Bordeaux, Dordogne, & Languedoc, France

Bordeaux, Dordogne, & Languedoc, France

Bordeaux, Dordogne, & Languedoc, France Snapshot

A Bordeaux tour like you’ve imagined: the best wines and gastronomic cuisine, idyllic hilltop villages, optional balloon ride, underground boat ride, prehistoric cave paintings, historic castles and unspoiled medieval towns with no cars, warm friendly hosts.

Tour Dates: June 10 – 24, 2020

Tour Price: $7,390

Tour price includes:

  • Roundtrip airfare from Boston or New York to Bordeaux* and home from Toulouse
  • 13 nights in small, elegant accommodations of regional character
  • All breakfasts, 10 dinners (mostly gastronomic), 2 special lunches
  • Full time tour leader
  • Transportation by comfortable mini-van
  • Airport transfers
  • All winery tours and tastings
  • Highlights include: Bordeaux, Pauillac (Médoc wine region), Saint-Emilion, Brantôme, Les Eyzies, Périgueux, Sarlat, Beynac, Domme, Rocamadour, Saint-Cirq-Lapopie, Albi, Toulouse, Carcassonne, and Cordes-sur-Ciel
  • Visit authentic prehistoric cave paintings as well as Lascaux II
  • Boat ride on an underground lake in the famous Gouffre de Padirac Cave
  • Optional balloon ride over Rocamadour Alzou Gorge
  • All tips, taxes and entrance fees as indicated in the itinerary
Tour price is per person based on double occupancy.
Single supplements are available for those traveling alone who would like their own room.
*Cost of airfare can be deducted if you wish to make your own arrangements.

Bordeaux, Dordogne & Languedoc Itinerary

Depart US, flying overnight to Bordeaux.

Day 1
We arrive at the Bordeaux Airport and take a short ride to our hotel in the city center. After  some free time to either rest or explore, we have a guided walking tour, led by our wonderful local guide, followed by a delicious welcome dinner.
Overnight: Bordeaux  Meals: D
Day 2
Today we explore the wine road to Pauillac and visit one of the famous wine châteaux of the Haut Médoc wine region. After lunch on the quai along the Gironde River, we return to Bordeaux for a free evening.
Overnight: Bordeaux  Meals: B
Day 3
A short drive takes us to the charming medieval wine village of Saint Emilion. Our local guide tells us the story of the 8th century monk who gave the town its name, and shows us the largest monolithic underground church in Europe. We then make our way to Brantôme, a picturesque village on the River Vienne, in the northwest part of Périgord.  One of the prettiest villages in France, Brantôme is a delight to explore.
Overnight: Brantôme  Meals: B, D
Day 4
This morning we take a tour of Brantôme with a local guide, then enjoy a wine tasting lunch in Perigueux along with a walking tour of this historic city. That evening you’ll have dinner on your own in Brantôme.
Overnight: Brantôme  Meals: B, D (dinner served mid-day)
Day 5
Heading east toward Montignac, we come to the famous Lascaux II, replica of the original Lascaux Cave, where we’ll get an excellent introduction to Paleolithic cave art. After lunch in Les Eyzies-de-Tayac, known as the capital of prehistory, we visit the National Museum of Prehistory with its world famous collection of prehistoric findings. A scenic drive along the Dordogne River brings us to our home for the next three nights, the picturesque medieval town of Sarlat.
Overnight: Sarlat  Meals: B, L, D
Day 6
Sarlat is the geographical center of Périgord-Quercy and the most important town in the region. With no cars on its narrow medieval streets, Sarlat is often used in filmmaking. Sarlat is also known as the capital of foie gras and truffles, so we’ll be sure to peek into the most tempting shops. We then venture into the beautiful countryside for an authentic truffle hunt. Our truffle expert and his faithful dogs teach us their techniques and then we enjoy a truffle-flavored lunch. Afterwards, we visit Rouffignac Cave, where we see authentic prehistoric cave drawings from the Magdalenian period. We return to Sarlat for a free evening.
Overnight: Sarlat  Meals: B
Day 7
This morning we take a guided tour of  the nearby Château Beynac-et-Cazenac. High on a hill above the Dordogne River, Beynac has an exciting history from the Middle Ages, having been captured by Richard the Lionheart during one of the many battles between the French and the English.  It has been meticulously restored and was the model for the Michael Crighton film Timeline. After walking down the picturesque castle road, we visit another charming medieval village, Domme. Here, at the top of a small mountain with a panoramic view of the Dordogne River Valley, we have a very special gastronomic lunch. We return to Sarlat for free time.
Overnight: Sarlat  Meals: B, D (meal served mid-day)
Day 8
This morning we drive to our next destination, Rocamadour. We enjoy a guided tour of this incredible ancient, ecclesiastical village built into the side of a mountain. In the 12th century Rocamadour became an important center of medieval Christianity, and since that time pilgrimages have been made here in hopes of miracles. We can visit the same chapel where King Henry Plantagenet came to pray for a miracle in the 1100s.  After lunch and free time to explore, we have an optional visit to a duck farm, where we learn the ancient art of making foie gras. Our lovely inn for the next three nights is on a sheep farm just outside the village. Our friendly hosts welcome us with an aperitif before our first gourmet dinner in Rocamadour.\
Overnight: Rocamadour  Meals: B, D
Day 9
Today is a fun adventure day. We take a boat ride on an underground river at the famous Gouffre de Padirac. Our enchanting journey takes us through an underground canyon and lake, passing by striking views of stalactites and  stalagmites, passageways, chambers, and a waterfall. Since 1898, speleological expeditions have uncovered more than 13 miles of underground galleries, many of which we see on our boat ride.  After a traditional French picnic complete with foie gras and French pastries, we continue to explore the Quercy Valley. We end our day relaxing by the pool before a wonderful gourmet dinner.
Overnight: Rocamadour  Meals: B, L, D
Day 10
If the weather is right, we have the option of a spectacular balloon ride floating over the beautiful Quercy Valley. We then take an excursion to visit two beautiful villages: Collonges-la-Rouge and Carennac.  This evening we enjoy another gastronomic dinner that upholds this region’s reputation for culinary excellence.
Overnight: Rocamadour  Meals: B, D
Day 11
We leave the Dordogne Valley and head south to visit the charming hilltop village of Saint-Cirq-Lapopie, one of the most  photogenic towns in France. Next we continue to the Languedoc region, named for the ancient language once spoken there. Our hotel for the next two nights is a lovely inn in the center of the lively town of Albi.
Overnight: Albi  Meals: B, D
Day 12
This morning we visit the Toulouse-Lautrec museum in Albi, which contains  the most complete permanent collection of the work of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Albi’s native son.  Next to the museum is the unusual “fortress—cathedral” of Albi. Its austere exterior belies the delicate beauty of its colorful tiled interior.  In the afternoon we visit the nearby hill-top village of Cordes-sur-Ciel, unspoiled charm with spectacular vistas over the surrounding countryside.
Overnight: Albi  Meals: B
Day 13
This morning we to travel to the fascinating walled village of Carcassonne. The “Cité” of Carcassonne is the largest fortress in Europe.  Entering through a 13th-century gate, you will feel transported back in time. We visit the castle, walk around the massive rampart walls, browse among the shops, and relax in one of the hundreds of sidewalk cafés. We then head to our final destination, the ancient city of Toulouse. Dating from Roman times, Toulouse became a great center of learning in the Middle Ages, and its university today is second in size only to the University of Paris. Our guide shows us the most interesting sights in the historic city and teaches us  about the fighting among the powerful Counts of Toulouse, the Albigensians and the Cathars. Farewell dinner in Toulouse.
Overnight: Toulouse  Meals: B, D

 

Photos coming soon.

 

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