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Dordogne, Albi & Carcassonne Tour

We enjoyed this tour very much indeed, with everything as expected from our previous holiday with Riviera. No problems and the courier Bernadette was very likeable, worked very hard and did an extremely good job.  The assistance requested for Jo was as required at both airports and effective.Thank you and best wishes

Review by Mike and Jo Collins. on 14 October 2016

Just a very quick note to say how much we enjoyed the above tour. We have been with Riviera before but this trip exceeded our wildest expectations with everything coming together to make a truly wonderful holiday. Sue, your tour manager was excellent throughout, and we can assure you that last Sunday morning there were 21 very satisfied customers on the train trip home.

Review by John and Sue Wildig on 11 October 2016

Just writing to say how much I enjoyed my recent trip to the Dordogne, Albi and Carcassonne. It was a wonderful introduction to this, for me, hitherto unknown region.

Our Tour Manager, Steve, was really great - a perfect balance of the professional and the friendly. He so obviously loves the area and was happy to share his knowledge with us without our feeling that we were being lectured to! Please convey my thanks, as we didn’t get the chance at Montpellier to say ‘au revoir’, wish him all the best for whatever the future might bring and…‘happy drifting’!

Review by Jill Dixon on 28 September 2016

I and a friend have just returned from 1st September to 8th September tour. We travelled by Eurostar and train and found it worked very easily as we boarded and returned by Ebbsfleet. The trip was excellent and both hotels we stayed were very good. Steve and Bernard dealt with everything on trip with good humour and were very efficient. A credit to Riveria!! Steve the guide was amusing,informative, and charming,
and his anecdotes describing life in Dordogne gave an extra twist to the holiday. I am sure if I decide to travel with Riviera again the same standards which be forthcoming.

Review by Olwen O’dowd on 21 September 2016

Just a quick note in praise of Steve, your rep for our Dordogne, Albi & Carcassonne Tour. He couldn’t have been more helpful, and went that extra mile for everyone, He’s a terrific ambassador for your company.

Review by Aidan Browne on 21 September 2016

A great tour. A busy schedule but quite relaxing too. The towns and villages were lovely and the caves at Lascaux and the view from the castle at Beynac were amazing. Hotels were clean and comfortable and meals were good. Sue our guide was great and our driver was very careful. Overall a good mix of things to see and do.

Review by Ray & Linda Wilson on 21 September 2016

Many thanks for another fascinating tour. Our tour manager David was excellent. As well as being highly professional and knowledgeable he was also very committed to the wellbeing of the group. This was a tremendously varied tour ranging from the delights of the Dordogne to the medieval towns of Carcassonne and Albi. We particularly enjoyed the tour of Beynac, Marquessac and la Roque -Gageac including the boat trip. The steam train trip was also great fun! Albi is a hidden gem with its beautiful cathedral. The hotel in Sarlat was very unusual and characterful! In Carcassonne the Mercure was ideally situated and just 5 minutes walk from the Cite Medievale. All in all a very enjoyable trip. Please pass on our best wishes to David and also to Dede our coach driver .

Review by Ken and Claire Price on 20 September 2016

The overall tour was fantastic, every excursion was both unmissable and unforgettable. Bernard our driver was cheerful, capable and very friendly, it was great to hear his enthusiastic farewells at the end of the days proceedings. David, our tour manager was a great asset of your company, and he went out of his way to make sure we got through the busy itinerary, and kept us all amused with his jokes and anecdotes, I think he relax about pleasing everyone regarding seating people at dinner times, people will work this out for themselves. So nice that everyone on the tour gelled so well, and everyone was on good terms.
The hotels were very nice, especially the Relais de Moussidiere at Sarlat, the rooms were large and well appointed, the food very nice (loved the cheese course), and the staff were great and friendly. It was like staying with friends, and the public areas were stylish and designed for comfort. I had a tear in my eye when we had to say goodbye. The Mercure at Carcassonne was good too, however we were given Premier rooms, for some reason, which were large and comfortable, others weren’t so keen on the standard rooms, the breakfasts and the one dinner we took here were very enjoyable.
Our times in the Dordogne, were fun, beautiful and also so memorable, every stop just added to the experience, and visits here varied and unique. The evening we arrived in Carcassonne we were able to walk around the illuminated streets which gave it a fairytale aspect. I was surprised how much we loved Albi, which although a long drive, was beautiful especially along the by the river. The highlight was the walled town of Carcassonne, which has so many depths, the more you explore it.
The only niggles we had was the late flight, making the 3 hour journey to Sarlat hard, but then we almost had another day to spend in Carcassonne. Also the had 3 nights in a row where we had to rush into dinner, the first was the fault of the Noddy train, that transported us from the village of Domme to the car park not being able to take us back until 6pm, the second day was due the coach overheating, and having to drive slowly to Carcassonne, and the last was due to the distance of Albi, which we wouldn’t have noticed had it not been due to the previous days.
All in all, we wouldn’t change a thing, a really great holiday!

Review by Simon & Paul on 18 September 2016

Our enjoyable tour of the Dordogne this September was made even better by our excellent tour guide, Steve. He anticipated our every need and was always available to help us . His commentaries were informative and amusing. He took into account that most of our group, being older, needed to go at a more leisurely pace on the guided walking tours. This he did by recourse to “drifting” at a slow walking pace which he obviously knew would suit us. Thanks Steve.

Review by Margaret McDonald on 15 September 2016

Having just returned from our Dordogne tour, I just had to say that this holiday was just amazing in every way. The hotels were a joy - clean, quiet, perfectly staffed, and the organisation was brilliant. Your office staff are obliging, and the tour guide David Baldry - well,  a more attentive, courteous, amusing, and clever expert would be hard to find. Many thanks to all concerned. Please pass on our thanks to David. Until the next time….

Review by Steve & Trish Legg on 14 September 2016

We are hooked, first holiday with you and it was brilliant. We were on the Dordogne trip 28th June from Gatwick and apart from the slight delay in getting there (not your fault but Air Traffic Controllers) everything was superbly planned, facilities were brilliant, tours were well thought out, informative and interesting, courier was good - as were the local guides and the coach driver ‘Dayday’.  The Hotel Moussidiere at Sarlat was wonderful and the Mercure was adequate for the Carcassonne leg - we definitely had the best first.

Just wanted to say a big, big thank you all.

Review by Gerry & Keith Bowden on 2 September 2016

We would just like to say how much we enjoyed this wonderful holiday last week.
The locations, hotels and food were all excellent and we would like to particularly mention the tour guide, Christine, who did a great job and really worked her socks off for us.

If there was one niggle it was the fact that the 2 oldest couples in the group (my husband and I were one of these couples) were put in the Ramparts in Carcasonne and we found this a bit inconvenient. I think it would be a good idea to look at people’s dates of birth when allocating these rooms!

Nevertheless the holiday was a great success.  We have been on 3 Riviera holidays now and have really enjoyed them all and have recommended your company to our friends.

Review by Barbara and David Fisher on 2 September 2016

We have just returned from this tour, which we really enjoyed.  David, our tour guide, was very knowledgeable and well organised, and coped well when things went wrong (two days had to be swapped around, and then the boat trip departure time had to be moved back by 2 hours) so that we hardly noticed the changes.  He also told us lots of funny stories en route!  Our driver, Regis, was brilliant, and took us via detours on occasions so that we could see other areas and villages.  We were very lucky with our group also, which gelled well and we made some lovely friends.

The tour itself is structured to make sure you see as much as possible of the areas you stay in, which we really appreciated.  Although this meant that some days were rather packed (especially in over 40 degrees of heat for a couple of days) everywhere we visited was so beautiful we wouldn’t have wanted to miss it. 

The Sarlat hotel was really lovely, very peaceful and in beautiful grounds with its own lake, and the food was excellent.  The staff there were lovely and couldn’t do enough for you - especially Patrick, the manager.  The Carcassonne hotel was literally a couple of minutes outside the main gate to the medieval city, so a perfect location, yet quiet at night.  The food in the restaurant there was very good (apart from arrival night - don’t let that put you off), but I would say they could do with providing some drawer space in the rooms, and some shelves in the bathroom - our toiletries ended up scattered all over the bathroom floor.  Still, it was only a few nights and the location made up for that.

All in all, a brilliant trip which we can highly recommend.

Review by Rosemary and David Hunter on 1 July 2016

Our first “bought” holiday package together.  It was great.  Riviera coped well with the disruption caused by french strikes and flooding.  Special thanks to Bernadette, our tour manager; she kept us informed, gave us lots of interesting information, ensured we were in the right place at the right time and guided us - all with calmness and quiet good humour.  Thanks also to Bernarde, our coach driver.

Review by Chris & Jean Carter on 14 June 2016

I am letting you know that my wife and I were impressed both with the tour manager David Baldry and our driver Bernarde. David was highly knowledgeable with a good sense of humour, but just as importantly he knew when to keep quiet; in my experience some tour managers do not!
Aside from the overcast weather on most days (not your fault!), this was a splendid holiday spent discovering many new attractive and interesting places, most of which we had never previously heard of. Travelling with like minded people of a similar age made it easy to make friends too.
No doubt you have heard differently from one lady member of our party who saw fit to complain about almost everything - there’s always one! David had the utmost sympathy of the remainder of the group as (so far as I was concerned) there really was nothing of substance to complain about. Its just as well that we’re not out there now with the fuel situation as it is; she really would have plenty more to moan about.
We are booked with you to go to Lake Garda in July so we’re looking forward to that.

Review by Graham Hardinge on 3 June 2016

We have just returned from the Dordogne, Albi & Carcassonne holiday. It was very enjoyable despite the efforts of the French air traffic controllers. The flight cancellation yesterday was a disappointment but the revised departure this morning at 8.25 from Toulouse which necessitated a 5.00 am departure from Carcassonne at least provided our rail travelling friends with revengeful laughter (we’d chortled when we heard they were having to leave at 6 am on Thursday). It all worked out fine. Our fellow travellers were as good as any group we’ve travelled with under the Riviera banner (we’ve done 5/6 trips with you now I believe). The group’s success was in no small measure down to Christine who was a caring and excellent tour manager. Here’s to the next time!

Review by Michael and Andrena Brent on 3 June 2016

We went to The Dordogne 2nd – 29th April with Riviera (our first tour with Riviera)  and our friendly and knowledgeable guide David.  Most of us were over 60 and I think we all appreciated that there was only one move during the 8 days -  none of that “Bags outside your rooms for 6.30am”  etc thank goodness.  The 2 hotels used were excellent too,  and of course, our driver. We saw I think most if not all of what we would have seen if we had moved each day…... and no hanging up all our clothes again.

It was cold but we were quite OK as our rooms were pleasant, and warm and we had brought sensible clothes! The Mercure hotel we went to second also had great TV reception…..maybe all of France has TV like that….. best TV watching we’ve had ever on holiday.


Review by Mr and Mrs Phil and Val Jackson on 19 May 2016

Just back this evening from a one week trip to Dordogne, Albi and Carcassonne, and wanted to give you some feedback.

This was very different from our usual holidays - usually very long haul, tailored trips, to far flung destinations, but we couldn’t have enjoyed a trip more than this one.  A great reminder of what fantastic places there are to visit, and not too far from home.  Riviera has put together a great itinerary - two nice locations to be based in, and two very different but very good hotels.  We saw so many wonderful places, lots of different experiences (guided walks, historic towns, gardens, boat trip, steam train etc).  It was a full programme but there always seemed to be plenty of time at all the stops.  And that was with a large group of 42.  A lovely group, incredibly prompt which certainly helped.  Nice to have some free time for evening meals in Carcassonne - plenty of choice and made a change from group meals.  Cedric, our driver, was great, and such a comfortable coach.  Never had such a smooth ride.  David, our guide, was a real star.  Professional, courteous, friendly, and very knowledgeable.  He guided us around, shared his knowledge of France and the places we were visiting, and amused us with some wonderful stories.  The fact that he knows the places so well really helped - always ready with details of toilets, but also things like going up to the first floor of the Goya Museum in Castres to get a better view of the gardens.  Learnt a lot and had a really enjoyable time.  The perfect holiday, and extremely good value.  Have been with Riviera before.  Will certainly bear in mind for future trips and will definitely recommend this trip and Riviera to others.  I do illustrated travel talks to a lot of local groups.  Was thinking this would just be a holiday and not a talk, but so enjoyed and so interesting that the talk is almost compiled.  Always a good opportunity to plug the trip and company.

Review by Sue Ablett and John Dickman on 13 May 2016

A superb trip. Very interesting. Our Tour manager David Bauldy, was outstanding. Extremely courteous, he was very knowledgeable of the area and fluent in French. His humour kept us all amused during our many outings. A genuine gentleman. Joan, another tour guide who accompanied him, was a splendid support.

Review by Gerry Robertson on 3 May 2016

My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed this holiday. The whole experience was great for us both, including the choice of accommodation, the locations we were taken to and the tours that had been organised for us. This area of France is unspoilt and the heritage has been beautifully preserved and maintained making it a joy to behold. The Tour Manager was also excellent. She was very well-informed, not only on the particular regions we were visiting, but also about France generally and she conveyed this knowledge well too, in a modest and straightforward way.
Although the busy itinerary makes it necessary for early morning departures, this was a small penalty to pay for the wonderful places we were taken to. We have been on many escorted holidays in the past and consider this to be one of the very best we have been on.

Review by Jai Car on 7 July 2013

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