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Brantôme is often referred to as 'The Venice of the Perigord', but the comparison is a bit erroneous. Yes, Brantôme has five beautiful stone bridges dating from the medieval period, and a number of graceful riverfront mansions (some of which have been converted into the best places to stay in Brantôme). And yes, its backstreets are of the charming, winding kind that it's easy to get lost in. But it's set on the wide, green banks of the river Dronne and surrounded by woods and rural views. So it's not really that Venice-y, but it is very beautiful, and offers the kind of sunny, rural peace that Venice can't.
Some of the best places to stay in Brantôme are the wonderful estates outside the town. Here, in historic mills and converted farm houses, you'll also find Michelin stars and the perfect country house escapes.
Brantôme's most famous landmark is its Benedictine Abbey, no longer used for that purpose though, it's now the Hotel de Ville, but it's still a sight to behold, and right next door is the real church, a little Gothic affair.
Behind the abbey is the structure which pre-dates it, the Parcours Troglodytique, an earlier abbey cut directly into the rock face in the 8th century. These monks lived in caves behind their church and the whole place is quite fascinating to explore.
There's one more Venetian parallel you can draw, Brantôme has a vibrant glass industry. So that's your shopping box ticked too.
- Le Moulin du Roc has the Michelin star, a romantically converted mill with lots of charm as well as luxurious creature comforts - like a pool and tennis courts.
- Le Chatenet was a family manor, and is now a family-run hotel, sitting on six hectares of estate grounds, which include a swimming pool, dovecote and tennis courts.
For central location
- Le Moulin de L'Abbaye is, as the name indicates, an old mill, so you're right on the river, and have a collection of outdoor terraces, dining areas and sun traps in which to ponder the area's beauty and enjoy the local cuisine.
For rustic chic
- Moulin de Vigonac oozes rustic chic. This converted 16th century watermill is just out of town, situated on the banks of the Dronne. The ten stylish rooms offer all modern comforts and some have private terraces overlooking the river.
For rural home from home
- A simple, rustic farmhouse with plenty of French charm, L'Auberge de L'etang Bleu feels like your home from home, surrounded by woodland.
Still not sure which to book?
Best Hotels in Brantome
Le Moulin de L'Abbaye 19 rooms from $189Brantome, Dordogne
Charming historic mill on the banks of the river. A picturesque stone building with attractive greenery and blue shutters. Two delicious restaurants serving local cuisine with riverbank seating. An enchanting spot for foodies, families and explorers.Village - Brantome is the "Venice of the Périgord".Riverside - A beautiful mill on the river front.Views - Fariytale views over the river.Foodies - Two excellent restaurants.Recommended by - Relais & Chateaux
Les Jardins de Brantome 7 rooms from $131Brantome
Les Jardins de Brantôme is a quiet wonder, just on the outskirts of the town of Brantôme. With stylish rooms, a superb restaurant and a magical garden, it makes for an excellent place to stay in the Dordogne. Perfect for couples looking for a intimate, relaxing holiday.Romantic Break - The sophisticated and elegant suites make for a perfect for a romantic break in the beautiful Dordogne region.Active Holiday - An ideal resting point after a long day outdoors, either kayaking, walking, golfing or cycling.Kayaking - Rent a kayak and head off to explore the countryside down the Dordogne river.Great walks - There are numerous beautiful walking trails from the hotel to nearby caves.
Moulin de Vigonac 10 rooms from $151Brantôme, Dordogne
A delightful hotel in a 16th century watermill. Large rustic chic rooms have exposed beams, warm furnishings and views over the gardens. An outdoor pool, sunny terrace, and lovely, fresh regional cuisine. Quiet, idyllic and full of countryside charm.Country Escape - A quiet location by the River Dronne, wander around the old mill, woods nearby and all the fun which can be had on the riverRestrictions on children - Children over 2 years old welcomeSights nearby - Château de BourdeillesFull of character
Hostellerie les Griffons 10 rooms from $99Dordogne
A glorious hotel set in a 17th century country house on the river, with spectacular views. Cosy rooms have exposed beams, wooden floors and rustic charm. Gourmet cuisine from the restaurant, outdoor pool, gardens, and large sitting room. Romantic, gourmet, and family friendly.Families - Larger rooms for families, swimming pool, walking trails, wonders of the river and mountain bikingGreat walks - The hotel can advise on the routes of surrounding countrysideSights nearby - Brantome and its Benedectine AbbeyTraditionalRecommended by - Sawdays
Le Chatenet 5 rooms from $171Brantôme, Dordogne
A lovely family-run manor house on a 6 hectare estate. Charming bedrooms and suites with fabric covered walls and wooden beamed ceilings. Spacious grounds include a swimming pool, a dovecote, and a tennis court. Great for families and groups of friends.Sights nearby - 10 minutes on foot into the centre of BrantomeSwimming Pool - Outdoor PoolLocal markets - Good for local colour.Great walks - Good for walkers.Recommended by - Sawdays
L'Auberge de L'etang Bleu 11 rooms from $80Vieux-Mareuil, Dordogne
A simple countryside house with French charm. Cosy rustic reception rooms with fireplaces, wooden beams and stone walls. Simply decorated bedrooms with attached bathrooms. An understated country escape in the surrounds of woodlands.Secluded setting - For escaping.TraditionalGreat walks - Good for walkers.Recommended by - Sawdays
Le Moulin du Roc 15 rooms from $206Champagnac-de-Belair, Dordogne
A beautiful mill with a Michelin starred restaurant, tennis court, and swimming pool. Romantic footbridges and terraces lead to luxuriously decorated rooms, suites and an apartment, all with private terraces. Classic furniture, exposed beams, and modern comforts. Very romantic.Foodies - Michelin starred.Private Hot Tub - 12 of the rooms have jacuzzi bath tubsSights nearby - Ideal base for exploring the DordogneFishing - Fly fishing on the riverRecommended by - Good Hotel Guide