Wondering if you should visit Bordeaux? With all the amazing things to do in Bordeaux, it’s no wonder this southwestern region of France was recently voted as the country’s best place to live in. Not only is the capital city of Bordeaux an attraction on its own, the neighboring cities of Saint Émilion and Médoc are stunning places to visit as well. Our Bordeaux travel guide shows you the best places to visit in the region, share some expertly crafted itineraries, offer recommendations on where to stay in Bordeaux, as well as some sound advice on traveling in the area. And yes, we also introduce some authentic food in our Bordeaux travel guide! We hope you’re excited to visit Bordeaux because we sure are!
Visit Bordeaux: Best places to visit
Most people often associate the region with vast vineyards and fine wine. Though they’re not wrong, there’s actually more to the region than just grapes. The city of Bordeaux has a number of fun activities and restaurants. The architecture here is also an interesting cross between French and Spanish styles. The region is rich in art and history as evidenced by the beautiful museums and ancient monuments to be found. Moreover, it is absolutely a must to drive around and visit the beautiful vineyards in Saint Emilion and Medoc. Of course, don’t leave without a few bottles of the local vin rouge the region is famously known for!
Visit Bordeaux: Best things to do
The area and its surrounding towns are really an ideal destination for wine lovers. There are a lot of wine-related activities such as tastings, grape-cutting, and even enrolling in workshops where you get to learn the basics about wine. However, even if you’re the least bit interested in wine, we guarantee you’ll still enjoy traveling through the region because of its beautiful scenery that serves as a relaxing break from the busyness of city living. If you’re in Bordeaux city, we recommend visiting “Cité du vin” to understand all of the different wines from this region.
Bordeaux travel guide: Itineraries
It can be a bit tricky to plan your trip in the region because the map will show you a ton of different towns and we’ll be honest, most of them are really worth stopping for. But hopefully the itineraries we’ve crafted from our own experiences will help you narrow it down to the must-sees. Make the 45-minute drive from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion. This medieval village is home to multiple UNESCO world heritage sites and of course the surrounding vineyards and wineries. We also recommend touring one of the neighboring Châteaux for a tour of the vineyards and wine tasting. We especially recommend either the Château de Gaudet or Château Ambre Tour Perret.
Traveling in Bordeaux
The best way to fully enjoy this region is by car. Though it’s possible to take public transportation or join coach tours, there’s nothing quite like driving through endless vineyards at your own pace and stopping whenever and wherever you feel like. But before you do, make sure to read our Bordeaux travel guide to traveling around Nouvelle Aquitaine area. The region has numerous local bus networks that provide extensive coverage of the area. You can access some of the smaller towns and villages with this method of transportation. Though it has become much more dynamic in recent years, parts of the region are still a bit quiet, so make sure you check the timetables as some buses only run a few times a day.
Visit Bordeaux: what to eat
Make sure you try the pastry this area is most famous for—canelés. And save a little wiggle room for spending on delicious and rich foie gras as the region is also known for producing some of the best in France. One of the city’s newest culinary landmarks includes the Maison Bernard Magrez that opened in 2014 and is located in a stunning 19th-century mansion. Bordeaux also has an abundance of more casual offerings including Garopapilles, Le Bouchon Bordelais and Le Taquin. Make sure to check out the Capucins market, perhaps the most famous farmers’ market in the city. Fresh, local delicacies are available at every stand.
Where to stay in Bordeaux
You’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to deciding on where to stay in the region. You have the option of staying in urban areas. You can also stay in a local town surrounded by vineyards. It all depends on what kind of trip you’re hoping for. Luckily, this region has numerous accommodations for every kind of traveller. If you’re looking for a more relaxed atmosphere, the nearby city of Saint Emilion or the Medoc region are also ideal places to spend the night.
Bordeaux travel guide: links and resources
Bordeaux Tourism official website
Official France Tourism website – Bordeaux page
Bordeaux City official public transport website