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The Sauternes and Barsac wine AOC is a small segment of the Bordeaux wine region where sweet white wine is produced. And while Bordeaux is mostly renowned for its red wine, the Sauternes appellation is actually one of the most prestigious wines in the world attracting many tourists traveling to Bordeaux.

There are many options when it comes to visiting the vineyards of Sauternes, everything from small family-owned wineries to big producers settled in stunning châteaux. If you have limited time in Bordeaux, knowing which wineries to visit isn’t always obvious and that’s where my article comes in handy. In this article, I gathered all the wineries I enjoyed visiting in Sauternes and Barsac, including the touristic experiences they offer. 

It’s important to know that most wineries ask you to book your visit in advance (even though some might offer you a spontaneous tour), that’s why I included a link to book a tour next to every château mentioned in this article. Public transport in this region is not very developed so you will need a car in order to get from Bordeaux to Sauternes and visit wineries, here you can find some good offers.
If renting a car is not something you plan to do, here are a few wineries in the Bordeaux region you can visit by public transport.

If you like Bordeaux wine, you should also check out my articles about the best wineries to visit in Saint Emilion and the Medoc wine route, two of the other famous wine areas in Bordeaux.

What you need to know about Sauternes wine

The Sauternes (and Barsac) appellation covers five small villages in the South of Gironde: Sauternes, Barsac, Preignac, Fargues, and Bommes located between two rivers, the Garonne and the Ciron. Sauternes wine owes its rich taste to Botrytis Cinerea, a fungus found on the grapes in this small part of Gironde. In Autumn, a morning mist is created when the cold water of the Ciron river meets the warm water of the larger Garonne, stimulating the formation of a fungus, also known as noble rot. 

In order to achieve the sweet taste, only the ripe grapes are picked up, which makes the harvesting process longer and more complicated. But that’s also what makes the visit to Sauternes so interesting. 

Wineries not to miss in Sauternes and Barsac

Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey – the fancy winery

The Sauternes oped doors weekend introduced me to the Lafaurie-Peyraguey winery, which back then I chose to go to mostly based on how impressive the château was.

Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey in Bomme is one of the oldest chateaux in the region, dating back to the 13th century. The Château with its 18.5 hectares is located on a hill, 70 m above sea level, just next to its prestigious neighbor Château d’Yquem. It is also one of the most esteemed wineries in the Sauternes wine region, recognized as a Sauternes Premier Grand Cru Classé in the 1855 classification.

Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey is open every day (10:00 – 19:00) in the high season and from Thursday to Monday (10:00 – 18:00) in the low season. You can visit the winery by appointment only.

You can book your tour in Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey here

However, this beautiful place is more than a winery! The Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey 5 stars Hotel was opened in 2018, receiving a Michelin star for its Lalique restaurant in its first year. Since then it became a must-stop for those looking for a luxurious experience in the Bordeaux wine region. If you’re looking for an idea for a romantic weekend, this one is definitely a great option. Book a stay here

Château d’Arche

Another chateau I had the chance to visit this year is château d’Arche. The 50-hectare winery in the Sauternes village dates back to the 17th century and has one of the most beautiful views of both the vineyards and the little church of Sauternes. The visit itself takes place at their modern facility where you will find the vat room, tasting room, and a beautiful shop. Just across the road you will find the beautiful 17th-century house where their hotel is located.  

Château d’Arche is open daily all year long and offers many touristic experiences. One is the discovery visit of the Sauternes wine, a tour that takes about an hour and includes an explanation of the Sauternes-making process. On this visit you get to see their cellars and vineyards and taste 3 different wines of the chateaux – you can book the visit here

Château d'Arche - one of the best wineries to visit in Sauternes
View from Château d’Arche

If you want something more active, you can also rent an electric bike at the chateau for a day/ half day, stroll around Sauternes admiring the view, and then finish with wine tasting at the chateau. If you’re mainly interested in wine tasting, book their workshop where you’ll learn to better understand the characteristics of the different wines the château offers. See other activities offered by Château d’Arche here.

If you’re planning to discover several wineries in the region, you could also stay the night in Château d’Arche. Book your stay here.

Château Guiraud

Château Guiraud is one of the biggest wineries in the Sauternes and Barsac AOC, spreading over 128 hectares. The winery, specializing in biodiversity, is classified as Premier Cru Classé (first growth) in the original classification of 1855. 

Château Guiraud is renowned for the many touristic activities and events it has been offering in the past 30 years. There are two English tours you can do on a regular basis. A tasting tour where you’ll learn all about their wine-making process and compare different vintages. The other is a more active tour where you take an electric bike from the château and use a special app to discover the property. Book their tours here

Château Guiraud one of the best wineries to visit in Suaternes
Château Guiraud

Château de Rayne Vigneau

Le Château de Rayne Vigneau in Bommes is another one of my favorite wineries to visit in Sauternes. Imagine yourself sipping wine at a bar in a beautiful little château, glancing at a sea of vines from the top of a hill, that’s what a visit to Château de Rayne Vigneau feels like. 

The château is positioned at the center of a single-block vineyard of 84 hectares and was labeled as 1er Grand Cru Classé de Sauternes in the original 1855 classification, making it one of the top wines of Sauternes. 

Rayne Vigneau is known for being very welcoming to tourists and will usually offer wine tastings even if you didn’t book a visit in advance (even though I always recommend doing so in case there’s a surge of visitors). In addition to their classic tours, Château de Rayne Vigneau offers fun activities like wine tasting on a tree, an escape game, and a trip around Sauternes on an electric scooter. See all the details here

The winery is open daily from April to November and is closed on Sunday during low season.

Château de Rayne Vigneau
The cellar of Château de Rayne Vigneau

Château de Myrat

Château de Myrat is located in Barsac and it’s one of the wineries I love to recommend to families visiting the Bordeaux wine region

The Château dates back to 1700 but since 1937 is owned by the famous Pontac family. Apart from their great wine and the beautiful property, what makes the visit fun for kids is the cute animal garden, with chickens, rabbits, dogs, and more. See more details about the château here

Château de Myrat is open for visits every day, upon appointment only. Here’s the email to contact and book: myrat@chateaudemyrat.fr

Château de Myrat
Château de Myrat

Château Filhot

Château Filhot, another Grand Cru Classé winery, is one of the most impressive castles in the Sauternes AOC.  The chateau was built by Romain de Filhot, an advisor to the Bordeaux Parliament in 1709, and has stayed in the family since. It’s one of the biggest estates in the region, covering 350 hectares with 65 hectares of vineyards in the village of Sauternes. Château Filhot is also known for its stunning English park, created by Bernard Fischer in 1845. 

The winery offers tours without prior appointment from Monday to Friday, although I recommend booking in advance if you want a tour in English. If you’re planning to visit on weekends, booking is required, here’s the email to contact the château: filhot@filhot.com

See opening hours and more information about the winery on their site

Château Filhot
Château Filhot

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 where I publish a weekly ‘what to do’ newsletter, check them out here:

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If it’s your first time in Bordeaux you may also like to read some of the following “intro to Bordeaux” articles I wrote:
The Ultimate Guide to a weekend Bordeaux 
The best districts in Bordeaux 
Where to stay in Bordeaux 
What to do in one day in Bordeaux
Things to do with kids in Bordeaux

*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 🙂 

The Chateaux of Sauternes et Barsac will open their doors to the public this weekend so if you love sweet wine this weekend is a treat. If you prefer to stay in town there are plenty of other things to do like a yoga festival in Darwin, a craftsmen market in Chartrons, a piano festival, a World music festival and more.

Here’s the list of things to do this weekend in and around Bordeaux (November 9-11):

Open doors in the Chateaux of Sauternes et Barsac

Sauternes et Barsac are two wine areas (appellation d’origine contrôlée) famous for their sweet white wine. This weekend (November 10-11) 50 wine producers of Sauternes et Barsac invite you to an open door weekend, with a program that will include wine tastings, visits in the châteaux, gourmet food, concerts and activities for kids. Some of the participating châteaux are: Château La Tour Blanche,  Château Coutet à BarsacLa Maison du Vigneron SauternesChâteau SuduirautChâteau de Rayne VigneauChâteau Caillou. You can see all the châteaux on the photo below.

Sauternes et Barsac open door

When: November 10-11
Where:Sauternes et Barsac– chose your chateau from the program

BLISS YOGA Festival

The Bliss Yoga festival will take place this weekend (November 10-11) in Darwin. The program of the festival includes 30 courses that aim to make you discover different types of yoga no matter what level you are. Although yoga is the main event, there will be other activities like workshops, different information stands, a well being space, kids area, a photography exhibition, bio products and more. For more info check out the website of the festival and the facebook page of the event.

When: November 10-11
Where: Darwin Ecosystème, 87 quai des Queyries

Halles de Bacalan – 1 year anniversary 

Halles de Bacalan invites you to celebrate their first anniversary with a super gourmand event on the weekend of November 9-11. This fun market is one of the best places for drinks with friends, especially on rainy weekends, so this event is guaranteed to be good. For more info check out the facebook page of the event.

When: November 9-11
Where: 10 esplanade de pontac, 33300 Bordeaux,

Piano Festival

This is the 9th edition of the Festival L’esprit du Piano that will take place at the Auditorium of the Opera of Bordeaux on November  9-26. This magnificent festival hosts some important pianists like Chick Corea, Yefim Bronfman, Deszo Ranki and Bertrand Chamayou and others, some of whom will collaborate with the National Orchestra of Bordeaux and the choir of the Opera of Bordeaux. One of the biggest names to take the stage of the Auditorium is the Jazz legend, Abdullah Ibrahim. See the program of the festival here and info about the tickets here.

When: November 9-26
Where: Grand Théâtre, Place de la Comédie – 33 000 Bordeaux

Remembrance day ceremonies- November 11

This Sunday (November 11) is remembrance day in France and some events will take place in Floirac to commemorate the centenary of the armistice of the First World War.  For more details click here.

When: November 11, 9:00-12:00
Where: Floirac, see the program

Centenaire de l’armistice de la 1ère Guerre Mondiale – Exhibition

This year is the centenary of the armistice of the First World War and as part of the commemoration the city will present an exhibition of different objects, posters and archives related to the war. The exhibition will be presented at the Town Hall in Floriac between November 6 and November 17 and in Espace Lucie Aubrac on November 11. For more info click here.

When: November 6-17
Where:  6 avenue Pasteur BP 110, 33270 Floirac

Jazz Festival in Caudéran

The second edition of the Jazz festival of Caudéran will take place on November 8-10. Three days with 6 concerts: Robin & the Woods, IepXtet – création musicale de Sébastien Iep Arruti, Lorenzo Naccarato trio, Itamar Borochov quartet, Saxtape and the Nicolas Folmer Horny Tonky experience. For more info about prices and the full program click here.

When: November 8-11
Where:  La Pergola Theater, Rue Fernand Cazères, 33200 Bordeaux

Salon Ob’Art

Le salon Ob’Art (Objets de créateur) is a creators fair with a rich pedagogic program of activities, workshops and demonstrations. The aim of the event is to create a dialog between artists, craftsmen and the wide public in order to transfer their know-how and to make the young generation discover a variety of professional vocations. The event will be dedicated to Japanese philosophy and craftsmanship. Le Salon Ob’Art will take place in Hangar 14 (Quai des Chartrons) on November 9-11. Entry is free for kids under 18 years old and 6 € for adults (free on the first day). For more info check out the website of the event.

When: November 9-11
Where: 173 Quai des Chartrons, 33300 Bordeaux

L’Arche de Noël – creators market

L’Arche de Noël is a creators market that will take place in the Chartrons neighborhood every weekend until Christmas (November 22-23 is the last event). Each week a group of local talented craftsmen and artists will present their original creations. This weekend (November 10-11) the stands will include jewelry, kids toys, textile, graphic design and more.

See more details here.

When: November 10-11
Where: 23 Rue Minvielle, 33000 Bordeaux

Festival Toutes Latitudes

Festival Toutes Latitudes is taking place this week (November 7-11) in Rocher de Palmer in Cenon. The festival celebrate diversity through world music with musicians from all the the world. The lineup includes the Malian singer Oumou Sangaré (the black Tina Turner), the Turkish guitarist Bilal Karaman, the Algerian band Babylone and more. To see the full program and buy tickets click here  and for more info check out the facebook page of the event.

When: November 7-11
Where: 1 rue Aristide Briand, 33150 Cenon

Salon des Grandes Ecoles

The Salon of  the “Grandes Ecoles” is an event where the most prestigious institutions in the French higher education come to present their schools to future students. The Salon will take place this Saturday (November 10) at the Palais des Congrès. The event includes conferences and meetings with representatives from the schools who will present you their academic programs. For more info click here.

When: November 10
Where: Espace Pluriel, Avenue Jean Gabriel Domergue, 33300 Bordeaux

Bordeaux Medoc Lyrique comtest

The finals of the International singing competition of the Opera of Bordeaux will take place this weekend (November 9-10) at the Opera. Some of the young singers are coming from the biggest opera houses and theaters in France and abroad such as Opéra de Zurich, Opéra National de Bordeaux, Opéra national de Paris, Semperoper Dresde, Théâtre du Bolchoï and Théâtre du Capitole de Toulouse. For more info and tickets click here.

When: November 9-10, at 20:00
Where: Place de la Comédie, 33000 Bordeaux

Delirium Party

Mille et Une Bieres, the very cool beer boutique invites you this Friday (November 9) to a Delirium party. The program includes a DJ , tattoo sessions and a happy hour on some of the beers. See more details here.

When: November 9, from 17:00 to midnight
Where: 42 Rue Edmond Besse, 33300 Bordeaux,

Fit Attitude

The Fit Attitude is a sports event that takes place on Saturday every two weeks in Jardin Public. It’s a free fitness event  and it’s open for all. The event will take place Saturday (November 10) at 11:00. See more details here.

When: November 10. 11:00
Where: place du Champ de Mars, 33000 Bordeaux,

Exhibitions

Exposition 3/1 – Espace Saint-Rémi

La Spirale association invites you to a collective exhibition by three local artists: Magalie Darsouze (visual artist), Benjamin Monteil (engraver) and Chris Pillot (painter). The exhibition will be presented at the beautiful Espace Saint-Rémi on November 7-17. The entrance is free. See more info here.

When: November 7-17
Where: 4 rue Jouannet à Bordeaux

Douro, l’air de la terre au bord des eaux – Exhibition

La Cité du Vin is currently hosting its second temporary exhibition of the “Vignoble invité” (invited vineyard). This exhibition, called Douro, l’air de la terre au bord des eaux, will take you to the heart of the wine region Haut-Douro in Portugal. As with the permanent exhibition in La Cité du Vin this too will be  accompanied by an experience of sounds and senses.  For more info click here.

When: October 5- January 6. 2019
Where:1, esplanade de Pontac, Bordeaux, 33300

Salva Me exhibition

“Salva me” is the new exhibition of the Bordelais graphic designer Aymeric Giraudel. The exhibition combines photography and graphics and plays with the human body to express its beauty. The exhibition will be presented at the Les Vivres de l’Art until November 16. For more info click here.

When: until November 16
Where: 4 rue Achard, 33300 BORDEAUX

 

If you want to plan ahead check out my general list of things to in Bordeaux in November 2018.

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Have a great weekend!