About the Lot Valley, South West France

The Lot Valley in South West France is a popular holiday destination for couples, families and groups of friends. Set in beautiful, unspoilt rolling countryside of gentle hills and valleys, it is made up of green fields, oak forests, vineyards, farmland and historic hill-top Bastide towns.

The region benefits from a warm sunny climate, making it ideal holiday weather and perfect for relaxing by the pool, eating alfresco and taking long leisurely walks in the beautiful countryside.

There are a range of interesting activities for all ages. Leisure lakes which offer excellent sun bathing, swimming and watersports are the area’s local alternative to the seaside. You can also play golf, go wine tasting at the many chateaux, explore the local bastide towns, take a thermal bath or beauty treatment at one of the Lot Valley spa towns, or enjoy the hustle and bustle of the French markets. It is equally an excellent place to take a family holiday with plenty of action to keep the children amused including quad biking, visiting caves and exciting theme parks! If there are members of your group that like to live life at a faster pace, there is a wealth of adrenaline sport on offer in the region including; Parascending, Parachuting, Hang Gliding, Mountain Biking, Quad Biking and Canoeing. Click here to read our guide to activities in the Lot Valley.

Where is the Lot Valley?

The Lot valley is situated South of the Dordogne and North of the Gers, near the rivers Lot, Dordogne and Tarn and Garonne in a beautiful and temperate area of South West France.

Calais 600 miles
Le Havre 490 miles
Caen and Saint-Malo 420 miles

About the Lot Valley

Kingfisher Holidays offers properties to let in a circle of about 50 miles from the Lot River between Cahors and Villeneuve-sur-Lot – in the Lot Valley. The Lot Valley includes three French departments: Lot et Garonne (Department 47), Lot (Department 46) and tarn et Garonne (Department 82).

The landscape in the Lot Valley is greener than other typical holiday areas. The terrain is a mixture of rolling hills, wide valleys, small farms, and pretty market villages. Visiting the Lot valley, where there are few main roads and almost no traffic, takes you back to a rural England of 50 years ago yet with all things French that so many of us dream of. The landscape changes as you move through the valley from high up vineyards, to lush green fields; wide lazy waterways to powerful waterfalls. And dotted along the way are picturesque bastide towns and medieval castles rich in history and culture.The oak woods and walnut groves, river valleys and limestone cliffs topped with ancient fortified towns and villages of the north, give way to the open, hilly green farming country.

The best way to see the Lot Valley is slowly – either by foot, bike or by hiring a canoe. You will pass a wealth of wildlife en route, including over two thousand species of flora and fauna and many types of birds and animals including deer, stags, foxes, squirrels, rabbits, owls, hawks and buzzards. The area is well looked after and many areas of countryside are protected so that they can be enjoyed for years to come.

The Lot Valley is still relatively unknown in comparison to other parts of South France. As a result, you will get to experience authentic French culture and cuisine in the local restaurants – and you will find eating out is still excellent value for money. It is also a good place to take your children to give them a taste of real France and let them practise their French speaking with the locals!

Distances to Kingfisher properties in the Lot Valley

The French have different ways of defining identical areas of their country. We tend to use the term Lot Valley but our properties are also considered to be in Quercy, in the south west of France, in departments of the region Nouvelle Aquitaine: (Lot et Garonne (47), Dordogne (24), Charente (16), Charente-Maritime (17), Corrèze (19), Creuse (23), Gironde (33), Landes (40), Pyrénées-Atlantiques (64), Deux-Sèvres (79), Vienne (86), Haute-Vienne (87)) as well as in of the region Occitanie: (Lot (46), Tarn-et-Garonne (82), Gers, Ariège (09), Aude (11), Aveyron (12), Gard (30), Haute-Garonne (31), Gers (32), Hérault (34), Lozère (48), Hautes-Pyrénées (65), Pyrénées-Orientales (66) and Tarn (81)

The properties, give or take, are (approximately):

  • ½ to 1 hour north of Agen TGV railway station
  • ½ hour west of Cahors
  • ½ hour south of Dordogne River at Sarlat
  • 1 ½ hours north of Toulouse Airport
  • 1 to 2 hours south of Bergerac Airport
  • 2 hours east of Bordeaux Airport
  • 2 hours west of St Antonin Noble Val
  • 2 hours south of Brive Railway Station – arrival of car train
  • 2 ½ hours east of Atlantic coast at Archachon
  • 2 ½ hours north west of Carcassonne
  • 3 hours north east of Atlantic coast at St Jean de Luz and Biaritz
  • 3 hours west of Rodez Airport
  • 3 ½ hours east from Spanish Border
  • 3 ½ hours north from Pyrenees
  • 5 ½ hours from Paris
  • 6 hours from St Malo
  • 7 ½ hours from Calais

Nouvelle Aquitaine

Nouvelle Aquitaine is the largest region in France, spreading from Vienne in the north of the region via Bordeaux on the Atlantic coast and down to the Pyrénées Atlantique and the Spanish border. Aquitaine was in years gone by (in the 13th Century on the marriage of Eleanor of Aquitane to Henry II) owned by Britain and is steeped in history being part of the battlefield of the Hundred Years War. Many of the castles, villages and towns were built by the English. You will find the region dotted with bastides or fortified hilltop towns and villages, the ancient strongholds of Richard the Lionheart, the Black Prince and Charlemagne.

New Aquitaine is a huge and diverse region with a wealth of places, cultures and cuisine to explore. Rolling hills, medieval châteaux, prehistoric caves and rivers of the Dordogne, to the pine-covered sandy terrain of the Landes and the long stretches of sandy beaches along the whole Atlantic coast from Bordeaux to the Spanish Border.

Bordeaux is the capital of New Aquitaine and is a cosmopolitan, a lively city with majestic old buildings and glamorous shops. It has been an important town for centuries, and played a significant role in the Napoleonic wars.

Occitanie region of France

The Occitanie region is the third largest region in France behind Nouvelle Aquitaine and Guyana. It stretches from the Lot to the Pyrénées Atlantique in the south of France.

It borders four departments with Nouvelle Aquitaine and stretches from as far north as the mountains of the Auvergne to the east of former region Languedoc-Roussillon.

The remote, rocky, mountainous area of the Pyrénées, adjacent to Spain, is the home of the Basque people. To the east of the Basque country is Toulouse, the large capital city of Occitanie, and then further north the landscape turns to rolling hills and castles bordering the Dordogne, with yet more remote mountains to the east.

The diverse scenery of the Occitanie is stunning and is still relatively undiscovered. The roads are quiet the people welcome tourists, agriculture (foie-gras, duck and figs, cheese, sunflowers, fruit and vegetables) and markets dominate the area not to mention some renowned local wines.

Further Information about the region

To help you get the most from your stay in a Lot Valley villa, you’ll find a wealth of helpful information on these pages of our Visitors’ Guide:

Getting to the Lot Valley |  Food and Drink | Restaurants| Things to do | Towns in South West France | History & Architecture | Climate