Walking Dordogne has about 20 excellent hiking – walking tours in their Itinerary, varying from 3 hours to 10 hours, most walks can be combined with other walks to make them longer or shorter. Our walks are guaranteed to show you the REAL Dordogne, and take you to all the main highlights this region is famous for.
Our walks are suitable for all ages, but for most walks a certain level of fitness and stamina is required. Most walks are on tracks & trails, some marked, others not. Certain walks to caves, dwellings, ruins and view points are off the tracks, and up hill walking is often required.
Some of our walks may not be suitable for people with a fear of heights.
The great thing about Walking Dordogne is that our walks are not planned months or weeks ahead, we usually plan the walks together with the customer the day before, depending on the wishes and preferences of the customer, this way we can make sure everyone gets to see what they want to see. If the walks are done in combination, with canoeing or horse riding, then these walks are usually planned ahead, to guarentee the use of the horses or canoes.
As of September 2007 we will be offering “Day Trips” to people who are in the area and would like to see some of the best kept secrets the Vezere Valley has to offer. An example of a “Day Trip” is the “Valley of Caves”, a 5 / 7 hour walk exploring more than 30 (Neaderthal) caves, shelters, troglodytes, underground cavern, stunning views and lots more. Below are some pics taken on this trip. Remember, these caves, shelters, troglodytes, caverns are NOT mentioned in any books, or on any maps.
Our popular day hikes are :
In the footsteps of Jacques le Croquant * Starting March 2012
this adventure lasts between 3-4 hours, is almost completely “Off the beaten Track” Not suitable for anyone with a fear of heights. Quite a bit of climbing on this adventure.
Short bit of History.
The summer of 1789 was the outbreak of the French Revolution. There were numerous good reasons that started the French Revolution, but one of the main reasons was BREAD!!.. the price of bread was soaring. For example, in August 1788, 50% of a peasant’s income went toward the purchase of bread. By July 1789, this figure had risen to 80%. Bread was a way of collecting taxes, and it was illegal for peasants to own an oven, grindstone and to bake their own bread. Some people risked their lives to supply bread illegally to the poorest peasants. The most famous of these heroes was “Jacques le Croquant” He and his men put up communal ovens hidden away in the hills and forests, well guarded and well used. Jacques le Croquant was captured in May of 1794 on the day of his 26th birthday …he was be-headed. Just 2 months later in July 28, 1794 the French Revolution came to an end.
In the footsteps of Jacques le Croquant
This amazing journey takes you on a real exciting and fascinating journey back in time. You will get to see 5 ORIGINAL illegal ovens still tucked away. You will travel along ancient paths, to ruined villages, the ruins of a Templar Hospital, and numerous caves and shelters. A lot of this adventure is off the beaten track. The trip can be done in about 6 hours, but can be extended with various other hikes.
It is possible to do a shorter version of this trip, but we really do not recommend it unless you are really short on time.
This adventure is a MUST for anyone interested in Historic and adventurous off the beaten trail hikes.
this adventure can be added to, or combined with most of our Vezere Valley hikes. ** This adventure is suitable for most people, but requires a high level of fitness, the ability to clamber, and are not claustrophobic.
We have spent 2 years exploring the caves, and beyond. “Going Underground” is NOT a “Potholing” adventure, but an adventure for hikers that want to experience another world underground.
These caves, chambers and tunnels have been used for 1000’s of years, and they played an extremely important role during the Second World War, where they were used by the French Resistance.
The Valley of Caves
* round trip * 9+ hours but can be combined with other hikes to make it longer or shorter ** must be fit and adventurous
The Valley of Caves tour, is a 9+ hour hike for the “die hards” it is a strenuous version of the “Ode to the Neanderthal” hike. On this thrill seeking, adrenaline pumping hike, you will get dirty, you will get tired, you will be cursing, but you will have the best time of your life!! On this trip of a lifetime we go prepared with camelbacks, headtorches, and extra batteries. We venture deep into caves, crawling into caverns, follow an ancient once river now cave, we will climb to hidden caves, and lots more, If it’s caves you want to see, then Welcome to the “Valley of Caves”
In the footsteps of the Mammoth
* round trip * 4-5 hours but can be combined with other hikes to make it longer or shorter
In the footsteps of the Mammoth is a exciting 4 – 5 hour round trip hike, 90% of this walk is off the beaten track, it is also part of the “Valley of Caves” and “Ode to the Neaderthal” trips. Highligts on this trip are numerous caves, some excellent troglodytes, an amazing rock ledge and shelters, fantastic views of the Vezere Valley and a ruined village, left behind hundreds of years ago.
Prehistoric, Romans and Medieval * round trip * 4-5 hours
Our Prehistoric, Romans and Medieval hike is an extremely interesting 4 – 5 hour hike through history, from the Prehistoric “Cap Blanc” and some excellent Troglodytes, to the Medieval stronghold village Commarque to the Roman roads, canal and bridges hidden in the Beune Valley. This trip is a MUST for anyone with an interest in various historic periods.
Hells Gorge * round trip * 4-5 hours
Hells Gorge, the name say’s it all, we follow an ancient track that cuts through the gorge. Here you will see the largest Prehistoric Overhang in Europe. We will venture into some hidden and unmapped caves and shelters, you will also explore the ruins of a Templars Hospital, an ancient sacrafice spot, excellent views and lots more. All in all an unforgettable 4-5 hour round trip.
Ode to the Neanderthal * round trip * 7-8 hours but can be combined with other hikes to make it longer or shorter ** must be fit and adventurous
Ode to the Neanderthal is Walking Dordogne’s most popular trip, it is a thrilling 7-8 hour round trip that takes you off the beaten track to the best kept secrets in the Vezere Valley. About 40 unmapped prehistoric caves, troglodytes, shelters excellent views of the Vezere Valley, and lots more. This trip can be combined with “Valley of Caves” and “In the Footsteps of the Mammoth” tours, to make it longer or shorter.
The ring of Eyzies * round trip * 4-5 hours but can be combined with other hikes to make it longer or shorter
The “Ring of Eyzies” is a fantastic 4-5 hour hike taking you to unmapped, long forgotten and hidden treasures in and around Les Eyzies de Tayac. We will venture off the beaten track into some great caves and Troglodytes, you will have wonderful views of the surrounding area, and we will follow some ancient tracks used 1000’s of years ago by our ancestors
For more info about canoeing or kayaking on the Vezere or Dordogne river please visit Walking Dordogne