Calling all wine lovers! It’s one of the world’s most famous wine regions, with 250 000 acres of vineyards and over 9000 wine producers. Whether you’re looking for a full body Red, refreshing Rose or crisp White wine, Bordeaux has it all. I went there with a group of friends for 4 days and we all fell in love. There is no shortage of things to do, but with our timing, we focused on going to places within driving distance of our beautiful villa in Nouvelle Aquitaine. Aside from a few poolside drinks, backyard games, and some delicious home cooked meals, we did quite a bit of exploring outside of the villa. Unfortunately, the villa we stayed in is no longer available, however staying in the countryside is absolute magic and I highly recommend it (Air BnB).
With the rolling hills, lush greenery, pink sunsets and historical buildings, Bordeaux offers a fairy-tale like vibe, but with a modern European twist. From medieval towns to seaside markets, vintage wineries and divine French cuisine, Bordeaux is a must do! See highlights below:
Perched in the heart of some of the most prestigious vineyards in the region, Saint-Emlion is a charming, medieval town, named as an UNESCO World Heritage site. Have a walk around town, treat yourself to a coffee and pastry in the square and check out the monolithic church. History claims, that this village and surrounding region has been producing wine for over 2000 years. So you can imagine the mastery of it. There are three wineries well worth going to, Chateau Franc Mayne, Chateau Angelus and Chateau Franc Baudron. Before you go get a little tipsy in the tastings, have some lunch at Clos De Mirande – a fine dining restaurant with traditional French food like ‘Foie Gras’ and stunning views on the outdoor patio.
Famously known for Art, history and architecture, Bordeaux is a city intended for slow and elegant strolls. With 362 historical monuments (some dating back to Roman Times) well preserved buildings of neoclassical and Gothic architecture, it is the perfect place to wander. If you are happy to splurge, I recommend staying at The Regent Hotel, as its centrally located and very pretty. Head to St Michel Quarter for the small eateries and on Sunday’s only, there is a super cute market along the Garonne River called Marches De Quai.
Part of the charm of Southwestern France is the small medieval villages. We stopped for coffee in a riverside town called Duras, which is known for The Castle of Dukes of Duras. Prior to the Castle being bought by the town and named a historical monument in 1969, it was a Fortress from the middle ages, known to be impregnable (impossible to get into under attack). Pretty neat eh! If you’re a flower person, you can go have tea and pasties in the Botanical Gardens. Admittedly, this is a drop by spot. With only 1300 residents, you don’t need much time here.
While I could have easily spent a couple more days in Bordeaux, I felt like we had a good introduction pertaining to what the region has to offer for tourists. It’s a great place to visit with a group of friends and would be undoubtedly romantic as a couple as well. I’ll definitely be going back!
What’s next? Chic, romantic & one of a kind – Paris