Sarlat is situated in the Nouvelle Aquitaine region, in the South East of the Dordogne, in what is known as the Black Périgord. Equidistant from Paris and Madrid, as well as Bordeaux and Toulouse, the A89 and A20 autoroutes make it easy to access. The airports of Brive La Gaillarde and Bergerac are nearby.
A dynamic city with 10,500 inhabitants, Sarlat is the tourist centre of the Black Périgord, welcoming 1.5 million visitors to its medieval centre every year.
An architectural gem, Sarlat is a perfect blend of styles from different eras, from the Middle Ages to the sixteenth century, with the patina of the golden stone variety typical of this region, and slate roofs burnished by time.
With three stars in the Michelin guide, Sarlat is a mediaeval city whose history is engraved in its stone.
Wandering its lanes you can read a thousand years of architectural history, identifiable in particular for its unique roofing slate, called Lauzes, which soaks up the sunlight during the day, returning the warmth at dusk.
Sarlat is considered the capital the Périgord Noir, perhaps called "black" because of its dark leafy oaks and chestnuts, unless it is because of the tuber melanosporum, the black Périgord truffle. Blessed by the gods, the Périgord is sandwiched between two valleys, the Vézère, classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its wealth of prehistoric remains, and the Dordogne where fortresses and chateaux stand at each bend in the river.
Sarlat has withstood the trials of a turbulent history. Restored in recent decades, its narrow streets and cobbled squares were among the first to benefit from the new generation of gas lighting. All overhead wiring has gone - to the delight of lovers of old stones and photographers looking for classical aesthetics.
For the number and typicality of its old buildings, Sarlat has an exceptional place in Europe for the conservation of architectural heritage.
The heritage of this city of art and history is unique.
Lose yourself in its narrow streets full of sun, drown yourself in the subtle aromas of the market, succumb to the night the magic of its gas lighting and fabulous show of street artists.
The Perigord Noir is a place for the finest dining. They say "the Périgord is a country best discovered by mouth!" Here, cuisine is taken rather seriously, and yet, with its rural, local sourcing, it is always simple and in harmony with the seasons. An endless local recipe book full of the most fabulous and tasty ideas, all thanks to the great diversity of our food production.
The name Sarlat is enough to make your mouth water all on its own. A pinch of foie gras, a touch of truffle, and you're almost in heaven!
Sarlat, city of cinema
Some thirty feature films have been made in Sarlat, and well over a hundred in the Périgord.
The beauty of its landscapes and its rich heritage, Sarlat is a favourite location for directors of historical films. It has even become France's third city of cinematic arts after Paris and Nice. The quality of life of the region, the mild climate and above all the pleasures of the table are undoubtedly other reasons why artistic professionals love coming here.
Périgueux, city of history
Discovering Périgueux is like turning the pages of a history book.
The heritage of the city takes you back to the sumptuous times of the Roman Empire with its extensive remains and the Gallo-Roman Museum of Vesunna.
Your journey through history is just beginning. Turning a medieval alleyway or strolling from square to square, you find timbered houses, mansions with little turrets, and the grand stores of the wealthy Périgueux merchants.
In this vast historical district, the Cathedral of Saint-Front sits enthroned at the top of the hill. This building, of which the locals are justifiably proud, is in the form of a Greek cross, surmounted by Byzantine-inspired cupolas. Built on the pilgrimage path to Santiago de Compostela (and World Heritage Site since 1998), the Saint-Front cathedral remains a major stopover for pilgrims.
Walk through the centuries, as you discover the mansions of the Renaissance finely ornamented and decorated.