France ~ Dordogne & Gironde

These rides explore the Gironde, Lot and Dordogne valleys in south west France, an area boasting some 1200 Chateaux and steeped with Anglo French history dating back to the Hugenot era. Beautiful oak forests, river valleys and rolling hills make it a wonderful area to explore by horse and the region’s superb cuisine and its renowned Cahors and Bordeaux wines, all add to its attraction. The Perigord, Vineyard of Bordeaux and Prehistory & Chateaux of Cahor Ride itineraries follow routes from village to village, whilst the Moulin de Labique & Chateau de Rouffiac Rides are centred at a lovley watermill / chateau, with rides out from the base. The new Prestigious Dordogne itinerary is semi-progressive, spending 2 nights at each of 3 luxurious hotels.

There are picnic lunches to enjoy along the way and classic French food and wine is served at your hotel at night, a welcome indulgence after a day in the saddle. Of the long ride itineraries, the Prehistory & Chateaux of Cahor Ride includes the most riding; the Vineyards of Bordeaux Rides is the faster paced. All rides are fairly relaxed with visits to local sights,  wine tasting etc.

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SUMMARY

Riding: 4-6 hours a day.

Horses: locally bred French saddle horses.

Pace: slow to moderate (moderate on Bordeaux ride).

Riding ability: confident novice riders and above.

Weight limit: 86kg (13st 7lbs).

Accommodation: 3* & 4* hotels, chateau hotels & chambres d'hotes.

Group size: max 6.

Season: April to November.

HORSES & RIDING

Horses: The horses used are mostly locally bred French saddle horses of between 14.2hh and 15.2hh. They are well schooled, good-natured and a sensible but forward going and responsive ride. Saddles are either English, 'Maclellans' (which are a comfortable cross between an English and western saddle), with western style also available for those who wish. Most of the horses are ridden western style and are used to neck reining and to a light contact with the mouth. Saddle bags are provided when necessary. The horses are tacked up / prepared for you by the local staff. Rides are normally limited to a maximum of 6 guests and are lead by Michel who is French and owns the horses. He is an experienced, knowledgeable guide and speaks fluent English.

Hours: There is usually between 4 and 6 hours riding a day (it varies with the itinerary, the Prehistory & Chateax of Cahor ride including the longest riding hours), broken up with rests and for lunch and sightseeing.

Pace and experience required:
To join these rides you should have a reasonable amount of previous riding experience and should be secure and comfortable on a well-schooled horse at a walk, trot and canter over varied terrain. The pace is fairly slow to moderate overall and quite relaxed (the Bordeaux ride offers more chances to canter). There is a weight limit of 86kgs (13 stone 7lbs).

ACCOMMODATION

Accommodation on the rides is in a variety of good quality 3* and 4* hotels and chambres d'hotes. Hotels are comfortable, chosen as far as possible for their character and all rooms have their own bathroom. Most have a good restaurant and several have their own swimming pool for a relaxing dip after the day's ride. The Moulin de Labique, where one ride is based and which is also used on the Perigord Ride for a night, is a lovely country house in the heart of the Dordogne. Labique & Chateau de Rouffiac have just 7 and 4 bedrooms respectively, all with individual bathrooms, and there are swimming pools at both. On the Prestigious Dordogne Ride 4* and 5* hotels are used. Rates assume accommodation in twin rooms but single rooms are available at a supplement.

RATES & DATES

Rates 2019

Perigord Ride (6 nights) - Euros 2675;
single supplement - Euros 370

Vineyards of Bordeaux (6 nights) - Euros 3010;
single supplement - Euros 450

Prehistory & Chateaux of Cahor (6 nights) - Euros 2685;
single supplement - Euros 360

Moulin de Labique Ride (6 nights) - Euros 2375;
single supplement - Euros 240

Chateau de Rouffiac Ride (6 nights) - Euros 2360
single supplement - Euros 330

Prestigious Dordogne Ride (6 nights) - Standard Room Euros 5410; Prestige Suite Euros 6700;
single supplement - Standard Euros 800; Prestige Suite Euros 1720

Non-riding partners are welcome on all rides - please enquire for non-riding rates and also group rates

Rates include - 6 nights twin hotel accommodation, 4 or 5 days riding, meals, wine with lunch and dinner, mini-bus back up and transfers from / to Bergerac (or Cahors, Agen, Bordeaux, Briva La Gaillarde train station depending on ride) at set times with the group.

Rates exclude - international flights / travel to Bergerac / Agen / Cahors / Brive La Gaillarde, personal medical insurance (compulsory), extra drinks and any tips you may wish to leave.


Prices are quoted in Euros. Payments to us can of course be made in pounds sterling if you wish and we can give you a sterling rate at the time of booking.

Dates 2019

Vineyards of Bordeaux
19th to 25th May
26th May to 1st June
15th to 21st September
22nd to 28th September

Perigord Ride
5th to 12th May
23rd to 29th June
1st to 7th September
(Prestigious Dordogne - same dates as Perigord above, decided by first booking)

Prehistory & Chateaux of Cahor
21st to 27th April
9th to 15th June
6th to 12th October

Moulin de Labique
7th to 13th July
18th to 24th August
(Chateau de Rouffiac - same dates as Moulin de Labique above, decided by first booking)

Other rides and dates tbc

 

ITINERARY

Itinerary in brief - Perigord Ride. Please enquire for other itineraries

Day 1 You will be met at Bergerac railway station or airport and driven to a country hotel for dinner and the night.
Day 2
After breakfast meet the horses and set off riding to Chateau de Biron. Lunch, then ride on to the lovely, well preserved bastide town of Monpazier, founded in 1284 and famous for its architecture. Dinner and overnight in Monpazier.
Day 3
Today's ride takes you to Montferrand-du-Perigord on the Couze river. A picnic lunch and continue to Cadouin. Time to visit the beautiful abbey before a short drive to a nearby hotel for dinner and the night.
Day 4
Breakfast and rejoin the horses, riding through the Bessede forest to another unique bastide - Belves. Lunch followed by an afternoon drive to visit the 'Gouffre de Proumeyssac' caves, known as the 'Crystal Cathedral'. Return to Belves for dinner and the night.
Day 5
Ride on through chestnut woods, stopping for lunch at a local duck farm.In the afternoon continue riding to Villefranche du Perigord. Time to visit this wonderful bastide before dinner and the night in Villefranche du Perigord.
Day 6
A short drive to rejoin the horses then ride to Chateau de Bonaguil, an imposing medieval fortress built on a rock face. After lunch and a tour of the chateau, ride on crossing the Lot river. Dinner and the last night at a charming country hotel.
Day 7
Breakfast, then you will be driven to Bergerac for your onward journey.
  Contact us at info@rideworldwide.com or on tel (+44) (0)1837-82544 / 825440 for further information, detailed itineraries, dates and answers to questions.

TRAVEL

Bergerac is the meeting place for most rides - Prehistory & Chateaux of Cahors, Pergiord and Moulin de Labique, Chateau Rouffiac; Departure is also from Bergerace except for Prehistory & Chateaux of Cahors where it may be either Cahor station or Bergerac.
Bordeaux is the meeting and departure point for Vineyards of Bordeaux Ride.
For the Prestigious Dordogne the meeting and departure point is Brive la Gaillarde Train Station.

The nearest international airports are Bergerac, Bordeaux and Toulouse and there are good train services from between Toulouse and Bordeaux. There are also trains to Bordeaux and Bergerac from Paris.

There are flights from several regional UK airports to Bergerac with low cost airlines
There are also direct flights from London to Bordeaux / Toulouse - budget around £200 economy return (varies with the airline and season).

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