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Posts Tagged ‘Curemonte’

 

Even if your primary reason for coming here is to canoe or kayak the magnificent Dordogne River, there are a few places that should not be overlooked when visiting the Dordogne River Valley:

Pech Merle, Grotte du Gaume, and Lascaux:          The Pre-History of Man

Check out magnificent cave art of early man at Pech Merle, Grotte du Gaume, and Lascaux. (Also, a visit to the National Prehistoric Museum in Les Eyzies is a must)

Links: Les EyziesGrotte du GaumePech MerleLascaux

Rocamadour:

Rocamadour is a nearly vertical village which has been visited by pilgrims since the 9th century. In 1166 when the perfectly preserved remains of St. Amadour were discovered under the floor in front of its little Chapelle Notre-Dame, Rocamadour became one of the most important centers for religious pilgrimage in all of Europe. It is said, ‘St. Amadour’ was actually Zacchaeus – a tax collector in Jericho at the time of Christ – who was advised by the Virgin Mary to come to this location in France to live out his remaining years as a hermit. Toward the end of the 12 century, Henri Courtmantel, aka: “Young King Henry”, son of King Henry II of England & Eleanor of Aquitaine (and the old brother of Richard the Lionheart),  plundered Rocamadour and stole its most prized relics including; a small statue known as the ‘Black Virgin’ and Rowland’s famous sword, Durandal. Ultimately, under pressure from King Henry II, he returned these relics to Rocamadour and they can be seen there today.

Link: Rocamadour

Gouffre de Padirac:

 

Imagine a voyage down a river deep underground it is probably one of the most unique boating experiences you will ever encounter. The Gouffre de Padirac provides a spectacular entrance to a network of rivers about 300 feet underground and the opportunity to take a little cruise of about 1.5 nautical miles through a beautiful grotto and cave network. The view up from the base of the Gouffre’s main chasm gives you the sense that you are beginning a journey to the center of the earth. Then, you continue to descend another 100 feet underground to the boats below!

Link: Gouffre de Padirac

Explore the most beautiful villages in France:

THE French government has generated a list of 148 villages within the 65 French Departments (Counties) they protect & consider these villages’ true national treasures. All of these villages date back to the Middle Ages. Within a 20 to 30 minute drive radius of Carennac, there are seven! These include: Carennac, Loubressac, Autoire, Curemonte, Rocamadour, Turenne and Collonges-la-Rouge.

In total, eighteen of these plus beaux villages (including; Collonges-la-Rouge, Turenne, Curemonte & Domme not on detailed on the map above) are within an hour drive or less of Carennac. That’s better than 10% of the entire List …Right here in the Haut Quercy, how cool is that???

Link: Les Plus Beaux Villages

à bientôt! Jack

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June 8, 2013 - Posted by Jack Tobin

France’s ‘Plus Beaux Villages’ sites are where the country’s heritage has been best preserved. These villages are havens of culture and possess architectural treasures to rouse the senses. They are truly bastions of the French art de vivre (art of life).

Tradition in these villages is not merely alive but thriving. A tour of the countryside reveals villages spread out like a fan, built against a cliff or encased in a small valley. Others are nestled in the loop of a river, at the foot of grand châteaux or at the bottom of natural gorges. Off the beaten track, safeguarded from urban development and communication highways, 148 small communes across the country, keen to preserve and promote their individual character, have been granted the “most beautiful villages in France” label.

In total, eighteen of these plus beaux villages including; Collonges-la-Rouge, Turenne, Curemonte & Domme in the Corrèze (not on detailed on the map below) are within an hour drive or less of our accommodation offerings in the Dordogne River Valley. That’s better than 10% of the entire list!

The Plus Beaux Villages de France association was founded in 1982 with the aim of conserving and promoting the heritage of “the most beautiful villages in France”. To qualify, villages must meet a number of demanding preconditions, set by the association to ensure the label is awarded on the basis of a rigorous selection process. Three basic conditions must be met by these beautiful Medieval Villages:  less than 2,000 inhabitants, two registered or listed sites, and the village must also pursue a policy to preserve its natural heritage reflected in its’ area development plan.

Plan to visit in 2013? Please check out the delightful accommodations at ‘Le Sud’!

Bon Voyage et à bientôt! Jack
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March 23, 2013 - Posted by Jack Tobin