Bergerac is a small town in the Dordogne department in the Aquitaine region of south-western France. The town is situated on the Dordogne river, approximately 100 km from the city of Bordeaux and has a population of about 27,000. It is part of one of the most important wine-growing regions in France, with Bergerac having twelve of its own recognized wine AOCs (appellations d'origine controlee) of both red and white varieties.

Things to Do and See
Bergerac is a town large enough to have its own distinct history and character, yet small enough that one can comfortably traverse the main streets and quickly acquire familiarity with the general layout of the town. Apart from being divided by the river into 'left and right banks' - as with the capital Paris - Bergerac has its own Notre-Dame Church, designed by Paul Abadie and built in the neo-Gothic style, between 1856 and 1865. The old town area - 'vielle ville' - is on the northern (or right) bank of the Dordogne and features a distinct architecture and charming cobbled streets. Boat trips and water activities are available on the river during the warmer months. Bergerac also lays claim to soldier and dramatist, Cyrano De Bergerac, although the link is somewhat tenuous.

There are numerous historical towns and villages close by, including the well-preserved village of Sarlat. The area also has many châteaux open to the public, such as the château in the village of Beynac-et-Cazenac, one of the most beautiful villages in France with an unhindered view of the Dordogne Valley: The sixteenth century medieval Castle Monbazilliac and winery is only ten minutes from Bergerac, and also has a Michelin-starred restaurant:

  • The port
  • Historical houses on the port
  • Vieux pont over the Dordogne River
  • Mairie de Bergerac
  • Rue de la Resistance
  • The wine museum
  • Notre Dame Church
  • Houses in old town
  • Statue of Cyrano de Bergerac
  • Le Petit Maine, Salon de The
  • Chocolatier
  • Dessert at L'imparfait Restaurant
  • Rue Cyrano
  • Christmas tree, rue de la Resistance
  • Christmas lights outside the Mairie
  • Old town at night
  • Building under renovation
  • La Dordogne, Mouleydier
  • Light dusting of snow
  • Snowfall
  • Vieux pont on the Dordogne

Shopping and Restaurants
Among many boutique shops, cafes and restaurants, Bergerac features a twice weekly outdoor market on the right bank at Place Gambetta, and a weekly fish market in Place de la Madeleine, on the left bank. Specialty dishes of the area include duck, such as the popular margret de canard, fish, and scallops (noix de St. Jacques).

Bergerac has a wide range of dining choices, including several high-calibre and awarded restaurants. Below is a selection of the restaurants we've enjoyed to-date, with links to extensive reviews on Trip Advisor. Ah! and there are so many more we've yet to try! All except the last one are within walking distance of our house. In no particular order...

History and Industry
The region is primarily known for its wine and tobacco. The climate and river position made the town an important trading centre during medieval times when its goods, predominantly wine, were transported down the river to Bordeaux and beyond. Bergerac's history and architecture have been shaped by the Hundred Years War and numerous religious conflicts between the Protestants and Catholics. The small covered market in Bergerac’s old town was the site of the first transmission from the French Resistance during World War II.

The average high temperature during the summer months is around 28 C (82 F), and the winter climate is more temperate than many parts of France. While it can snow in the winter, it is something of an event, and average winter temperatures typically range between 2-11 C (36-50 F). The Bergeracois are very friendly and many speak some English.