At the heart of Black Perigord, clinging to one of the most beautiful cliffs of the Dordogne valley, the medieval village of Beynac-et-Cazenac, rated one of the most beautiful villages of France, offers a page of history.
The origins of Beynac, contrary to appearances, are not medieval but older. It was in effect from 2000 BC. JC that the people of the Bronze Age chose this site to settle. Remains have also been found near the Archaeological Park. The Gauls have also served to control the trade of the wine came from Italy.
The castle, probably intended to monitor the Dordogne, must have existed in the ninth century, when northern populations upriver and spreading terror.
Simon de Montfort seized the castle in the early thirteenth century but Beynac recover their property through the intervention of Philip Augustus in 1217. The castle remains a family property until 1761 date of marriage of Marie-Claude de Beynac Christophe de Beaumont. One of the descendants sold it in 1961.
At the time of the Hundred Years War, the fortress of Beynac was one of the French fortresses. The Dordogne then served as border between France and England; not far away, on the other side of the Dordogne, the Castle Castelnaud was in British hands.
The castle has often served part in the filming of movies: Revenge of the Musketeers Bertrand Tavernier in 1994, The Visitors II (Corridors of Time) by Jean-Marie Poiré in 1997, Joan of Arc by Luc Besson 1999.
August 15, 1827, the village Cazenac, located 5 km, is attached to Beynac prefectural decision ratified by a royal decree.
Near the fortress, the village is built around an enclosure partitioned by several fortified gates. Several districts appear: barrier of Cafourque, Barri del Soucy (district weavers) or Port. It remains active until the nineteenth century and was a major stop of the boatmen who descended the river to Bordeaux for transporting various goods (staves, cereals...). In addition to trade, fishing and agriculture, the cultivation of hemp and the building industry (working stone and wood) are flourishing of the Revolution until the mid-nineteenth century.
The pleasure to stroll will take you from the castle - which is one of the jewels of medieval architecture - up to the old port by walking the cobbled streets lined with old houses typical of the blondes coiffed facades 'imposing tiled roofs.
Everything is then ready for a gourmet stopover or a walk on the Dordogne barge.