Before I get into the details of the fabulous things we saw, food we ate, things we did (and I do plan to include lots of details and photos...I'm writing with a mindset of wanting anyone who reads these blog posts to be able to easily plan their own Southern France get-away) let me first show people where we went. I thought I should include a map because apparently some people who live in France aren't even aware of the city we visited. I guess it's a well-kept secret.
This is the beautiful Dordogne region.
It is separate into 4 areas called Perigord Green, Purple, White, and Black. We were in the Black area, also known as Perigord Noir. The town we stayed in, Tremolat, is not shown on the map but a neighboring town Limeuil is there on the left middle side of the gray area.
Tremolat was our home base, but we drove all over the region. A rental car is a must for this type of vacation. And just so you know, it's almost impossible to get anything other than a manual transmission and the curvy roads will have your clutch leg sore for days.
Every night, we returned to our lovely little cottage that we found on HomeAway.com. It was our first time to use HomeAway and we were thrilled with it. An older British couple has owned this house for 6 years. They live in the upper floors, connected but separate from the little cottage they rent out. We could walk up steps to their front door which we did twice and both times had the best conversation. They were so nice and treated us like family. It was perfect because we had total privacy, but if we wanted to ask their advice about sight-seeing or just have a visit they were right there.
Les Cireys is the name of this 16th Century house. You can rent it, too!
The house had a small kitchen, accessible only by ducking. It had a dining area, 2 sitting rooms, a bathroom, and up the tiny steep steps was a bedroom. There was a private outdoor eating area and a front lawn with chairs. It was decorated well with all kinds of interesting items, wall decor, and antiques. We really enjoyed staying here.
For this trip, we flew into Toulouse which was about 3 hours from Tremolat. I think Bergerac, another option for arrival, would have been closer but we didn't mind the drive. We arrived at 9 PM, exhausted from being awake for about 24 hours straight, and went right to sleep. The good thing about it was we woke up the next morning totally on France time (it's 7 hours ahead) and ready to go.