Rocamadour

Aug 13th, 2011, 05:31 PM
  #1  
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Rocamadour

Is it possible to see both Rocamadour and Gouffre de Padirac in the same day or is it too much for one day? Should one devote an entire day to Rocamadour?
Flem04 is offline  
Aug 13th, 2011, 07:15 PM
  #2  
kja
 
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Depends on what you want to see and experience and your pace of travel, but IMO you CAN definitely see both Rocamadour and Gouffre de Padirac in the same day.
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Aug 13th, 2011, 07:26 PM
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We spent about 3 hours at Rocamadour and feel that was ample time -- at least for us.
crckwc1 is offline  
Aug 13th, 2011, 07:30 PM
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I regularly do Martel, Rocamadour, Gouffre de Padirac, and several other things in one day.

I can't imagine devoting an entire day to Rocamadour, which I consider to be a highly overrated site to begin with. You drive there, take the funicular or walk down to the "town," see the Black Virgin, check out the tourist shops, have a snack, and then get out. It may be the second most visited pilgrimage site in France after le Mont St-Michel, but it's just a tourist venue with a religious twist. There are so many more interesting things to see in the region.

But to answer your question, yes, you can see them both in one day. I can't imagine anyone spending a full day in Rocamadour.
StCirq is offline  
Aug 13th, 2011, 07:39 PM
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St.Cirq: What would you suggest as replacement day trips to replace Rocamadour during our week in the western Dordogne during the last week in Sept?
taconictraveler is offline  
Aug 13th, 2011, 07:47 PM
  #6  
sap
 
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We just took photos of Rocamadour from L'Hospitalet as I had heard from several sources that the view was actually better than being there. (We'll do anything to avoid crowds.)

After that, we went directly to Gouffre de Padirac and were able to move on to Autoire for lunch, drive through Loubressac, and then visit Carennac and Martel before heading back to the western side of the Dordogne. I DO wish we had spent much more time in the cute town of Martel. I plan to go back there someday and do it more justice.
sap is offline  
Aug 13th, 2011, 08:12 PM
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Flem....Roc is a quicky as St Cirq and others have said..plenty of time to see Gouffre de P and other spots in the same day. We have stayed at the Domaine de la Rhue, and fanned out each day in ever-widening circles.

Sap and Flem, et al: here are some selected scanned pre-digital pix of the Dordogne and Lot..and some of the villages you mention. Carennac, Loubressac and Autoire are charmers.

http://picasaweb.google.com/stuartto...eAndLotRegion#

stu
tower is offline  
Aug 13th, 2011, 10:34 PM
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We enjoyed Rocamadour very much. It's an incredibly beautiful place, even if it's quite touristy. For the first time visitor to this area, it shouldn't be missed. We spent about 3 hours there. We combined it with visiting several other towns in the area, incuding Loubressac, Carennac, Martel and Souillac.

If you would like to read more about our visit there, check out my web page on this trip which was in May. Here is the URL.

http://www.travel.stv77.com/bordeaux/bordeaux.htm
sssteve is offline  
Aug 14th, 2011, 03:25 AM
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St Cirq says of Rocamadour, "It's just a tourist venue with a religious twist."

Or a religious venue with a tourist twist. All depends on your point of view.
Ackislander is offline  
Aug 14th, 2011, 07:48 AM
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According to something I read recently, Lourdes is the "top" religious pilgrimage site, followed my Lisieux in Normandy. Several years ago (maybe a decade ago) I read that Mt St Michel is the most visited site (excluding large cities like Paris & Nice), and Rocamadour is #2.

We've visited Rocamadour several times. Last time, we got there around 8:30, parked the car, climbed up to the village, explored a bit, and high-tailed in out by 10:30 when the tourist mobs started to arrive. We then went directly to Padirac & visited before the lunch closing. One thing my wife I learned after years & years of travel in Europe, is to never keep your eyes on the street level super-touristy shops when you walk through a super-touristy town. Focus on the buildings sections above street level. Also, I would never visit Rocamadour mid-day during tourist season. We did not stop for the "view" at l'Hospitalet on this trip - we've done that several times before. The view is only good in the AM when the sun is in the east.

This is from my Dordogne guide. E-mail me at [email protected] if you want the entire itinerary & I'll attach it to the reply e-mail. We've vacationed for 10 weeks in the Dordogne & 2 weeks in the Lot.

There are clusters of picturesque villages around the Gouffre de Padirac (St Cere*, Autoire*, Loubressac*, Carennac*, Beaulieu-s-Dordogne**, Argentat*) & also a great Chateau (Castelnau-Bretenoux**). Montal** Chateau is nice, but the guided tour can be a little tedious. You might think that you can see all these and Rocamadour*** on the same day (on a day trip), but that’s impossible. In ’03, we visited this area on an overnight trip – we stayed in St Cere. We left our Gite near Domme early & drove past Rocamadour and saw this amazing village from the vista at Hospitalet. We then drove to Autoire and Loubressac and explored these cute villages on foot (great views from Loubressac). Then we drove to our hotel in St Cere, checked in, and explored the village - following the walking itinerary in the Green Michelin guide. Around 12:30 we drove to Argentat and took photographs of the picturesque riverside promenade from the bridge that crosses over the Dordogne (beautiful). We then followed the circular driving itinerary #1 in the Green Guide under “Argentat”. The view of Tours Merle** from the road was very haunting, but the tour of the ruins was nothing special (skip it). After the driving tour, we went back to Argentat and visited the town on foot. We then toured Beaulieu sur Dordogne. It was around 5:30PM by now, and I have always wanted to drive down the Dordogne river at sunset. We therefore took the D703 (which becomes the D803 when you leave the Lot department and enter the Dordogne department) to Martel*, where we explored this very pretty town on foot. We continued west on the D703/803 and then theD15 south to Meyronne, where it hit the roads that follow the Dordogne eastward. We took the driving itinerary described in the Green Guide (under Dordogne) all the way back to Bretenoux, where we went back to our hotel at St Cere and got there about 7:30. We drove this route in the east direction so the setting sun would be at our back – it was fantastic. The next morning we toured Castelnau-Bretenoux, and then drove west on the Dordogne along the same drive we followed the evening before. The sights are different in each direction. We stopped at Carennac, which my wife & I both agree is the “perfect” village – very little touristy stuff & lots of wonderfully restored houses where “real” people live. We continued west on the Dordogne, stopping at various places to take pictures of castles perched here-and-there. We got back to our Gite near Dome about mid afternoon. Note that this trip took us a full day and another half-day – and we did not visit Rocamadour or Padirac.

Stu Dudley
StuDudley is offline  
Aug 14th, 2011, 08:21 AM
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You can do both in a day. But for us, Rocamadour is an incredible site. [That's good advice.] It's inspiring to walk the steps to the top. Above all, read a little bit avout the history of this beautiful town. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/rocamadour
iris1745 is online now  
Aug 14th, 2011, 08:38 AM
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According to something I read recently, Lourdes is the "top" religious pilgrimage site, followed my Lisieux in Normandy. >>

I heard [on the Tour de France commentary I think] that Lourdes has more hotel beds than Paris.
annhig is offline  
Aug 14th, 2011, 09:44 AM
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Thanks for the help! You all are great!
Flem04 is offline  
Aug 14th, 2011, 11:20 AM
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I think Rocamadour is good for (an ordinary) lunch, with a walk-through of the village before or after. The restaurant terraces perched on the edge of the valley are breathtaking on a nice day. Who cares what you eat?
kerouac is offline  
Aug 17th, 2011, 11:16 AM
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I agree about 3 hours there and then head out to visit the villages of Autoire, Martel, Carennac. We just returned from the area.

We spent 2 nights at Domaine de la Rhue and went into Rocamadour the first evening for dinner and view after all the tourists left. We practically had the town to ourselves. The next morning we spent about 3 hrs walking down from L'Hospitalet and exploring this town. The walk down and up were not strenuous. There are a lot of switchbacks but it was a very pleasant walk.
winnick is offline  
Aug 17th, 2011, 11:18 AM
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Spend the night in Gramat.
kerouac is offline  
Aug 17th, 2011, 02:34 PM
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winnick...happy you decided to try out the Domaine. We love it. One day we walked the trail to the top level of Roc. We also visited a few evenings when all the busses had left,after returning from day drives to the aforementioned villages.
stu
tower is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 12:20 AM
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I have friends near Brive so about once a year I combine a visit with them and then spend 2 or 3 days at Rocamadour. I live in Paris 7 months of the year. True you can see all there is to see in 3 hours but I have always found the village very relaxing. I like to hike in the area. I always stay at a hotel on the edge of the village that has a nice terrace with a view of the hills and valley. You will find that after 7:00 pm all the tourists leave and the village takes on an entirely different character. The day time view of the village is nothing compared to the views at night from above the village. If you have it in you; it's sort of spiritual thing I guess,.
LarryJ is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 01:09 AM
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> You will find that after 7:00 pm all the tourists leave and the village takes on an entirely different character.

Reminds me of Venice...
kappa1 is offline  
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