The hamlet of Serres has about a dozen houses set on a hill surrounded by wooded valleys and small fields. There is plenty of scope for beautiful walks or cycle rides.
About 4 km away is the village of Payrac. It has a range of restaurants, a comprehensively stocked village store, a bakery, pharmacy, post office and petrol station.
The nearest town, about 10km away, is Gourdon
, whose pretty streets run in concentric rings around an immense church and ruined castle set on the top of the hill.
The side streets running up the hill from the main shopping street are full of character, and the view from the castle at the top is well worth the gentle climb!
There are many restaurants and excellent supermarkets.
A little further is the larger town of Souillac, set on the Dordogne River. It has one of the best local markets every Friday.
If you do want longer trips, here are some of our suggestions.
The country to the east of the A20 motorway, called “La Causse” is open limestone country with gorges and caves along the Dordogne river.
The most famous tourist destination is Rocamadour, a medieval town build almost vertically up the side of a very deep gorge. You can park at either the top or the bottom, and go up and down by funicular railway or by walking 1000s of steps.
It is a famous pilgrim site and the faithful climbed the steps on their knees.
Also go on to visit the spectacular caves at Padirac and travel on the underground river.
Further south-eastwards you can travel back in time to ancient man and the cave paintings of Peche Merle.
To the west of the A20, from the River Dordogne in the north to the River Lot in the south, is “La Bouraine”, rolling country of woods, small fields and pretty villages – Cotswolds in the sun.
It is worth exploring both the Lot and the Dordogne river valleys.
They are both very pretty, but the scenery is different.
The Lot valley, to the south, is home to the Cahors Appellation vineyards.
Drive along the south side of the Lot, westwards from Cahors to Fumel to visit these and enjoy wine tastings. The wines from this area are full bodied and almost purple in colour, dominated by the variety Malbec. They are little known in the UK, but well worth trying!
The Dordogne valley is famous for its wealth of castles, most dating from the 14th and 15th centuries and the Hundred Years’ War, when they were either held by the English keeping out the French or vice-versa.
An attractive market town with one of the best markets, and a range of concerts and galleries.
A typical regional market town, but with a stunning mediaeval centre.
A renovated castle on the edge of a very high cliff looking down on the river.
A bastide village perched high on a rock with breath-taking views along the Dordogne valley, and lots of good restaurants.
A narrow village squashed between the river and vertical cliffs. There are troglodyte caves in the cliffs, and one of the best restaurants in the area, La Belle Etoile, on the main road.
An ancient castle perched high above the village, with dramatic views over the river valley.
Another ancient castle high on a rock.
Explore some of the area on YouTube and be amazed.
There is a very wide range of things to do in the area. An excellent tourist information office in Gourdon will give advice, and supply maps and brochures listing all local events and attractions.
Ask at the tourist office for the latest information. There are many concerts and art exhibitions throughout the summer. There is also good little cinema in Gourdon. If you want films in English (with French sub-titles) they have many “version original” films over the season.
The local towns and countryside are all worth exploring.
Spend time exploring the lanes in the immediate neighbourhood by car, bike or on foot. You do not have to go miles!