I was drawn to this region for no more a reason than, you guessed it, a nice place to stay.
In my search of where to go in France, I discovered Gites, or farmhouses/barns/old houses turned into self-catering holiday homes. It’s a program run by the French government to sustain the countryside and prevent it from falling to ruin. They are totally affordable, and so far, all amazing.
Anyways, Dordogne is as popular as Provence. But somehow I had never heard of it before.
Now, just an aside about Provence. We loved Barjac and our stay at the lovely bed and breakfast. However, we are not Provence junkies. You hear about it again and again. It is lovely. It’s also super crowded and overdone. Therefore, I was afraid this region would be as well.
So far, so good.
We are located at the Gite-le-Duc in what is basically a cute gingerbread house near a village called Martel. Martel is mentioned in the Rough Guide but not as somewhere you need to see. I think, however, it might just be the sweetest, cutest village ever.
It’s part medieval, part 17th century – so it’s a nice break from everything being so medieval. And it has good food. So far I have eaten foie gras, potato gratin, some sort of asparagus that was injected with crack goodness, cream potatoes (not to be confused with potato gratin), cream veggies, and pork stuffed with sage and cheese. DROOL.
Our home for three days is so adorable – like I said, it’s a gingerbread house. My friends need to come here so that we can rent all the gites that are on this property. Stone houses, a pool, dripping with wisteria and a boulangerie down the road. Parfaitt n’es pas?
The countryside is barfably cute. Stone cottages, chateaux along the river, green pastures, baby goats/cows/sheep/horses. Today I kept screaming as we passed little baby farm animals with their mummies. Plus we go to sleep to the chorus of frogs and nightingales – well we would if the Engineer would let me open the windows.
Every town keeps getting prettier and prettier. All within a half an hour!