There are many ways to discover Bordeaux’s fascinating history and cultural heritage, its gastronomy, and its wine industry. You can plan a great trip to Bordeaux using all my Bordeaux articles, especially if you’re planning day trips from Bordeaux. But I think that the capital of the SW of France is so rich with history and landmarks that taking at least one tour in Bordeaux is almost a must!
Jumpstarting your Bordeaux adventure with a guided tour isn’t just about finding your way around – it’s like having a local friend with the inside scoop. Whether you want to walk, sail, or pedal in the historic city or focus on other parts of Bordeaux’s culture like cuisine or wine, Bordeaux has a tour to offer.
In this article, you’ll find the best tours in Bordeaux, anything from walking tours to gourmet tours, cycling, and more. As you’re visiting the world wine capital, you should consider taking a wine tour, which you can also find on this list. However, if you’re mainly interested in wine, I recommend checking my article about the best wine tours from Bordeaux.
If you need more ideas of fun stuff to do in Bordeaux after (or before) your tour, you should also check my article about the best 50 things to do in Bordeaux. Now let’s discover the best tours in Bordeaux.
A walking tour of historic Bordeaux
Bordeaux boasts historic landmarks, impressive gates, and architectural richness that’s almost impossible to absorb in a short visit, without the right guidance. I highly recommend taking a walking tour of the historic part of Bordeaux to get the context of how the city was developed and why it encompasses such different styles in its little center.
Bordeaux Private walking tour
This excellent private guided walking tour of old Bordeaux will take you to the most popular landmarks such as the Grand Theatre, Porte Cailhau, and the Saint André Cathedral. The tour lasts 2-3 hours which is enough to give you a dipper understanding of Bordeaux’s magic without it getting too havie.
The great thing about this walking tour is that it has a bit of everything. The historical details about the main monuments of Bordeaux but also local anecdotes and interesting cultural references. So if you want a fascinating and intimate guided tour of Bordeaux, this one is for you. Book the tour here.
Bordeaux group walking tour
If you don’t mind big groups, you can also take the Bordeaux guided walking tour proposed by the Bordeaux Tourist Office. This 2-hour walking tour offers a taste of Bordeaux’s fantastic mix of city urban landmarks and architectural marvels. It’s also a nice opportunity to meet other tourists from all over the world!
As the group can get big, you usually won’t cover as many landmarks and history as you would in a private tour. However, if don’t want to spend much on a tour, this is a great option to start your discovery of Bordeaux. Also, in case you purchase Bordeaux’s City Pass, you can take the tour for free.
A night walking tour in Bordeaux
As much as Bordeaux is beautiful in daylight, there’s something even more magical about the city at night. The yellow smokie light reflected on the old limestone houses makes it look mysterious. It almost feels like the city is inviting you to discover its night secrets.
To make your night date with Bordeaux more interesting I recommend taking the Night Walking Tour.
The tour is led by a friendly local guide who loves to spread his love for Bordeaux. Discover the city’s key attractions at night and immerse yourself in the enchanting ambiance of this splendid city. On this tour, you also get to taste a canelé, which is Bordeaux’s most famous pastry.
You can book the Bordeaux by-night tour here.
Discovering Bordeaux by bikes
Bordeaux is a perfect place for cycling! The city is flat and has many designated cycling paths in the center and the suburbs, which makes locals cycle everywhere around Bordeaux. That’s why a cycling tour in Bordeaux is such a great option!
The Monsieur Bacchus Bike Tour company offers a great biking tour of the historic center and the Chartrons district. Casually cycle through the street of Bordeaux while learning about its main monuments, high-class French culture, and modern life. If you love history but don’t love walking too much, a cycling tour is an easy way to explore Bordeaux.
The three hours tour will bring you to parts of parts of Bordeaux, that you will not see on a regular walking tour. You get to visit the posh Chartrons district as well as the more hip right bank of the Garonne River. The tours are offered from March to November. You can book them here.
Food Tours in Bordeaux
Did you know that apart from its notorious wines Bordeaux is also known for its exceptional culinary scene? Boasting the highest number of restaurants per capita, it’s no wonder the capital of the southwest was crowned the best food city in France.
Some of Bordeaux’s specialties include oysters from Arcachon, duck products and canelés. However, being new to the city, choosing the best spots to taste these delicacies can be tricky. Taking a food tour is a great way to taste Bordeaux while exploring the city.
There are many food tours in Bordeaux however many of them feel more like historic tours with a snack, so it’s important to choose right. There are a few that I particularly like.
NO DIET CLUB – Unique food tour in Bordeaux
NO DIET CLUB is the best gastronomic group tour for real foodies! It’s a 3.5-hour tasting tour in a warm and friendly atmosphere with a group of 12 people max. You’ll be offered plenty of tasting, ranging from savory snacks like cheese, burgers, and mussels to Bordeaux’s sweet treats.
You can book the tour here.
Bordeaux traditional food tour
Another great option is the Bordeaux Traditional food tour, offered by Do Eat Better Experience. This tour is a great mix of food and history, two important features in Bordeaux. You will be tasting plenty of local bites in Bordeaux’s best spots while learning the secrets of the city along the way. The tour starts with wine tasting and ends with a delicious lunch in a classic French Bistro. An absolute treat!
If you’re a foodie visiting Bordeaux in high season, be sure to book the tour in advance as it’s likely to sell out.
Bordeaux Gourmet Food Tour
If you’re looking for a more high-end private food tour in Bordeaux, you should check out Aquitaine Travel Guide. The company is run by Anne who is a chef and also a brilliant guide that offers a deeper glimpse into the gastronomic culture of this region.
If you don’t have time for a proper food tour in Bordeaux, you can also use my articles to build a self-guided food tour:
What to eat at the Capucins market in Bordeaux
The best markets in Bordeaux
The best foodie streets in Bordeaux
Bordeaux’s food specialties you have to try
Take a River Cruise in Bordeaux
For centuries, the Garonne River, among the longest rivers in France, has served as a lifeline to the heart of Bordeaux. In the past, it was the main route for trade, helping Bordeaux become a flourishing port and trading center. The Garonne had an immense economic impact on the city and is considered the key factor in the rise of Bordeaux as a global power in the wine business.
Today, the riverside remains a vibrant and vital part of Bordeaux’s landscape that serves as a space for many social events (especially in summer). Along the riverfront, you can see some of Bordeaux’s most beautiful architecture. So Taking a River Cruise in Bordeaux is a cool way to experience the city!
River Garonne Cruise with Glass of Wine
This relaxed 1,5 hours cruise on a yacht named Luna will help you discover Bordeaux from the river. And, it comes with a bonus—a complimentary glass of wine! Doesn’t it make everything better?
What sets this cruise apart is the combination of sightseeing and wine sipping, the best way to enjoy Bordeaux. The cruise starts from the city center and passes by iconic landmarks like the Place de la Bourse and the Saint Pierre Stone Bridge. If you’re looking for a laid-back adventure with a light touch of luxury, don’t hesitate to book this Bordeaux-guided cruise.
Bordeaux Lunch Cruise
If you’re planning to take the tour around lunchtime, which not take a Bordeaux lunch cruise. A guided cruise where you get to see some of Bordeaux’s fabulous monuments while enjoying a classic French lunch. The 2-hour cruise starts at noon at Quai des Chartrons. Book your table here.
Accompany a professional fisherman on the Garonne river
Organized by a professional fisherman in Bordeaux, this cruise offers a real adventure! During the cruise, you will learn about the Garonne and its Flora and Fauna. The coolest part is that you’ll be a part of the fishing experience with “the last fisherman of Bordeaux”! This tour is not offered very often, but when it does it creates a great experience. You can see the available dates here.
Wine tour to the vineyards of Bordeaux
When traveling to the most famous wine region in the world, a trip to the vineyards is kind of a must. There are thousands of vineyards to visit in the Bordeaux wine region, some of which you can find in my article about wineries in the Medoc, Saint Emilion, and Sauternes regions. So you definitely plan a self-guided tour in one of Bordeaux’s wine appelations.
However, there’s something about a good wine tour (especially a more intimate one) that can elevate the whole experience. Also, the fact that they drive you, choose the wineries, and do all the scheduling is a big advantage.
Here are my recommendations for the two best wine tours from Bordeaux. You can read all my other recommendations in my article about Bordeaux’s best wine tours.
A full day to Saint Emilion
Go on the Saint-Emilion Full-Day Wine Tour from Bordeaux for a comprehensive and enriching wine adventure. This tour takes you through the picturesque vineyards of Saint-Emilion, a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its exceptional wines. The 8-hour tour includes a visit (and wine tasting of course) at 3 Châteaux and also Free time to discover Saint-Emilion.
Throughout the day, you’ll get to witness the artistry behind the production ‘from wine to bottle’, sharing the secrets of the winemaking craft and making the technical details accessible and enjoyable for participants of all levels of wine expertise.
Perfect for wine enthusiasts seeking a comprehensive and immersive experience, this tour provides historical and cultural explanations, tasting, and exploring of the rich culture of Saint-Emilion. You can book the full-day tour from Bordeaux here.
A half day to Medoc
The half-day wine trip to Medoc will allow you to visit two wineries from different appellations in Medoc and observe the differences between the more prestigious chateaux and smaller family-owned properties. All the chateaux on the tours are either Grand Cru classé or Cru Bourgeois, so good wine is guaranteed.
The tour is usually offered in the tourist season in the morning and the afternoon. You can book the tour here.
A street art tour of Bordeaux
Bordeaux prides itself on a very dynamic street art culture and talented artists that decorate many murals in the city. In the city center, which is a UNESCO site, painting on most of the buildings is strictly forbidden. Nevertheless, the city does a wonderful job of incorporating street art where it’s possible. That’s why you will find the huge animals of AMO, the colorful faces of Alber, and the expressive characters of Nasty on hotel buildings and shutters in the city.
However, if you want to discover the real richness of Bordeaux’s street art you need to leave the city center and explore other neighborhoods. There you will discover vibrant murals and eye-catching graffiti, showcasing the creativity of local and international artists.
A Street Art Guided Tour in Bordeaux is the perfect way to dive into this lively street art scene. During this 1,5 hour tour, you’ll see the urban landscape of Bordeaux through its most colorful creative side. The advantage here is that the guide helps you uncover hidden gems of art you might miss on your own.
If you’re curious about street art and want a relaxed and enjoyable way to explore Bordeaux, this tour is for you. No art degree is required—just an open mind and a love for urban expression. Book your tour 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:
*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 🙂