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Sarlat-la-Canéda, Perigord Noir

The most famous town of the region, just north of the Dordogne river

featured in Towns & villages Updated

Standing out as one of the most charming towns in the region, this medieval dwelling remains much as it was when it was built in the 14th century. 

At its centre is a Carolingian Benedictine Abbey, whose church became the Cathédrale Saint-Sacerdos de Sarlat. Look out for the Maison de La Boétie which was the birthplace of the 16th century poet Etienne de La Boétie. The region is known for its gastronomic delights; sample the walnut oil produced at the Moulin de la Tour or try the foie gras from the local factories in one of Sarlat's restaurants. Much of the centre of Sarlat is pedestrianised in summer giving it a pleasant and vibrant feel.

Sights & Attractions in Sarlat-la-Caneda

The city of Sarlat itself is one big attraction. The medieval streets, narrow passageways and stunning honey-coloured buildings are a pleasure to wander round. All roads seem to lead to the main church so you can't escape visiting the Cathédrale Saint-Sacerdos. This beautiful small cathedral offers a wonderful insight into the heart of the community here in Sarlat, and opens its doors each day to bring history to life. 

The countryside, towns and villages that surround Sarlat also have a lot to offer and you shouldn't miss taking advantage of this. A visit to the beautiful fairytale-style Chateau de Puymartin or to the stunning grounds of Chateau des Milandes will not leave you disappointed. The nearby town of Les Eyzies-de-Tayac plays host to a variety of prehistoric ruins, and the immaculate gardens of Manoir d'Eyrignac are situated just to the north-east of Sarlat.

Events in Sarlat-la-Caneda

The weekly market in Sarlat-la-Canéda is one of the biggest draws to the town. Each Saturday the town transforms into one huge market selling everything from gifts and souvenirs to fresh fruit and veg, and fashion, accessories and household items. Everything you could possibly need or want, all in one great big fun shopping experience.

Things to do in Sarlat-la-Caneda

Being just 8km to the north of the river Dordogne watersports are high on the agenda here. Kayaking along the gentle flowing river is a popular past time, and combining this with camping makes it even more of a great outdoor experience. Several companies offer itineraries and camping equipment or accommodation so that you can cruise the Dordogne for up to six days.

Another way to enjoy the Dordogne is to take a boat trip on a 'gabare'; a traditional boat used to transport goods along the river. These boat trips have commentary to help you understand the importance of the river in the culture and heritage of the region.

Hot air ballooning is another popular activity in the Dordogne. Starting early in the morning to watch the sun rise as you rise high above the towns, villages and forests below is a magical experience.

Dining in Sarlat-la-Caneda

There are plenty of restaurants to choose from in Sarlat. Those which line the main square are often popular at around 17:00 and 18:00, when people come out for a drink before dinner and to enjoy the late summer evenings and change of light. You will find small cosy restaurants down the narrow side streets and lanes of the old town, offering local specialities and interesting twists on typical dishes...expect duck gizzards to be available with any meal. Whatever our preference you will be sure to find a restaurant that you enjoy in Sarlat, after all this town is probably the best place in the Dordogne for shopping and eating.

Hotels in Sarlat-la-Caneda

Being one of the largest and certainly the most central town in the Perigord Noir, you will find a good selection of hotels. From the charming B&B to the delightful boutique hotel, there are hotels to suit any budget.

How to get to Sarlat-la-Caneda

Situated in the heart of the Perigord Noir region, Sarlat-la-Canéda is only a few kilometres north of the river Dordogne. Surrounded by tourist attractions and pretty villages this is a great base to explore the towns of Domme, La Roque-Gageac, Beynac-et-Cazenac, Les Eyzies-de-Tayac Montignac, Souillac and Gourdon. 


Map of the surrounding area