In a stunning position on the north bank of the Dordogne River, La Roque Gageac, although small, is one of France's most beautiful villages, backed by a steep cliffs, and with very little to suggest that much has changed there in the last 300 years. This is truly a perfect picture village, located about 8km (5 miles) from the historic town of Sarlat.
The honey-coloured houses with traditional Périgord roofs, line the river and spread up the hillsides beyond. While many of the properties in La Roque Gageac are modest, there is also a number of grand houses., like the 19th-century Chateau de la Malartrie built in Renaissance style (although it appears older).
The strong defensive position of La Roque Gageac and the fortress whose defences continued to be extended up to the 17th century, meant that it held an important strategic and defensive position in the area. La Roque Gageac has always been an important trading point on the Dordogne river with goods being carried by traditional boats called 'gabares'. Replicas of these boats are now used for river cruises. These start from various points along the river with those at La Roque Gageac sailing past the Chateau de la Malartie, the Chateau de Lacoste, the Chateau de Marqueyssac and the Chateau de Castelnaud.