The reception building for Villars Cave

Although it is better known as a show cave, there are prehistoric drawings here. Located about 45 minutes north of Perigueux, it is still in the Perigord/Dordogne region even though it is quite far from the majority of the caves in the region. The drawings are of horses, stags, and bison, plus a representation of a human and a bison in what may be some kind of confrontation, a scene that can also be found in Lascaux (as shown at Le Thot) and Roc de Sers so this may be early evidence of a specific tale or legend that was part of an oral tradition. A thick layer of calcite has built up on the drawings, giving them a blue appearance. They are estimated to be 17,000 years old, which does place them in the same relative time period (Magdalenian) as the other sites with the bison/human encounter. 

Guided tours only. Often the guide speaks English or German too, but if it's a large group, the tour will mostly be in French.  There is an introductory video, a sound and light show in the cave, and the paintings are shown at the very end of the tour. You have to walk about 500 m inside the cave, 150 m uphill to return to the parking lot, and there are about 20 steps in the cave. Closed in the winter.

Hours and prices (English)


Address: Le Cluzeau, 24530 Villars, France

Services: Free parking, English tours, snack bar, gift shop, toilets, picnic area, playground

The entrance to Villars cave