Our drive today started in Cahors, taking us through the Caussess du Quercy Natural Regional Park to Rocamadour. First stop was in Saint-Cirq-Lapopie. The weather was bit dismal with only sporadic rays of sunshine, which was actually okay for what we were about to see. Simultaneous oohs and aahs came right out of us of as we neared Saint-Cirq-Lapopie set about 100 meters above the Lot river. The location in the rock was decided in order to control the river traffic and defend the village and you can see why. You have an excellent view up and down the river and to the valley surrounding it. Artists have flocked here and today it is a major tourist attraction with artisan gift shops and cozy restaurants. We sampled both. As we are travelling just outside the main tourist season we also witnessed the last few touches being made in the village for the summer season.
On our way to Rocamadour we made a stop at the caves, Grotte du Pech Merle. The caves we found by three teenagers in 1922 and changed forever the future for their little village, Cabrerets. The highlight of the tour was the 25000 year old wall paintings of mammoths, horses and various hand and foot prints. The hand prints were so clear. Very difficult to fathom the length of time they have been there buried under the rocks. Due to the significant cultural value of the cave drawings no photography of any kind was permitted.
The remaining drive to Racamodour went through winding mountain roads and small villages. Too many to be mentioned but impressions of tiny medieval houses, crumbling stone hedges, small roundabouts and narrow bridges leading over creeks will forever be imprinted on our brains. Heavy rains set in for the final stretch before arriving at Rocamadour.