81 Results

chartrons

Search

If you love wine, food, and beautiful architecture you simply cannot miss a day trip to Bordeaux when visiting the region. One day in this vibrant city may not be enough to discover all the attractions and gastronomic experiences it has to offer but with the right plan, you can have a perfect day exploring the highlights of Bordeaux. 

So if you’ve been wondering how to spend your one day in Bordeaux, this article will help you taste the best this city has to offer. It includes stunning architecture, a visit to the main market, cycling on the riverfront, tasting wine, and more. By the end of this day, you’ll be exhausted and totally in love with Bordeaux!

A perfect day trip to Bordeaux
The beautiful streets in Bordeaux – Lost in Bordeaux

If you’re coming for a weekend, you should check out my Ultimate Guide to a Weekend in Bordeaux. Also, don’t miss my articles about the best neighborhoods to stay in Bordeaux and the best hotels in the city center if you’re looking for accommodation in Bordeaux.

Now let’s start discovering the beautiful capital of the Southwest of France.

Marché des Capucins – Visit the main market of Bordeaux

If you’re a foodie or just like discovering new markets, I highly recommend starting your one day in Bordeaux in Marché des Capucins. This is the biggest daily market in Bordeaux and has everything from stands of fruits, vegetables, sweets, and spices to a bunch of lively cafés and restaurants. 

Marché des Capucins - Visit the main market of Bordeaux
Marché des Capucins – Lost in Bordeaux

If you don’t have a lot of time, the best way to discover this huge market is by taking a food tour. You can take a private tour with Anne, who is a chef and an amazing food tour guide. Or join the group food tour of the No Diet Club.

If you like oysters there’s one restaurant in the market you simply cannot miss! Chez Jean-Mi has become an institution in Bordeaux, attracting many locals for a plate of oysters with white dry wine. Before you go, be sure to check out my article about the best places to eat at the Marché des Capucins.

Chez Jean Me - the best oysters in Bordeaux
Chez Jean Me – taste oysters at the market – Lost in Bordeaux

It’s a covered market so you can enjoy it on the city’s numerous rainy days. Most cafes and restaurants also have tables outside where you can have a coffee or an early lunch. The market gets very busy on the weekend so be sure to be there early. The market is open from Tuesday to Sunday, however, be aware that not all the restaurants and stands are open on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Stroll the narrow streets of old Bordeaux

I have yet met one person who was not stunned by the beauty of “Vieux Bordeaux”, the historic part of the city. You can spend hours getting lost in the narrow paved streets with beautiful 17th and 18th-century houses. 

The Southwest capital has 362 preserved buildings labeled as historic monuments, second only to Paris. The historic part of the city (and several streets around it) is recognized by UNESCO as an “outstanding urban and architectural ensemble” of 18th-century architecture. 

The beautiful town of Bordeaux
The center of Bordeaux – Lost in Bordeaux

Give yourself at least a few hours to wander the picturesque streets of Bordeaux. The city is rich with history and different architectural styles so if you have time, take a historic tour in the center of Bordeaux. Here’s a tour that’s offered by the Tourists office in several languages. If you don’t like big groups you can always take a private tour.

Main sites in the city center

There’s a photographer in Bordeaux who does amazing photography tours with photoshoots of these and other Bordeaux highlights, so that could be a really special experience. Here’s a shortlist of the sites you should not miss on your visit:

Grosse Cloche – the 15th-century gate to the old city. This stunning bell tower is part of a whole structure that was previously a part of the city hall of Bordeaux and at some point served as a prison for misbehaved juveniles (!). 

The center of Bordeaux
Saint James Street – by Lost in Bordeaux

It’s one of Bordeaux’s most emblematic monuments and appears on the coat of arms of Bordeaux. The Gross Cloche is located on one end of rue Saint James, one of the liveliest streets of Bordeaux, with stylish boutiques and wine bars. 

Porte Cailhau – another magnificent 15th-century gate to the historic center of Bordeaux. This glamourous monument was built to commemorate the glory of King Charles VIII and opens up to one of Bordeaux’s nicest squares, Place du Palais. 

Two other important monuments are located on the border between the historic part and the fancy Triangle d’Or neighborhood.

The Grand Theatre -The beautiful 18th-century building on Place de la Comedie will be hard to miss. This is one of the most impressive buildings in the city and is home to the National Opera and the National Ballet of Bordeaux. If you have the chance, try to book tickets to one of the concerts the Opera or the national ballet. 

Continue from there to Place des Quinconces, the largest city square in France and one of the biggest in Europe. There you’ll also find the beautiful monument dedicated to the Girondins (members of a political faction) who were killed during the French Revolution. 

one day in Bordeaux - discover the monuments
Discover the monuments of Bordeaux

Have a drink on the lively squares of Bordeaux

There’s a very special atmosphere in Bordeaux. It’s a very touristy and lively city that somehow succeeds in maintaining its tranquility. What contributes to that are the lively squares in the city center, linked by pleasant pedestrian streets. Almost every square in Bordeaux is adorned with terrasse restaurants and wine bars. As you can imagine, the city of wine has plenty of amazing wine bars and wine tasting places for you to taste some Bordeaux wine.

Some of the liveliest squares in the city center include the Place du Palais with a magnificent view of Porte Cailhau, Place Pierre with the Saint Pierre church right in the middle, and Place Camille Julian with the Utopia bistrot (an old church converted into an independent cinema and restaurant). 

Discover the beautiful squares of Bordeaux - Place du Parlement
Place du Parlement – Lost in Bordeaux

The biggest square in the old center is Place du Parlement, which was built in the 18th century in an Italian style. Its facades are very richly decorated and resemble the facades of the buildings on the riverfront of Bordeaux and the magnificent Place de la Bourse.

Lift your eyes to see the mascarons

Mascaron in Bordeaux
Mascaron in Place de la Bourse

If you’re following my advice and on your way to Place du Parlement don’t miss the beautiful little sculptures that decorate the buildings.  

The sculpted faces between the ground and first floor are called mascarons, a variation on the word masks in Italian. There are more than 3000 mascarons decorating the buildings and the monuments of Bordeaux, taking inspiration from Greek mythology, wild animals, religion, and the economic development of Bordeaux. 

Some examples are Neptune who represents the importance of the river and African faces, a memory of the slave trade Bordeaux was part of.  Most of the mascarons can be found on the buildings on the riverfront of, Place de la Bourse and Place du Parlement.

You can read in more detail about all the main monuments in Bordeaux in my ultimate guide to a weekend in Bordeaux.

Dine in one of Bordeaux’s delicious restaurants

After the long walk, a proper lunch is in order! In recent years Bordeaux has gained popularity as a gastronomic city and even holds the record for the number of restaurants per person in France. If you have only one day in the city, trying one of Bordeaux’s restaurants should be on your list. 

Bo tanique -one of the best restaurants in Bordeaux

There are a lot of excellent restaurants in the city center and choosing one won’t be easy, but let me suggest just a few: Bo Tanique, Lauza, Symbiose,  Cent 33, Frida, Au Bistro and the list goes on and on. 

It’s important to notice that restaurants in Bordeaux tend to be closed on Sundays or Mondays (or both) so check out their websites when planning your trip. Also, it’s always recommended to book a table ahead of time, even if you do it on the same day.

Have a picnic in Jardin Public, Bordeaux’s main park

If you prefer leaving the dining experience for the evening you can replace a fancy lunch with a picnic in the beautiful park of Bordeaux, Jardin Public. 

Jardin Public in Bordeaux
Jardin Public in Bordeaux – by Lost in Bordeaux

Make yourself a basket of regional products and join the other Bordelais on the vast green planes. Don’t forget to add a bottle of Bordeaux wine you can get in most supermarkets or in dedicated wine shops. 

Jardin Public is a beautiful park and by far one of the most kid-friendly places in the city. However, it’s not the only good spot for a picnic or a little break. Bordeaux has many gardens and parks that you can enjoy on a sunny day. To discover them check out my post about the best places for a picnic in Bordeaux.

Shop on the Longest street in France

Sainte Catherine is the longest pedestrian street in France, full of clothing boutiques, and one of the only places in the center where you can find all the main fashion retail stores. If you prefer smaller boutiques, you won’t find them on the main streets but rather on the small narrow streets of Saint Paul and Saint Pier districts, as well as on rue Notre Dame in Chartrons.

Shopping in Bordeaux
Shopping in Bordeaux – by Lost in Bordeaux

If you’re into second-hand clothing be sure to check my guide to second-hand and vintage shops in the center of Bordeaux

Visit the main church in Bordeaux -Saint-André 

The big Cathedral on the main square of Pey Berland is a Roman Catholic church and the seat of the Archbishop of Bordeaux. This cathedral has an important part in the history of Bordeaux. Here, the 13-year-old Eleanor d’Aquitaine, married the future king of France Louis VII, therefore making her the queen of France (for a very short period of time).

Cathédrale Saint-André de Bordeaux
Cathédrale Saint-André de Bordeaux – Lost in Bordeaux

Like many other churches and basilicas in Bordeaux, Saint-André is classified as a national monument of France. In the evening the Cathedral often hosts concerts of classical music, choirs and an organ festival during the summer. You can check out more info about the concerts here

visit the fancy district of Bordeaux 

It’s time for a little dessert and there’s no better place for it than the Triangle d’Or neighborhood, the fancy district of Bordeaux. You’ll notice that the architecture and landscape of this district are different from the narrow streets of the historic center of Bordeaux. The wide boulevards and decorated 18th-century houses reflect the economic boom that the city was undergoing at the time.

Today it’s considered a gourmet district with plenty of wine and cheese boutiques. It’s also home to Olala Bordeaux, one of the best places to take wine-tasting classes. During the tourist season they offer daily wine tasting master classes.

Like every French city, Bordeaux has its chocolatiers, many of which are located in and around Triangle d’Or. On rue Michel Montaigne you will discover the most famous local patissier and chocolatier, David Capy. On Allée de Tourny you will visit the oldest chocolatier in Bordeaux, Cadiot Badie. It’s a very prestigious place that feels more like a jewelry shop than a chocolate boutique. Other amazing chocolate shops are la Maison Darricau and Hasnaa Chocolat Grand Cru.

Cadiot Badie - one of the oldest chocolate places in Bordeaux

If you also want to take the opportunity to stop for a coffee. Bordeaux has some amazing coffee shops. You can read about my favorite ones in my article about the five coffee places in Bordeaux you don’t want to miss

Chill at the Miroir d’eau

Now it’s time to visit Bordeaux’s most famous attraction and one you have probably seen in any guide or video about Bordeaux – Le Miroir d’eau. 

This modern monument, built in 2006, is the world’s largest reflecting pool. The surface is made from blue granite covered in water, reflecting the 18th-century Place de la Bourse. It’s a perfect place to chill on a hot sunny day in Bordeaux. 

miroir d'eau in Bordeaux

If you’re coming with kids you can easily spend more than an hour here as it’s going to be quite hard to get them out of it. Kids seem to really love it! (don’t forget to bring change clothes for the kids, they tend to get soaked!)

Take a bike ride on the banks of the Garonne – or a cruise if you’re tired 🙂

The promenade on the left bank of the Garonne River is one of Bordeaux’s highlights. Since the massive overhaul project in the early 2000s, the quais (docks) of Bordeaux has become one of Bordeaux’s most popular spots, hosting many events and festivals during the summer. 

The 4.5 km promenade is also perfect for a walk or a bicycle tour. The most interesting part of it is between the two bridges of Bordeaux – Pont Saint Pierre in the center and Pont Chaban Delmas in the north of the city, which includes the Miroir d’eau as well as playgrounds for kids and restaurants with a view of the river.

Cycling in Bordeaux
Cycling in Bordeaux – Lost in Bordeaux

A few companies are offering a biking tour that covers all the parts of town and more, Monsieur Bacchus is one of the best ones.  But you can also do a self-guided tour using my bridge-to-bridge route article.

Want to cruise instead of cycling?

if you only have one day in Bordeaux and that’s taking a cruise. There are plenty of nice afternoon cruises on the Garonne, but I believe that to experience the good life of Bordeaux you should take the Cruise with a glass of wine.

Discover the hipster side of Bordeaux

After spending several hours on the classic left side of the river, it’s time to discover the more hipster right bank of the Garonne. Crossing the river to the other side you’ll get to the Bastide neighborhood. If you’re going on the biking tour from the previous item, you’re going to get there on your way.  

Here, the main attraction is Darwin, an old military base turned into an urban space with plenty of cool stuff to do. Among these, you’ll find a restaurant, a bakery, a winery, a huge skate park, and many hipster shops. 

Darwin in Bordeaux
Darwin by Lost in Bordeaux

Darwin is one of the most extraordinary places for street art and includes some amazing works by a lot of talented regional artists on every one of its buildings. 

If you visit the Bastide district on the weekend (during the summer) don’t miss one of Bordeaux’s hidden gems, La Guinguette chez Alriq. The Guinguette is a tavern on the banks of the river that hosts plenty of open-air concerts. The performing bands and artists come from all over the world and create an atmosphere of a laid-back world music party. 

what to do in the summer in Bordeaux

How to get there? 

If you follow my advice about doing the bridge-to-bridge circuit, you’re going to pass through everything I mentioned on your way. Otherwise, you can do a nice walk, crossing Pont de Pierre or taking tram A to the other side. Another fun way to get there is by taking the river shuttle

Have a drink in one of Bordeaux’s wine bars 

Wine bars are springing up like mushrooms in the center of Bordeaux. It’s not a big surprise considering it’s the capital of the biggest wine area in France. A great way to finish your one day in Bordeaux is by tasting wine in one of Bordeaux’s wine bars

There are plenty of wine bars to choose from in the city center, here are some of my favorite ones: le Bar a Vin for the beautiful decor and professional waiters, Wine More Time for its huge selection, and Les doux secrets d’Hélène for the design and the tasty tapas. 

Wine more Time - one of the best wine bars in Bordeaux
Wine More Time – Lost in Bordeaux

Some bars offer wine-tasting experiences that allow you to better understand the wines of the region. To discover the best places for wine tasting check out my article about wine tasting in Bordeaux

If you’re interested in wine don’t miss a trip to Saint Emilion where you can visit some of the best wineries in the region. You can take a guided wine tour or plan the trip by yourself using my post about the best wineries to visit in Saint Emilion

What is the best time to visit Saint Emilion

Not less interesting and beautiful is the Medoc wine area where you can see some of the most impressive chateaux in the region. Follow my post about the Medoc wine route when planning your trip there.

I hope you enjoyed this beautiful city and if you have a few more days in the area don’t forget to check out my article about the best day trips from Bordeaux.

Like the article? Want to read it again when you’re in Bordeaux? Save it on your Pinterest board.

You can also get plenty of tips on things to do in the Southwest of France via lost in Bordeaux’s social media accounts and email list, check them out here:

Facebook |Instagram |Email | Facebook group

*Note – Some of the links in this article include affiliate links for which I earn a small commission. It adds absolutely nothing to your cost and helps me continue writing about this amazing region. Don’t worry, I’m not getting rich here, I’ll never recommend anything I don’t believe in 🙂 

September is hands down the best month to visit Bordeaux! It’s still hot enough to go to the beach, many summer bars are still open and don’t even get me started with how beautiful the vineyards are this time of the year. So you don’t really need events to enjoy the SW of France in September, but I’m going to tell you about them anyway! And that’s because I believe it’s the best way to discover the hidden gems of Gironde.

So this September we have everything from the Medoc Marathon to the European heritage days and a dance festival on the beach. If you’re reading this in August, don’t forget to check out my article about the best things to do in August as well. 

September is the best month to visit the Bordeaux region
Beaches around Bordeaux in September

There are only the biggest events taking place in September in the region. There are of course many other smaller festivals, markets, and concerts happening here all the time. These usually appear in my weekend newsletter so don’t forget to subscribe to my email list if you’re not on it yet. 

If you want to discover more of the region I also invite you to join my Travel in the Southwest of France group on Facebook or follow me on my Facebook/ Instagram accounts.

Here are some of the best things you can do in Bordeaux in September 2023!

The best events in Bordeaux (and Gironde) in September 2023

The Rugby World Cup is coming to Bordeaux!

This year Bordeaux is one of the cities hosting the Rugby World Cup which means that the city is going to be extra lively in September and October 2023. Bordeaux is about to host five matches at the Matmut Atlantique stadium on September 9 – 30. You can buy tickets here.

Bordeaux is going to welcome the worldwide fans at the Rugby Village that will be set up at the Parc des Sports de Saint Michel. There you’ll be able to socialize with other fans, enjoy interactive activities, and watch the match together on a 52m² screen. 

See more details about the Rugby village here

The Medoc Marathon

Running 42km is only a small part of the Medoc Marathon experience. It’s mostly about enjoying the amazing scenery accompanies by great wine and food. This year the celebrated Marathon will take place on September 2nd. 

You don’t have to run to enjoy this event, many activities will take place on the weekend of the marathon (September 1-3). follow the program here. 

See all the other things you can do in Medoc in my article about a weekend in Medoc

When: September 10 / Where: the Marathon will start in Pauillac

Initial Festival

In September, Bordeaux will be hosting one of the biggest electronic music festivals in France. The initial Festival will take place on September 1-2 at the Parc des Expositions. The long program includes 3 stages and 22 artists that will make you dance non-stop for two days. See more details here.

When: September 1-2 / Where: Parc des Expositions in Bordeaux

Ouvre La Voix Festival

Ouvre La Voix Festival gives you the opportunity to discover the beautiful Entre-Deux-Mers region in Gironde in a special way. The three-day program of the festival (September 1-3) combines concerts, wine, and gastronomy with biking routes taking you to places like Créon, Frontenac, Sauveterre de Guyenne, and more. See more details here.

When: September 1-3 / Where: Different places in the  Entre-Deux-Mers region (check out the program).

Festival des Gueilles de Bonde in Macau

Festival des Gueilles de Bonde is an art and music festival taking place in Macau in the Médoc region. This year the free festival will take place on September 1-2. The program includes music concerts, street theater, and a gastronomic market. Check out the program of the festival here.

When: September 1-2/ Where: place de la Mairie, MACAU, 33460

Les Noctambules de Septembre 

Every Friday during the month of September you have a chance to discover one of the most beautiful castles in Gironde. However, these are not just regular visits, but rather special night tours accompanied by a short wine tasting. See all the events here.

Discover the Chartrons neighborhood

There’s no specific event taking place here in September, but I don’t want you to miss one of the most beautiful neighborhoods in Bordeaux on your visit. Elegant buildings with flower-covered balconies, chic coffee places, some of the best pastry places in Bordeaux, and many antique shops are only some of the things you can find in Chartrons. See all the best things to do in Chartrons in my article

Antiques chartrons Bordeaux

Bordeaux Open Air

Bordeaux Open Air is a series of free summer electronic music events, all set in different locations and with a great city vibe to them. For more details and the full summer program click here.

When:  Sept 3, 10, 24 / Where: Follow the website for the exact location

Festival Teste à Têtes

The Teste à Têtes festival, organized by the circus school Komonò Circus, will take place on September 9-10 in La Teste de Buch. The program includes plenty of activities dedicated to street art and music concerts and circus workshops for kids. For more details click here.

Festival Teste à Têtes in La teste du buch , Arcahon
Festival Teste à Têtes – Lost in Bordeaux

When: September 8-10 / Where: Different locations in La Teste de Buch, see the program.

See my other recommendations about places to visit in Arcachon in my article about a day trip to Arcachon.

The Big Scooter Race

The Nire Laguna Thomas Association organized a wonderful event to help raise funds for research on pediatric cancer. A kid’s scooter race will take place on September 9 on the Quai of Bordeaux, starting from Placette de Munich. The race is open to kids aged 5 -10 years old, register here.

When:  September 9 / Where: Placette de Munich , 33000 Bordeaux

The medieval festival of Bouliac

Every year, Bouliac, one of Bordeaux’s suburbs, organizes a fun medieval celebration full of art, games, and amazing costumes. This year the festival will take place on September 9-10. Check out all the details here

When: September 9-10 / Where: Rue de l’Esplanade, 33270 Bouliac, France

The Vino Voce festival

The vino festival in Saint Emilion is a celebration of voices in all forms, from singing voices to voices on the radio, voices of actors, and more. The festival (September 8-10) includes a rich program of music concerts, movie screenings, singing master classes, and other platforms where voice plays an important role.  For more info about the festival click here

When: September 9-10 / Where: Different locations in Saint Emilion

Climax Festival 

Darwin will host its annual Climax Festival on September 15-17. The festival focuses on environmental issues and climate change and its program includes conferences debates and many cultural events and concerts. This is one of the biggest festivals in the center of Bordeaux located in one of the hippest places in the city. Take a look at the site of the festival for the full program.

When: September 15-17 / Where: 87 Quai des Queyries, 33100 Bordeaux

Journées Européennes du Patrimoine

The European Heritage Days are a great opportunity to discover some of Bordeaux’s most beautiful and interesting buildings. During the weekend of September 16- 17, many public and private places will open their doors and allow you to peek into parts of this city’s history otherwise hidden from our daily view. 

Some of the most interesting places to visit during the weekend are the Opera of Bordeaux, the Grosse Cloche, and many more. You can see the full list of the places that will be open for visits here.

Grosse Cloche - Bordeaux
Grosse Cloche – Lost in Bordeaux

You can also see the program all over France here
When: September 16-17 / Where: Many places across the city, check out the program above.

The ceremony of the harvest in Saint Emilion – Ban des Vendanges

The ceremony that kicks off the annual harvest in Saint Emilion is called Ban des Vendanges, meaning ‘the harvest ban’. The ceremony is held in front of the beautiful front collegiate church of Saint Emilion by the Jurade, winegrowers dressed in red caps and robes. 

This year the events of the “Ban des Vendanges” will take place on September 17, as part of the European heritage days. For more info about this special day check out my article about the harvest season in Saint Emilion.

harvest in Saint Emilion
My son, harvesting in Saint Emilion

There are a few wineries that host harvest events where you can come and take part in the harvest process. For now, the only winery that has published an event like that is Château St-Ferdinand, you can see all the details here.

As usual, when I’ll have more details I will update this list. 

 Summer Rock in Bouliac

The annual “Bouliac on the Rock” event will take place this year on September 16. The program of the event includes an American car exhibition, a rock concert, a raffle, vinyl discs, and food stands. The festival is free, see more info here.

When:  September 16 / Where: Parking du stade, Bouliac

Festival Cadences d’Arcachon

Festival Cadence is a dance festival taking place every year in Arcachon. The program of the festival is known for its diversity including classic, contemporary, hip-hop, flamenco, and more. The festival will take place on September 18-24, for the full program click here, and see more info here.

When: September 18-24 / Where: Arcachon

Week-end anniversaire – le Capc a 50 ans

The contemporary museum of Bordeaux, le CAPC is celebrating its 50th birthday this year! For this special event, the museum is hosting a festive weekend with free dance performances, meetings with artists, and a kids’ party. The events will take place on September 23-24, see details here

When: September 23-24 / Where: Arcachon

Vélotour Bordeaux

Discover Bordeaux by bike through places where bicycles are usually not allowed: museums, sports centers, cultural and historic places, and more. More than ten places have opened their doors for this unusual experience. The tour will take place on September 24 and will start at the Maison Écocitoyenne Bordeaux. For more info about the event click here.

When:  September 24 / Where: Quai Richelieu, 33000 Bordeaux

A similar event will take place in Saint Emilion on September 9, see all the details here

See other things you can do in Saint Emilion in my article about a day trip to Saint Emilion.

Visit the Vineyards of Sauternes and Barsac

Bordeaux is mainly famous for its red wines but a small part of this huge wine region is actually dedicated to white sweet wine. The Sauternes and Barsac AOC produce some of the most prestigious sweet wines in the world. But what makes the visit there even more interesting are the beautiful chateaux in which these wines are produced. See my latest article about wineries to visit in Sauternes and Barsac.

Les Campulsations

Les Campulsations is a student festival, celebrating the beginning of the new academic year in different locations in the Aquitaine region. The program is varied and includes such events as a brocante party, music concerts, theater shows, exhibitions, and more. Check out the full program and find an event near you. The festival will take place from September 28-29.

When: September 28-29 / Where: Different locations, consult the program.

Go for a drink in one of Bordeaux’s summer bars

Many of the outdoor bars of Bordeaux are still open this month and many of them have fun musical programs over the weekend. Don’t miss the last month of a proper Bordolais summer! Check out the list of the best summer bars in Bordeaux.

Dance at la guingette chez Alriq

La Guinguette chez Alriq is a tavern in the Bastide neighborhood, on the rive droite of the Garonne. During the summer the place is full of locals who escape the more touristy rive gauche and come to enjoy live concerts on the river bank. The Guinguette is open from Thursday to Sunday. For the concert program for September click here.

When: every weekend during September / Where: ZA Quai des Queyries, Port Bastide, 33100 Bordeaux

Big events in other parts of the SW of France – September 2023

Piano aux Jacobins (Piano concerts)

Piano aux Jacobins is a Piano festival taking place every September at the Couvent de Jacobins in the center of Toulouse. Le Couvent de Jacobins is one of the landmarks of Toulouse and a must-stop on your visit there. This year (2023) the festival is taking place on September 6-29, see the program here.

See other places not to miss on your visit to Toulouse

When: September 6-29 / Where: Le Couvent de Jacobins, Toulouse

Montgolfiades de Rocamadour

The hot-air balloon festival of Racamadour is taking place this year on September 23-24. It is one of the most beautiful festivals in the region, attracting tens of thousands of people every year. See all the full programs here

When: September 23-24 / Where: Rocamadour

Sarlat celebrates gourmet taste

This is an amazing culinary event taking place every year in the medieval town of Sarlat. Every fourth weekend of September Sarlat is holding an event that celebrates the gastronomy of the region with a big market, an open-air meal, and a walk to see the seasonal migration ramble. The event is taking place on September 23-24. See more details here.

When: September 23-24 / Where: Sarlat

If you’re looking for more ideas for day trips in the Bordeaux region here are a few other articles you might want to read:
The best beaches around Bordeaux
Day trips around Bordeaux – wine, beaches, and villages 
10 day trips from Bordeaux by Public transport
A weekend in Medoc – Bordeaux wine tours
What to do and eat in Saint Emilion

You can also get plenty of tips on things to do in the Southwest of France via lost in Bordeaux’s social media accounts and email list, check them out here:

Facebook |Instagram |Email | Facebook group

Bordeaux isn’t one of France’s cheapest cities but there are quite a lot of things you can enjoy here for free (or at a very low price). In this article, I gathered plenty of ideas for you to enjoy the city and the area around Bordeaux without spending a dime. Following my list, you will learn how to dance, discover amazing art, visit beautiful beaches and do most of it completely free. If you’re coming with kids, this post will give you some nice ideas for entertaining them without breaking the bank. Many of the offered attractions in this article are available during the summer season but some things you can do during winter as well. So let’s start with the list of free things to do in Bordeaux!

Free things you can do all year long in Bordeaux 

Stroll the historic city

girondins-monument-in-Bordeaux
The Girondins monument

You don’t need much to enjoy this amazing city. The exceptional architecture is present on almost every street. The old gates to the city, the romantic streets leading to lively squares, the wide beautiful promenade on the river banks will all leave a great impression on you. After Paris, Bordeaux has the highest number of preserved historical buildings in France. No wonder that its historic part was declared as an outstanding urban and architectural ensemble by UNESCO. If it’s your first time in Bordeaux you can read about the most important monuments in my guide to a weekend in Bordeaux

Darwin – hipster paradise

Darwin Bordeaux
Darwin Bordeaux

If you want to take the off-beaten track go to where the locals love to hang out. Darwin is an old military base on the right bank of the river converted into an urban space with a very cool vibe to it. It has a very chic restaurant and several shops but you don’t really need to spend money to enjoy it. You can stroll around the hangars, check out the charity shop, see plenty of street art and just embrace the hipster vibes :). Darwin and the associations it hosts are very active and offer plenty of free events. You can also have a picnic at the Parc aux Angéliques located just in front of Darwin.  

Address:  87 Quai des Queyries, 33100 Bordeaux

Free museums Sunday

Musee des beaux arts in Bordeaux
Musee des beaux arts in Bordeaux

Like in most cities in France, the first Sunday of the month is a free museums day (apart from July and August). You have free entrance to all the public museums and to most exhibitions. Check out the full list of museums in Bordeaux that you can visit for free. If you want to discover some of Bordeaux’s best museums check out my article about the museums of Bordeaux.

Free galleries in Bordeaux 

Discover the local art in the many galleries spread in the city, many of which you can visit without a reservation. Here are some of the best galleries in Bordeaux: Galerie D.X., Bouillon d’art, Cox gallery (street art) and BAG (which is also a coffee shop and a gluten-free bakery). For contemporary art, head to FRAC which is located at the new MECA, an interesting architectural attraction by itself. 

Take a city bike

biking-in-Bordeaux

One of the best ways to discover the city is by bike and you don’t even have to pay much to do that in Bordeaux. There are city bikes (V³) stations spread all over the city and they cost only 1.7 euros for 24 hours. You have to return it to the station every 30 minutes and you can immediately take another one to continue your journey. You can also pay 2 euros per hour and return it later if you want to make a longer ride to areas without city bike stations. See the location of the stations here.

See Bordeaux’s most ancient monument

Palais Galien
Palais Galien

Strolling the city center you’ve probably noticed a lot of impressive monuments dating back to the 13th, 14th, and 15th centuries such as the Grosse Cloche or the Saint Michel Basilica. But Bordeaux’s oldest monument is actually located outside of the old city walls. Palais Galien is the ruins of a Gallo Roman amphitheater dating back to the second century when Bordeaux was called Burdigala. The site is located a few minutes’ walk from Jardin public and you can see all of it from the street. There are guided tours to Palais Galien during the summer season. You can book them by calling this number +33 5 56 00 66 00.

Bordeaux churches

Bordeaux Metropole is rich with many basilicas and churches, decorating almost every big square in the city. Its history is blended with religion and the churches are a testament to the development of the city. One of the best things about them is that they are always free and open every day. Bordeaux is an old city so you get to explore religious temples from various periods in time, carrying very different styles. Some examples are the amazing Saint Andres on Place Pey Berland which is built in a Gothic Style or the church of Notre Dame with its Baroque style. Other impressive and interesting churches and Basilicas include Saint Croix, Saint Michel, and Saint Bruno. 

Free events

Carnival-in-Bordeaux
The Carnival of Bordeaux

There are free events taking place every weekend, from concerts on the street to huge brocantes, street art events, dance lessons and more. Every month I publish a list of the best events taking place in Bordeaux, so check out the monthly lists here. Also, every weekend I send an email list with plenty of ideas and events to attend on weekends in Bordeaux, so subscribe to my newsletter if you want to be updated on these too.

Drink at the Capucins Market

One of the main attractions in Bordeaux is Marché des Capucins, Bordeaux’s main market. Eating at the market definitely isn’t free (although very affordable) but you don’t have to eat there to feel the vibe. You can just sip a glass of cold white wine at Chez Jean Me (only 2 euros a glass) and absorb the sounds and smells of the market. If you need more recommendations check out my post about the best restaurants at the Capucins market

Discover the street art

Like many other cities, Bordeaux too has the street art fever, with numerous talented local artists. One of the best things about street art is that it’s usually free, you just need to put some effort to find it. Darwin is one of the places that have the largest concentration of street art by local artists in Bordeaux. Other spots in the city include the Bassin a Flot district, rue du Loup with a beautiful work by Nasty, rue Bourrard, quai des platitudes, the Mur in Chartrons, rue Bergeret. One of the most beautiful works, in my opinion, is located just next to Pessac’s train station. The street art scene is always evolving so again you’ll have to get back here for updates 😉

Brocante in Saint Michel

Antiques and flea markets are a popular attraction in many cities. Some people go there to hunt for special bargains to take home and others see it as a way to discover more about the place through the pieces on display. Bordeaux is quite rich with Brocantes and Vide Greniers (a local version of a garage sale) and you can find many of them both in the center and the villages around it. The most famous one is located in Passage Saint Michel, a hangar that gathers about twenty brocanteurs (second-hand goods dealers) together. Just in front of it, on the main square in Saint Michel, you will find the Sunday Brocante with much cheaper items for sale.
Another neighborhood to visit is Chartrons, with plenty of more expensive Antique boutiques. If you want to experience a local and cheaper “flea market” you should attend a Vide Grenier in one of the suburbs or the villages next to Bordeaux. To discover when are the next vide greniers taking place check out this site.
If you decide to go to the Saint Michel district, check out my article about the things to do in Saint Michel.

Discover the heritage and nature of Bordeaux by foot

If you love walking and nature, this is the perfect place for you. There are plenty of beautiful hiking trails to discover in Bordeaux metropole and the towns around it. On the way, you will see lakes, rivers, forests, and historical monuments and guess what, it’s all free. Take a look at the best hiking trails in and around Bordeaux in my article.

What to do for free in Bordeaux during the summer

Go to a free music concert

Bordeaux open air festival in Jardin Public
Bordeaux open air festival by Lost in Bordeaux

The summer in Bordeaux is one big music festival with plenty of free concerts and parties scattered all over the city. There are several associations that organize free concerts from June to the end of September in many different styles and locations. Bordeaux Open Air offers amazing electronic festivals in the parks of Bordeaux almost every summer. Relache will make you rock with free rock concerts on different squares of Bordeaux. Banzai lab has amazing parties on the weekend of July and the Pavillon d’été welcomes you to enjoy free music concerts on the right bank of the river. For more information follow my post about things to do in July August list will be out soon.

Learn how to dance 

Dansons sur les quais
learn how to dance with Dansons sur les quais

If dance classes are too expensive for you, in Bordeaux you can learn it for free! The main dance festival in the summer is Dansons sur les quais, with free dancing lessons on the promenade. The lessons are taught by professional teachers and it’s quite an amazing experience for both kids and adults.

Have a picnic at the Park

chateau peixotto
chateau peixotto in Talence

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to enjoy a proper French meal or snack. Just buy some cheese and wine, add to it a crispy baguette from the boulangerie, and head to one of Bordeaux’s magical picnic spots. Many of you probably heard about the beautiful Jardin Public, but this is far from being the only park in Bordeaux. Check out my list of the best picnic places in Bordeaux where I also included information about playgrounds for kids and the closest supermarkets. 
You’ll probably also like my article about the most beautiful parks in Bordeaux.

Listen to music and dance at la Guingette chez Alriq

La Guinguette chez Alriq is one of the best summer places in Bordeaux with plenty of concerts in the open air. During the summer they host amazing bands from Thursday to Sunday. While on most evenings the concerts cost 6 euros on Sunday afternoon the concerts are free! 

Adress: ZA Quai des Queyries, Port Bastide, 33100 Bordeaux

Go to one of the beaches in the city

One of the best free attractions to do during the Bordelaise summer is going to a beach. There are many lakes in the area and two of them happen to be in the city and you can even reach them by public transport. Bordeaux Lac is a fantastic little beach in the north of the city. Unfortunately, the direct line to the beach (line c) from the city center is going through some work until September so going to the beach will take more time than usual. The second city beach is located in the southern suburb of Bordeaux, Bègles. Bègles plage can be reached by line c within 25 minutes from the train station.  
See the list of the most beautiful beaches around Bordeaux in my article.

Fun stuff to do (almost) for free with kids in Bordeaux

Chill at the Miroir d’eau 

mirior-deau-bordeaux-with-kids

The best free attraction for kids (and adults) in Bordeaux is definitely Mirroir d’eau. Kids absolutely love splashing in the water, especially on hot summer days. When tired you can have a picnic in the little garden right next to it. 

Go to the pool

Going to the pool is not really free in Bordeaux but it’s very affordable and you can spend the whole day there. There are several kids-friendly pools in the Bordeaux metropole, two of which are not very far from the city center. Next to the Meriadeck, you’ll find the piscine Judaique located in a beautiful art deco building. A bit farther from the center is Piscine du Grand Parc. Both are very kids friendly with facilities like a baby pool, water slides, floats, and more. 

Skateboarding on the Quai

If your kids love skating be sure to bring the skateboard with you when coming to Bordeaux. One of the best skateparks in the city is located on Quai des Chartrons and it’s free. For those heading to the Sunday market on the quai, that would be a great break for the kids.

UPDATE – This park is going through a renovation project until November 2022, but if your kids really love skating go to the skatepark of Bourgailh park in Pessac.

For more activities with kids in Bordeaux check out my list of the best 30 things to do with kids in Bordeaux

Enjoy the free scenery of the South of Gironde

There are plenty of amazing day trips you can go on when visiting the Bordeaux area. It’s not entirely free of course as you have to rent a car but it gives you the chance to discover plenty of amazing places around Bordeaux without paying a dime. Also, If you make sure to rent it a few months before your arrival rental prices are fairly low. If you prefer to go by train, check out my list of the 10 day trips you can do by train from Bordeaux

Discover the beautiful châteaux of the Medoc region

Chateau d'Arsac
Château d’Arsac by Lost in Bordeaux

Even if you don’t want to spend money on a wine tour I highly recommend doing the route du Vin, just for the beautiful châteaux all along the way. If you don’t want to rent a car you can do most of the trip by bike. While in many wineries you’d have to pay for a guided tour, some will offer you to taste their wine for free. For more information check out my article about the wine road in Medoc
The other option is visiting a chateau in Saint Emilion, many of which offer very affordable tours, check out my list of recommended wineries to visit in Saint Emilion.

Go to one of Bordeaux’s beautiful beaches

Plage de la Hume
Plage de la Hume on the Bassin d’Arcachon

Above I’ve mentioned two beaches that are located within the city but with a car, Gironde is a paradise for beach lovers. Plenty of beautiful sandy beaches surround the Bordeaux Metropole. The more kids friendly ones are located on the lakes, such as lac Lacanau or lac Cazaux and on the Bassin d’Arcachon. Surfers will definitely fall in love with the beaches on the Atlantic coast. If you need help in choosing the best beaches, I just recently released a post about the best beaches near Bordeaux.

Visit medieval villages 

Rions
Rions

To its south and east, Bordeaux is surrounded by amazing medieval villages that you can reach within less than an hour drive. One of the most famous villages in our area is Saint Emilion, but it’s not the only charming village in the area, others include, Bazas, Saint Macaire, La Reole, Rions and more. For more information about some of these destinations check out my article about day trips from Bordeaux.
Don’t miss my article about the most beautiful villages in Gironde.

I hope I convinced you that a trip to Bordeaux can be quite cheap when you have so many incredible free things to do. Hope you enjoyed the list! 

Just to remind you that I often update about events and exhibitions on my facebook/Instagram accounts so be sure to follow! Also, join my newsletter where I share a lot of exclusive info about Bordeaux and the region – sign up here.

If you’re visiting Bordeaux for the first time, be sure to check up my ultimate guide to Bordeaux, which will get you familiar with all the “must” places to visits in Bordeaux. To help you to choose a hotel in Bordeaux I’ve gathered a list of the best hotels in the center of Bordeaux as well as a guide to the districts of Bordeaux to help you choose your preferred location.

If you’re looking for more ideas for day trips in the Bordeaux region here are a few other articles you might want to read:
The best beaches around Bordeaux
Day trips around Bordeaux – wine, beaches and villages 
10 day trips from Bordeaux by Public transport
A weekend in Medoc – Bordeaux wine tours
What to do and eat in Saint Emilion

You can also get plenty of tips on things to do in the Southwest of France via lost in Bordeaux’s social media accounts and email list, check them out here:

Facebook |Instagram |Email | Facebook group

This is the weekend of 14 Juillet (French national day) so many events in and around Bordeaux will be dedicated to that. Two big summer festivals are also starting this weekend, one will make you dance during the summer and the other will keep you and your kids fit. Before we dig into this weekend’s list, I wanted to remind you to take a look at what else is on this month in my July list.
Here’s the list of things to do in Bordeaux this weekend (July 12-14).

Celebrate French National Day

July 14th is the French national day which is celebrated in every city in France. Like every year, Bordeaux will hold a series of popular events and parties, the main ones are:

  • Military parade at Quai des Chartrons –  18:30
  • The traditional dance party at Placette de Munich – Quai Louis XVIII (in front of Quinconces) – 20:30
  • Fireworks show above the Garonne river between Pont de Pierre and Place de la Bourse – 22:45

Most towns around Bordeaux will also hold firework shows (full list):

July 13:

  • Cenon – Parc Palmer –  23 :00
  • Mérignac – Stade Robert Brettes – 23:00
  • Gradignan – Parc de Mandavit – 22:45
  • Bouliac – Parc de Vialle Bété – 22:00
  • Bruges – Esplanade Charles de Gaulle -23:00
  • Blanquefort– Parc de Fongravey- 23:00

July 14

  • Pessac  – Parc de Cazalet –  23 :00
  • Talence – Parc Peixoto – 23 :00
  • Lormont – Place Aristide – 23:00
  • Arcachon – next to the sea – 23:00 

Bal Pompiers

Bal Pompiers are traditional firemen parties that take place in many cities in France on July 13 and 14. Bordeaux’s firemen will also celebrate the national day with a few parties of their own. One of the biggest ones will take place at the Ornano Fire Academy (Meriadeck) on July 13, check more details here. Another big party is Bal de la Benauge that will take place on July 13 at the Benauge fire station, Check more details here

When:  July 13 / Where: see the addresses of the fire stations in the links above

Quai des Sports

This is the 11th edition of this fun sportive event taking place every summer (July 13 to August 11) at the Parc des sports Saint Michel.  The program this month includes a variety of sportive activities such as a fitness night, beach volleyball, basketball, BMX, beach wrestling and more. The festival will be accompanied by artistic and music events. Many of the activities are aimed at kids and teenagers and are a perfect solution for entertaining them in the center of Bordeaux during the summer.  Check the full program here.

When: Daily from July 13 to August 11 / Where: Parc des sports Saint Michel, Bordeaux

Dance on the Quai

Dansons sur les Quais is a series of dancing classes and events where people gather to dance together and learn a variety of dancing genres like Tango, Salsa, Bollywood, Forro, Hip Hop, Street Jazz, Zumba, Country and more. These activities will be guided by professional dancers from different dance schools in Bordeaux and they are completely free, so this is a great opportunity you don’t want to miss. Dansons sur les Quais is finally starting this Sunday (July 14) and will take place on the quai almost daily until August 18. For more details and the full program check out the website of Dansons sur les Quai.

When:  Daily from July 14 to August 18 / Where: Quai Louis XVIII, 33000 Bordeaux

Go to the beach

In case you missed it on my facebook page, a few days ago I published an article about the best beaches near Bordeaux. So if you were planning to discover a new beach this weekend this article will give you some great ideas. I included beaches on lakes, on the ocean and on Bassin d’Arcachon.

Bordeaux Open Air

Bordeaux open air festival in Jardin Public
Bordeaux Open Air festival by Lost in Bordeaux

Bordeaux Open Air is a series of free summer electronic music events, all set in different locations and with a great city vibe to them. Every event is dedicated to a different country and hosts its DJ’s for sets of electronic music. The next Open Air event will take place this Sunday (July 14) at Square Dom Bedos. For more details click here.

When:  July 14, starting 15:00 / Where:  Square Dom Bedos, Bordeaux

Raphaëlle Boitel – Horizon

Horizon is a dance and acrobatic artwork by the French choreographer Raphaëlle Boitel. The piece pays tribute to the emblematic architecture in Bordeaux by using the Opera building as its stage. The show will take place on Place de la Comedie on Friday and Saturday (July 12-13) at 20:00. For more details click here

When:  July 12-13 / Where: Place de la comédie, 33000 Bordeaux

The summer pavilion on the right side of the river

Like every summer in the last five years, the Orangeade association opens its summer pavilion on le Quai Deschamps (in the Bastide neighborhood) with live concerts every Friday (18:00 – 01:00) and Saturday (12:00 to 01:00). These events are not just music concerts but rather a place for friends and families to spend the weekend with yoga classes, creative workshops, activities for kids and more. The next event will take place this weekend (July 12-13), for more details click here.

When:  July 12-13 / Where: Quai Deschamps, 33100 Bordeaux, France

Zanzibar – Opening

This weekend Darwin will open their summer bar. This year the bar takes inspiration from East Africa and will pay tribute to Afro-Caribbean and South American music. You can join the opening event on Friday and Saturday (July 12-13) with plenty of cocktails and concerts. See the full program here.

When:  July 12-13 / Where: Quai Deschamps, 33100 Bordeaux, France

Go to see an exhibition

Mika Bordeaux
Mika at Institut Bernard Magrez

There are some amazing exhibitions presented this summer at various museums in Bordeaux. I gathered the best exhibition you should see this summer in one of my recent articles, read it here. It’s a great way to escape the heat 🙂

L’Eté de l’Escale du livre

Plenty of free activities for kids will take place this Thursday and Friday (July 11-12) in front of la Salle Des Fêtes Bordeaux Grand-Parc. Check out the full program here.

When:  July 11-12 / Where: 39 Cours de Luze, 33300 Bordeaux, France

Music O Teich

Music O Teich will take place this weekend (July 12-14) at the port of Le Teich in Bassin d’Arcachon. The event includes a big creators market and free concerts every night. For more info click here

When: July 12-14 / Where: 33470 Le Teich, Aquitaine, France

If you want to receive more tips and updates about things happening all over our region join my newsletter where I share a lot of exclusive info for my readers only – sign up here.

A note for newcomers to Bordeaux 🙂

If you’re visiting Bordeaux for the first time, be sure to check out my ultimate guide to Bordeaux to get familiar with all the must-see places in Bordeaux. To help you choose a hotel in Bordeaux I’ve gathered a list of the best hotels in the center of Bordeaux as well as a guide to the districts of Bordeaux to help you find your preferred AirBnB location.

Finally, if you are looking for a fun and delicious activity in Bordeaux, check out my food tours in which I’ll take you through a three hours journey in the culinary scene of the Southwest of France.

The summer is fully on in Bordeaux and with it come open air events where you can dance and enjoy being outdoors with your friends and family. One of the biggest events is the Weekend de L’art Contemporain with more than 150 artists presenting their works all over Bordeaux. If you’re fed up with the city center, there are plenty of great festivals in different parts of the metropole you can go to. If you’re more into art this weekend, check out my new article about the best exhibitions to see this summer in Bordeaux. Here’s the list of things to do this weekend in Bordeaux (July 5-7): 

Weekend de L’art Contemporain 

The contemporary art weekend will take place on July 5-7 in different art institutions in Bordeaux.  During three days, 40 locations in Bordeaux metropole will open their doors to the public and present artworks from more than 150 contemporary artists. The inauguration evening will take place on July 4 on the IBoat, see more details here. For the full program click here

When:  July 5-7 / Where: different places in Bordeaux (see the program)

Zinefest

Zinefest is a festival dedicated to comics, illustrations, photography and poetry. The festival includes several expositions and concerts by both French and international artists and will take place in several venues in the south of Bordeaux. Check out the full program of events here.

When: July 1-7 / Where: Different locations next to Marché des Douves in Bordeaux Sud (check out the program).

Jalles House Rock

Le Jalles House Rock is one of the biggest rock festivals in Gironde that annually proposes a rich program of local and international acts. The goal of the festival is to share the love for rock music with as many people as possible and that’s why the entrance is free (they do however encourage you to donate to the Estran association that organizes the event). This year the festival in Saint-Médard-en-Jalles takes place on July 4-6. For more details check out the website of the festival.

When: July 4-6 / Where: 1 chemin de Cantelaude, 33160 Saint-Médard-en-Jalles

Festival Rues et Vous

This is the 12th edition of Festival Rue et Vous, a performance art festival taking place every year in the charming medieval town of Rions. This year the festival will take place on July 5-7 and will include a rich program of theater, dance, circus and music shows for both adults and kids. For tickets and the full program check out the website of the festival.

When: July 5-7 / Where: Rions

Summer of Music in Medoc

Les Estivales de Musique en Medoc is the only music festival in France dedicated exclusively to young laureates of international competitions.  The festival was created in 2003 to discover new talents in classical music. The concerts are hosted in some of the most prestigious châteaux in the Medoc area and are followed by wine tastings. The concerts will take place on July 3-12. See the full program here.

When:  July 3 -12 / Where: Different locations, see program above

Les 24h du Swing

This is the 30th edition of ‘les 24h du Swing’, a swing festival taking place this weekend (July 5-7)  in Monségur. More than 40 concerts will take place at different locations like Bastide Monséguraise, des Tilleuls à la Halle and different bars and restaurants in Monségur. For more info and tickers click here

When:  July 5-7  / Where: several locations in Monségur

INSITU – Lire le Monde

INSITU is a fun literature festival taking place this weekend (July 5-7) in different places in Bordeaux metropole. The concept of the festival is a marathon of events where texts, written by foreign authors, are read by French comedians in surprising locations like a chocolate shop, a synagogue, a greenhouse and more. For the full program and list of locations click here. The reading events are free but require prior reservation (click here to register). 

When:  July 5-7 / Where: different places in Bordeaux metropole

Bordeaux Open Air

Bordeaux Open Air is a series of free summer electronic music events, all set in different locations and with a great city vibe to them. Every event is dedicated to a different country and hosts its DJ’s for sets of electronic music. The next Open Air event will take place this Sunday (July 7) in Jardin public. For more details click here.

When:  July 7 / Where: Jardin Public, Bordeaux

Senefesti

Senefesti is a festival celebrating African culture through dance and music performances. The event will take place this Saturday(July 6) in Parc Palmer in Cenon. For more details click here.

When: July 6/ Where: Parc de Palmer, 1 rue Aristide Briand, 33150 Cenon

The summer pavilion on the right side of the river

Like every summer in the last five years, the Orangeade association opens its summer pavilion on le Quai Deschamps (in the Bastide neighborhood) with live concerts every Friday (18:00 – 01:00) and Saturday (12:00 to 01:00). These events are not just music concerts but rather a place for friends and families to spend the weekend with yoga classes, creative workshops, activities for kids and more. The events will take place throughout the summer from July 5 to August 31 and are free. For the specific program of each event, follow my weekend posts about what to do in Bordeaux. For more details click here.

When:  From July 5 to August 31 / Where: Quai Deschamps, 33100 Bordeaux, France

Relache Festival

Relache Festival, created by the Allez les filles association, is a series of free concerts taking place at different venues and dates during the summer. The next two events are about to take place this weekend (July 5 -7) at Place Fernand Lafargue and at Square Dom Bedos. For the lineup and more details click here.

When:  July 5-7 / Where: Place Fernand Lafargue and at Square Dom Bedos, Bordeaux 

Journee de l’elevage et des produits du terroir in Bazas

The traditional day of local products and animal farming is taking place this Saturday (July 6) in the historic town of Bazas. A big exhibition of animals will take place on place de la Cathédrale among them cows, sheep, horses and more. The program also includes a cattle competition, concerts, local food, sheep shearing and more. For more info click here

When:  July 6, 11:00 – 23:00  / Where: Place de la Cathédrale, 33430 Bazas 

Larrostréa

Larrostréa is an event in Gujan-Mestras celebrating the oyster cabanes and the traditional oyster farming boats. During three days (July 5-7) plenty of nice activities will take place on Port de Larros such as a  boat parade, art exhibitions, concerts and more. For more details click here

Port Larros - Gujan Mestras
Port Larros – Gujan Mestras
When: July 5-7 / Where: Port de Larros, 33470 Gujan-Mestras, France

Micro-Festival Balterno!

Micro-Festival Balterno is a music event that is taking place this Saturday (July 6) in Parc de Mussonville in Bègles. It’s a free event with nine hours of non-stop music with six concerts and an art exhibition, all in a fun atmosphere in a charming park. For more info click here

When:  July 6, starting 16:00  / Where: Avenue Alexis Labro, 33130 Bègles

Pétanque Electronique in Canéjan 

If you love to play Petanque, this is your weekend. Pétanque Electronique is an event taking place this weekend (July 6-7) in Canéjan. The program includes a petanque competition (in groups of three), concerts and food. For more info click here. Bring your own petanque balls 

When:  July 6-7 / Where: Avenue du Barricot, 33610 Canéjan

Festival PLAY in Gradignan 

PLAY is a free sports festival taking place this weekend (July 6-7) in Gradignan. During two days plenty of sportive, artistic, digital and cultural activities will take place in different locations in the city, among them Parc de l’Ermitage, Conservatoire de Musique de Gradignan, trocké Caféand Gymnase Toupiac.  For the full program click here

When:  July 6-7 / Where: different location in Gradignan

Foire aux Rosés

The Foire aux Rosés is the perfect event for this hot summer. 47 Rosé producers from all over France will offer tastings and great deals on their wines. The event will take place this Saturday (July 6) in Hangar 14 on quai des Chartrons. For more details click here

When:  July 6  / Where: 173 Quai des Chartrons, 33300 Bordeaux

Lacanau fête l’été

Lacanau Ocean will celebrate this Saturday (July 6) a day of activities for the whole family, an oyster buffet and salsa dancing in the evening. For more details click here. 

When: July 6  / Where: the main beach of Lacanau-Océan

Soirée Blanche

Another summer celebration is happening this Friday (July 5) at the Restaurant du StadeBordelais in Le Bouscat. To celebrate the beginning of the summer vacation they initiated a white evening with Dj sets and a lot of tapas. The dress code is white of course 🙂 For more details click here

When:  July 5, starting 19:00  / Where: 2 rue Ferdinand de Lesseps, 33110 Le Bouscat

If you want to see art this weekend check out my post about the best exhibitions in Bordeaux this summer.

If you’re visiting Bordeaux for the first time, be sure to check out my ultimate guide to Bordeaux to get familiar with all the must-see places in Bordeaux. To help you choose a hotel in Bordeaux I’ve gathered a list of the best hotels in the center of Bordeaux as well as a guide to the districts of Bordeaux to help you find your preferred AirBnB location.

Finally, if you are looking for a fun and delicious activity in Bordeaux, check out my food tours in which I’ll take you through a three hours journey in the culinary scene of the Southwest of France.

Lost in Bordeaux helps you enjoy the city and region in many ways so be sure to follow us on facebook/Instagram for more daily updates on things to do and see. Or better yet, join my newsletter where I share a lot of exclusive info about Bordeaux and the region – sign up here.

This is going to be a very musical weekend with a lot of music festivals in Pessac, Bacalan, different parks in Bordeaux and the big one, the GaroRock in Marmand. Also, the sales have started this weekend, so it’s a good opportunity to hit the stores. If you want to travel a bit, there are quite a lot of activities in Saint Emilion this weekend, with celebrations of the 20 years to the Unesco declaration. You can also just go traveling to the Medoc area by following my new guide to the Medoc wine region.

Here’s the list of things to do this weekend in Bordeaux (June 28-30).

Saint Emilion celebrates 20 years in Unesco

In 1999, Saint Emilion was the first vineyard to enter the UNESCO  world heritage list. This year, to marks the 20th anniversary of this nomination, Saint Emilion invites you to a weekend full of fun events in the village and the châteaux around it. The program includes concerts, markets, guided tours, open doors at the wineries and more. For more details click here and for the full program here. The event will take place on June 28-30.

If you’re wondering which wineries you should visit while there, check out my recent post about the best châteaux to visit in Saint Emilion.

When: June 28-30 / Where: Saint Emilion

Les Tropicales – film festival

The Tropicales is a cinema festival created to encourage people to share their thoughts and feelings about different movies. This year’s program includes many popular films as well as new movies that were premiered at the Cannes festival, outdoor screenings, debates and more. The festival will take place on June 27-30 in Cinéma Utopia and Place du Palais. Take a look at the full program.

When: June 27-30 / Where: Cinéma Utopia and Place du Palais, Bordeaux

Festival Les Z’Arpètes

This is the 17th edition of this outdoor arts festival that takes place this Friday and Saturday (June 28-29) in Villenave d’Ornon. the two-day festival includes a very rich program of concerts and performances as well as an artisans’ market and many activities for kids. Check out the full program here.

When:  June 29-29 / Where: Plaine de Courréjean, Chemin de la Caminasse, 33140 Villenave d’Ornon

Festival en Bonne Voix

This is the 13th edition of the Bonne Voix festival, a free event that takes place every year in Parc Razon in the center of Pessac and proposes a rich program of French music. This year the festival will take place on Saturday (June 29) and will include artists like Sinclair, Léa Paci, Delta, Bancal Chéri and others. For more info click here

When:  June 29 / Where: Parc Razon, 33600 Pessac

Festival Mur du Souffle – Street art live

Mur du Souffle is an artistic association that fights against the Cystic fibrosis disease. This weekend (June 29-30) they invite you to a live street art festival in Bruges. during two days, four street artists (Rouge, DACO, KARTE and MIKA) will paint in three different locations in the city. The program also includes a music concert, food and activities for kids. For more info click here

When:  June 29-30 / Where: Bruges – Tram C – Arrêt Ausone

Festival des arts et des cultures Grand Parc en Scène

The Grand Festival was created to reunite people through art and culture. The artistic program includes culinary activities, workshops, circus, dance, DJ sets and more. For more info click here. The free festival will take place this weekend (June 28-29) at Place de l’Europe.

When:  June 28-29 / Where: Place de l’Europe, 33300 Bordeaux

Bordeaux Open Air

Bordeaux Open Air is a series of free summer electronic music events, all set in different locations and with a great city vibe to them. Every event is dedicated to a different country and hosts its DJ’s for sets of electronic music. The first event this summer is taking place this Sunday (June 30 ) at Square Dom Bedos. The locations of the following events have not been published yet. For more details click here.

When:  June 30 / Where: Square Dom Bedos, Bordeaux

Fête de la pirogue

Fête de la pirogue is a fun festival that celebrates the Tahitienne culture and gastronomy with activities like traditional dance, an artisan village, traditional food and more. The event will take place this weekend (June 29-30) on Plage du Moutchic at Lacanau lake.  For more info click here

When:  June 29-30 / Where: Plage du Moutchic, 33680 Lacanau

Week-end découverte des plantes sauvages comestibles médicinales

A discovery weekend of wild, edible and medicinal plants will take place this weekend (June 29-30) at Ferme d’Hortélie in Saint-Sauveur. The program includes a discovery walk of wild plants, lunch in the farm, workshops on aromatic plants and oil fabrication and more. Check out the full program here

When:  June 29-30 / Where: 12 bis route de la Garosse – 33250 Saint-Sauveur

Festival Garorock

One of the biggest music festivals in our region is taking place on June 27-30  in Marmande (about an hour drive from Bordeaux). Garorock is an international festival with 5 big stages that will host more than 50 French and international artists. For more info and tickets click here.

When:  June 27-30 / Where: Plaine de la Filhole, 47200 Marmande

If you want to discover other festivals taking place in the region, check out my post about the best music festivals around Bordeaux.

Festival Connexion Brasil

This fun event is about to take place this weekend (June 29-30) in different locations in Bacalan. During the two days, plenty of fun activities related to music and dance from Brazil will take place in locations like Les Vivres de l’Art, Halles de Bacalan and others. For more info click here

When: June 29-30 / Where: Different location in Bacalan, Bordeaux

Meeting de l’Air de Cazaux

La base aérienne 120 de Cazaux is one of the biggest economic actors in the region. This weekend (June 29-30) the airbase opens its doors to the public with plenty of demonstrations of their airplanes. For tickets and more info click here

When: June 29-30 / Where: Base aerienne 120 – BP 70413, 33260 Cazaux

Eysines Goes Soul 

The annual soul festival in Eysines will take place this Friday (June 28)  at the Domaine du Pinsan. You are invited to bring your picnic to the park and celebrate the summer with concerts of soul, rock, funk and blues. The evening will end with a fireworks show. For more details and the lineup click here. The event is free. 

When:  June 28 / Where: Domaine du Pinsan, Eysines

Heures d’été in Caudéran

Heures d’été is a series of musical evenings taking place every Friday in different parks in the Cauderan neighborhood in Bordeaux. This week the musical evening will take place on Friday (June 28) at Chartreuse Saint-André. For the full program click here.

When:  June 28 / Where: Chartreuse Saint-André, Bordeaux

Soirée dj set croisière

How about a party on a boat, sounds nice, right? That’s exactly what you can do this Sunday afternoon (June 30). The boat-restaurant SICAMBRE invites you to get on board and enjoy three hours of music, wine, snacks and a guided tour of Bordeaux on the water. The tour starts at Quai des Chartrons. For tickets and more details click here

When:  June 30 / Where: Quai des Chartrons, Bordeaux

SUNDUB Session

SUNDUB is a music event dedicated to Reggae & Dub music with a great lineup of free concerts. The event is taking place once a month from June to October. This month Sundub will take place on Sunday (June 30) at Université Bordeaux Montaigne in Pessac. For more details click here

When: June 30, from 14:00 / Where: Esplanade des Antilles, Domaine universitaire, 33607 Pessac,

PIK NIK ZIK – free concerts

Pik Nik Zik is a series of free concerts organized by the Les P’tits Gratteurs association, that will take place every last Sunday of the Month from April to August. This week the event will take place on Sunday (June 30) at the Quai des sports Saint-Michel. For more details click here.

When: June 30, starting 17:00 / Where: Quai des sports Saint-Michel, Bordeaux

Last chance to see the “When art and design take on glass” exhibition

This is the last chance to see this beautiful glass exhibition at the Cité du Vin. The exhibition beautifully combines the wine and glass worlds. It includes the works of several glass designers who all modified and reinvented wine glasses and bottles. For more details click here.

When: March 15 – June 30 / Where: Esplanade de Pontac, 134 quai de Bacalan, 33300 Bordeaux

That’s it for this weekend 🙂

If you’re visiting Bordeaux for the first time, be sure to check out my ultimate guide to Bordeaux to get familiar with all the must-see places in Bordeaux. To help you choose a hotel in Bordeaux I’ve gathered a list of the best hotels in the center of Bordeaux as well as a guide to the districts of Bordeaux to help you find your preferred AirBnB location.

Finally, if you are looking for a fun and delicious activity in Bordeaux, check out my food tours in which I’ll take you through a three hours journey in the culinary scene of the Southwest of France.

Lost in Bordeaux helps you enjoy the city and region in many ways so be sure to follow us on facebook/Instagram for more daily updates on things to do and see. Or better yet, join my newsletter where I share a lot of exclusive info about Bordeaux and the region – sign up here.

This weekend the events are really varied so everyone can easily find something they like. We have a dance and circus festival, a climate change mega concert, a comics festival, a rosé party and more. If you’re heading to Arcachon this weekend, check out my latest post about things to do and eat in Arcachon. Here’s the list of things to do this weekend in Bordeaux (May 24-26).

Festival Echappée Belle in Blanquefort

The Echappée Belle festival is a great entertaining event for the whole family, merging theater, dance, circus and other forms of art. The festival will take place from May 23-26 in Blanquefort, starting in Parc Majolan and continuing for the weekend in Parc de Fongravey.  See the full program here.

When: May 23-26 / Where: Different locations in Blanquefort (see the program)

WISFEST – Climate change festival

Wisfest is a climate change event that will take place this weekend (May 24-25) in the center of Bordeaux. The event includes plenty of debates on the most burning topics related to environmental and climate change. The climax of the event is the mega concert that will take place Friday night (May 24) at Place des Quinconces, with an incredible lineup of artists such as Mika, Tom Walker and more. You can see more details here and purchase tickets here.

When: May 24-25 / Where: Place des Quinconces, 33000 Bordeaux

Grand Crus Weekend

One of the most anticipated events in Bordeaux’s wine world is the Grand Crus Weekend that will take place on May 24-26. This event, organized by the Union des Grands Crus (the regional wine classification), aims to create an international meeting of wine lovers. The highlights of this weekend will include tasting wines from over 110 Grand Crus and meeting different chateaux owners as part of pre-organized dinners in the châteaux. Read more about the event and the full program here.

When: May 24-26 / Where: many locations in Gironde, see the program

Le Mai talençais

A super fun and free event for kids will take place this weekend (May 25-26) in park Peixotto in Talence. The program includes concerts, a creators market, activities for kids and fireworks on Saturday night. For more details click here.

When: May 25-26 / Where: Parc de Peixotto, 33400 Talence

Festival de la BD in La Teste de Buch

Festival de la BD, a comics fair, will take place this weekend (May 25-26) in La Teste de Buch at the Bassin d’Arcachon. The event will host about 40 professionals from the illustration world. Among them cartoonists, writers and colorists. For more details click here.

When: May 25-26 / Where: 18 Rue du 14 Juillet, 33260 La Teste-de-Buch

Sous les pavés la vigne

Sous les pavés la vigne is a natural wine fair taking place this weekend (May 25-26) at Le Garage Moderne. More than 50 producers of wine, beer and other spirits will present their organic products during the two-day event. For the full program of the event click here.

When: May 25-26 / Where: 1 rue des Etrangers, 33300 Bordeaux

Les Cogitations

Les Cogitations is a mocking art festival taking place in the L’entrepot in Lehaillan on May 22-25. Check out the full list of the performers here.

When: May 22-25 / Where: 13 rue Georges Clémenceau – Le Haillan

Le grand Apérosé

This Saturday (May 25), Les Vivres de l’Art will host a fun Apérosé event. Rosé and music in one of the coolest places in Bordeaux, what more do you need on a weekend? For more details click here.

Les Vivres de l'Art Bordeaux
Les Vivres de l’Art by Lost in Bordeaux
When: May 25, from 12:00 to 20:00 / Where: 4 rue Achard, 33300 Bordeaux, France

Festival Escape Game et Imaginaire

An escape game festival will take place this weekend (May 25-26) in the charming village of Saint Macaire. Tens of different activities such as escape games, workshops and parties will take place in the first edition of the festival. For more info click here.

When: May 25 – 26 / Where: the center of Saint Macaire

Marché de créateurs et producteurs

Especially for the French mothers’ day, a creators market will take place this Saturday (May 25) in Parc du Castel in Floriac. For more details click here.

When: May 25 / Where: Parc du Castel 33270 Floirac

Caravansérail

Caravansérail is a design event that brings together creators and craftsmen from all over the world. Among the stands, you’ll find home decoration, candles, bags, jewelry and more.  The sale takes place on May 22-26 at Chineurs du monde, the brocante shop in the Saint Michel neighborhood. For more details click here.

When: May 22-26 / Where: Boutique Chineurs du Monde, 75 Rue Camille Sauvageau, Bordeaux

Foire de Printemps in Noaillan

A fair of gastronomy and crafts will take place this Sunday (May 26) in Noaillan. The event will also include a big vide grenier. For more details click here.

When: May 26 / Where: Lieu-dit Antonion, 33730 Noaillan

PIK NIK ZIK – free concerts

Pik Nik Zik is a series of free concerts organized by the Les P’tits Gratteurs association, that will take place every last Sunday of the Month from April to August. This week the event will take place on Sunday (May 26) at the Quai des sports Saint-Michel. For more details click here.

When: May 26, starting 17:00 / Where: Quai des sports Saint-Michel, Bordeaux

Quatre Tendances – Dance show

Quatre tendances is a collaboration between several ballets groups and choreographers. Like every two years, Quatre tendances will take the stage for several nights to perform a number of contemporary choreographies. This year the national ballet of Bordeaux will collaborate with Ballet Preljocaj – CCN d’Aix-en-Provence, le Malandain Ballet Biarritz and le CCN-Ballet de l’Opéra National du Rhin. Four choreographies will be performed during nine shows, taking place on May 22-31. For more details and tickets click here.

When: May 22-31 / Where: Grand Théâtre, place de la Comédie, 33000 BORDEAUX

Jazz concert

The Thelonious Jazz bar in Chartrons will host two Jazz nights this Friday and Saturday (May 24-25). Check out their program here.

When: May 24-25 / Where: 18 rue Bourbon, Bordeaux

Le M.U.R de Bordeaux Performance

A-MO is the Bordelaise artist whose work will decorate the M.U.R de Bordeaux. You can meet him and see him perform his art on the wall this Friday (May 24). For more info check out the facebook page of the event.

When: May 24, at 18:00 / Where: place Paul et Jean-Paul Avisseau 33300 Bordeaux

Noche Del Pintxo

Noche del Pintxo is a fun event taking place in Halles de Talence once a month. As the name indicates, this event is all about Pintxos, with ingredients coming solely from the market. The event will take place this Friday (May 24). For more info check out the facebook page of the event.

When: May 24  18:30- 22:30 / Where: Place Alcala de Henares, 33400 Talence

Mama’s Brunch

Another fun event this Sunday is Mama’s Brunch. Mama Shelter invites you to its big buffet brunch which is a bit pricey (39 euros per person) but it includes almost four hours of activities and artistic workshops for kids, so it’s like brunch with a babysitter :). For more details and the menu click here.

When: May 26 / Where: 19, rue Poquelin Moliere, 33000 Bordeaux

Swing on the streets

Swing In Kiosque is a series of improvised dance events that are taking place in Jardin Public once a month. This weekend the event will take place on May 26. Take a look at the full program of events on their facebook page.

When: May 26 at 15:00 / Where: Jardin Public

Journées Portes & Bouteilles Ouvertes

An open doors event will take place this weekend (May 25-26) at Château de Bel located on the board of the Dordogne river. For more details click here.  

When: May 25-26 / Where: Château De Bel, 1 Malbâtit, 33500 Arveyres

The Big Plants Sale

A big plants sale will take place this weekend (May 24-26) on Quai des Marques Bordeaux. The prices are guaranteed to be quite low (from 2€ to 10€) so it’s a good opportunity to fill your house with summer plants. For more details follow the facebook page of the event.

When: May 24-24 / Where: Hangar 15 à 19 – Quai des Chartrons, 33000 Bordeaux

That’s all for this weekend! If you want to leave Bordeaux for the weekend check out my posts about the best day trips from Bordeaux and the best chateaux to visit in Saint Emilion. If you want to have a super foodie experience, check out the Lost in Bordeaux food tours 🙂

If you’re not on my email list yet, join me and get more exclusive tips about Bordeaux – subscribe here!

If you want to know what other events are taking place next month in the city, check out my post about the best things to do in June in Bordeaux.

Have a great weekend!

Bordeaux is a vibrant city rich with restaurants, boutiques, and stunning monuments. To fully enjoy all this city has to offer, choosing the right hotel or apartment location is crucial. If you’re wondering what are the best areas to stay in Bordeaux, you can to the right place!

The most lively and central neighborhood in Bordeaux is Saint Pierre and if you don’t have budget or any other constraints (kids, noise, etc.) it’s a perfect area for your Bordeaux vacation. Having said that you shouldn’t limit yourself to Saint Pierre, there are lots of good neighborhoods in Bordeaux.

In this guide, I’ll help you discover the best districts to stay in Bordeaux: lively neighborhoods, hipster districts, and the best areas for families visiting the city. I added a few recommended hotels to some of my district descriptions in case you’re not an Airbnb kind of person 🙂 If you need more recommendations for hotels in the city center, check out my post about the best hotels in Bordeaux for every budget.

I have quite a few other articles you might find useful if you’re looking for accommodation in the region: The best spa hotels in Bordeaux, the best wine hotels, where to stay in Saint Emilion, and where to stay in Toulouse

Let’s dive into the best districts of Bordeaux!

Central Areas in Bordeaux

Saint Pierre and Saint Paul – The historic center of Bordeaux

Saint Pierre and Saint Paul districts represent the city’s historic heart. These are the two most vibrant and lively areas in Bordeaux. Here you’ll find the paved narrow streets, the charming squares, and some of the most famous monuments of Bordeaux (Place de la Bourse, the Grosse Cloche, and more). Even if you’re not staying here, I recommend taking a walking tour of the neighborhood, to make sure you don’t miss the highlights.

hip streets in Bordeaux - best districs in Bordeaux
Rue Saint James – Lost in Bordeaux

The historic center is also the heart of the gastronomic scene in Bordeaux, with plenty of amazing restaurants, cocktail bars, and hip cafés. It’s home to some of the most foodie streets in Bordeaux

You can find a fine restaurant on almost every street in Saint Pierre. Whereas the best bars are located on rue Parlement Saint Pierre and rue Parlement Sainte Catherine. Another street area with an amazing gastronomic scene is all the little streets around Place Fernand Lafargue.

The neighborhoods are bounded by the Opera of Bordeaux from the north and rue Victor Hugo from the South. Going east you can enjoy a pleasant stroll on the gorgeous promenade of the Garonne River. The western border of the historic center is marked by rue Sainte Catherine. This is the longest pedestrian shopping street in Europe home to all the main retail stores as well as several smaller boutiques.

You can find plenty of Airbnb apartments in this area but they will usually be more expensive. Also, you should know that some of the streets can be a bit noisy at night.

There are lots of little hotels in this touristy area. If you’re looking for something very simple but with good value for money I recommend staying at Hotel Bleu de Mer (Hôtel Acanthe). Another good option is the Quality hotel, which is a very nice 3-star hotel.
You can see more recommendations for hotels in the Saint Pierre district in my post about the best places to stay in Bordeaux.  

Pey Berland and Meriadeck – the shopping and administrative district of Bordeaux

Bordering the historic center is the Pey Berland neighborhood, home to the main Cathedral of Bordeaux, Saint André, and the city hall (Hotel du Ville). This is one of Bordeaux’s central neighborhoods located within walking distance from all the main monuments in Bordeaux. 

The Pey Berland tower in the Hotel de ville district in Bordeaux
The Pey Berland tower – by Lost in Bordeaux

Pey Berland is also known as the museum district of Bordeaux with several good museums worth visiting: Musée des Beaux-Arts, Musée des Arts décoratifs (currently closed for renovation) et du Design and the Musée d’Aquitaine (a regional history museum).

This district is also a hub for the new wave of hip quality cafés emerging around Bordeaux such as SIP, The Blacklist, l’Alchimiste and Gusco.

If Sainte Catherine left you hungry for more shopping, this district will not disappoint you. Plenty of clothing boutiques and art galleries are located between the town hall, place Gambetta, and Cours de l’independance. On rainy days, you can also visit the Mériadeck, the only shopping mall in the center of Bordeaux.

If you’re looking for accommodation in this area but still want to feel the historic vibe of Bordeaux, try choosing a place on the east side of Cours d’Albret.

The most popular rooftop in Bordeaux - Mama shelter
Mama Shelter- by Lost in Bordeaux

In this district, you can find the coolest hotel in town  – the Mama Shelter. Stylish rooms, a good restaurant, and a super chic rooftop bar with the best view of Bordeaux. Near Meriadeck you can also find First Bordeaux, a new chic hotel, with a nice bar. 

If you’re traveling with kids, Novotel can be a good option for you. Located within about a 10-minute walk from the center, the hotel offers big rooms that perfectly fit families. 

Quinconces and Triangle d’Or – The fancy area of Bordeaux

To the north of the historic center, we find the Triangle d’Or district, where the houses mostly date back to the 18th century. As you walk from the narrow streets of old Bordeaux towards the wide boulevards of Trainge d’Or you can instantly see the contrast in scenery. This is the fancy part of Bordeaux, abundant with luxury boutiques and some of the best chocolatiers in Bordeaux.

Opera house of Bordeaux
Opera House of Bordeaux

The neighborhood also borders Jardin Public, the biggest park in the center of Bordeaux, making it a very kid-friendly area.

Triangle d’Or is home to the Opera of Bordeaux and l’Esplanade des Quinconces, one of the biggest squares in France. Several times a year, different fairs take place at the square or on the Allées de Tourney. Among them are the Christmas market, the big brocante (flea and antique market) of Bordeaux, and an amusement park

Brocante de Bordeaux - one of the best events in Bordeaux
Brocante de Bordeaux – Lost in Bordeaux

This district is home to the more fancy and prestigious hotels and apartments. This stunning apartment is located on the Cours de l’Intendance, less than five minutes walk from the Opera of Bordeaux. Hôtel de Sèze is a beautiful 4-star hotel that also has a Spa. Another option would be the very popular Le Boutique Hotel, which also has a wine bar where they organize wine tastings.

Chartrons – the posh area of Bordeaux

The Chartrons district is located to the north of Place de Quinconces. It’s quite a big district but the more interesting part of it lies next to the riverfront and around the long rue Notre Dame. It’s the posh part of Bordeaux, teeming with excellent restaurants, trendy boutiques, and antique shops. For many years, this was the wine merchants’ district of Bordeaux and you can actually take a fun wine-tasting tour that follows that historic path.

In the north part of Chartrons’s riverfront you can find Les Hangars, warehouses once used by foreign merchants to age and store wine. Today it was turned into a commercial center with riverview restaurants and shops. 

the riverfront of Bordeaux in the Charonts neighborhood
The Hangars of Chartrons – Lost in Bordeaux

Every Sunday a big market takes place on Quai des Chartrons, gathering many tourists and locals from all parts of the city. So even if you don’t stay there, don’t miss this charming neighborhood.

In the Chartrons district, you can stay at Casa Blanca, a very cozy and stylish B&B with a yummy breakfast. It’s located just a few minutes walk from Place du Marché Chartrons (Chartrons’ main square) and Jardin Public. Hotel Indigo in the center of Chartrons is also a good option if you want a more lively hotel close to the riverfront. 

See more information about Chartrons in my article.

Jardin Public and Saint Seurin – the quiet and green area of Bordeaux

Fondaudege and Saint Seurin are two residential neighborhoods, located quite close to the city center. If you’re planning a trip to Bordeaux with kids, these neighborhoods are perfect as they are calm and close to the main park of Bordeaux, Jardin Public.

Jardin public in Bordeaux
Jardin Public – the main park of Bordeaux

In recent years, rue Fondaudege (the main street of the district) has gone through massive renovations, inaugurating a new tram line. Today, you can jump on line D and get to the city center within a few minutes. Or you walk on the cute elegant streets for about 15 minutes to get to the most central parts of Bordeaux. 

If you decide to stay in this area there are plenty of options for accommodation. If you’re after a fancy stay, you are going to be charmed with Le Palais Gallien and its spa facilities. If you’re looking for a small family-owned B&B, Maison Rosa is an amazing spot with a garden and a pool.

Saint Michel, Saint Croix and Victoire  – the Cosmopolitan areas of Bordeaux

If you’re looking to lower your budget or change the scenery from classic Bordeaux, the southern districts of the city are a great option. Saint Michel, Saint Croix and Victoire are the cosmopolitan districts of the city. A very mixed population lives in these neighborhoods, among them, you’ll find international students, artists, and immigrant merchant families. 

The area has a lively culinary scene, from Capucins (the main market of Bordeaux) to local bars and cute little restaurants. If you’re a foodie, don’t miss this fun food tour in the market of Bordeaux

capucins market in Bordeaux

Although it’s only a few minutes walk from the city center, apartments in this area are considerably cheaper than the neighboring Saint Paul district.

Staycity Aparthotels is a great accommodation option with a good price close to the main square of Saint Michel. Another great place is Maison Fredon a little boutique hotel located in a beautifully renovated 18th-century house. 

Click here to read more about things to do in Saint Michel.

The more distant neighborhoods in Bordeaux

Bordeaux is not a big city and you can easily reach the center from several other more distant districts. So if the center of Bordeaux is a bit out of your budget, consider some of the following areas. 

Another option would be to look for something on one of the tramlines as those are very regular, as opposed to buses in Bordeaux. Here is the map of the tramline in Bordeaux, to make it easier for you to do your search.

Bastide – the other side of the river

LES CHANTIERS DE LA GARONNE
The hip area of Bordeaux

While most of the historic monuments are located on the west side (rive gauche) of the Garonne, rive droite has its charm. 

Pont Pierre, the central bridge of Bordeaux will lead you to the Bastide neighborhood on the other side. Until quite recently it was a sleepy residential neighborhood but in the last decade, it transformed into a hip area where many locals love to spend their weekends. This district is especially charming from May to October when you can enjoy all its green areas and all the summer bars and restaurants on the riverfront. If you’re into wine, there’s a great place here that offers wine-tasting classes.

The bridge being the only thing separating you from the center of Bordeaux, you can get almost everywhere walking. The prices of hotels here are lower than in the city center, which makes it a great option to stay in Bordeaux. If you still see yourself using the tram, try to find a place along line A, that will bring you in a few minutes to Pey Berland. 

Chambres à Bord’O is a beautiful B&B with very spacious rooms, located along the A tram line. If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly place, try Eklo, an eco-friendly hostel with an outdoor bar. 

Bacalan – The grungy area of Bordeaux

Neighboring Chartrons from the north is the Bacalan district, located about 30 minutes walk from the center of Bordeaux. Bacalan itself is a big district but here I’m going to focus only on its most interesting area, Bassin a Flot. 

Bassin a Flot is built around the port of Bordeaux and has a very grungy look to it as opposed to the elegant architecture of the city center. In recent years, it has been transforming into one of the liveliest parts of Bordeaux. The neighborhood is not only home to the magnificent Cité du Vin but also to some of the best art venues in town. 

Bacalan neighborhood - the view on cite du vin
Bassin a Frlot in Bordeaux

This part of the Bacalan neighborhood is located along Tram B, so getting to the city center is very easy when staying here. 

In this district, one of the best accommodation options is Seeko’o Hotel. It’s located in the north of the Chartrons neighborhood just next to the riverfront and within a few minutes walk from the big wine museum of Bordeaux. Radisson Blu Hotel on the Bassin a Flot with its rooftop is another fun hotel in this area. For a little upgrade check out Renaissance Bordeaux, with a pool and amazing view. 

If you want to learn more about things to do in the Bacalan neighborhood, click here.

Gare Saint Jean – next to the train station

Saint-Jean isn’t one of the best neighborhoods to stay in Bordeaux and in some parts can be a bit shady. However, if you need to catch a train early in the morning staying there can be quite practical. And it’s also much more affordable than the center of Bordeaux, which you can easily reach with the Tram Line C. 

There are some nice hotels on the way from the train station to the riverfront (the quai) and, generally speaking, this is the nicer part around Gare Saint-Jean. Also, Quai des Paludate is home to some of Bordeaux’s nightclubs and to La Boca food market

Gradually and with a lot of investment from the city of Bordeaux, this area is becoming more popular and the stay can indeed be quite nice.

Novotel Gare Saint Jean is a good option if you want to stay next to the train station. It’s not very new but the rooms are comfortable and clean. For something with a more boutique vibe, check out Hôtel Particulier – Bordeaux St Jean

Saint Genes and Nansouty

South to the center, you can find Saint Genes and Nansouty. These are two quiet neighborhoods bordering Place de la Victoire from the South. Both are located only within a 15-20 minute walk from the center and conveniently placed on the tram line B. 

Nansouty has a love center with cute restaurants and food shops attracting many locals to this part of town. One of the cutest places in the Nansouty Saint-Genes district is Bordeaux Cosy B&B.

Nansouty one of the most pleasant neighborhoods in Bordeaux
Nansouty in Bordeaux

Saint Agustin

One of the most family-friendly neighborhoods in Bordeaux is Saint Augustin. It’s a small quiet area, located about 20 min (by tram) from the city center and a walking distance from two beautiful parks in Bordeaux, Parc Bourran and Parc Bordelais. The neighborhood has a little center with a few restaurants and a weekly market.

Bordeaux Lac

The Bordeaux Lac district is located in the north, quite far from the center of Bordeaux. Apart from cheaper rates, its main advantage is being close to the Parc des Expositions, where many of Bordeaux’s fairs and salons take place. So if you come to Bordeaux for a conference this will be a good option for you. 

Also, if the shopping in the city center was not enough, Bordeaux Lac has one of the biggest shopping centers in the region.

As its name suggests, the neighborhood has a big lake with a popular beach that is open to the public during the summer. You can reach the exhibition park, the shopping center, and the beach by line C from the center of Bordeaux. 

I hope this article covers everything you need to know about the different neighborhoods you can stay in when visiting Bordeaux. If you need more specific recommendations, check out my post about the best hotels in the city center.

If it’s your first time visiting Bordeaux, here are a few other articles you’ll find useful:
Things to do in Bordeaux, France – the ultimate guide
10 day trips from Bordeaux by train
The detailed guide to the Bordeaux wine region and how to visit it

Need more ideas for things to do in and around Bordeaux? you should definitely join my newsletter where I share a lot of info about the area – sign up here.

You can also get plenty of tips on things to do in the Southwest of France via lost in Bordeaux’s social media accounts and email list, check them out here:

Facebook |Instagram |Email | Facebook group

Liked the article? Want to read it again when you’re in Bordeaux? Save it on your Pinterest board.

*Note – Some of the links in this article include affiliate links for which I earn a small commission. It adds absolutely nothing to your cost and helps me continue writing about this amazing region. Don’t worry, I’m not getting rich here, I’ll never recommend anything I don’t believe in 🙂 

This weekend you’ll find a lot of artistic events in the program as well as gardening activities because after all, it’s springtime. The biggest event this weekend is the Wine festival in Blaye, which is a beautiful place that you should definitely go to if you can. If you’re interested in boats don’t miss the big Salon Nautique in Arcachon. Here’s the list of things to do this weekend in Bordeaux (April 12-14).

The Blaye Spring Wine Festival

The Blaye Spring Wine Festival will take place on April 13-14 at the Blaye Citadel. The annual wine festival brings together more than 80 winemakers. The program includes discovery workshops (introduction to tasting, mixing and food and wine pairing), guided visits of the magnificent citadel by train or horse and more. For the full program and tickets click here.

When: April 13-14 / Where: Citadelle de Blaye, 33390 Blaye

Salon Nautique d’Arcachon

The big Salon Nautique d’Arcachon will take place this weekend (April 12-14) at Port de Plaisance D Arcachon. This is a fabulous event for boat lovers. More than 150 exhibitors will participate in the Salon, with 450 boats stationed all over the port. The event will also include a night show a triathlon, and an exposition of an exceptionally big vessel. For more details click here.

When: April 12-14 / Where:14 Quai Goslar, 33120 Arcachon

Salon des Vins de France & Gastronomie du Sud-Ouest

This weekend (April 13-14) a fair of French wine and south west gastronomy will take place at the beautiful Château Malromé. The fair includes meetings with 25 wine makers and four local producers, tastings of some of the best French wines and a master class of food matching. For more details click here.

When: April 13-14 / Where: Château Malromé, 33490 Saint-André-du-Bois

Festival Musical Écran

Festival Musical Écran is a very unique film festival all dedicated to documentaries about music. The festival will take place on April 7-14 in different places in Bordeaux: Cinéma Utopia, Cour Malby, Bibliothéque Mériadeck, Institut Cervantes and Université de Bordeaux Campus Victoire. For the full program and all the details click here.

When: April 7-14 / Where: different locations, see the program

Bordeaux International Barrel Aged Festival

This is the first edition of the International Barrel Aged Festival that will bring together 20 different breweries and 10 distilleries from 14 countries. It’s a good opportunity to meet the best producers of beer and Gin, coming from Ireland, Finland, Spain and more. The evening will take place on Friday (April 12) at Mille et Une Bières Bordeaux. The program includes plenty of alcohol, a dj set and a food truck. For more details click here.

When: April 12, from 18:00 / Where: 42 Rue Edmond Besse, 33300 Bordeaux, France

Semaine de l’art 2019

On April 12-20 an art week will take place at the Abbaye de Verneuil in the médoc region. Six artists (a sculptor, a photographer, a graphic designer and more) will present their exhibitions at the abbey. The evening program includes plenty of concerts. For tickets and more info click here.

When: April 12-20 / Where: 2 Place Saint-Pierre, 33180 Vertheuil

Fête des Jardins

spring in Bordeaux
flowers in our garden 🙂

The 10th edition of the big celebration of gardening in le Bouscat will take place this weekend (April 13-14). More than 30 exhibitors and associations will help you flower your balconies, gardens and terraces. The event will also include activities for kids, exhibitions, concerts a market and more. For more details click here.

When: April 13-14 / Where: Parc de l’Ermitage, Rond-point de l’Ermitage – 33110 le Bouscat

Festival Lier

Festival Lier is an event that brings together several artists from different disciplines for an evening of cultural diversity. The program includes music from the balkans, afrobeat, French rock, beatbox and more. The event will take place this Saturday (April 13) at the Salle des fêtes Bordeaux Grand Parc at 18:00. For more info click here.

When: April 13, from 18:00 / Where: Salle des fêtes Bordeaux Grand Parc

Troc aux Plantes

This Saturday (April 13) a day dedicated to plants and gardening will take place at Place du Marché des Chartrons. There will be stands and activities aimed to teach you everything you need to know about gardening. For more info click here.

When: April 13 / Where: 7 Place du Marché des Chartrons, 33000 Bordeaux, France

Printemps des Artistes

Printemps des Artistes in the city of Langon reunites 15 artists for a family friendly event dedicated to visual art. The program includes workshops, exhibitions, performances and a painting contest. The event will take place at the Centre Culturel des Carmes 33 on April 13. For more details click here.

When: April 13 / Where: 8 place des Carmes, 33210 Langon

Mably Afro Acid w/ Maryisonacid

This Friday (April 12) cour Mably hosts a big free party that will include a dj-sets by Maryisonacid and Ana al Fabet. For more details click here.  

When: April 12, from 19:00 / Where: 3 rue Mably à Bordeaux

Students March for climate change

Join the students of Bordeaux for this important event. A student March for climate change will take place this Friday (April 12) at 14:00. The march will leave from Place de la Victoire. You can see more updates on their instagram page.

When: April 12 / Where: Place de la victoire

Le Bordeaux préféré de mon guide

This is a great opportunity to discover some hidden spots in Bordeaux. Every Sunday afternoon a guide from the Bordeaux tourist office will take you through an off the beaten track tour of Bordeaux where you will discover lesser known places in the city. For reservations and more info click here.

When: April 14 / Where: Bordeaux tourist office

Itinéraires des Photographes Voyageurs – photography festival

The 29th edition of the “traveling photographers routes” festival is taking place on April 2-28. During one month, 18 photography exhibitions will be presented at the main cultural institutions in the city, among them, the Rocher de Palmer in Cenon, the Bibliothèque Grand Parc, Espace Saint-Rémi and others. Get the full list of artists and more info about the event here.

photography exhibition at espace saint remi bordeaux
photo by : Gaelle Abravanel

When: April 2 -28 / Where: Different locations in Bordeaux (see program)

D’un soleil à l’autre

In the D’un soleil à l’autre exhibition artists present their poetic journey in space. Aspects like elastic distances, weightlessness, dazzling, infinitely large landscapes and incandescent materials are beautifully translated into contemporary digital art. La Base sous marine is known for the phenomenal use of their unique space for art, so don’t miss this one. The exhibition will be presented at the museum from March 9 to May 19. For more info click here.

When: March 9 – May 19 / Where: Boulevard Alfred Daney, 33000 Bordeaux

If you need some ideas for things to do this weekend check out my new post about 30 things to do with kids in Bordeaux.

That’s all for this weekend! If you’re not on my email list yet, join me and get more exclusive tips about Bordeaux – subscribe here

If you want to know what other events are taking place this month in the city, check out my post about the 15 things not miss in April in Bordeaux.

Bordeaux is known as the wine capital of France and for that reason many people avoid traveling here with kids. But that’s only because most people don’t realize how family-friendly Bordeaux really is. There are so many amazing things to do in Bordeaux with kids!  From Beautiful parks to kids-friendly biking paths, stunning beaches, and attraction parks, this region has it all!

In this article, I gathered 30 things you can do with your kids in Bordeaux and its surroundings (the SW of France). I included both outdoor and indoor activities and even kids-friendly wineries you should visit. I hope it’ll give you plenty of ideas to plan a perfect family trip to Bordeaux. If you’re also looking for a kids-friendly hotel in Bordeaux, I’ve got you covered in this article.

Note– in case you plan to visit many places in one or two days, consider buying the Bordeaux city pass, which gives plenty of free entrances to the city’s museums and public transport.

If Bordeaux is not the only destination on your list, check out my other guides for kids-friendly destinations in the Southwest of France. Now let’s dig in! 

Things to do with kids in Bordeaux Metropole

Splash in the Miroir d’eau

The biggest water mirror in the world is one of the best things to do with kids when the temperatures rise in Bordeaux. Every 15 minutes the water rises and creates a very shallow pool where kids can run and splash in the water. When the kids are tired just spread a blanket in the little garden nearby and have a picnic

The water mirror operates daily from 10 am to 10 pm and is closed in the winter for maintenance.

Eat in a kids-friendly restaurant

Bordeaux is the city of restaurants but we all know how exhausting it can be with kids. That’s why it’s important to choose a kids-friendly restaurant when traveling here. While there are quite a few restaurants now that offer a kid’s menu, there aren’t many where kids can actually occupy themselves so you can eat.

If you want a fun foodie experience in Bordeaux but also to avoid taking your kids to restaurants, I highly recommend taking a kids-friendly food tour. This will allow you to discover not only the city itself but also its sweet specialties and other delicacies. Two kid-friendly food tours I can recommend are the private food tour with Anne (who is a chef and a mom to little kids herself), and the group patisserie tour in the old center of Bordeaux.

Max a table - a kids friendly restaurant in Bordeaux
Max a Table – Lost in Bordeaux

Here’s a partial list of the places of the restaurants in the center of Bordeaux that I like taking my kids to: Max a Table, for their hamburgers and touchscreen tables, Monzu is a great Italian restaurant where your kids can color while they wait for the food. La Douce Parenthèse is a very sweet Salon de The with great tarts and a small coloring table for the kids. And if you’re not too hungry you can also take them to the games cafe Atelier B and order a charcuterie board and wine while you play.

Take a scooter or bicycle and go to the Quai

One of the main accomplishments of Bordeaux’s makeover in the two last decades is the beautiful riverfront on the left side of the Garonne. A pedestrian-only 4.5 km promenade stretches out between Gare Saint Jean and Bassin a flot in the north of the city. 

When it’s sunny outside you can see plenty of families with bikes, scooters or skates riding the paths. The bridge-to-bridge trail is one of the most popular routes to discover the Garonne area. If your kids are a bit older, you can also enjoy a guided biking tour, which is an amazing opportunity to discover the city in a more dynamic way.

If you don’t have bikes you can take the (almost) free city bike, all you need is a credit card. Check out all the stations in Bordeaux here. That option will be great for you if you’re traveling with teenagers. If you need bikes for smaller kids, you can use the services of Bike Hire, who will deliver them to your hotel.

Picnic in the park (Jardin public and many others)

A picnic in the park is one of the easiest ways to spend some time outside with your kids. You can enjoy your bottle of rosé while they run around the park. When in Bordeaux, many people head straight to Jardin Public, and while it’s a beautiful park, it’s far from being the only green spot in the city.

To help you get familiar with the green parts of the city, I gathered a list of the best places to have a picnic in Bordeaux, which include both big parks and little gardens and some necessary playgrounds – click here to read the post.

parc Bordelais in Bordeaux
Parc Bordelais by Lost in Bordeaux

Take the little train to tour the city

If you want to discover Bordeaux in a fun way, take the little train that departs from the tourists’ office. This 45-minute tour passes by the main sites of the historic city like Place des Quinconces and Place de la Bourse (with Scripted commentaries available in 8 languages). The train leaves every two hours from the Tourist information office, where you also buy the tickets. For more details and tickets click here.

Natural History Museum

After years of renovations, the Museum of Natural History of Bordeaux finally opened its doors in March 2019. Created in 1971, the museum has one of the biggest collections in France with more than a million specimens. 

Natural history museum in Bordeaux

Besides the new design and the incredible collection, one of the new features in the renovated museum is the “Early Years Museum” for kids under 6 years old. The museum also hosts many temporary exhibitions that kids usually love! See if they have any special events when you’re in Bordeaux

Entry to this museum is free every first Sunday of the month (except July and August) and if you have the Bordeaux city pass. The museum is located at 5 Place Bardineau (the entry is through Jardin Public).

See other cool museums to visit in Bordeaux here.

Cap Sciences – Kids Science Museum

Cap Sciences is a kids’ science museum and one of the more fun and educative places in Bordeaux. The museum proposes interactive exhibitions and activities all dedicated to different aspects of science.

Another interesting feature of the museum is the kids’ workshops arranged by different age groups. Among them, you can find photography, molecular cooking, eco-citizens, and more. For more details click here.

The museum is located at Hangar 20, Quai de Bacalan, just next to the Cité du Vin.

Soft play

When you really need your kids to let off some steam the best place to go is a soft play and there are several of those in Bordeaux: You Kids Parc in Merignac, Youpi Parc, and Royal kids in Pessac and Kidooland in Bordeaux Lac which is actually my favorite one. In Kidooland parents have comfortable sits and even an outdoor bar to enjoy while they wait for their kids.

Go to the beach at Bordeaux Lac

If you’re vacationing in Bordeaux but have no time to go to the ocean, Bordeaux actually has a lake with a beach. The cute beach of Bordeaux Lac (Plage du Lac ) has everything you need: a sandy clean beach with beautiful clear and calm water and a lot of shade from the nearby trees. The beach is open to the public daily from June 1st to mid-September. Starting July 1st it offers water and beach activities such as sailing, kayaking, mini-golf, and more. Check out the list of daily activities here.

Bordeaux lac
Bordeaux lac by Lost in Bordeaux

Note – if you do have a car, I highly recommend trying one of the amazing beaches outside of the city.

Artistic workshop in institut Bernard Magrez

Institut Bernard Magrez is one of the best places in the city for art lovers. They present beautiful street art exhibitions several times a year and frequently hold kids’ creative workshops around the theme of the exhibition. To be updated on their future workshops follow them on Facebook.

Street art workshop at institut Bernard Magrez
Street art workshop – Lost in Bordeaux

Where: 16 Rue de Tivoli, 33000 Bordeaux

Surfing in a coffee place

This is a super cool activity for kids (over 8 yo). The Wave Surf Café is the first indoor cafe where you can surf! The Big artificial wave in the middle of the coffee shop imitates the ocean waves and allows you to feel like a professional surfer in the city center :). If your kids love big waves but you don’t have the time to get to the ocean, this is a great experience for you!

The Wave Surf cafe is open daily, reservation is required. For more details click here.
Where: 174 Cours du Médoc, 33300 Bordeaux

Skating

There are two great options for kids who like to skate. One is the skatepark on Quai des Chartrons which is a great facility. For those heading to the Sunday market on Quai des Chartrons, that would be a great break for the kids. 

skating on the quai in Bordeaux
photo by: @lost_in_bordeaux

If you need a change of scenery from the center of Bordeaux, cross the river to Darwin. It’s a super cool urban space that has a skateboard park made from recycled materials and a special cultural landscape of street art and electronic music. This is a good option for rainy days. You can also rent a skateboard there. 

Where: 87 Quai des Queyries, 33100 Bordeaux

Go ice skating at the Meriadeck

La Patinoire de Mériadeck is a sports complex in Bordeaux Center that hosts hockey games as well as many different concerts. However, several days a week the place is open to the public and you can come with your family and enjoy ice skating in this huge arena. 

As the Patinoire hosts many different events during the year, its opening hours might change from time to time, so before heading there with your kids, check out the schedule.  It is usually closed during the summer vacation.

Where: 95 Cours Maréchal Juin, 33000 Bordeaux

Discover Bordeaux and the region through a game – Terra Aventura 

Our region, Nouvelle Aquitaine, has come up with a perfect way to discover the region with kids. It offers a free geocaching game called Terra Aventura, an immersive activity that will help you get your kids engaged when discovering a new destination. Be it a natural reserve or a historic landmark, the game makes them discover the place playfully through a series of questions and clues. 

Terra Aventura is a free app, all you need to do is download it on your phone. The games are offered in French and English. The app offers four games in the suburbs of Bordeaux and many others in different parts of Gironde. See all the details about the games in Ile de Ré following this link.

Puppet show at the Park

Le Guignol Guérin, founded in 1853, is the oldest puppetry show in France. Every summer (July and August) the theatre company is hosting daily spectacles for kids in Jardin Public and Parc Bordelais. Read more about the theater here.

Guignol Guérin - puppet theater in Bordeaux
Guignol Guérin in Jardin Public – Lost in Bordeaux

The show usually starts at 16:00 but can be canceled or postponed when it’s raining or getting too hot. In December there are a few spectacles taking place at the Inox theatre in Bordeaux. The shows are in French.

Go to the pool

There are several kids-friendly pools in the Bordeaux metropole, with one of them being very close to the city center.  

Next to the Meriadeck, you’ll find the Piscine Judaique located in a beautiful art deco building. That’s where most people living in the city center take their kids to swim. It’s a very kids-friendly pool with a kids pool, water slides, floats, and more. The pool is closed on Mondays and bank holidays. 

If you have a car there are many other great kids-friendly pools in Bordeaux like the one in the Stade Nautique Pessac, the Pinsan pool in Eysins, and the Ucpa Aqua Stadium in Merignac.

Go rollerblading

If your kids love rollerblading or skating I have the perfect place to suggest! Moovens Rollers is a place that has opened up recently in Gradignan (one of Bordeaux’s suburbs) where you can come and enjoy skating as well as fun roller disco evenings. You can rent your skates and rollers there, which is perfect for tourists who don’t have the equipment with them in Bordeaux.

The place is located at 11 Av. de la Madeleine, 33170 Gradignan. See all the details here.

Adventure park in Merignac  

Tepacap is a new amazing adventure part in Merignac, one of Bordeaux’s suburbs. The park is located in the Decathlon sports village, and offers a variety of activities such as treetop walking, a labyrinth, and a treasure hunt group games. 

It’s very popular in the summer so be sure to book in advance. The park is open from April to the beginning of November. You can see the opening hours and prices here

Where: 10 Rue Archimède Entrée à Décathlon, 33700 Mérignac

Shopping in one of the malls

Who doesn’t love shopping, right? Well, I personally don’t but I know that quite a lot of teenagers see it as a legitimate site seeing in the city. 

So where do we shop in Bordeaux? The main shopping street is rue Sainte Catherine, the longest pedestrian street in France. Very close to it you have the Meriadeck which is the only shopping center in the city center. But if you’re looking for bigger malls, with plenty of clothing retailers, you’ll have to go a bit further to the shopping centers in the surrounding towns such as Rives d’Arcins in Begles, Aushopping in Bordeaux lac or Mérignac Soleil.

Spend time at the main library

If your kids are interested in books, the Bibliothèque in Mériadeck has a library for kids between 0 and 13 years old. The place includes novels, comics, manga, music, movies, and even a coloring space for the little ones. 

Bibliothèque in Mériadeck
Bibliothèque in Mériadeck – by Lost in Bordeaux

Apart from books, the Meriadeck library also hosts different events such as little shows for kids, story time, and video games in groups. On the first floor of the library, you’ll find a kids’ room with games and books for the little ones. It’s a great option for rainy days. The opening hours of the Meriadeck library vary throughout the year, see schedule here

Where: 85 Cours Maréchal Juin, 33000 Bordeaux

Ferme urbaine des Iris

The Iris Animal Farm in Lormont is a magical place that allows you to spend a fun day with your kids in nature. On the farm, your curious kids can learn about animals and feed them. They have a wide variety of animals, among them rabbits, donkeys, and goats. 

Ferme urbaine des Iris - visit animal farm with kids in Bordeaux
Ferme urbaine des Iris – Lost in Bordeaux

Ferme urbaine des Iris is located just a few minutes walk from one of the most beautiful parks in Bordeaux, Parc de L’ermitage.The farm is closed for groups on school vacations. For more info click here.

Where: 8 Rue Sourbes, 33310 Lormont

Climbing

Indoor climbing has become extremely popular in Bordeaux and there are numerous facilities where you can do that with kids. These are the climbing centers in or close to Bordeaux: Arkose, Block’out Roc’ and Climb up. Block’out Roc is located very close to the center in the Chartrons neighborhood and the other ones will require to take a tram or a car from the city center.

Kfe des familles – Café associative

Kfe des Familles is a cute associative café that allows parents to spend time with their kids while also enjoying a coffee or lunch. 

Besides a nice little restaurant, the place has a room for kids’ workshops as well as a space for the little ones, where they can play accompanied by their parents. The cafe organizes plenty of activities and events throughout the year. For more info click here.

Where: 46 rue de New-York 33300 Bordeaux

Go to the zoo

The Zoo of Bordeaux, located in Pessac, is a beautiful family-friendly place. It allows you to discover more than 250 different animals from monkeys to giraffes and white tigers. The zoo organizes plenty of events for kids throughout the year. The Zoo is open daily all year long, except on December 25 and January 1st. For more details click here.

Where: 3 Rue du Transvaal, 33600 Pessac

Take your kids to a classical music concert 

Every first Sunday of the month the National Orchestra of Bordeaux (ONBA) hosts a classical music concert either at the Grand Theatre or the Auditorium of Bordeaux. The concerts are usually around 45 to 60 minutes long and the ticket price is €10 for adults and €1 for kids, so it’s a great opportunity to introduce your kids to classical music. You can see this Sunday’s concert on the Opera website

Throught the year the Grand Theatre offers special activities for the little ones and events for babies. Follow their program here.

A bit farther – things to do around Bordeaux (Gironde)

Route du vin with kids – visit family-friendly wineries

Traveling to Bordeaux with kids doesn’t mean you can’t discover this incredible wine region

I have been visiting many wine estates (wine chateaux) with my kids since moving here and the owners were very welcoming most of the time. However last couple of years (since my kids became very hard to travel with 🙂) I discovered a few super kids-friendly wineries that offer different activities to keep kids busy and parents happy. 

Discover wineries in Bordeaux on self guided tours in the Bordeaux wine region
Discover wineries in the Bordeaux wine region – by List in Bordeaux

You can read all my recommendations for kid-friendly chateaux in the Bordeaux wine region in my article. I have included wineries in Saint Emilion, Pessac Leognan, Medoc, and other appelations so you should find at least one that fits your route.

Kayaking on one of Bordeaux’s rivers

If you’re looking for a thrilling outdoor activity, kayaking/ canoeing on the river is perfect for that. Bordeaux is surrounded be several both wide and narrow rivers which all offer kayaking/ experiences. 

The closest one to Bordeaux is the L’Eyre, a coastal river that flows through the Gascogne forest into the Bassin d’Arcachon. There are plenty of places to rent a kayak/ canoe on the l’Eyre. The closest town to Bordeaux would be Mios where you can rent all the equipment from T en Leyre.

kayaking on the L’Eyre river next to Arcachon
Canoe on the L’Eyre river – Lost in Bordeaux

Recently I went with my girl on a canoe trip in the more sauvage part of the river and it was amazing. We rented the Canoe from Alokanoe and were very happy with it. Other kayaking options are on the Cerons in the south of Gironde or traveling a bit farther to the wider Dordogne river. Here are all my recommendations for Kayaking on the Dordogne river.

Discover contemporary art in the forest

How about combining nature with art? One of the best ways to discover the massive forest of Landes de Gascogne in the south of Gironde is by following the map of La Foret d’Art Contemporain. 

la foret d'art contemporain

This is a cool project that aims to promote contemporary art by placing it in different spots in the forest. Around 30 different pieces of art were placed in all parts of the forest, usually close to one of the smaller towns, to allow you to discover the more rural parts of Gironde. Follow the map of the project – here.

La Ferme Exotique

La Ferme Exotique is a charming animal farm located in Cadaujac, about 20 minutes from Bordeaux. There are almost 1000 animals on the farm, coming from all over the world and in all sizes. It’s a unique experience as they allow kids to really connect with the animals and even help feed some of them. 

The park is open daily from April to October and mostly on weekends and Wednsays the rest of the year. For more details click here.


Where: Domaine de la Roussie, 1932 Chemin du Port de l’Esquillot, 33140 Cadaujac

The inflatable water park in Biscarrosse

Bordeaux is just one hour away from the biggest inflatable water park in the world! The AquaPark is equipped with water ziplines, several diving boards of different heights, trampolines, catapults, climbing walls, slides, and more.

The park is accessible to kids over 4 years old. In the summer, the park have special slots for kids from 4 to 10 yo, so they can enjoy it in a calmer environment. The Aquakids is open on July – August on Wednsday, Friday and Sunday from 9:00 to 11:30. Kids must be accompanies by an adult. For more details and tickets click here.

Where: Port Maguide, 18 Chemin de Maguide, 40600 Biscarrosse

Take the kids to an amusement park

Parc de la coccinelle is an amusement park in Gujan-Mestras, on the Bassin d’Arcachon. This park is a perfect day out that your kids will definitely enjoy. It has everything from water slides, roller coasters, trampolines,, and even an animal farm where you can feed baby goats. 

It’s open from April to the beginning of November, however, it’s not open every week, so check out the schedule before going. For more info click here.  

This park is perfect with little ones, however if you’re kids are a bit older they will probably enjoy Kid Parc, located in the same area in Gujan Mestras. If you need more ideas on what to do with kids when going to Arcachon, check out my post about the best things to do with kids in Arcachon.

Where: Parc de loisirs, La Hume, 33470 Gujan-Mestras

Where to stay in Bordeaux with kids? 

There are quite a few kid-friendly hotels in Bordeaux, you can read all my recommendations in my article about the most family friendly hotels in Bordeaux

If you need ideas for what to do with kids when it’s raining in Bordeaux, click here. Apart from that list I constantly update about kids-friendly events and activities taking place monthly in Bordeaux.

You can also get plenty of tips on things to do in the Southwest of France via Lost in Bordeaux’s social media accounts and email list, check them out here:

Facebook |Instagram |Email | Facebook group

*Note – Some of the links in this article include affiliate links for which I earn a small commission. It adds absolutely nothing to your cost and helps me continue writing about this amazing region. Don’t worry, I’m not getting rich here, I’ll never recommend anything I don’t believe in 🙂