Geo: 44.8913, 1.21511
Today we decided to visit Saturday market in Sarlat-la-Caneda, followed by visits to other places along the Dordogne River valley northwest of Toulouse.
Sarlat is known for its year-round Saturday market which is set in the beautiful historic village. We arrived with many other people and enjoyed the largest market we had ever experienced. In addition to fruit, vegetable and flower vendors, there were pate/fois grois vendors, fish vendors, cheese and bread vendors, clothing and shoe vendors, and so many others. The charm of the market, as is true with so many in France, lies is the beautiful, cobble-stone villages in which they are set. Just look up and you are surrounded by bell towers, beautiful centuries-old architecture, and flower filled window boxes.
Next we traveled about 10 km southwest of Sarlat to Beynac, another 'plus beaux village de France' - with it's amazing stone castle perched high on a rock cliff overlooking the Dordogne River. The castle is also the site of several movies, include Jean d'Arc and Chocolat. We toured the castle which has only been open to the public since the 1960's and which is still partially inhabited by a private family. The views from
the castle were amazing!
A few kilometers down the road brought us to La Roque-Gagneac, another 'plus beaux village' - which is set up against a stone cliff overlooking the Dordogne River. The creamy golden stone houses with tiled roofs match the stone hillside behind them. Some old dwellings are actually built into the cliffs.
Heading back to Toulouse, we stopped for coffee in another quaint village, Belves, noted for its many church bell towers. The folks there were in the process of decorating the town square for their evening celebration of Bastille Day.
We finally rolled onto our street before 9 pm. It was a long but thoroughly enjoyable day.
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