Visiting the fascinating caves of France

The Lascaux caves are home to probably the most famous prehistoric paintings in the world. In fact the paintings that you see at Lascaux are copies of the original paintings which were done nineteen thousand years ago. The originals are still there, two hundred metres away, but are no longer viewable because it was found that human breath was damaging them.

The copies were made using the exact same method and materials as for the originals. The paintings are mainly of prehistoric animals one of which is the auroch which is thought to have been a member of the Ox family and was worshipped in prehistoric times.

There are more caves to be found at Les Eyzies which is situated in the beautiful Vezere Valley which is classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The valley is a fantastic sight and has some breath-taking scenery as well as interesting prehistoric caves and sites of interest.

Les Eyzies is the location of the National Prehistory Museum which is home to one of the largest and complete sets of prehistoric relics in the world. Close to the museum is Abri Pataud which is a Cro-Magnon dwelling from nearly 40,000 years ago. It is amazing to think of the people living here all those years ago.

Just a few kilometres north of the banks of the River Dordogne is the town of Sarlat. This is a lovely medieval town of yellow sandstone buildings which is a beautiful place to visit. It is probably at its best early on a spring or autumn morning when you can get the full benefit of the contrast of colours against the sunshine. There is a cathedral in the town which you can visit and some quaint little backstreets to wander around too.