Sit on the terrace overlooking the pool
and enjoy a leisurely breakfast of fresh croissants from Martel, sipping a café au lait whilst contemplating what to do that day.
Head into Martel on a Wednesday or Saturday morning
for the market which takes place in the main square. Go shopping for lunch and dinner and try some of the delicious local produce on offer or simply soak up the atmosphere of a French market.
Have a game of table tennis
It is surprising how competitive everyone turns out to be!
Enjoy a ride on 'Le Truffadou' (steam train)
And discover the picturesque Dordogne valley. The train runs from St Denis to Baladou, stopping at Martel.
Summer evenings in Martel
Head into Martel on a Wednesday evening in July and August and join in the dances that take place in the market square.
Tour of Martel, the town with 7 towers
Pick up the leaflet from the tourist office which takes you on a self guided tour of the town. Although small, the town has a lot of history as well as being very pretty. For example, Place Gambetta used to be the Place du Sel, where people would come to trade and buy the salt, brought from the Atlantic along the Dordogne River.
claimed to be the second most visited site in France, is a 20 min drive due south of Martel and is a must on the list of things to do! Clinging to the rock face, cliff-hugging Rocamadour hangs almost 500 feet above the Alzou Canyon, one of the most extraordinary settings in France! A walk around the Chateau walls with views down into village is a must if you have a good head for heights.
Carennac (to the east of Martel)
is a stunning village on the banks of the River Dordogne, and is classed as 'One of the most beautiful villages in France'.
Day out at a Water Park
If the children want a pool with water slides, head to Quercyland for the day. In Souillac, on the banks of the river, this water park has 7 swimming pools, 3 water slides, bouncy castles, a go kart circuit, paddle boats, crazy golf....plus restaurants. Open from May to end of September.
Visit Cahors (1hr drive), famous for its wines.
It is said that the Romans, who planted the first vines here, circa 1BC, would still recognise the wines today. Explore the old town, a maze of mediaeval streets and buildings. Wander down to the banks of the Lot and take a boat ride around the meander in the River Lot which encloses the town, or walk on the Pont Valentre.
A 'cool' thing to do in high summer - Visit a cave.
Close by is the 'Gouffre de Padirac', where you descend 103m by stairs or lift for a magical underground journey (1 ½ hr). Cross the Rain Chamber in a boat and then continue on foot through the Grand Cours room and onto the Grand Dôme with its 94m high ceiling and the Lac Supérieur.
Come face to face with Dinosaurs!
Prehistologia is a prehistoric park, situated in a forest covering several hectares, between Martel and Rocamadour. Learn about the history of the world from 4.5 million years ago to the Neolithic period. It is the largest life size reconstruction in Europe of prehistoric creatures (dinosaurs, flying reptiles..)
Eating out in Martel
Enjoy a walk down to Martel (approx 1km) early evening for dinner out at one of the restaurants. With about 6 or 7 restaurants in total, there is plenty of choice. What better way to spend a summer's evening?
Antiques and Brocante
Take a tour of the antique shops in the Lot. The tourist office has put together a leaflet (with map) featuring all the antique and brocante (bric a brac) shops in the northern part of the Lot. See what gems you can uncover!
On the outskirts of Martel is Reptiland - a living museum/collection of over 102 different species of reptiles (the largest collection in France). Children will probably be fascinated by the tour!
Take a relaxing trip on the River Dordogne in a 'gabarre'.
A gabarre is a traditional river boat, once used for transporting goods along the river. There are two companies offering trips from the riverside town of La Roque-Gageac. Trips last approx 1hr.
Have you visited Maison La Seguinie?
Click here to suggest a Great Thing you've done nearby ...