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“Truly Unbelievable Experience”
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.
Norfolk, Virginia
Level Contributor
189 reviews
49 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“Truly Unbelievable Experience”
Reviewed July 29, 2013

First you have to walk down a hole of over a hundred feet or so in an enclosed stairway. Elevators are available for those who are handicapped. Once you get down to the bottom you enter a very deep cave and walk a hundred years or so until you get to a gondola type boat ride thru the cave. Once you get to the other end, you will met a guide that will escort your through a tour of the "great" caves. The stalactite and stalagmites are immense. You are able to walk up stairs from the bottom of the stalactite to the top. FYI, not an easy climb for a person not in reasonably good shape. If you can't the guide will direct you to meet the tour at another location. After the tour, you take the boat ride back through a smaller cave and then exit. You can use elevator to get to the top vs climbing the stairs again. Strongly suggest you book online to avoid some of the lines.

Visited July 2013
2 Thank JoeF41
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Durham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Well worth the wait!!”
Reviewed July 28, 2013

Booked in advance after reading reviews on here. Still queued for over an hour in the caves for the boat but was well worth it. Our gondolier spoke in English and gave us a good history of the caves as did the walking guide. An amazing experience that i would totally recommend

Visited July 2013
Thank jsinky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“amazing place”
Reviewed July 28, 2013

We were supprized to see this amazing place. This is unique and very impressive attraction. Be patient to wait in line for tickets and for boat. Go down and up by elevator even you need to wait few minutes.
Great place to come with children but not too small

Visited July 2013
Thank Lina1122
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
149 reviews
76 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 122 helpful votes
“Incredible underground rock formations”
Reviewed July 24, 2013

Visited with my family (wife and two kids, 6 and 8) in July 2013, although only myself and older daughter entered the cave.

We arrived early just after opening but still had to wait about 15 minutes in line to get tickets.We could enter right away but was told that there was an hour wait to get on the boats as some large school bus groups got priority.

It was all very cool to take the stairs down this huge hole in the Earth and to finally go underground. We took the evelator back up. It is definitely cold down there so dress appropriately.

The underground boat ride with guide was nice but it was all in French so unfortunately we understood almost none of it. The best part was getting out of the boat to explore the cave on foot. We saw some stunning caverns and rock formations. Again, the walking tour was also all in French. It's too bad they didn't have language-specific tours available or maybe make the tours bilingual.

One thing that really bothered my was we were told NO PHOTOGRAPHY. Not event without flash - just no pictures whatsoever! Probably to entice people to purchase an over-priced picture they take of you on your boat. I found that practice really distasteful.

Visited July 2013
2 Thank dms666
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berkeley, California
Level Contributor
16 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Jaw-Dropping Cool!”
Reviewed July 22, 2013

I went in unprepared for what we were going to see. I thought it was just going to be a big hole in the ground, so I was pleasantly surprised by the cool temperatures in the cave and even more so by the boat ride followed by more amazing cave hiking. I couldn't understand the French spoken by our boat guide, but that didn't stop my amazement at what I was seeing. Went in the late afternoon, and the lines weren't bad at all. I expect had we seen long lines, we never would have gone in and missed this fantastic site.

Visited July 2013
1 Thank GiveandTake
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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