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Walking, cycling (bike hire is available locally), golf, and canoeing on the Dordogne are probably the most popular outdoor activities here.

Tennis is available close by in Villereal.

Horse-riding is available nearby.

Painting and photography are also pursued by several of our gite guests. Who could see a field of sunflowers and not  take a photo? Our two gites are perhaps the most painted and sketched houses in south-west France - bring your paper and pencils and you might also surprise yourself!

This is a beautiful area for walking and cycling. The area is perhaps especially ideal for cycling - very quiet roads are easy to find even in August, and the hills are steep enough to add interest to the views and the ride while not being too painful - and they are short enough to push up, if you prefer. At the time of writing this, 11th August 2005, I have just completed a 50km cycle circuit past Chateau Biron and Gavaudun Castle and saw less than 10 cars in total during my ride. And had the additional pleasure of cycling between large fields of sunflowers in complete silence, just amazing.

At least one of the local golf clubs (a 9 hole course) hires out golf clubs and balls to visitors who have not brought them with them. Another offers a 'one day pass'.

If all this is too quiet for you, track down the annual bodegas held by all the towns in the area  - a night of eating, drinking and music takes over the town and carries on late into the night. Villereal bodega is usually held on the last Sunday in July.

Restaurants, food and shopping

If you need a bout of more serious shopping during your stay, Bergerac and Villeneuve-sur-Lot are easily accessible. Bergerac in particular has a lovely 'old town', and a river frontage where boat trips along the Dordogne can be taken - remember also to stop off for a wander around Issigeac on your way to Bergerac, particularly on Sunday morning for the market.

Biron VillageThe south-west of France is famous for its love of fine food and restaurants abound in the area, with those at Castillones (Les Ramparts), Gavaudun and Issigeac (Chez Alain and Brucelieres) being among those that we particularly recommend. Many other restaurants are found at Monpazier, Monflanquin and Villereal and the other towns in the area - a more detailed list is provided in the gites.

Foie gras, truffles, goose and duck are particular local specialities. The prune industry is also very significant (even if you think you don't like prunes you need to try 'pruneaux d'Agen'!), making the spring a very attractive time to visit, when the blossom is on the plum orchards. The area is also an important producer of less rich food, such as cherries, strawberries, tomatoes and kiwi fruits. Fields of sunflowers and vines are of course a common sight.

The area includes many famous wine regions including Bergerac, Bordeaux, Duras and Cahors and it is very easy to find good wine at a good price.

The many local markets are very good sources of cheeses, fresh vegetables etc. - there are markets open every day of the week in the locality.

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