piper quinn paddling in the dordogne river in lalinde

Visiting Lalinde, Dordogne a picture perfect French town

The Dordogne region of France is absolutely full of picturesque towns and villages ripe for exploring. We like to switch off the sat nav and take a slow drive stopping when we find somewhere pretty. But to give you a head start I wanted to share one of our favourites with you. This is everything you need to know about visiting Lalinde, Dordogne and why you should definitely add it to your french bucket list.

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young girl and her father walking on steping stones in the dordogne river with a chateaux in the background

Where to stay in Lalinde

When we’re exploring the Dordogne we tend to stay in the countryside in a sweet French Gite. If you’re looking for one near Lalinde then VRBO has loads to choose from. I absolutely love the look of  Maison Perigourdine and its sweet stone exterior. It sleeps five people in two bedrooms and is less than half a mile from the town centre.

Or if you’re after something with a pool which will be a massive bonus during the French summer you could try this Périgord house which has a heated outdoor pool and a 4 bedrooms. It’s just over a mile from the centre of Lalinde which is easily walkable if you fancy dinner and a drink in town.

flowery gardens with a fountain in the centre with the shops od lalinde behind

Have a look at this full list of holiday rentals in Lalinde and the surrounding area to get an idea of prices.

If you prefer a hotel feel for your stay then Les Magnolias less than half a mile from Lalinde town centre is an excellent option. It has a gorgeous outdoor swimming pool, a roof terrace and boules courts. Its location nestled on the banks of the Dordogne make it the perfect place to escape to after a busy day exploring.

arched bridge over the dordogne river in lalinde

Things to do in Lalinde, Dordogne

Not much remains of the original medieval town that Lalinde once was as it was hit hard during the hundred years war. This is not a place for adrenaline fuelled activities or art galleries, more somewhere to explore slowly taking it all in.

Dip your toes in the River

As with many Dordogne towns and villages, a lot revolves around the expansive Dordogne River. Lalinde has plenty of spots where you can get your feet (or whole body) wet.

piper quinn on the banks of the dordogne river

If you fancy some time away from the river there is also a small lake in town which is the perfect spot to throw down a blanket and enjoy a baguette and glass of red.

Head to market

Every Thursday is market day in Lalinde. This is the perfect place to do your shopping if your self catering nearby. Much of town visits the stalls so it’s a great place to rub shoulders with the locals. The market stretches all the way from the town hall to the village square. Foie gras, walnuts and of course locally produced wine are all popular purchases.

covered town square in lalinde, France

Musee de la Pierre

The only museum we found in Lalinde was the Musee de la Pierre a geological depository which is open during several days over the summer or by appointment during the rest of the year. Just pop into the tourist office to check the dates.

La Maison de Montard

One of the prettiest buildings in town is La Maison de Montard. It has a lovely garden area just through it’s gates where you can walk through the arches of the old town walls then down the stone steps to the grassy banks of the river. This building is an occasional art gallery, again it’s best to ask at the tourist centre for what’s on.

lalinde pretty french town in the dordogne

Saint-Front’s Chapel de Colubri

Located across the river from Lalinde town centre is Saint-Front’s Chapel, a tiny church which is said to date back to the 8th century. Although what you’ll find now is not the original building. It is located high on a cliff so offers some amazing views of Lalinde and the surrounding countryside.

Take a hike

Lalinde is a great place to start and end a hike in the Dordogne. It has various trails passing through the centre. The scenery around town is stunning with plenty of places to enjoy a picnic or a paddle. Have a look at All Trails for some suggested routes.

sandy beach on the dordogne river

Cross the bridge

The main bridge across the Dordogne you’ll see today was built in 1880 and I think its the perfect spot to look back to town and watch the flowing water of the Dordogne.

piper and nigel quinn looking over the bridge in lalinde

Visit the tourist office

I know it sounds a bit odd but it’s housed in the Old Renaissance House, a really beautiful building making it well worth a trip down to the bridge end of town. You can also pop in and get an idea of what else there is to do in the area. It has a little park outside with some benches and a charming fountain.

Eglise St Pierre-es-Liens

The small Catholic church at the end of town is very impressive with a tall bell tower so make sure you walk all the way through town during your visit.

Eglise St Pierre-es-Liens in the dordogne

Le Château de Lalinde

You’ll find Lalinde Castle perched right on the riverbanks. It was built in 1267 by King Henry III and used to be a jail then a hotel. Now it is a private residence so you can’t actually go in. It’s still very impressive from the outside.

lalinde castle of the banks of the river dordogne

Where to eat in Lalinde

French food is amazing and slightly unusual at times! Meat stew salad anyone?! Lalinde is not a big city so do not expect a wide variety of fast food or brand names here. What you’ll find instead are small, local run restaurants, cafes and bars. Most of which will have menus written in French which a quick google translate can help you decipher.

flower pots filled with red flowers hanging from a yellow stone wall

I recommend heading to the market hall and choosing one of the restaurants with outdoor tables spilling out across the square. It’s a great spot for people watching.

If you’re visiting with fussy eaters I recommend popping into a boulangerie for a freshly baked baguette, cheeses, hams and pastries and heading to the river for a picnic.

Best time to visit Lalinde in France

France is a great choice at anytime of year and being fairly far south, Lalinde enjoys great weather for many months. Over the peak summer months it get very hot in the Dordogne making a cooling dip in the river essential. This is also when you’ll see the most tourists in Lalinde. However this is not one of those French tourist towns that close once the season ends, bars, restaurants and the market remain busy year round.

father and daughter on the rocks of the banks of the dordogne river

How to get to Lalinde, Dordogne

Lalinde is located on the banks of the Dordogne river about 15 miles East of Bergerac. There is an international airport located in Bergerac and from there it’s around a half hour drive to Lalinde. If you’re heading in by train you’ll need to get to Bordeaux which is a two hour ride from Paris then hop on another train to Lalinde which will take you an hour and a half.

We visited as part of our road trip through France so drove and it was very easy to find. It’s on the D703 from Bergerac or the D29. Use the zip code 24150 to get you into town.

tall french flag on a tall pole above a bridge in front of a blue sky

How to get around Lalinde

Much of Lalinde is on one road and you can walk from one end of town to another in less than half an hour. The side streets are very pretty and well worth exploring, don’t worry about getting lost, you’ll never be far from the main road.

pretty honey coloured building in laline, dordogne

Shopping in Lalinde in the Dordogne

You’ll find everything you need in town for your stay in Lalinde. It has a smattering of clothes shops, pharmacies, boulangeries, souvenir shops and patisseries. There is a large Intermarche just five minutes drive out of town.

Remember that most things in France close in the early afternoon, mainly between 12 and 2 so plan your trip accordingly.

cars parking around the war memorial in Lalinde, dordogne

Parking in Lalinde

We managed to find a spot on the main road into Lalinde but there are several car parks dotted around town. you’ll find one in the centre of town surrounding the war memorial and another up by the church.

In summary, Lalinde in the Dordogne is absolutely one of the prettiest towns in the region. Whilst there’s not heaps to do it’s the kind of place that forces you to slow down and take in your surroundings and is well worth a visit during your next trip to France.

Make sure you read my full guide to visiting the Dordogne with kids for more pretty towns and great things to do all around Lalinde.

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