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Review of Gouffre de Padirac

Gouffre de Padirac
Ranked #1 of 2 things to do in Padirac
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: The Gouffre de Padirac, the most famous cave in Europe, is considered as one of the most interesting geological sites in France. After a vertiginous descent, by lift or stairs, of 103 metres, you embark on a boat trip along the subterranean river with spectacular views on the galleries. That's when you discover the "Grande Pendeloque" - a gigantic stalactite of 60 metres high - hanging by a string, it appears to admire itself in the "Lac de la Pluie". You then walk towards the "Lac des Gours" or the "Salle du Grand Dôme" with its 94 metres high vault.
Reviewed October 25, 2012

The start could have been a little better organized. After buying tickets we lined up for the evevator to another elevator to another elevator then stairs to the line for the small boats to the actual tour. Once we got there it was fascinating. Very interesting and visually stunning. And the tour guides spoke clear English! Alert: Not handicap accessable.

2  Thank cordyroy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"underground river"
in 87 reviews
"boat ride"
in 96 reviews
"cave system"
in 27 reviews
in 33 reviews
"walking tour"
in 17 reviews
"spoke english"
in 12 reviews
"on foot"
in 17 reviews
"take pictures"
in 9 reviews
"well worth the visit"
in 16 reviews
"flights of stairs"
in 7 reviews
"book in advance"
in 20 reviews
"high season"
in 13 reviews
"worth the trip"
in 7 reviews
"mobility issues"
in 6 reviews
"ticket office"
in 10 reviews
"buy tickets"
in 5 reviews
"great attraction"
in 5 reviews

416 - 420 of 3,643 reviews

Reviewed October 20, 2012

We were asked by some guests in our gites what we thought of Padirac. We hadn't visited so we thought we should and we all went along together. Wow!! Padirac is simply stunning, breath-taking, even. Although a bit of a trek from our Gites, and therefore really a "day out" from here, the caves are simply amazing, unbelievable and totally naturally, being created over thousands of years. This is a must for anyone remotely close. Not suitable for those with reduced mobility, when we went, though. Things may have improved with recent changes in the law. Negatives? The queues can be long, the parking a bit insufficient, so choose your timing carefully. Our guide tried, but didn't really speak English, so we translated. The catering in the restaurants/cafes, nice enough but a bit average, with the usual touristic trinkets on the side. Ignore those, and it is has to be rated one of the wonders of the natural world.

1  Thank LesGitesTrepart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 9, 2012

This gouffre is amazing and not a site you get to see everyday. It makes one feel really small and realize the size and strength of nature. It is honestly too bad the staff here was so incredibly rude. From the elevator operators to the boat drivers and tour guides, the attitude was at times flippant, and at other times quite aggressive! Being told to not take pictures can be done in a better way than yelling. I tried to merely take a photo of my family before the tour and the no photo zone started and was screamed at. There was nothing to see yet! It was not necessary. Then the whole tour, our guide acted like a watchdog for photographs-- saying "I'm not an idiot" angrily and insisting we need to buy postcards. I didn't spend a dime- so rude!

1  Thank Domfas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 7, 2012

A 45 minute queue whilst standing in the rain. This is apparently deliberate because there is another 45 minute queue underground waiting to get aboard the boats. The guides who have to be able to speak English to work here refuse to speak any English so you have no idea what they are gibbering about. I was about to start taking the p*** but a very helpful French girl took pity on us and did her best to translate as the tour proceeded. This inhibited my intention. There is no signage to assist understanding, no photography is permitted and the health and safety message that we were about to climb 160 odd steps was conducted totally in French. This is supposed to be an internationally renowned site but it's as amateur as it gets. Personally, I would sack the lot of them! The admission is a rather hefty €9.60 per adult.

6  Thank adsy0110
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 4, 2012

We decided to revisit these limestone caves. Last time we were here was when our children were very young.

It was still fun to do and the stalactite and stalagmite formations are still fascinating. Queuing can be a problem but we were here this time in September so it wasn't too bad. The guides on the desk were cheerful and our gondola guide was knowledgeable and keen to engage when questions were asked. While we were underground, there were sculptures by Belgium-born artist Isabelle Thiltgès - some interesting, some blended in with the natural landscape, others seemed anachronistic.

The 75 metre descent is either via elevators, or for the more athletic as I was determined to be,, many, many flights of stairs comprising 455 steps in total. it makes you feel virtuous.

2  Thank Auberiginas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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