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Museums in and around Périgueux to discover

musée Vesunna Périgueux

Périgueux is famous for its gastronomy and medieval heritage, but it’s also a haven for art and history lovers. Growing up in Périgueux, I had the opportunity to explore the city’s various museums on several occasions.

Prepare to be amazed by the diversity and richness of these museums’ collections. Whether you’re passionate about archaeology, history, art or simply curious about new discoveries, you’ll find what you’re looking for in Périgueux’s museums. It’s also a great activity to do with the whole family and when it’s raining. So, are you ready to dive into this cultural adventure?

Musée Gallo-Romain Vésunna: A plunge into antiquity

Let’s start with the museum we recommend you visit during your stay in Périgueux. The Vésunna museum was built on the remains of an impressive Gallo-Roman temple. It’s an open window on antiquity, a journey back in time to Roman times.

Ihe Gallo-Roman remains include a tower and the remains of a Domus (villa) dating from the 1st to 3rd centuries, now restored as a handsome, interactive museum with full windows, and therefore completely open to the outside world. There are descriptive sheets everywhere, as well as videos and tablets showing the different eras of the site. and daily life in Gallo-Roman times. Everyday objects, sculptures and models help you imagine the city as it was thousands of years ago. It’s fascinating to see how people lived, worked and played back then. You can also admire the Tour de Vésone, just next door.

The museum is magnificent, with architect Jean Nouvel in charge of the project. The volumes have been preserved, which will allow you to realize the volumes of the houses of the time. Underneath the rooms you can see the hypocaust heating system.

Tips for your visit: To get the most out of your visit, download the museum app. It offers audio guides and interactive maps to enhance your experience. And keep an eye on the program of themed tours, often offered during school vacations. Full price €6.

This tour is an excellent way to deepen your understanding of Périgueux’s Roman history.

Vesunna Museum Périgueux
Museum website photo

The Musée d’Art et d’Archéologie du Périgord: A Historical Treasure

Right in the heart of Périgueux, the Musée d’Art et d’Archéologie du Périgord (MAAP for its French acronym) is a must-see for any visitor. It’s a life-size history book. Imagine a journey that takes you from prehistory to the present day, through rich and diverse eras.

As soon as you enter, you’re greeted by impressive prehistoric collections. Here, each object tells a story, the story of the region’s first inhabitants. It’s fascinating to see these relics of prehistoric man’s daily life. Reproductions of habitats and scenes from daily life will appeal to young and old alike. And that’s just the beginning! The museum also boasts a superb collection ofmedieval art, where sculptures and objets d’artplunge youinto another time.

And for art lovers, the museum is full of surprises. Several rooms feature collections of modern and contemporary art.

Events : several events are organized throughout the year, including museum Thursdays to discover 1 work in particular, trail games for children take them through the various rooms for a playful and educational discovery, and during school vacations as escapes gamesand workshops for children…

Tips for your visit: the museum is open almost all year round, but check the official website for opening times and prices before your visit. Full price €6. An audioguide is available for an additional €1, in French and English. Don’t forget to ask about the children’s treasure hunt.

The Military Museum: a testimony to the warrior past

Let’s continue our cultural tour of Périgueux with a visit to the Military Museum. This museum is a sanctuary dedicated tomilitary history, from the Hundred Years’ War to the Second World War. It’s a plunge into the wartime past of France and the Dordogne, an educational and moving experience.

Organized over 3 floors, each room in the museum is a story, telling tales of battle, strategy and heroism. You’ll find armor, weapons, uniforms and even battle scenes. It’s a tangible way to connect with history, to feel the weight of bygone eras.

The main museums around Périgueux

  1. The Lascaux Cave (Lascaux IV) at Montignac
    The replica of the famous Lascaux cave is an exceptional site. It offers an immersion into the cave art of our ancestors. The unmissable, full replica of the Lascaux cave, the new site offers an immersive and interactive experience, the museum will appeal to young and old, 30 minutes north of Sarlat
  2. National Prehistory Museum at Les Eyzies-de-Tayac
    Located in the “Capital of Prehistory”, this museum is a must for understanding the history of prehistoric man. It houses one of the most important prehistory collections in Europe. This rich museum is well worth a visit. It brings together various items (tools, jewelry, bones, pottery…) found in nearby caves, including Lascaux I. The museum is a fun, chronological way to learn more about the origins of mankind. An ideal family outing to do around Sarlat.
  3. Château de Bourdeilles
    Just a few kilometers from Périgueux, this medieval and Renaissance château boasts a museum rich in antique furniture and works of art. It’s a journey through history and architectural elegance.
  4. Bovetti Chocolate Museum in Terrasson-Lavilledieu
    For a sweeter experience, this museum dedicated to chocolate is a gourmet and educational getaway. Discover the history of cocoa and take part in chocolate-making workshops.

Practical information

Pass Grand Périgueux

The Pass Grand Périgueux is an interesting option if you want to visit several sites during your stay in Périgueux at a low cost. Here is a detailed description of how it works:

  1. What is the Pass Grand Périgueux? The Pass Grand Périgueux gives you the freedom to discover various tourist sites at reduced prices. It offers different packages depending on the length of your stay, from 4 visits over 5 days to 12 visits valid for one year. This pass entitles the holder to free admission to one of 16 partners, depending on the package chosen. The Pass, equipped with a barcode, is activated the first time it is used.
  2. Examples of sites included: the Vesunna Museum, the Museum of Art and Architecture, the Military Museum, the roofs of Saint Front Cathedral, access to the bus network (Péribus)….
  3. Where to buy the Pass Grand Périgueux? The Pass can be purchased online, at the Grand Périgueux tourist office (located on Place du Coderc) or at one of the specified sales outlets.

This Pass is ideal for those planning to visit several cultural and historical sites in the region, offering an economical and convenient way to explore the cultural diversity of Périgueux and the surrounding area.

perigueux cathedrale saint front from the quayside

Where to stay in Périgueux?

To make the most of Périgueux, we recommend staying in the historic center.

Our favorite

We recommend that you stay at Les Apparts Limogeanne, a charming address in the heart of Périgueux’s historic center (protected area) in a pedestrian street, 5 minutes from everything, including Saint-Front cathedral, restaurants, tourist office…

The accommodations are fully equipped and furnished (bed and household linen, Nespresso, Netflix…). They have just been tastefully renovated. There is air-conditioning, which was very appreciated during the hot summer days. It is simply one of our best accommodations!

➡️Recevez 5% discount with the code PERIGUEUX to be entered in the coupon box directly on the Apparts Limogeanne website.

Périgueux hotel apartments limogeanne

We wish you an excellent stay in Perigueux! Feel free to drop us a line below to let us know if you’re planning a Périgourdine getaway, ask any questions you may have or share on social networks(our Instagram) we’ll be delighted to get back to you!

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My name is Floriane, and I've been an adventurer and travel enthusiast since I was very young. More than anything, I love sharing our travel stories and tips with you. We love short getaways as well as long trips. This blog was born after our backpacking trip around the world. We also went on a family tour of Europe.
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