Ribérac

Birthplace of 12th-century
troubadour Arnaud Daniel,
Ribérac is a town where you
are just as likely to hear
English as Occitan at Friday’s
market, because of the large
number of English expatriates
living in nearby villages. The
abbey church, built in the 12th
century with later additions,
has 17th-century paintings and
a dome above the choir.

 

Many Romanesque domed
churches are dotted around
Ribérac: the church at Sioracde-
Ribérac, fortified in the 14th
century, contains an interesting
18th-century painted and
gilded wooden statue; the
church at Grand-Brassac has
a splendid carved doorway as
well as three domes supported
on stone columns; and the
church at Saint-Privat-des-
Prés, an architectural jewel,
has a circular arch with ornate
moulding over the entrance.

 

 

Environs
30km (19 miles) northwest
of Ribéra are the Tourbières
de Vendoire, peat bogs where
visitors can see extraordinary
water-filled plant fossils.

 

Tourbières de Vendoire
Tel (05) 53 90 79 56. # May–Sep:
Wed–Mon; Oct–Apr: appointment
only

 
The Château de Mareuil,
30km (19 miles) north of
Ribérac, is the only medieval
fortress built on a plain. It was
once owned by the Talleyrand
family, and has 12th-century
towers and ramparts, a 15thcentury
keep with living
quarters and a Gothic chapel.

Château de Mareuil
At junction of D939 & D708. Tel (05)
53 60 99 85. # mid-Nov–Mar: Sun;
Apr–Jun: & Oct–mid-Nov: Wed–Mon;
Jul, Aug: daily