A calm and peaceful territory
Along the Dordogne, discover the Pays Foyen between country houses and vineyards. A territory bordering the Dordogne and Lot-et-Garonne, the Pays Foyen is full of activities and sites to discover. Between historical heritage and wine châteaux, the Pays Foyen remains a calm and peaceful territory along the water.
Vines and a wine appellation
Also called “Porte du Périgord”, the Pays Foyen is at the heart of the AOC vineyard of Sainte-Foy-Côtes-de-Bordeaux. From the Middle Ages, Sainte-Foy-La-Grande enjoyed prosperity thanks to the wine trade which took place in its port located away from the city, as well as activities linked to the main local production: coopers and naval carpenters who set up their workshops along the river.
Under English domination until 1450, the wines of the area were shipped on barges to Libourne and Blaye to be loaded on ocean-going ships bound for the British Isles.
Bastides to discover
Sainte-Foy-la-Grande bastide of the XIIIst century is located at the eastern end of the Gironde department. The city is one of the smallest municipalities in France and covers 51 hectares. It is the oldest of the Gironde bastides.
“From the square to the arcades, the heart of the bastide of Sainte-Foy-la-Grande, discover the streets and alleys of the great city: the Church of Notre-Dame, the market hall, the temple… You will be seduced by the extraordinary variety of old stone or half-timbered houses that dot the city. To end your journey, a walk along the quays will allow you to admire the panorama over the Dordogne »
Do not miss the Saturday morning market, which offers local products. Ranked among the 100 most beautiful markets in France, it attracts many locals and tourists.
Excavator, unlike Sainte-Foy-la-Grande, is not a “new built” country house. It was built on the site of or near an earlier medieval market town. Thus, there was a castle (castrum) attested in 1242 well before the creation of the bastide. The village developed around the castle, which today no longer exists.
“On its promontory, the bastide of Pellegrue, centered around its small centenary hall, invites you to explore. Its former castle town, with its charming alleys, is grouped around its beautiful Romanesque church. Leaving the bastide, a hilly course, between forests and plots of vines, takes a few sections of the Jacques de Vézelay path (GR 654). You will surely meet pilgrims there! Pellegrue is an envied stopover for these pilgrims between Sainte-Foy-la-Grande and Monségur, on their way to Compostela. "
The crane, symbol of the city ...
The current coat of arms of the town of Pellegrue represents “a silver crane holding a golden vigilance in its right hand”. Vigilance was a stone preventing the animal from falling asleep. Legend has it that the crane would have played a role in saving the city. While the city fell asleep, bandits wanted to besiege the city, but in their movement they awoke a colony of cranes. The latter began to shout, thus waking up the garrison which could then repel the attack.