Welcome to Perigord!
Is there a difference between Dordogne and Périgord?
Today the Périgord and the Dordogne department are synomynes and designate the same territory. During the French Revolution, the National Assembly decided to create the departments in order to simplify the administrative organisation of France. The criteria chosen for the name of the departments being geographical or hydrographic, the Périgord thus receives the name of its main river: the Dordogne.
Certainly the most beautiful department in France, It contains four major natural regions: in the centre, the Périgord Blanc (Périgueux, Ribérac); In the southeast, the Périgord Noir (Sarladais); The Périgord vert (Nontronnais) at the foot of the Limousin Mountains; In the southwest, the Périgord Purple (Bergeracois). The Périgord Blanc is composed of limestone plateaus, carved by rivers (Isle, Auvézère, Rent, Dronne), where the valleys widen. The Middle Valley of the Isle serves as a backbone to a slightly different region south of Périgueux, where the maritime pines are appearing. The region of Sarladais, is a country of pechs, these round hills capped with thickets of chestnut trees and pine forests; Low valleys planted with walnut trees, tobacco fields, orchards. The Périgord vert, the Nontronnais, is covered with trees, heath heaths; The Chestnut reigns supreme. It is a country of basins and valleys, of which the greasy meadow invades the gentle slopes. The Périgord Purple, whose valley widens downstream from Bergerac, is a region of orchards and vineyards.
The land began to form from the primary age when the central Massif emerged from the Earth's crust. These crystalline rocks are found in the northeast, on the edge of the Limousin. But the formation of Périgord occurred mainly in the secondary era, when the sea invaded Aquitaine, depressing limestone deposits at the foot of the Massif Central. Jurassic Limestone was born on the Causse Périgourdin. Later, Jurassic Limestone forms the soil of the Périgord blanc and most of the black Périgord. But it is in the Quaternary era that the main rivers (Dordogne, Vézère, Isle, Dronne) make their appearance and will dig the valleys.
The Dordogne Department (here we call it Perigord) is located in the New Aquitaine (but we say South West) bordered by the ramparts of the Massif Central, the Causses of Quercy, the orchards of the Lot et Garonne and the gravel of Gironde, you will cross many landscapes and the most beautiful villages of France.
Sacred Temple of Prehistory where already Cro Magnon inspired by the Vézère Valley expressed all his art. With its 15 sites classified as World Heritage by UNESCO, it is a part of the history of mankind that is available to you. You will discover parietal art in the frescoes of the Lascaux cave in Montignac and in the ornate caves and shelters that line the valley to Les Eyzies de Tayac where the National Museum of Prehistory and the International pole of prehistory remind us In particular that this is where the Cro-Magnon man was discovered.
A country loaded with history from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance where the castles witnessing past conflicts now print a sense of serenity and calm found in the Dordogne Valley. The troglodyte fortresses of La Roque Saint-Christophe, the Madeleine and Reignac and the remarkable castles such as Hautefort, Beynac, Losse, Castelnaud... Illustrate the turbulent history of this region.
Welcome to this beautiful country where everything is poetry, or literature that sometimes touches the genius. Is not Etienne la Boétie (native of Sarlat the caneda capital of Black Périgord) or Michel de Montaigne who wants to. The Périgord knows that its landscapes, Its villages, its products must have a touch of the creator a little lighter than elsewhere. A rich nature and exceptional architecture with no less than 8 villages ranked the most beautiful villages of France.
Even widely occupied the summer months, there remains room for sunsets over the ochre stones at the top of the limestone cliffs, for afternoons to listen to sing the breeze in the leaves of poplars, feet in the clear wave, our rivers and for walking, horseback riding or biking under the chestnut trees. These moments will know, better than anyone, to tell this multiple country.
The Périgord is a sanctuary, it has been able to preserve essential values. There are scents that awaken the most beautiful memories, landscapes similar to the dreams of children, caves that have borne a part of mankind.
From time to time, it is nice to make provision for certainties and sweetness in this world. Nature cradles you in the hollow of its valleys of its forests and rivers. The pure air and the dishes of the traditional gastronomy périgourdine will be given to you in addition.
Ponds and forests of the Nontronnais, passing through the roads of the Bergeracois wines and the paths of the Sarladais: it takes time to discover everything. Perigord.com will be your guide to allow you to organize your stay.
And if the too great heats of summer get you tired, the Autumns and the spring are great moments to slip into the silence of the sarladaises alleys or between the thick walls of the castles. The seasons stretch slowly and, from Easter to Toussaint, the color palette of the great painter from up there, is a reason enough to stop here.
And even the winter, so sad at times, takes here, by the fireside, nestled in a vast périgourdine chimney, with the looks of a temple where time seems suspended.
Being bored here is impossible, there is so much to see, so much to do, so much to taste, the Périgord people have planned everything to entertain you. Everything is there to enjoy the rivers, forests, roads and paths, rocks and even the air. We invite you to browse our site and compose your holidays in the tourist Périgord.
The flag of the Dordogne was chosen at the time of the French Revolution when the department was created on 4 March 1790. It corresponds to the coat of arms of the Counts of Périgord.
On the flag of the Dordogne are 3 lions in profile gilded with their claws apart, tongues out and a blue crown.
Contrary to the flag of Basque, Corsica or Breton omnipresent in these regions, the flag of Dordogne is not very present in Périgord, you will often find it in the castles that you will visit.
The Dordogne in question!
Discover the Périgord by playing our quizzes! Test your knowledge of our beautiful department, its places, its traditions, its gastronomy, its personalities... Learn while having fun!
What score will you get?