Accommodations in Montignac near Lascaux II (Montignac, France)
Lascaux II (Montignac, France)
In 1940, 4 children discovered the Lascaux cave by chance. When they came back after a few days with lighting equipment, they found that the walls of the cave had paintings on them. These are now thought to be 15 000 years old. There are animals (almost 600), human representations, and signs (dots, lines and so on). After the war, the cave was adapted to allow visitors to enter and see the paintings. Unfortunately, they brought with them carbon dioxide with every breath they took. This and the increased humidity caused the paintings, which had remained in perfect condition for millennia, to deteriorate, and algae and mosses to grow. The cave had to be closed in 1963. Only a few scientists and photographers are now allowed to visit at certain times, and only in small groups, as the paintings have been saved but the cave environment remains under threat. The Dordogne Region undertook to build a life-size reproduction of part of the cave using cement to reproduce exactly the shape of the natural walls. This was opened to the public in 1983 and was called Lascaux II. Visitors take a 40 minutes guided visit which is available in French, English, German and Dutch. Please note that during the tourist season, tickets are only available in Montignac town centre. In season Lascaux II is open daily, and closed on Mondays out of season. It is also closed in January and the beginning of February. Along with other caves in the area, the original Lascaux is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
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