Sunday
Nov292009

Things to see and do

Caving Related

http://pagesperso-orange.fr/scf/survey.htm - local speleo club : caves and surveys

http://www.oucc.org.uk/dtt/vol10/dtt10_14.htm - OUCC - report of trip to the Lot 

 

Other Stuff

Belmontet
Distillerie de Servat
Tel 05 65 31 90 17
See the lavender fields and watch the essential oil distillation process.
Open Weds. No charge.

Crayssac
Pterosaur beach
Tel 05 65 20 86 40
Very important paleontological site where fossilised footprints and tracks from 50 different species of prehistoric creatures dating back 140 million years have been found.

Telephone for details of visits.

Figeac
Accro-Liane
Tel 06 34 35 09 09

Gramat
Gramat wildlife park
Route de Cajarc
Tel 05 65 38 81 22
150 species of animals (most of which once roamed wild on the causse) living in vast enclosures. Rare domestic breeds. Visits on foot only-2 hrs needed to tour the whole park.

Centre National d'Instruction
Cynophile de la Gendarmerie
Tel 05 65 10 14 30
The National Police-dog Handlers' training school is open to the public free on Thurs. afternoons in July/August. Demonstrations of training and handling given.

Martel
Reptiland
Puy Lombry
Tel 05 65 37 41 00
Reptiles of all types and arachnids on show in natural light. 250 specimens. Covered structure.

Lacave
Préhistologia Prehistoric Park
Tel 05 65 32 28 28
The world's history from its formation through the various evolutionary phases with lifesize models of creatures from different eras; the rise of Man; reconstruction of a Neolithic village.

Lavergne
Le Minotaure (Labyrinth)
Tel 05 65 33 74 80
Have fun getting lost and unlost in the maze whilst finding out about various places in the Lot, which provide you with clues to unlocking the treasure chest.

Mayrinhac Lentour
Marais de Bonnefont
Pech du Puits
Tel 06 78 00 93 07 (mobile)
In a 42 hectare protected area at the source of the Alzou, this 2 km Nature Path provides the chance to learn about the plants (including orchids), birds and animals living in this wetland habitat.

Padirac
Insectopia
Pech du Puits
Tel 05 65 33 76 76
An amusing and educational adventure in the interactive world of insects.

Pradines
Cap Nature
Accrobranche (Tree circuits)
Tel 05 65 22 25 12
Leisure park offering more than 3 hrs of fun and games in the tree-tops, Instruction given. Family circuit suitable for 6 yrs old and over; zip wires for the 11's and over. Special area for 3-6's to play in complete safety. Advance booking essential.

Prayssac
Ferme de la Tille
(working farm/vineyard)
Tel 05 65 22 41 90
A 1.5 km path takes you round this farm/vineyard, with a wealth of information about farming and crops in the past, the present state of agriculture in the Lot, the river and wildlife habitats.

Miers
Les P'tits Equins
Route de Carennac
Tel 05 65 38 00 69

Rocamadour
The Monkey Forest
L'Hospitalet
Tel 05 65 33 62 72
More than 130 Barbary Macaques living completely naturally within a 20 hectare enclosure and interacting with the public. Specialised guide present at all times.

La Borie d'Imbert and Justine's House
Route de Lacave
Tel 05 65 38 87 76
Visit the Rocamadour cheese-making dairy and the herd of goats, plus the fascinating recreation of a late 19th C. farm with its house, garden, animals, crops and vines.

La Maison des Abeilles
(Apiary centre)
Tel 05 65 33 66 98
Learn about the domestic bee and the art of bee-keeping. Demonstartions in a glassed-in courtyard where there are sometimes as many as 500 000 bees all at once.

Le Rocher des Aigles
(Bird of Prey Sanctuary)
Tel 05 65 33 65 45
Many species of birds of prey breed here in the large aviaries, which you can visit, and they fly  completley free high over Rocamadour during spectacular hour-long demonstrations.

Sunday
Nov292009

Unexpedition - 1st Communication

What:The wind's howling, the rain is spattering the windows, every now and again the rain hardens into sleet, the cold is seeping into your bones and Summer seems a long, long way off.

Picture yourself, instead, in the French countryside, the warmth of the Summer sun giving your pale British skin a healthy glow (dermatologists step aside you know what I mean), the sound of a cork being pulled and a glass of chilled white wine hitting the bottom of a perfectly clear wine glass. Look across the tall grass of the field alongside you to the creamy sides of a limestone gorge, distant birds ride the gentle Southerly breeze. Look to the left, the River Cele gurgles as it flows through the rolling countryside.

This year the there is no SWCC caving expedition but there is the oppportunity of joining a group of likeminded people on an unexpedition with some caving elements and there is every chance of the mild danger of over exposure to UV and a gentle hangover. The Hyland's are going to the Lot region of central France and we'd like you to come with us, the upside is plenty of caving, cycling, canoeing, archaeology, walking, fairs, festivals, fishing and walking the only downside is the need to pay a 20% deposit before Christmas so we can book the campsite!

Where: The Department du Lot is about 8 hours driving from Calais, we're going to a campsite just outside the small market town of Gramat. The campsite is called Le Teuliere they have both chalets and camping as well as a very nice looking pool. It's bang in the middle of the Lot and it's 15 minutes drive from the famous show cave at Padirac, and 15 minutes from the charming medieval town of Rocamadour.

Speleo Stuff: The area is covered in caves and grottes, most small and some big, some walkin, some requiring SRT - try googling for 'Igue de Viazac','Gouffre des Vitarelles','Igue de Goudou', 'Saut de la Pucelle (easy)'and 'Les Combettes (easy)'

Family Stuff: The area has loads of family style day trips out including some outstanding canoeing and swimming in the many broad and slow rivers, Wildlife parks, monkey santuaries, show-caves, 'Go-Ape!' style tree obstacle courses and paleontology sites.

When: The dates we've asked for are Saturday July 31st to Saturday August 14th 2010

What next: Have a quick think, look at the weather forecast and then decide to come. Select the type of accomodation you want from camping, camping + electric or chalet, prices on the website (see links below). Mail or call Dominic Hyland before (01590) 641307 or 'dominic.hyland@gmail.com' before Sunday December 6th. Leave contact details and I'll get in touch, confirm the price and you'll need to send me a cheque/money transfer pronto, so Denise Knibbs can help us book the site ASAP.

Things to see and do

Links:
Tourist Information - http://www.rocamadour.com/
Campsite - http://laparro.mcv.free.fr/   
Rocamadour - http://www.rocamadour.net/
Speleo - http://cds46.free.fr/

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