No wonder Monpazier was classified Un des Plus Beaux Villages de France - or ‘One of the Most Beautiful Villages of France' - a title earned by just over 150 villages across the nation. This 13th century bastide (‘fortified village') is considered the best preserved and most beautiful of all the bastide villages in the South-West. Its historical significance also earned it the ranking of "Grand Site National" in 1991.

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An easy 700 metre stroll into the village is always rewarding.  Each Thursday morning the evocative central village square Place des Cornieres comes alive for the bustle and buzz of market day. And you can almost guarantee any given month will feature a festival or fete to celebrate anything from roses or strawberries, to Bastille Day, to cepes and truffles. In France, there's always a reason for a fete!

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The advantage of Monpazier is that it's a living, working village, complete with excellent charcuteries, patisseries, pharmacy, two small well-stocked supermarkets, wine cellars, doctors, dentist, bank and petrol station. Many talented artisans have also made Monpazier their home. Explore the woodwork, ceramics, glassblowing, print framers, traditional soaps and perfumes, and leatherwork ateliers and artists galleries, as well as an antique clock restorer and an ostrich egg engraver. Or simply watch the world go by on the open cafe terraces by the Place.

Monpazier is considered one of the 'must-see' villages of this region.  It's featured in this beautiful short clip...so take an armchair tour of the Dordogne right here!

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Foodlovers, rejoice!  You are in 'Michelin territory' in this corner of the Dordogne. A stroll into the village will bring you to two Michelin-recommended restaurants: the elegant Restaurant Eleonore, in the Hotel Edward 1er, and its relaxed contemporary cousin Bistrot 2, just outside Monpazier's north gate.  Only 12km north is the innovative one Michelin star restaurant L'Etincelles, in Ste Sabine Born, where husband & wife team Vincent & Anne will welcome you warmly. Head further north over the river to Tremolat, and you'll find the renowned one-star Le Vieux Logis, and its ever-popular casual venue, Bistro de la Place. And 25km west, a few steps from Chateau Monbazillac is the stylish one-star La Tour des Vents, offering magnificent views across the vineyards below.

In the village itself there are several other great-value restaurants to enjoy, ranging from excellent bistro fare, delicous cous cous dishes to simple pizzerias.

For more things to do and see in the area click here

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