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The Vézère valley classified as France’s 20th major site

Already famous for its impressive prehistoric heritage, the Vézère valley has just been classified as France’s 20th major site by the Ministry of Tourism. This distinction recognises an exceptional natural and architectural environment. This new Grand Site de France covers 35 communes, including Marquay, which have set themselves the goal of protecting their territory and heritage while promoting tourism that respects nature and the environment.

The Vézère Valley, so aptly named the Valley of Man, is not just about prehistoric treasures. Of course, a visit to the Lascaux caves (Lascaux II or Lascaux IV) is a must. But nothing beats a visit to the small, original Font de Gaume cave, even if it means queuing early in the morning. Take the winding road from Sarlat to Les Eyzies, and you’ll understand just how exceptional this succession of forests, meadows and cliffs perched above the river is.

This landscape, where man is discreet (41 inhabitants per km2), unfurls its palette of colours: the green of the forests, the yellow of the stones of the Périgord houses, the intense blue of the sky, the chalky white of the cliffs, the brown-green of the river water. To appreciate all the nuances, you’ll need to take your time: visit the charming village of Saint Léon sur Vézère, for example, or take a canoe down the river to admire the sites of the village of La Madeleine or La Roque Saint Christophe from your skiff. There’s so much to discover: castles, decorated caves, listed villages and craftsmen. In the Vézère valley, you’ll get a breath of fresh air, and sometimes you’ll feel like you’re on your own. So for your next holiday, make no mistake… luxury is space, and the Vézère Valley is not short of it.

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