Discover prehistoric caves
A visit to the prehistoric caves is a must in the Périgord Noir. Hot or cold, the coolness of the caves is appreciated.
The Vézère valley, north of Sarlat, is home to the majority of sites. The village of Les Eyzies is home to the national prehistory museum.
During your stay at our Sarlat campsite, take a plunge into the heart of prehistory by visiting these remarkable sites.
The Périgord and its cave styles
The luxury of the Dordogne is that you can admire many different types of caves. The most famous are the decorated caves such as Lascaux, Font de Gaume and Bara-Bahau.
Périgord is also rich in prehistoric rock shelters. You can visit La Madeleine, Roc de Cazelle, La Roque Saint-Christophe or Le Conquil.
Last but not least, take in the gouffres and concretion caves. Discover the Proumeyssac chasm and the Maxanges, Cougnac and Grand Roque caves.
The Lascaux cave
The Lascaux cave, 30 minutes from Sarlat, is theemblem of cave art. Its various frescoes depict some 600 animals (horses, bulls, deer and felines) and mysterious symbols.
This exceptional, modernized site features a complete replica of the original cave, projection rooms and a large auditorium, where you can learn even more about Lascaux.
Parietal art no longer holds any secrets for children, who learn while having fun thanks to their age-appropriate tablet. Try out the 3D virtual tour to see every nook and cranny.
Discover the Gouffre de Padirac
If you’re staying in Sarlat, the Gouffre de Padirac is a must-see: as soon as you arrive in front of the abyss, you’ll be blown away by theimmensity of the shaft that gives access to the bowels of the earth.
After a 75-metre descent by staircase or elevator, you can admire the vegetation that has taken root in the cavity. Then embark on the underground river and take a leisurely look at the rock walls and the various concretions that have formed over time.
The galleries finally take you into one of France’s largest underground chambers, where the majestic stalagmites are a sight to behold.
The Carbonnières caves
Close to the Dordogne river, the Carbonnières caves were only discovered very recently, in the year 2000. Visits began in 2018, making them the last caves open to the public in France.
The galleries have been designed to be accessible to everyone. They are therefore accessible to strollers and wheelchairs.
This cave near Rocamadour boasts a wide variety of limestone concretions, from stalactites to draperies, in six large chambers up to 15 metres high. The lighting effects give the site a magical air.
La Roque Saint-Christophe
This ancient Dordogne fortress is carved out of the rock overlooking the Vézère River. The view over the valley is magnificent. The village of La Roque Saint-Christophe had its own defense system and a church.
The models show how troglodyte villages were organized in the Middle Ages. Follow the guide to see the civil engineering machines in operation. These were used to haul up livestock, building materials or wine barrels.
The Cougnac Caves
In the Lot department, close to the Dordogne border, the Cougnac caves combine concretions and cave art. These two caves were discovered in 1949 and 1952.
In the first cavity, you can admire the stalactite ceiling, columns and draperies, highlighted by the lighting.
In the heart of the second cave, among the concretions, you’ll discover the ornate gallery, a listed historic monument. Our ancestors depicted deer, mammoths and ibex.