La Citadelle

La Forêt de la Double

The Double Forest in the north-east Dordogne lies between Monpon-Menesterol at its south-east corner and Angoulême to the north. It is a vast natural forest with literally thousands of lakes, large and small. It is bounded by the River Isle to the south.

Click on the small map to display a full-sized map. This will give you a better idea of the location and full extent of La Double.
Once known as a damp and boggy place, the forest is now prized for its huge number of lakes big and small, from secluded fishing holes, to big recreational lakes. As well as the leisure use of these lakes, fish-farming has always been important. On the River Isle they even farm sturgeon for caviar.
France is famed for the quality and popularity of its long-distance walks (grandes randonnées). They are well-mapped and marked out. One of those heading north into La Double passes about 300 yards from La Citadelle.
As well as passing through the trees, these walks pass through the small, farmed clearings in the forest ...
... and through tiny villages, like Vainxains.
Canoing is popular throughout the Dordogne, but the quiet lakes and small rivers of La Double have their own atmosphere.

Horse-riding is also immensely popular in this vast forest.

So from being a damp and generally unpopular area of France in past centuries, we now treasure the Forêt de la Double for its natural beauty and the many popular leisure pusuits it supports.