Brive la Gaillarde



Brive-la-Gaillarde is the commercial hub of the Dordogne Valley. It is a moderndynamic and active town with a long history dating back to the medieval ages. In a period of seemingly constant commercial growth, it is the place to visit for travellers wishing to go on a shopping spree. In the medieval heart of the town are numerous boutique shops, cafés, restaurants and well-known French clothing stores. With the centre almost entirely pedestrianised, fanning out from the church at its centre, the streets in all directions offer shopping temptations. There are also many historical visits to be had including the 16th century Labenche Museum of Art and History, the highlight of which is the collection of magnificent tapestries. The Museum of Resistance and Deportation also makes for a fascinating visit detailing the story of one of Brive’s most famous sons - the former government minister and Resistance fighter - Edmond Michelet.


Brive-la-Gaillarde is also a town that is crazy about rugby. For those who follow this sport, Brive has a team in the Top 14 French national league and in this region it’s much more popular than football. In Brive, rugby has captured the heart of the town and despite the club’s small size, the proud supporters here are avid fans.

The town also has a long association with the gastronomy of the Dordogne Valley with many excellent restaurants to choose from. Every Saturday morning, under the covered market hall (Halle Georges Brassens), top end local fare can be found at numerous stalls overflowing with delicacies.

This market is hugely popular and thrives with locals buying everything from live chickens to vegetables and fresh meats. Since the 13th century winter fairs called Foires Grasses (fatty fairs) have sold Foie Gras, duck and geese products several times a year. Right next to the market are excellent bars and restaurants with locals and rugby supporters in the CAB jersey preparing for the game later that afternoon with a late morning aperitif.



The slate quarry of Pans de Travassac near the village of Donzenac provides the raw materials that make up the slate roofs of houses dotted throughout the Dordogne Valley and has been doing so since the 17th century. Open to the public, it makes for a fascinating and unusual visit.