impressive cave systems. Along the Dordogne are the picturesque villages of Beynac, Castelnaud-la-Chapelle, La Roque Gageac, Domme and Sarlat. A little further south is the most beautiful village of Belves. Along this same stretch of river are the magnificent castles of Beynac, Castelnaud and les Milandes, as well the caves at Domme, and the troglodyte dwellings under the main square of Belves.

There are so many fascinating sights to discover both on horseback and on foot. Riding horses between these villages and castles enables you to step back in time and follow medieval tracks and forest pathways as you are seduced by the landscapes and history of the area. The Perigord is also famous for its culinary delights, particularly duck and goose products such as confit de canard and foie gras, as well as the infamous black truffles. Both red and white Bergerac and Monbazillac wines are produced in the region, so lovers of both food and wine will not be disappointed! Visits to two well-known restaurants are included in the itinerary to allow connoisseurs to sample these local delicacies.

Horses & Riding

Tack

You will ride in comfortable trail saddles during these trips. Saddlebags are available to keep personal belongings in during the day and ponchos and water are provided. All the horses are ridden in English style bridles with "myler" type bits.

Horses

The ride organisers have a lovely mixed stable of horses including paints, Arabian, Thoroughbred and French warmbloods (both pure and cross-bred). Many of the horses used on these rides have been selectively bred by your guides and hosts for the task. The horses live out in a large herd together during the down season and are well-mannered and well-rounded in their education.

Riding

There is 1 itinerary:

  • Castles of Perigord Trail is a trail ride

Ages

16 years and older.

Health

Riders should be fit and comfortable in the saddle for long hours. Canters may last several minutes at a time and you will be asked to ride in a light/forward seat, throughout.

Weight

90kg / 198lbs / 14st 3lbs

Food & Accommodation

Food

Full board meals are included. Dinners are in a traditional French regional style taken in restaurants and hotels along the route. Picnic lunches tend to be buffets involving cuts of cold meats, cheese and various mixed salads (including local wine). Breakfasts are continental style.

Please note that appetisers and drinks are not included with dinners.

Accommodation

You will stay in a mixture of B&Bs and small local hotels during these trails. These are a mixture of typical local Auberge and gîte, as well as small family-run hotels. The accommodations have been selected for their character, comfort and suitability to the route of the trail.

Itineraries

Castles of Perigord Trail Standard accommodation.

Other Activities

Numerous visits to castles and medieval villages and their bastides are included within the itinerary. Non-riders are welcome to join riding friends and travel in the back-up vehicle, meeting the riders at lunch stops and in the evenings, but there is no specific non-riding itinerary.

Travel

The meeting point for this ride is at Bergerac station at 06:30 pm. There is one group set-time departure available from this station at that time (payable locally).

On departure day you will be dropped off back there between 9am and 10am.

Itinerary & Pricing

Day 1

Riding: No riding.

You will be collected from Lalinde train station strictly by 6.30 pm and transferred as a group to your B&B. If you have your own transport then you are also welcomed at the B&B in the late afternoon.

Day 2

Riding: 4 - 5 hours

After breakfast, at c. 10:30 am, you are introduced to the horses at Chateau de Bannes (a 15th-century private castle). Set off riding through Lalinde's bastide and follow the canal towards the village of Mauzac which is situated on the right bank of the Dordogne. Stop for a picnic lunch before continuing to the ancient fishing port of Limeuil. Dinner and overnight in a B&B or hotel.

Day 3

Riding: 4 - 5 hours

After crossing the forest on horseback, you stop for a picnic lunch near the village of St Cyprien on the edge of the Dordogne. The afternoon ride takes you along a medieval path between the castles of Tayac and Castelnaud-la-Chapelle to reach the place where you leave the horses for the night in the Valley of the Ceou. Dinner and overnight in a B&B or hotel.

Day 4

Riding: 3 - 4 hours

There is time this morning to visit Castelnaud-la-Chapelle's castle (12th century) and its museum - the castle offers magnificent views across the Beynac, Marquessac and La Roche Gageac.

Today's ride takes you from the Ceou valley to the Dordogne valley where a picnic lunch is waiting for you at the base of a windmill in the Domme bastide. Either before or after lunch you can visit this royal bastide from the 13th century.

In the afternoon you will have great views of the Dordogne valley from this village and your route to Vitrac where you leave the horses. You are then transferred to the well-preserved medieval city of Sarlat for dinner and to overnight.

Day 5

Riding: 2 - 3 hours

This morning's ride takes you from the horses resting place, through Sarlat and onto Campagnac Castle where you stop for a picnic. There is no riding this afternoon and you are free to explore the splendid city of Sarlat. Sarlat is the capital of the Black Perigord region and is considered one of the most beautiful cities in Europe with its stunning architecture, art and history.
Dinner and overnight in a B&B or hotel.

Day 6

Riding: 4 - 5 hours

Ride along a path towards Meyrals which offers the chance to see the Puymartin Castle, which was first built in the 12th century then destroyed in the 14th century before being rebuilt in the 15th century! Picnic at the foot of Meyrals church before continuing to Audrix which offers a magnificent panorama of the valley of the Vézère.  Dinner and night at B&B or a hotel.

Day 7

Riding: 4 - 5 hours

In the morning, you will head down to the Vézère Valley and join the Limeuil river. You will ride along the Dordogne River towards Cadouin, where you have a picnic near the 12th-century abbey. From there, you will go through the Béssede Forest, the most important forest land of the Périgord, and take some time to visit Molière's village, a bastide again from the 12th century, before heading back to the Bannes castle. Final dinner and night at the gites where you spent your first night.

Day 8

Riding: No riding.

You will be transferred together to Bergerac or Lalinde train station after breakfast at c. 8.30am (no later transfers will be possible).

NB. Please note that the itinerary is a guide and may have to be adjusted due to weather or other local conditions, but always with your best interests at heart.

Experience Intermediate / Experienced

You need to be capable in all four paces (walk, rising trot, canter and gallop in a forward seat) across varied terrain in open spaces. You should ride regularly and be fit to canter for long distances, with soft hands. You should also be a confident rider. Those who are assessed to not have the required level for the ride may be asked to stop riding and will be charged additionally (c 300€ euros) for the transport of your horse back to base. No refunds will be given in this case.

Minimum group size 5
Maximum group size 10
Departure windows

April 8, 2023 - April 15, 2023

Pricing

2023
Sharing
£1725 $2085 €1940
Included 7 nights accommodation in shared rooms, all meals from dinner on arrival day to breakfast on departure day, wine with lunches and 6 days of riding as per the itinerary.
Not included Flights, train tickets, personal travel insurance, group set-time transfers (20€ EUR per person), drinks in hotels and restaurants, entrance fees to museums and castles, tips and personal expenses. The chateaux visits will require guests to pay an additional fee to take part. The extra costs for these total approx. 11€ (EUR) per person.

Extras

2023 - Single Supplement £360 $435 €405
Paid to Far and Ride
2022 - Train Station Transfer €20
Paid locally
There is a group set-time transfer from Bergerac station strictly at 6.30 pm on arrival day and then a group transfer on departure day as well (usually departing at around 9 am). The cost for transfer is 20 euros per person, return fare, paid on arrival. Please note that no alternative transfers will be offered.
Note: All programmes and itineraries are weather dependent; in the face of adverse, or unexpected, weather conditions reasonable attempts will be made to provide equivalent riding. All programmes are accurate at the time of writing. However, the team may adapt or modify details, whilst aiming to provide a similar experience.