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Bordeaux tours

Bordeaux tours

Visit one of the region’s oldest vineyards, pass by the lively hub of the Grand Theatre, and take in stunning views along the Garonne River, all on our trips to Bordeaux.

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Grand Tour of France
15 days | 17 days with Paris extension

4.5 star rating

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What travelers are saying about their trips to Bordeaux

Fabulous !
09/02/21 by 3rd-time traveler Diane
Despite Covid constraints, we had a wonderful time on this tour! Our guide was extremely knowledgeable and professional. Of course, we loved Paris.
Food & Wine: France through Bordeaux & the Loire Valley
Amazing trip!
09/02/21 by 7th-time traveler Bonnie
This trip was amazing! Simone was a fabulous tour director! I hope we get to travel with him again very soon. The food and wine choices were very good and the fellow travelers were close friends by the end of the tour.
Food & Wine: France through Bordeaux & the Loire Valley
Must Do Food and Wine in France !!
09/02/21 by 7th-time traveler James
My wife and I enjoyed this trip immensely. Great people and food and wine and sights. TD Simone superb. Travel arrangements impeccable. No Covid worries. Do not hesitate to book this tour! Excellent!
Food & Wine: France through Bordeaux & the Loire Valley
Best trip ever...
By 2-time traveler George Z. on 11/20/2018
This trip was nothing less than spectacular! The entire tour was organized in an optimal manner and allowed us to see and experience so many places and topics that we did not even expect. Our tour director, Brian, was so very informative and knowledgeable, that we are planning our next trip already.
See more reviews of Paris, Normandy & the Loire Valley
Wonderful tour of Riviera, Provence and Paris!
By 6-time traveler Marilyn B. on 09/25/2018
This tour was a delightful sampling of the best of the Riviera, Provence and Paris! Franck was the most pleasant, attentive and knowledgeable tour director we could have ever expected. Our group, which included many first time travelers to France, certainly got a taste of the best
See more reviews of A Week in France: The Riviera, Provence & Paris

Travel tips for Bordeaux trips

What are some interesting things to do on a trip to Bordeaux?

Bordeaux is one of the best places to visit in France for travelers who enjoy food, wine, history, and natural scenery. Here are a few things to do in Bordeaux when you’re on tour.

  • Learn how to make French food. The only thing better than feasting on Bordelaise cuisine? Learning how to make it yourself. Travelers who visit Bordeaux on our Food & Wine: A Taste of Bordeaux & Burgundy tour can learn tips and techniques from a French chef during an included cooking class. This is one of the six best travel experiences to invest in this year.

  • Enjoy a wine tasting. Bordeaux is practically synonymous with wine, and tastings are a great way for travelers on Bordeaux vacations to learn about the reds, whites, and rosés that are produced there. On our Food & Wine: A Taste of Bordeaux & Burgundy tour, travelers can sample wines during an included cooking class in Bordeaux, or at a wine chateaux during an optional excursion to the Arcachon Bay area.

  • Cruise around Arcachon Bay. Nicknamed the Oyster Capital of France, this nearly enclosed bay is roughly an hour’s drive southwest of Bordeaux. Travelers on our Food & Wine: France through Bordeaux & the Loire Valley tour can cruise around it—and sample fresh oysters from its waters—during an optional excursion.

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When is the best time of year to visit Bordeaux?

Each season brings out a different side of Bordeaux. Here are some tips to keep in mind when browsing our Bordeaux tours.

  • March through October. Bordeaux is chock-full of restaurants and cafes with outdoor seating, plus pedestrian-friendly squares that are ideal for coffee-drinking and people-watching. Travelers on Bordeaux tours during these months can enjoy it all thanks to warm weather.
  • May and June. In the springtime, travelers on trips to Bordeaux will find the city bursting to life with blooming tulips, poppies, and fruit trees, as well as flowering grapevines.
  • September and October. For wine-lovers, guided tours of Bordeaux in September and October are ideal, as this is when local vineyards hum with the excitement of harvest.
  • November through February. Wintertime can be rainy and windy, so if you plan to visit Bordeaux during these months, be sure to bring an umbrella and protective clothing. Note that, while travelers who visit Bordeaux this time of year will experience fewer crowds, they might also find that some wineries and restaurants are closed.
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What are the top attractions to see in Bordeaux?
  • Historic district. With its cobblestone streets and medieval buildings, the heart of Vieux Bordeaux (Old Bordeaux) is home to highlights such as the 15th-century city gate known as Port Cailhau, and the Place de la Bourse.
  • La Cité du Vin. Oenophiles on tours of Bordeaux won’t want to miss this unique cultural center (its name means “the city of wine” in English), which is dedicated to the heritage and history of wine on a global scale. It features modern design, engaging exhibitions, and dedicated tasting areas.
  • Place de la Bourse. This 18th-century square, on the banks of the Garonne River, is one of the city’s most recognizable sites. Travelers on our Bordeaux, France, tours can spend time people-watching here, or marveling at the buildings that surround the square, during their free time.
  • Miroir d’Eau. Photography buffs who travel to Bordeaux will want to spend time exploring this shallow, reflective pool (its name translates to “water mirror”) across from Place de la Bourse. It’s one of the most photogenic spots in Bordeaux.
  • Grand Théâtre. This elegant opera house in the center of Bordeaux is among the city’s best-known buildings. It hosted its first performance in 1780.
  • Flèche Saint-Michel. Built atop an ancient burial ground in the 15th century, this beloved bell tower stands nearly 375 feet high. It closed for a five-year-long renovation in November 2021, but travelers on trips to Bordeaux can still stroll past to appreciate its height and significance.
  • Place des Quinconces. Situated near the Garonne River, this city square—one of the largest in Europe—plays host to street fairs, festivals, and other public events. It’s also home to a popular fountain and grand statues.
  • Cathédral Saint-André. Travelers who book our Bordeaux tour packages can spend time admiring the gargoyles, artworks, and gothic architecture of this UNESCO World Heritage site during a guided city tour or their free time.
  • Pont de Pierre. Commissioned by Napoleon Bonaparte in the early 19th century, this bridge, with its 17 spans, connects the left and right banks of the Garonne River and was the first stone bridge built in Bordeaux.
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What should I pack for a tour in Bordeaux?

With these essentials in your suitcase, you’ll be fully prepared to visit Bordeaux.

  • Lightweight, loose-fitting clothing that can be easily layered to accommodate varying temperatures, as well as a light jacket or rainwear

  • Comfortable, sturdy walking shoes for sightseeing and vineyard tours

  • Dressier attire if you plan to visit a high-end restaurant or attend a special performance

  • Pants, dresses, shirts, and skirts that cover your shoulders and legs. Many churches and other religious sites deny entrance to visitors with bare legs and shoulders

  • Packable wine sleeves in case you want to bring home a special bottle (or two) of Bordeaux

  • A small tote or cross-body bag to keep your money, camera, sunglasses, and other essentials within easy reach all day long

  • A hat, sunglasses, and SPF to protect your skin from the sun

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What are some common dishes, foods, and drinks to order in Bordeaux?

Sampling Bordelaise cuisine is a highlight of our tours to Bordeaux. Here are a few things to try when you’re on tour.

  • Canelés. If you’re a traveler with a sweet tooth, be sure to try this beloved Bordelaise pastry. The small cake is flavored with rum and vanilla, has a custardy center, and is named for the copper mold in which it’s baked.

  • Chocolatines. Known in Bordeaux and southwestern France as the chocolatine and elsewhere in the country as pain au chocolat (translation: chocolate bread), this indulgent treat consists of buttery, flaky puff pastry baked around pieces of chocolate.

  • Seafood. Bordeaux is situated roughly 30 miles from the Atlantic Ocean, and many restaurants and cafes in the city serve seafood that’s been freshly plucked from its waters.

  • Oysters. Also nearby: Arcachon, one of France’s seven distinct oyster-growing areas, making the bivalves a must when they’re in season.

  • Entrecôte marchand de vin. This traditional Bordelaise dish, also known as entrecôte a la bordelaise, features a rib steak cooked in a rich gravy made from Bordeaux wine, butter, shallots, herbs, and bone marrow.

  • Lamprey à la Bordelaise. Once enjoyed by the elite, this dish is now popular throughout the Bordeaux region. It consists of lamprey—an ancient type of eel-like, jawless fish caught between December and may—stewed with cured ham, red wine, fresh herbs, and vegetables, such as leeks, onions, and garlic.

  • Blaye white asparagus. This regional delicacy (asperges du Blayais in French) is harvested between February and May. Travelers who visit Bordeaux then can find it at local farmers’ markets and on restaurants’ seasonal menus.

  • Wine. Bordeaux is known around the world for its wine, which travelers can taste and learn more about on our included and optional Bordeaux wine tours. Whether you favor red, white, or rosé wine, you’ll find it in Bordeaux.

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What should travelers know before visiting Bordeaux?
  • Bring an umbrella. Bordeaux doesn’t often get uncomfortably cold, but it does get rainy, especially in spring and fall. Some sources say Bordeaux receives rainfall between 170 and 200 days each year.
  • Good Bordeaux doesn’t have to break the bank. Plenty of high-quality, wallet-friendly wines are produced in Bordeaux. Feel like splurging on a pricey glass or bottle? We don’t blame you. But you’ll have lots of reasonably priced options to choose from, too.
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What are a few French phrases to know before you go?

Here are a few French phrases to learn for your trip:

  • “Où est” means “Where is.” (Ask “Où est le musée?” to find a local museum.)
  • “Parlez-vous Anglais?” means “Do you speak English?”
  • “Je voudrais” means “I would like.” Complete the request with *“un verre de vin” (a glass of wine), “un café” (a coffee), or “eau” (water) depending on what you’re craving.
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