A list of tips when travelling to the Dordogne
We are currently compiling a list of tips, however, the list is not limited to our sole experience.
Please feel free to get in touch with us via our Contact Us Form in the top menu if you’d like to add your own tips and photos.
A tip or 2 – Traveling to the Dordogne by boat or air
Brittany Ferries run crossings from:
- Dover to Calais
- Portsmouth to Caen, Cherbourg and St Malo
- Poole to Cherbourg and Plymouth to Roscoff, as well as from Cork to Roscoff.
Some flights might be operating only during the holiday season.
A tip or 2 – French Public Holidays and Opening Hours
France Sundays and Public Holidays: Most small businesses are closed, some supermarket are open only in the morning.
Mondays: Most shops are traditionally closed on Monday.
However, most businesses related to tourism tend to be open during the peak season.
Fixed Public Holidays in France: January 1 New Year’s day, May 1 Labour Day, May 8 Victory 1945, July 14 Bastille day, August 15 Assumption, November 1 All Saints, November 11 Armistice 1918, December 25 Christmas Day, December 26 St-Etienne Day (only in the east of France)
A tip or 2 – About some of the Dordogne Prehistoric sites
Most caves charge about 7,50 € per person.
Castles and others vary from 4 to 12 €.
A handful of privately owned sites charge half price for children below 16.
Too few, though, give them free entrance (except babies and toddlers of course who go free of charge).
Tickets can reach an average of nearly 30 € for a family of 2 adults and 2 children.
In other words quite a budget if you intend to visit a few caves or castles!
Therefore, choose the sites you want to visit before hand, as you can’t visit them all.
There is no Pass available, because the sites are either privately owned or belong to the communes, the departments or the state.
It indeed seems tricky for all these various organizations to find a common agreement on prices and rules!
Some privately owned sites have, however, pooled together and offer discounts.
The Dordogne and Vézère Valleys are absolutely gorgeous; it is a pity that they should be a bit expensive to visit!
A tip or 2 about Lascaux
However, keep in mind that it is only a replica (a stunning one obviously!)
Lascaux tickets are only available from the Tourist Office in the town of Montignac!
There is no discount for children below 16.
When buying tickets for Lascaux you are offered the possibility of paying a few additional € for visiting Le Thot prehistoric centre.
This centre is really worth the extra money.
It indeed proposes various media and reproductions of the paintings of the galleries not on display in Lascaux II.
It is set in a huge park where aurochs, bison and horses are kept in large enclosures; it is obviously targeting families with children.