The Dordogne weather varies greatly from season to season. There are advantages to visiting during each of the seasons, all of which can be very beautiful: sunflowers and sunshine in the summer, lush spring flowers make the Dordogne burst with colour in the spring, vivid autumn colours and mists rising from the rivers in autumn and fields and trees white with frost in the winter.
- summers are warm-hot (25-35 degrees) with occasional storms and showers, although colder spells can also arrive and last a day or two. Early morning can still be quite mild.
- lazing by the pool, eating al fresco, canoing, visiting the markets, cooling off in the wonderful Dordogne caves, exploring some of the many Dordogne castles. There really is lots to do during the summer in the Dordogne.
- spring and autumn in the Dordogne are similar but milder (22-28 degrees) and with a greater chance of rain - especially in early spring, periods of heavy rain can arrive quite frequently
- exploring the Dordogne towns and villages, admiring the lovely Dordogne gardens, eating out in some great restaurants, walking and cycling. Spring and Autumn are our favourite times in the Dordogne.
- winters, although usually mild in south-west France, tend to have occasional short periods of cold weather (down to -10 degrees sometimes) and more frequent rain (especially in late winter and early spring).
- enjoy some bracing walks through the frosty countryside, curl up in front of a log fire, drive along the Dordogne river which looks lovely at all times of the year, visit some of the larger sites such as the Font-de-Gaume caves which stay open in the winter.
The weather is rarely 'grey' and even during the winter the sky tends to be bright and sunny. You can read about the weather and climate during the different seasons in the Dordogne region at when to visit the Dordogne, as part of your forward planning.
You probably like to keep an eye on the Dordogne weather as your holiday approaches, but one word of warning - the weather forecast for the region is almost always significantly worse than the reality!
Remember also that there can be a significant difference between the weather in Perigord Noir, in the south-west of the Dordogne, and Perigord Vert in the north. On average the north is a couple of degrees cooler and has a bit more rain.