Advice requested on when to make the first trip

My wife and I intend to move to the Dordogne from Australia once our house is sold. Could be one month or twelve… Any advice on when we should spend some weeks in the area before we buy a house?
Many thanks

Although tiny by Australian standards the Dordogne is a fairly large diverse department. What are you hoping to achieve on your visit? An area that might seem perfect in the Spring or Autumn might be too hot and too crowded in the summer or too quiet, too cut off and too cold in the winter. There is no perfect to see the big picture.

Thanks so much for reply David. I guess we are trying to get a " feel" for the area and locate the most relevant places to buy a house. Given the distances we thought a six week stay in the area would give us an idea.

You would certainly get a good feeling for the area in six weeks. If you were to come mid to late August you would see the busy part of the year in full swing then get to see how places change as the tourists thin out into September.

I think visiting when it is grey/wet/horrible is a sensible idea because if you like somewhere under those conditions you can only like it better when the weather is good. At least that worked for me!

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Thanks so much for reply Veronique. I was actually saying that exact thing to my wife last evening!. We know the summers will be warm and sunny so let’s go in or around winter…
I guess the hard part is not knowing when the house will sell…
Really appreciate your response.


My wife & I are aussies and we have been living around Sainte Foy La Grande (on the Dordogne river and on the border of Dordogne & Gironde) for nearly 5 years now.

The earlier comments are quite sound and despite the difference in size from Aust, the Dordogne is still quite a large and divergent region. August is a busy time with hordes of tourists and the advice to experience the region in the less celebrated months is sound. We spent a month here in November & December before making our final decision. It can be grey and cool (not as cold as we expected) but be warned…a lot of shops and restaurants etc close over the late autumn and winter months so it can be a little challenging. Spring & summer are great although we do experience temps up to 40 degrees at the peak.

Lots to see & do in the region, but generally less likely to do as much in those months.

Not withstanding that, as Vero says above, if you like it in the colder months, you will love it in summer.

We certainly have no regrets on making the move.

Good luck

Hi Graham
So many thanks for yours and others help with our pending move. The information provided has been priceless. What a great forum.
Thanks again.

Stick with the dream…