Dordogne Holidays and Leisure. Walking through the beautiful Dordogne countryside.

Countryside holiday cottage in Dordogne, France.

Private and secluded house with 5 acres of grounds and a one acre Lake.

The countryside in France is excellent for walking,
ranging from flat leisurely paths by the sides of stunning rivers and lakes to the steepest climbs enough for most mortals who aren't goats.

France is a big country and there is plenty of space for all, it is possible to walk for ages without meeting too many others,
and with judicious care you can go to many remote places.
Given that you respect others property and behave in an adult fashion no-one really minds the occasional walker appearing out of nowhere.

Though some research is recommended however, with the local tourist offices, for example, who publish guides giving a variety of walks differing in length,
duration and challenge to suit all.
The Pilgrims trail is 740 Km long if you fancy a stroll from Central France to the Pyrenees!
The Federation Francaise de la Randonnee(FFRP),
The National Walkers association is helpful, well organised and produces a wide range of excellent maps and handbooks.
There are many long distance footpaths in this area and known as Sentiers de Grande Randonnee de Pays (GRPs).

Whatever you do, you are surrounded by the Dordogne with 'un peu de tous' (something for everyone), it is quite impressive and you can see
it at your own pace experiencing some very famous and historic sites and sights.

Organised or recommended tours are graded, so you will be given a good idea of what to expect though like everything else its best to pace yourself
and if you are serious, invest in the best so that your holiday is memorable for the right reasons.
The routes pretty much cover the whole region and connect some very famous and attractive towns and areas.

If you are out and about though you may have admired the system of signposting walks that you find in the countryside.
There are posts with references to "boucles" and local villages, combined with a system of posts coming up to waist height, with yellow or green tops.
But the way it all links together is not too clear.

The issue of the walking maps by the Dordogne tourist authorities has greatly helped to understand the signposting system.
It involves "boucles" or circuits in each commune, marked yellow, linked by "itineraries de liaison" or linking paths, marked green.
Intrepid walkers can thus combine a circuit with a link, and thus move from commune to commune on footpaths.
In each commune a map can be found in the centre of the village, with details of the walks and where to start.
Signposts then appear on the walks, with the yellow and green coding being used again.

Not for the fainthearted.
The yellow circuits are not for the casual stroller. Details on the reverse of the Montpon map give the shortest circuits as four (for Menesplet)
and 7.8 (for Saint-Barthelemy de Bellegarde) kilometres respectively.
The remainder are between nine and fifteen kilometres. Guidance times show the four kilometres as taking one hour.

Many of the routes are also used by horses and mountain bikes and are thus rather more than footpaths.
They can become a bit churned up in the wetter weather.

Sample of the new maps
The distribution of the maps to tourist offices has been somewhat erratic. Some tourist offices have not yet received them, while others have had them for months.
The intention is for the system to operate throughout the department,
so if you're interested in discovering the Dordogne countryside on foot, horseback or mountain bike, visit the local tourist office and see whether a map is available.
It is quite difficult in practice to manage without.
Maps also have quite a lot of useful background information about the area, including places to visit and where to find activities such as canoeing or riding.
By the time the summer season is upon us it's hoped that all tourist offices will be fully equipped.

If you want to be organised about your walking amongst the wildlife you could try contacting some of the local clubs and walking groups in the area.
All of these organise regular walking activities and welcome newcomers and holiday makers alike!

Randopattes de Figeac,
Weekly walks organised both mid-week and weekends.
Contact Mr Courmac
Tel: 05 65 34 44 20

St Cere
Tourist office provide details of the impressive 480km of paths arranged into circuits from 3 to 26 km divided into four categories.

Randonnee Pedestre
Organised walks on first and third Thursdays and Sundays of the month
Tel: 05 65 10 83 33

USB Section Randonnee Pedestre
Contact Chantal Delarue
Tel: 05 53 73 15 12

Le Bugue
Objective 42, A local walking group
Contact Mr Guy Melin
Tel: 05 53 03 92 60

14 walks from 5 to 30km. Free guide available from the tourist office giving details of the routes.

La Randonee Pedestre en Aquitaine
46, Rue Kleber,
Tel: 05 53 45 51 21

Tourist office arranges accompanied walks every Wednesday from mid-June to mid- September.
Tel: 05 53 90 03 10

Phone house 07974 371 255

Back to the home page Holiday house to let in Dordogne France