Camping in Dordogne, between Nature and Heritage

Les gabares face à la Roque-Gageac

The Périgord is a great region for camping. Campsites are scattered along the banks of the Dordogne, the Vézère, the Dronne or the Céou. So make the most of your next camping holiday in the Dordogne, with your tent, caravan or camper van, to discover this green region, rich in an exceptional heritage that is written on the walls of the Lascaux cave and in the golden stone of Sarlat.

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Charming towns and villages to visit during your camping holiday in the Périgord

What stands out the most when listing the towns and villages of the Périgord is the incredible richness of this territory. With no less than 10 villages classified as the Most Beautiful Villages in France, the department has a unique heritage. The highlight is the Dordogne valley. Within a few kilometres, no less than 4 listed villages await you, nestling in the meanders of the river, so close that they sometimes seem to be watching each other: Domme, perched on the heights, offers an unrestricted view of the Dordogne, La Roque-Gageac, which stretches along the river, or Castelnaud and Beynac, dominated by their castles. So many jewels that make the Dordogne a splendid necklace. And if these four villages were not enough to make you happy, they are only a few minutes away from Sarlat. With 66 listed monuments in an area of 11 hectares, Sarlat is in the record books. Roofs of lauze, cobbled streets and blonde stone buildings make up the decor of this perfectly preserved Renaissance town. Don’t miss the opportunity to discover it during your camping holiday in the Dordogne.

However, the Périgord is not limited to the banks of the Dordogne. With its 44 listed monuments, Périgueux seems to want to compete with Sarlat. Although the city boasts a Roman history with its Vesunna museum, it is the cathedral of Saint-Front, with its white stone and Byzantine domes, that best symbolises the city. To the north of Périgueux, don’t miss Saint-Jean-de-Côle, which is one of the 10 listed villages in Périgord, and Brantôme, whose abbey, steeped in history, is the pride of the Périgord Vert.

The Dordogne, from one castle to another

In addition to the listed villages, the Périgord has a myriad of castles that bear witness to the region’s glorious history. From your campsite in the Dordogne, there is bound to be a castle to visit. Of all these, the castle of Puyghuilem is one of the most surprising. With its Renaissance architecture, this elegant building is more reminiscent of the castles of the Loire. The castle of Hautefort was once a stronghold before it became a residence with a French garden in the 19th century. Once the property of Josephine Baker, the château des Milandes is also famous for its formal garden, which is now used as the setting for a bird of prey show. On the edge of the Agenais region, the château de Biron has watched over the borders since the Middle Ages. When you visit it, you will no doubt recognise the setting for cloak and dagger films such as D’Artagnan’s Daughter. When one speaks of Monbazillac, one thinks above all of the wine. Whether you like wine or not, the Château de Monbazillac alone is worth a visit.

camping in nature

Of course, the Dordogne has a rich heritage to discover from the campsite where you spend your holidays. But the Dordogne also has beautiful green hillside landscapes where the Vézère, Dordogne and Dronne rivers meander. In the north of the department, the Parc Régional du Périgord Limousin is located. It is an area of plateaus and hills suitable for hiking and cycling. In all seasons, the region enchants the nature lover, whether in spring when the orchids bloom or the mushrooms in autumn. Among the treasures of this region where water is everywhere, go for a walk to the Saut du Chalard waterfall or to the Tourbière de Vendoire. This 65-hectare peat bog is an island of preserved nature. Educational trails invite you to discover these surprising landscapes.

the dordogne in prehistoric times

The heritage of the Périgord does not date back to the Middle Ages, but much earlier. Indeed, the Dordogne is one of the world’s leading centres for prehistory and cave art. The most famous site is of course the Lascaux cave. This cave, discovered in the 1940s, is one of the most beautiful decorated caves in the world. In order to preserve the original, a facsimile was built to welcome the public. In 2016, a new version opened its doors in Montignac with Lascaux IV, International Centre for Cave Art. During your camping holidays in the Dordogne, don’t miss the opportunity to discover this fantastic site using all the latest technologies to immerse yourself in prehistory. Several campsites in the Dordogne allow you to stay close to Montignac to facilitate access to the cave. Lascaux is not the only prehistoric site in the Périgord. The Vézère Valley has one of the largest concentrations of prehistoric sites in Europe. Fifteen of them have been listed as UNESCO World Heritage sites. Among the must-see sites in the Vézère valley, the Roque-Saint-Christophe, a limestone wall with dwellings, and the National Museum of Prehistory at Les Eyzies-de-Tayac, which will give you a better understanding of this period.

canoe trip and balloon ride

Canoeing and hot-air ballooning are two of the great classics for discovering the green, hilly landscapes of the Dordogne. There are many rivers where you can go canoeing. The Dordogne, the Vézère and the Dronne are just some of them. Ask at the reception of the campsite where you are staying during your camping holiday in the Périgord for the best addresses for a canoe trip. As the sun descends over the Dordogne valley, it’s time for the hot air balloons to come out. It is a superb spectacle that colours the Perigordian sky every evening. If you have the opportunity, take a ride in one of these hot-air balloons. You will discover the Dordogne, its listed villages and its castles from another angle.

Gourmet Dordogne

More than any other region in France, the Dordogne is associated with gastronomy. Black Périgord truffles, foie gras, confits, ceps and walnuts are all delicious Périgord specialities. They can be tasted in restaurants, of course, but also on the traditional markets. They are of course washed down with Bergerac wines. The Bergerac vineyards, in the western Dordogne, produce delicious red wines such as Pécharmant, but also rosés and whites, as well as the famous sweet wine of Monbazillac.

To learn more about truffles, be sure to visit the Musée de la Truffe in Sorges.

The campsites in the Dordogne often have a restaurant where you can taste recipes based on the emblematic products of the Périgord. Take advantage of your holidays in the Dordogne to go and eat there. And if you are looking for something a little more gastronomic, the campsite managers will be able to show you their best gourmet addresses around the campsite.

Our campsites in Dordogne

A selection of campsites in the Dordogne for holidays in a tent, caravan or motorhome.

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Written By

It is because we love traditional camping that we thought of this site. Because we sometimes regret that the rental accommodations now occupy so much space on campsites, we wanted to highlight the sites where tents, caravans and motorhomes are still the majority. And to offer all those who share our love of the outdoor life, a site with travel ideas, technical advice and above all a choice of campsites where it is good to come and put up your caravan or tent.

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