Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Limeuil - 5 Kms from Le Bugue

It was on another early morning ride that I discovered Limeuil, a village perched on a limestone ridge overlooking the confluence of the Dordogne and Vezere rivers. There was more to meet the eye than what I saw on the surface of this quaint little village on the ride - but more about that later.
Back home after the ride, I said to Sue, "Do I have a surprise for you today, no not diamonds dear, but certainly a rough diamond." So after pottering around at home and then into Le Bugue for the morning email catch up with family, I drove Sue to Limeuil. You take a road that mostly follows the Vezere river until you get near the village (about 5 kms) but instead of following the lower road you take a right hand turn that takes you up a steep incline. I have to say that earlier in the morning it did take some effort to climb into the village on a single gear bike.

It was May 8 and as we arrived the villagers were slowly wandering up to the church. It was VE Day of course and French flags were flying on many of the Medieval houses of the village, some are quite large where others are minuscule as if they were inhabited by hobbits. The lawns and gardens of the village are beautifully manicured and you can see why it is rated as "One of the Most Beautiful Villages of France".
As the villagers wandered up to the church I couldn't help noticing that they were all older people going to pay their respects to the fallen. Maybe there are no young people in the village!
Limeuil's website tells us that this limestone outcrop has been inhabited since prehistoric times and artifacts dated from 10,000BC have been found. The village has a very authentic Medieval feel about it with its three fortified gateways and the ruins of the castle and ramparts.

Travelling through rural France in your own car has its benefits and for us, travelling on a guided tour with other tourists is not to our liking. You miss these rough diamonds, the hidden treasures that are not on the tourist bus route. Its also nice not to hear another English accent.
And its even better on a bike.
Hidden treasures around every corner. You just needed to explore.
Is this a Hobbit house or what?

The villagers were obviously proud of their surroundings.
The lawns and gardens were picture perfect.

The obligatory  French village window picture.

And there it was - just waiting for some TLC, a Citroen Mahari. Just a beefy 2CV really.

Not sure if this place was inhabited but there was this French flag out for VE day.
Love the textures and various colours of the stones on this house, and its wheelchair friendly as well.

Every French village has its "Place" or square and the Marie. I took this as people started to gather for the VE service. Look further up towards the gap in the buildings in the distance.

We left by this lovely little road that took us back to Le Bugue.
This would be our last full day in Le Bugue - the next day we needed to be in Confolens for a two night stay on our way to the Loire Valley. Along the way we stopped at Limoges and followed the path of Richard the Lionheart, and then stumbled upon a ruined castle. The ruins were deserted, that is until nature called, but that's another story next Wednesday.


  1. I could not agree more about riding around on a bike. I have found so many places that I would never have noticed in the car!
    Lovely photos and info.
    You must be happy with the way the TDF is going at the moment :-) Diane

  2. Diane,
    I must apologise for not commenting on your blog - I have been but it keeps to be locking me out. I do the same on Craig's blog as yours and its OK. Blogger confuses me sometimes.
    Let me assure you that I'm reading.
    In fact I suggested that it was Nigel that brings the rain, not the Akubra. Don't tell him I said that.

  3. Lovely photos guys, as usual. The French take such pride i even the most remote villages, don't they?
    I enjoyed the tour as always.

  4. This village in particular was really enchanting.
    From Le Bugue we still travel to Limoge, Poitiers and into the Loire.
    Plenty more stories to tell on Wednesdays.


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