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Now that the French ‘vacances’ are knocking on the door, Bordeaux is officially turning into one big music, dance and art festival. Starting July, plenty of festivals will take place all over the metropole. You can go dancing on the quai, listen to free music concerts on the other side of the Garone or listen to classical music concerts in different locations around Bordeaux. Apart from that, there are street art and food truck festivals and let’s not forget the summer sales!!!  Here’s the list of things to do in Bordeaux in July 2019. For many more events in and around Bordeaux don’t forget to follow the weekend list on the blog. 

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. The dancing events will take place on the quai almost daily from mid- July to mid – August. 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

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, however, 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

Bordeaux Metropolitan Summer

Like every year Bordeaux Metropolitan invites you to discover the city and the area around it through a series of cultural events and activities. More than 100 activities of music, dance, public reading, theater, circus and gastronomy will take place between June 20 and August 31. These events are so widely spread across the metropolitan area of Bordeaux that you are guaranteed to discover places (especially parks) that you have never heard of before: Parc d’Observation in Floirac, Parc du Viver in Merignac, Parc Camponac in Pessac and many more. Check out the full program of events here.

When:  Daily from June 20 to August 31 / Where: Bordeaux Metropolitan – check out the exact location of every event in the program.

Summer Sales

Soldes d’été are six weeks in the summer during which you can find really good deals on clothes, shoes, electric supplies, toys and more. Les soldes d’été will take place from June 26 to August 6.

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 arts festival that takes 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

Celebrate the 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:

14 Juillet Bordeaux
  • 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

Apart from the traditional national day events, plenty of other parties will take place on July 13-14 to celebrate this day. Follow the blog for updates.

Bordeaux Food-truck Festival

This is the biggest gathering of food trucks in the region of Nouvelle Aquitaine. Tens of different food trucks will be spread around the Gironde department in five events that will take place between June and September. This festival aims to mix street food with the finesse of the wine world. As part of this gastronomic event, visitors can taste the wines of the hosting châteaux and the specialties of food coming from all corners of the world: French, Italian, Brazilian and many more. The program of the festival also includes free concerts, exhibitions, escape games, activities for kids and more. This month two food truck events will take place in the Medoc region.
* Food truck festival at the Festival de Jazz de Lesparre on July 19-20. See more details here. (When: July 19-20 / Where:  Lesparre-Médoc).
* Food truck festival at Chateau Castera on July 21st – see more details here. (When: July 21 / Where:  Rue du Bourg, 33340 Saint-Germain-d’Esteuil)

The events are free but require prior reservation – you can do it here. See all the details about the five weekends of the Bordeaux food truck festival here.

Les Nouvelles Saisons – music festival

Les Nouvelles Saisons is a classic music festival taking place in Bordeaux on July 16-25 in three locations: Cour Mably, Cathédrale de Bordeaux and la Grande Poste. The festival was created by the violoncellist Jeremy Genet and the composer Christian Lauba offering a great variety of musical styles (baroque, romantic, modern and more). For more details and tickets click here.

When: July 16-25 / Where: Different location in Bordeaux

La Bataille de Castillon

La Bataille de Castillon is a spectacle taking place during more than 10 evenings in the summer, replicating the famous fight from 1453. Castillon-la-Bataille, the town where the show takes place also hosts many activities and events revolving the big show: tours of the city, exhibitions and workshops of medieval art and more. For more info and tickets click here.

BATAILLE-de-CASTILLONjpg405
When: July 19 – August 24 / Where: Association 1453, Mairie de Castillon, 33350 CASTILLON-LA-BATAILLE

Braderie d’été

Every summer the main streets of Bordeaux are getting filled with stands of clothes, shoes, toys, house supplies and more – this is the Bordeaux summer Braderie. If you’re in town for winter sales take the opportunity to check out the stands of more than 250 merchants on rue Porte Dijeaux, rue Sainte Catherine and rue des Trois Conils. The Braderie will take place on July 17-20. For more details click here.

When: July 17-20 / Where: Center of Bordeaux: rue Porte Dijeaux, rue Sainte Catherine and rue des Trois Conils

Arcachon En Scene

Archachon en Scene is a popular music festival that brings big French and international acts to perform in this beautiful town. This year’s program includes Amir and Kimberose (July 29) and GIMS  (August 2). For more info check out the facebook page of the event, for tickets click here.

When: July 28 29, August 2 / Where: Stade Vélodrome d’Arcachon

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 will take place on June 30 at Square Dom Bedos and the second one on July 7 at Jardin public. The locations of the following events have not been published yet. For more details click here.

When:  June 30, July 7, July 14. July 28 / Where: Follow the website for the exact location

Quai des Sports

This is the 11th edition of this fun sportive event that takes 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 for 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

Puppet Theater for Kids

Le Guignol Guérin, founded in 1853, is the oldest puppetry show in France with daily spectacles for kids in Parc Bordelais during the summer  (July and August). The show usually starts at 16:00 but can be canceled or postponed when it’s raining or getting too hot. Read more about the theater here.

When: Daily during July – August at 16:00 / Where: Parc Bordelais

Two street art exhibitions

Two amazing street art exhibitions are going to presented at the Institut Bernard Magrez throughout the summer. The first one (from May 28 to September 1st) is called Instincts, an exhibition by Mika which is one of Bordeaux’s most prominent street artists. The other one (July 5 – October 6) is an exhibition by one of the most famous street artists in the world, Seth (Julien Mallard) who also happens to be French. For more details click here.

When: All summer  / Where: 16 rue de Tivoli, Bordeaux

Rivages et Vertigo Sea – a new exhibition

The Base sous marine is hosting a new and intriguing exhibition starting June 21. It is, in fact, a combination of two exhibitions addressing the themes of sea and shore. Rivages is a photography exhibition by the artist Harry Gruyaert and VertigoSea is a video installation by the director John Akomfrah. For more information about the exhibition click here.

When:  June 21 – September 22 / Where: Boulevard Alfred Daney, 33000 Bordeaux, France

Dance at la guingette chez Alriq

La Guinguette chez Alriq is a tavern at the Bastide neighborhood, on the rive droite of the Garonne. During the summer the place is full with 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 concerts program of July click here.

When: all summer / Where: ZA Quai des Queyries, Port Bastide, 33100 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.

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.

Bordeaux is located in one of the most beautiful areas in France, surrounded by charming villages, impressive chateaux, vineyards and sandy beaches. When visiting the city, many are looking for day trips from Bordeaux that will allow them to discover the area without driving for hours. And you can indeed easily fill your visits here with amazing day trips from the city. However, many of these places are hidden secrets to most tourists and information is not easy to find online. That’s why I decided to make this list of places to visit around Bordeaux. I tried to make it as diverse as I could to help anyone find its perfect spot for a day trip. It’s important to notice that most of these locations are not very accessible by public transport, so renting a car is recommended. For those of you that prefer not to go by car, be sure to check up my article about the best day trips from Bordeaux by train.

Wine related day tips around Bordeaux

Saint Émilion

Saint Émilion is probably the most famous wine related day trip from Bordeaux. Its picturesque center, densely filled with wine shops and fancy restaurants, turns this little town into a prominent attraction for tourists in the area. Saint Émilion is mostly famous for its wines so a visit to one of the châteaux (wineries) is a must. The charming town, however, is worth a visit even if you’re not a wine lover. Important historical monuments can be found in abundance in this medieval town, some of which date back as far as the 11th and 12th centuries. One of the famous monuments is the 11th-century Monolithic church, carved from a limestone cliff, it’s the largest underground church in Europe.

best wineries in Saint Emilion

There is a direct train from Bordeaux to Saint Émilion however if you want to visit some of the distant chateaux in the region, coming by car is recommended. There is just one problem is Saint Émilion, there are just too many beautiful spots to visit and it’s really hard to choose just a few! In my article about the best wineries to visit in Saint Emilion, I cover both the most interesting chateaux and the most welcoming wine producing families in the area so check it out!

The Medoc Wine Route

The Medoc is one of the most famous wine regions in the world, attracting many wine enthusiasts to the Medoc wine route. The famous route is a never-ending road (the D2) leading from the northern part of Bordeaux Metropole (start in Blanquefort) to almost the northernmost point in Gironde. An infinite landscape of vineyards adorned with mesmerizing châteaux. A view that will leave you speechless even if you don’t like wine.

Chateau d'Arsac in the Medoc
Chateau d’Arsac by lost in Bordeaux

There are about 600 châteaux along the Medoc wine trail. You probably won’t have time to visit most of them, but luckily, some of the most beautiful ones can be seen from the road so all you have to do is stop for a quick photo. The most famous wine houses (like Château Margeaux and Château Mouton Rothschild) are open only to professionals but don’t worry, there are plenty of beautiful properties you can visit. Some of the prettiest and more interesting are Château d’Arsac, Château Siran, Château Beychevelle and Château Cos d’Estournelle. If you don’t mind going a little further to the north I highly recommend visiting the last chateau on the trail, Château Loudenne. This charming (it’s pink!) old château has a huge garden and its own port so apart from the wine visit, you can have a lovely picnic or take a boat tour. Make sure you book your visit to the wineries before going there as it can get quite busy in the summer.

Cognac

Tasting Cognac
Tasting Cognac – Lost in Bordeaux

Wine is not the only alcoholic drink the Southwest of France is known for! Bordeaux is located about 120 km (75 miles) from Cognac, an area that produces one of the most luxurious spirits in the world. The town of Cognac, located in the Charente department, is a charming and interesting place that’s worth a visit even if you’re not a big fan of Cognac. The old center of the city is characterized by narrow paved streets with houses dating from the 16th and 17th century. Some of the most famous Cognac houses are located right in the city center, among them, you’ll find Hennessy, Martell and Rémy Martin.  All of them offer tours which normally include a visit to the cellars and Cognac tastings. You can read more about Cognac in my post about the 10 best things to do in Cognac. While it’s possible to get to Cognac by train, it’s quite a long journey so going by car is recommended.

Discover the sandy beaches around Bordeaux

Arcachon

dune du Pilat - one day trips from Bordeaux
Dune du Pilat – Lost in Bordeaux

Arcachon is one of the most popular summer destinations in the southwest of France. A seaside resort town renowned for its beautiful beaches, impressive architecture and vibrant atmosphere. Within an hour drive from Bordeaux you get  to swim in the ocean, eat oysters and see beautiful villas. A day trip from Bordeaux to Arcachon can easily take a whole day but many tend to combine it with a visit to the Dune du Pilat, the tallest sand dune in Europe and one of the most popular destinations in France.

I recently wrote a post about the best things to do and see in and around the town of Arcachon, which is one of the main tourist destinations on the Arcachon Bay. So take a look at it before you head to the area. You can reach Arcachon by train, however coming by car will allow you to easily access the dune and to visit other places on the bay, such as Gujan Mestas and the Teich bird reserve.

Soulac sur mer

This charming little town is one of the highlights of the Medoc region. It’s located on the very top of the Medoc Atlantique, about 90 km (55 miles) from Bordeaux. If this is too far for you, you can combine it with the wine trail in Medoc which I mentioned above.

Soulac sur Mer is a resort town that resembles Arcachon, with the city center looking like Ville d’été and the impressive 18th-century villas that look just like Ville d’Hiver. Soulac has some of the most beautiful beaches on the Atlantic coast, attracting many French tourists to the area. There are plenty of cute little restaurants both in the center and on the promenade. Seafood is a very important part of the local cuisine and so many restaurants will serve oysters and large shrimps.

Villas in Soulac sur Mer
Villas in Soulac sur Mer

When there, take a map in the tourist office and go on a discovery tour of the most interesting villas. I highly recommend coming here at the beginning of June during the festive weekend of Soulac 1900, a really fun Jazz festival.

Cap Ferret

oysters in Cap Ferret

Cap Ferret is a charming town located on the Western part of Bassin d’Arcachon (Arcachon Bay) and has been traditionally known as a summer getaway for the French upper class. Although it’s been recently gaining popularity among tourists visiting the south of France, it has yet to lose its relaxing, uncrowded beach village atmosphere.

Cap Ferret is shaped like a narrow tongue with a long string of beautiful sandy beaches on the Atlantic ocean and a view on the eastern side of the Bassin. It’s also one of the main producers of oysters in France due to its location on the bay that creates perfect conditions for the ostréiculture industry. Dozens of oyster cabins and restaurants with a view on the Bassin give Cap Ferret a unique character that’s worth a visit and a taste.

The Biscarrosse lake

Lac de Biscarrosse
Lac de Biscarrosse – lost in Bordeaux

This one is a great option for a day in nature. If you don’t mind driving a bit longer, the beautiful Biscarrosse lake is located about 70 km (45 miles) from Bordeaux. It is one of the biggest lakes in the area with plenty of amazing beaches and pine forest surrounding it. As it’s so big there are several beaches to choose from, some of which are Plage Navarrose and Plage de Caton. Aquapark, the biggest inflatable water park in France is located on Plage Maguide. If you’re into surfing, head to the beaches on the Atlantic coast. You can also start the day with a biking trail on the canal, connecting the big and little lakes.

A day trip to beautiful villages

Bazas

Bazas is a beautiful town with lovely people and a great heritage embodying the Gascony culture. It’s located at the eastern edge of the Gascon Landes forest, about 65 km (40 miles) from Bordeaux. A stroll in the historic center will allow you to discover the rich history of the city and its past role as an important bishopric. Its beautiful architecture includes the gothic cathedral (recognized as a World Heritage site by UNESCO), old mansions, gardens and historic monuments.

Bazas
Bazas by lost in Bordeaux

Heritage is not the only attraction of this charming town, it’s actually quite famous for its gastronomy, especially its meat. You can enjoy the Bazas meat in one of the restaurants that are perfectly located on the main square. True meat lovers could also buy meat in one of the many butcher shops in the center. If you’re looking for a full gastronomic experience to discover the cuisine of the region, there’s one tour you shouldn’t miss. Anne, an American living is Bazas is an expert on everything related to food in the region. She knows all the farmers and chefs around Bazas and a guided tour with her is an experience you don’t want to miss. Check out her website.

Blaye

Blaye
Blaye – by Lost in Bordeaux

Blaye is one of the most interesting places in the Bordeaux area, located only about 50 km (30 miles) from the center of Bordeaux. This little town has a long military and strategic history and today it’s mostly known for its remarkable Citadel and red wine. The Citadel and the city walls are recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and you can easily spend half a day discovering the old city walls. The entrance to the Citadel is free and you can explore the streets and ramparts admiring the view of the Gironde estuary which can be seen from the top.

Blaye is also known for its red wine. You can visit the Maison du Vin on the main street (12 Cours Vauban), where they would gladly introduce you to the wines of the area and the chateaux you can visit around Blaye. The easiest way to get there is by car or by ferry if you’re coming from the other side of the Gironde estuary. The ferry is leaving from Lamarque.

Visit castles in the South of Gironde

South Gironde is a magical area with a landscape colored with history, tradition and character. It’s a rural area, abundant with beautiful medieval villages and ancient castles. One of the most impressive castles is Château de la Brede which is located only 30 minutes from Bordeaux. It is a 14th-century castle that was built in a Gothic style. The house has a historic importance as it was the residence of Montesquieu. The château is open for visits from April to November (consult their opening hours here).

Château de la Brede
Château de la Brede

Another interesting castle to visit is château de Cadillac located in a charming little town that goes by the same name. The chateau is very impressive and is best known for being a women’s prison starting from the French revolution until 1950. Now it serves as a museum that mostly displays the life of the royals who were occupying the estate before it became a prison. However, on the last floor, you can actually still see the cells and an exhibition about the prison.

Bergerac

Bergerac is one of the main cities in the Dordogne area, quite close to the eastern border of the Gironde department. While it’s not as appealing as some of the small beautiful villages in Dordogne, it’s a lively city with a lot of charm to it. In the city center, you will find plenty of restaurants, a great market and long shopping streets. Bergerac is seated on the banks of the Dordogne giving it a beautiful view of the river. You can take a tour on the traditional boats (les gabarres) and discover the history of the city as well as the natural reserve around it.

The area is also known for its wine and you can combine your trip there with a visit to a château. One of the most famous ones is the beautiful Château de Monbazillac, which is located only 15 minutes away. It’s known for its sweet white wine. If you’re going to Bergerac on a Saturday, don’t miss the great market in Saint Foy la Grande which is just on the way from Bordeaux.

Château de Monbazillac
Château de Monbazillac – lost in 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 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.

When staying for more than a weekend in the area, many tourists are looking for day trips from Bordeaux. And rightly so, as Gironde (Bordeaux’s department) is one of the most fascinating areas in France, rich with beaches, beautiful villages, nature and heritage. There are plenty of beautiful locations around Bordeaux and some are even accessible by public transport. Thus, in order to help those who don’t want to rent a car, I gathered a list of the 10 best day trips from Bordeaux you can do by train.

* If you do rent a car you have much more options for day trips around Bordeaux – check out my article about day trips with a car.

All the tickets to the suggested destinations can be bought directly at the Gare Saint Jean train station in Bordeaux. The only one I would recommend ordering ahead of time is Angouleme, only because it’s on the direct line to Paris and the tickets might be expensive if you buy them last minute at the train station. So let’s start discovering the Bordeaux area by train with this list of the 10 best day trips around Bordeaux.

Arcachon and Dune du Pilat

Dune du Pilat
Dune du Pilat by: Lost in Bordeaux

Arcachon is one of the most popular summer destinations in the southwest of France. A seaside resort town renowned for its beautiful beaches, impressive architecture and vibrant atmosphere. The town is divided into four districts, named after the four seasons. Ville d’Été, covering the touristic center, main beach, restaurants and boutiques. Ville d’Hiver – the historic center adorned with glamorous 19th century villas. Ville de Printemps in the west is closer to the most beautiful and less crowded beaches and Ville d’Automne is the amazing port area of Arcachon packed with great sea food restaurants. A day trip from Bordeaux to Arcachon can easily take a whole day but many tend to combine it with a visit to the Dune du Pilat, the tallest sand dune in Europe and one of the most popular destinations in France. Words can’t describe how impressive this sand monster is, you’ll have to climb it to fully appreciate its beauty.
For more info: www.arcachon.com
*If you want to learn more about Arcachon check out my guide to what to do and eat in the Arcachon.

How to get there by train? There is a direct train to the center of Arcachon from the Gare Saint Jean train station (or Pessac train station). To continue to Dune du Pilat, take bus number 1 from the train station in Arcachon. The train leaves Bordeaux every 30 minutes from 6 am to 11:30 pm.

Saint Émilion

Day trip from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion
Saint Emilion by lost in Bordeaux

Saint Émilion is probably the most famous wine related day trip out of Bordeaux. Its picturesque center, densely filled with wine shops and fancy restaurants, turns this little town into a prominent attraction for tourists in the area.

Saint Emilion is mostly famous for its wines, with four appellations d’origine controlee (AOC) – Saint Émilion, Saint Émilion Grand Cru, Lussac Saint Émilion and Puisseguin Saint Émilion. A visit to one of the châteaux and participating in some wine tasting is a “must” when coming to the area. If you’re having a hard time choosing a wine château for a visit, check out my article about the best wineries to visit in Saint Emilion.

The charming town, however, is worth a visit even if you’re not a wine lover. Important historical monuments can be found in abundance in this medieval town, some of which date back as far as the 11th and 12th centuries. One of the famous monuments is the 11th century Monolithic church, carved from a limestone cliff, it’s the largest underground church in Europe. Check out the tourist office’s website for all the information about châteaux in the Saint Émilion area – http://www.saint-emilion-tourisme.com/

How to get there by train? You can get to Saint Emilion by train from the Saint Jean station in Bordeaux. There’s a 15 minutes walk from the station to the city center.

Another option is to take a guided tour that picks you up from Bordeaux and brings you to Saint-Emilion and back. Here are some of the best guided tours from Bordeaux to Saint-Emilion:

La Réole

day tip from Bordeaux to La Reole
La Réole – by Lost in Bordeaux

La Réole is a small hilly town situated on the banks of the Garonne river about 50 km from Bordeaux. Although the town developed around a monastery founded in the 7th or 8th century, it’s golden era was in medieval times when it became the second largest city in the region after Bordeaux. Still today, it’s one of the biggest towns in the south of the Gironde department with plenty of interesting events and a very lively weekly market on Saturdays. Get lost in the narrow charming streets of the historic center of La Réole and let the beautiful architecture take you back in time.
For more info: http://www.lareole.fr/

How to get there by train? It takes about 40 minutes to get from Bordeaux to La Réole train station. The train leaves from Gare Saint Jean every two hours.

Wine tasting in Margaux

Visiting châteaux in the Médoc area is definitely easier by car, but if you prefer going by train that’s totally doable. You can always do this day trip the DIY way. A train from Bordeaux will bring you to the center of Margaux in the Haut Médoc wine making region. Margaux is also the name of one of the most famous wine appellation d’origine which includes châteaux in the village itself and several villages around it. Some of the wine châteaux are within a walking distance from the train station allowing you to have the route du vin experience without renting a car.

Here are the names of several recommended wine châteaux which are close to the train station (all require prior reservation):

  • Château Lascombes: 1 Cours de Verdun, 33460 Margaux
  • Château Marquis de Terme: 3 Route de Rauzan, 33460 Margaux
  • Château Ferriere: 33bis Rue de la Tremoille, 33460 Margaux
  • Château Les Barraillots: 4 Rue Corneillan, 33460 Margaux

The beautiful Château Margaux is only a 25 minutes walk from the train station. Unfortunately their tours are only open to professionals but you can walk around the winery, see the beautiful vines and take photos of the famous chateau.

For more info: https://www.margaux-tourisme.com/

How to get there by public transport: There’s a train leaving Bordeaux to Margaux every couple of hours.

Saint Macaire

This is not a familiar destination to most people visiting Bordeaux, but it’s definitely worth a day trip. Saint Macaire is a medieval city located some 50 km from Bordeaux on the banks of the Garonne river. In the 13th and 14th centuries Saint Macaire was one of the most prosperous cities in Aquitaine due to its significant agricultural and trade activities. This charming town with its narrow streets and beautiful old houses is a great place for those looking to get a sense of the region’s heritage.

Saint Macaire is also well known for its white wine. Guided tours are organized by the tourist office, including tastings of the Côtes de Bordeaux Saint-Macaire wines. It’s really worth visiting Saint Macaire at the end of August when the Fêtes médiévales takes place and the little town is getting very lively with amazing costumes, music, medieval games and more.
For more info: https://www.tourisme-sud-gironde.com/patrimoine/notre-territoire/saint-macaire/

How to get there by public transport? You can get to Saint Macaire by train from the Saint Jean station in Bordeaux. In the middle of the week, however, the train leaves very early in the morning and the next one leaves only in the evening. Several trains are running between Bordeaux and Saint Macaire on Saturdays so this is the recommended day to go if you want to get there by public transport. A more flexible option would be to get to Langon, from which there are more frequent trains from Bordeaux and then take a taxi (it’s a 10 minutes ride from Langon). Or if you have a bike you can take it with you on the train to Langon and then ride about 15 minutes to Saint Macaire.

Libourne

day trip to libourne
Libourne by Lost in Bordeaux

Libourne is a beautiful town located at the confluence of the Isle and Dordogne rivers. The city was founded as a Bastide town in the 13th century and has been for many years an important port city central to the wine and wood trade done on the river. Surrounded by some of the world’s most renowned wine labels such as Saint Emilion, Pomerol and Fronsac, it used to play an important role in the economy of the region. While it’s not as attractive as Bordeaux, it’s the main city in northern Gironde and it’s rich with history and beautiful architecture.

Due to its location, many people see it as a wine destination from which you can visit the numerous chateaux in the area. But this city has more to offer and is worth a separate visit. You can start your visits at Place Abel-Surchamp, the main square of the city hosting the outdoor market every Tuesday, Friday and Sunday. This is one of the main markets in the area, attracting people from all the little towns around Libourne. It’s recommended to visit the city on one of the market days as it really lifts the atmosphere. You can see a lot of interesting buildings on the little streets leading to the main square, some worth mentioning are Rue Victor Hugo and Rue Fonneuve. Don’t forget to take a walk on the beautiful quais of the Isle river.
For more info: http://www.tourisme-libournais.com/

How to get there by train? There’s a train from Bordeaux to Libourne every 20-30 minutes.

Sainte Foy la Grande

Sainte-Foy-la-Grande
Sainte-Foy-la-Grande by Lost in Bordeaux

This beautiful bastide town, situated in the north east of Gironde, is one of the most charming towns in the Libournais area. The Dordogne river runs through the town, unusual for bastides which are typically situated on hilltops. Many of the buildings in the center of this medieval town date back to the 15th century and give St. Foy la Grande it’s charming look. It’s a small lively town with little cafés on the main central Place du Marché square. Although it’s not a very touristy destination it does get quite busy during Saturday’s market. The market is one of the biggest in the area and it’s the recommended day to visit Sainte Foy la Grande. If you want to spend the whole day there you can cross the river to the other side and visit a small river beach called Plage des Bardoulets.
For more info: http://www.tourisme-dordogne-paysfoyen.com/

How to get there by train? It takes about an hour by train from Saint Jean station to Sainte Foy la Grande.

Gujan-Mestras

Gujan-Mestras is a little town known as the capital of oyster farming on the Bassin d’Arcachon. It has seven oyster ports which you can visit and watch oyster farmers work. You can even join one of the farmers and take part in their work for a few hours. Find the list of farmers providing that experience on the tourist office website. One “must” stop is the “Maison de Huitre”, an interactive museum where you discover everything about oyster farming. And finally, don’t forget to taste the freshest oysters in one of the cabanes along the coast line, many of which are located at the famous Port de Larros. If you’re planning to spend the whole day there, check out the Plage de la Hume. For more info on what to do in
Gujan-Mestras check out: https://www.gujanmestras.com

How to get there by train? Gujan-Mestras is one of the stations on the way from Bordeaux to Arcachon. The train leaves every 30 minutes from Bordeaux Saint Jean or Pessac Centre stations.

Visit Châteaux in Bordeaux by tram or bus

Many people are looking for châteaux in the Médoc region or next to Saint Emilion, but actually there are some famous châteaux in Bordeaux metropole and you can easily reach them by tram or by bus.

Some of the more familiar ones are:
Château Pape Clément in Pessac
Take line B to Pessac Centre and then continue 20 minutes by foot or take a direct bus from Place Tourny in Bordeaux (line 4). For more info click here. Château Haut brion in Pessac
You can reach it by bus 4 from Place Tourny in Bordeaux.
For more info click here.
Château du Taillan in Le Taillan-Médoc
You can reach it by bus 5N from Place Tourny in Bordeaux.
For more info click here.
Château Saint Ahon In Blanquefort
Take line C to the Blanquefort train station and then continue 20 minutes by foot or take bus 29 from the Blanquefort train station.
For more info click ere.
All of them have amazing wine and are beautiful destinations, be sure to make reservations before you go.

Angoulême

One of the biggest cities in the south west region is Angoulme. The town is located on a plateau overlooking the Charente river, attracting many tourists thanks to its beautiful historic center and vibrant cultural life. Stroll the streets to explore the historic part of the city and the beautiful boulevards with their view on the original ramparts. It’s a vibrant city with plenty of cafes and restaurants, a big market, museums and historic monuments worth visiting. It’s also famous for its comics festival taking places in January and its interesting comics museum. You can admire the comics art by just strolling the streets. There are 20 murals of comics and illustrations on buildings in almost every neighborhood around the city.
For more info: http://www.angouleme-tourisme.com/

How to get there by train? The TGV train to Paris stops in Angouleme, so even though it’s located 130 km from Bordeaux, you can still get there from Bordeaux in about 35 minutes.

If you are have more time and you’re looking for a weekend destination to go to by train check out my two posts about things to do in Biarritz and in Cognac.

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.


 If you want to discover the Medoc area, one of France’s most famous wine routes, this is an excellent time for a visit.  On April 6-7, the region celebrates the beginning of spring with an open doors weekend, hosted by the Maison du Tourisme et du Vin de Pauillac. It’s an incredible event that allows you to visit most of the chateaux of the Médoc region and taste a lot of wine. 

Chateaux Livran

Le Week-end Portes Ouvertes (open doors weekend) in Médoc is an annual event that officially starts the tourist season in the wine region of southwest France. The first time that vineyards have collectively decided to open their doors to the public was in 1991 and it was an immediate success. The Week-end Portes Ouvertes has seen tens of thousands of visitors and the open house tradition was copied to other chateaux in France. This tradition has grown so much that it became a challenge to pick the best chateaux to visit during this weekend.

More than 70 châteaux from eight different AOC (appellation d’origine contrôléewill participate in the Portes Ouvertes weekend:  MEDOC, HAUT MEDOC, PAUILLAC, SAINT ESTEPHE,  SAINT JULIEN, LISTRAC, MOULIS and MARGAUX. The AOC is the French certification for geographical indications of agricultural products such as wine and cheeses. Click here to see which châteaux are participating in the event.

Although visiting the cellars and wine tastings are still at the heart of the event, today the various chateaux try to attract visitors with additional activities such as music, wine workshops, food, art expos and games for kids. If you don’t have a specific chateau in mind you can choose one according to the proposed activities. I gathered a list of activities to help you choose one:

Fine dining

Wines are not the only product the Médoc region does well, it is also famous for its gastronomic specialties, such as: l’agneau de Pauillac (Pauillac lamb), l’entrecôte cuite aux sarments (entrecote cooked with wine shoots), les chocolats de Mademoiselle de Margaux and more. In addition to in-house restaurants, some of the chateaux offer gourmet markets, food trucks and bars. So, besides tasting great wine you are guaranteed to have a great culinary experience.

These are the châteaux offering a lunch or a dinner during the portes ouvertes: Saint-Hilaire – Saint-Christoly – Pierre de Montignac-  Chantelys – Tour des Termes -St-Estèphe – Le Crock- Julia – Hourtin Ducasse – Lanessan- La tour Carnet -Reverdi – Baudan – Chasse Spleen – Haut-Breton Larigaudière – Desmirail – Kirwan -Siran – Larrieu-Terrefort – Les Barraillots –  Maucamps – Paloumey – Agassac – Ségur – Saint Ahon – Taillan

Choose one of these châteaux from the menu in this link to see the ones offering dining options.

Art in the Châteaux

Some of the châteaux will host exhibitions of paintings, sculptures and photographs of both local and international artists.

In Châteaux Saint Hilaire, for example, two Medoc artists will present their aquarelle paintings and photographs. Châteaux Chasse Spleen will open its art center that includes modern and contemporary art works. And in Châteaux Castera, one of the most ancient chateaux in the region, you could see the permanent sculpture exposition “Les bouteilles de vincent libecq”. 

castera chateaux
photo by: castera chateaux

These are the chateâux displaying art during the portes ouvertes: Saint-Hilaire – La Tour de By – Saint-Christoly – Chantelys – Castera – Tour des Termes – Tour Sieujean – Larose Trinaudon – Lanessan – de Lauga – Arnauld- Chasse Spleen – Brillette – La tour de Bessan – Prieure Lichine – Siran – Les Barraillots – Bellevue de Tayac – Cantemerle – Paloumey – Ségur – Saint Ahon

Choose one of these châteaux from the menu in this link to see the exhibitions displayed in every château.

Visiting with kids

Many people take the chance to make the châteaux visit a family trip, and rightly so as kids can also appreciate the charming châteaux and their gardens.  Nonetheless, having to look after your little kids while wine tasting can definitely undermine the experience. That is why some of the châteaux propose activities to entertain your kids while you are tasting wine.

Château Saint- Esthepe offers a coloring corner for kids. In château Julia you will find a trampoline and swings. Château Hourtin-Ducasse will entertain your kids with activities like coloring, ping pong and comics. And château Lamothe Bergeron will hold a creative workshop and grape juice tasting. 

These are the châteaux offering activities for kids : Saint-Hilaire – Saint-Christoly – Livran – St Estephe – Le Crock – Julia- Hourtin-Ducasse – Larose Trintaudon – Camensac- Lanessan – Lamothe Bergeron – Fonréaud – Brillete- Bellevue de Tayac – Haut-Breton Larigaudière – Marquis de Terme – Prieuré Lichine -Prieuré Lichine – Siran- Les Barraillots – Paloumey – Agassac – Ségur – Saint Ahon – du Taillan

Choose one of these châteaux from the menu in this link to see the activities they propose.

Getting to know the wine world

Wine is a multi-faceted experience and many of the châteaux would like you to experience more than just wine tasting. Some organize workshops and activities revolving around the production of wine. 

These are all the châteaux offering workshops and wine-related activities: Carmenère – Saint-Hilaire  – Les Ormes Sorbet – Chantelys – Loudenne – Tronquoy Lalande – Clerc Milon – Pédesclaux- Hourtin-Ducasse – Camensac – Lamothe Bergeron – Arnauld – Anthonic – Haut-Breton Larigaudière – La Tour de Bessan – Siran- Belle Vue – Paloumey – Ségur

Choose one of these châteaux from the menu in this link to see the activities they propose.

Most of the châteaux require a prior reservation for the wine tastings and cellar tours, so if you found a château you would like to discover this weekend, hurry up and make a reservation by email or phone. All of the details, including the address, the activities proposed, the hours and contact details appear on the individual web page of each of the participating châteaux. For more info, simply go to the site of the event and choose a château by name to see its corresponding details.

If you’re coming to Bordeaux especially for this occasion, be sure to check up my list of recommended hotels in Bordeaux center.
If you want to get updates about the portes ouvertes, join my email list here and I’ll send up-to-date info closer to the event.

Enjoy your glass of wine and the official beginning of Spring in the region!

We’re back again to a weekend filled with interesting and fun events. And the timing is great as it’s supposed to be a bit cold this weekend, so going to the beach isn’t going to be an option. So what do we have this weekend? A lot of wine, coffee and sales of clothes, bicycles and antiques. Here’s the list of things to do this weekend in Bordeaux (April 5-7).

Open doors in Médoc

To celebrate the beginning of the spring the Maison du Tourisme et du Vin de Pauillac will hold an open doors weekend on April 6-7. During the weekend you can visit plenty of châteaux in the Medoc region and taste some of the finest wines in the world. For details about all the participating chateaux click here.

If you want to know more about the event, you should read my post about the Open doors weekend.

When: April 6-7 / Where:  different locations (see the site)

Vide-greniers des Bordelais

One of my favorite things to do in France is to wander around vide greniers (the French version of a garage sale) discover what French people hold in their homes and buy a lot of stuff I don’t really need at ridiculously low prices. On April 7, more than 20 vide-greniers will take place all over the city. The vide grenier on Barrière Judaïque will take place on April 6-7. Check out the list of all the locations here.

When: April 7 / Where:  different locations (see the site)

Tauzia Fête les Jardins

Tauzia is a gardening festival that takes place on April 5-7 at the Tauzia chateau in Gradignan. The event, which received a great amount of interest from the Bordelaise public last year, is full of events and activities for gardening enthusiasts. It will bring together more than 80 exhibitors specialized in the world of plants: plant producers, landscape designers, artists, collectors, horticulturists and in general people with exceptional knowledge of plants. You will be able to buy plants, flowers and shrubs in the beautiful English park of Chateau Tauzia and also get advice from the specialists on how to maintain your garden. See more details here.

When: April 5-7 / Where: Château de Tauzia, 216 Cours du Général de Gaulle, 33170 Gradignan

Festival Porcelaine caféinée

A fun café festival is about to take place this weekend in Bordeaux (April 5-6). The festival is dedicated to the famous Limoges Porcelain and to the growing scene of specialty coffee in Bordeaux. During these two days many coffee workshops, meetings and interesting conferences will take place at the Rez de Chaussee (a creative space in Chartrons) as well as in many coffee places in Bordeaux such as Cofete B, L’alchimiste, Kuro, Cafe Laiton and more. For more info and registration to the workshops click here.

I have recently written an article about some of these great coffee shops, so if you want to know more about the coffee scene in Bordeaux then click here.

piha cafe bordeaux
photo by: Laura Macias
When: April 5-6 / Where: different locations around the city

Le Grand Air

A big skateboard competition will take place this Saturday (April 6) in Darwin. The competition includes three categories: Junior (- de 18 ans),  Senior (+ de 18 ans) and Master (+ de 40 ans) and it will start at 10:30. The event will open its doors to the wide public at 13:30 for a fun afternoon with music and different skateboard related activities. For more info click here.

When: Apri 6 / Where: 87 quai des Queyries, 33100 Bordeaux

Convention Tattoo Bordeaux

The international tattoo convention in Bordeaux will take place on the weekend of April 6-7 in Hangar 14, which is located at Quai des Chartrons. The program includes a tattoo contest, expositions, live concerts and different activities such as juggling and break-dancing. For more info click here.

When: April 6-7 / Where: Hangar 14, 115 Quai des Chartrons, 33000 Bordeaux

Marché des Créateurs Recycleurs

This weekend (April 5-7) a creative market will take place at the Atelier d’éco Solidaire. All the designers selling their creations at the event create their products from recycled materials so it’s a very environmentally friendly event. For more details click here.

When: April 5-7 / Where: 7 rue de la Motte Picquet, 33300 Bordeaux

Esclave du livre (literature festival)

Esclave du livre is a literature association whose goal is to promote reading and support the creation of new literature. They invite you on April 5-7to take part in a literature festival that will bring together authors and illustrators for debates, public readings, performances and discovering pieces that haven’t been published yet. For more info click here.

When: April 5-7 / Where:  Place Renaudel – Quartier Ste Croix , Bordeaux

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 program and all the details click here.

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

Free museums Sunday

Like in most cities in France, the first Sunday of the month is a free museums day. You have a 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 this Sunday.

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

Bicycle spring sale

Are you looking to buy or sell a bicycle, the big spring bicycle sale is just around the corner. The Bordeaux bicycle stock exchange will take place this Sunday(April 1) at Quai Louis XVIII. Those who wish to sell their bike can do it between 9:30 and 11am and the buyers will be able to start buying after 10am. For more click here. Check on leboncoin before you go, as prices are not always cheap..

When: April 7 (9:30 to 13:30) /Where: Quai Louis XVIII

Marché aux fleurs à Eysines

This Saturday (April 6) the city of Eysines will host its first flower market at la Grande Place du Bourg. For more details click here.

When: April 6 / Where: Grande place du bourg

Buy clothes at the Grande Braderie

Le Relais Gironde will hold a clearance sale this Saturday (April 6) where you can buy clothes, shoes, bags and more. This event is quite big and you can find many interesting and useful items for very cheap prices. For more details click here.

When: Apri 6 / Where: 517 boulevard Alfred Daney, Bordeaux

EXHIBITIONS

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 all artists and more info about the event here.

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

The Reopening of the Museum of Natural History of Bordeaux

After years of renovations the museum of natural history of Bordeaux opened its doors on March 31. Created in 1971, the museum has one of the biggest collections in France with more than a million specimens. Everyone seems to be very excited about it so check it out.

When: Starting March 31 / Where: 5 place Bardineau, 33000 Bordeaux

When art and design take on glass

A new temporary exhibition was inaugurated at the Cité du Vin in March. 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

If you’re into travelling this weekend, get inspired by my post about day trips you can do from Bordeaux by train.

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.

The rentrée is on! with plenty of stuff happening in the city this weekend! if you’re looking for a big event check out the climax festival taking place this weekend. If you’re into more of a local vibe, this weekend is a paradise of activities, from a picnic with your neighbors to a plants sale and a furniture building event. Don’t even get me started on all that is happening around Bordeaux this weekend: the Médoc marathon, a food truck festival, music and cycling festivals and plenty more. Enjoy and please subscribe to my newsletter if you don’t want to miss more of my updates about things to do in Bordeaux.

Events in Bordeaux 

Climax Festival 

The Climax festival taking place in Darwin focuses on environmental issues and climate change. Conferences and debates will take place throughout the four day festival (September 6-9) and will be accompanied by art and cultural activities. Every night, a rich lineup of electronic music will make the festival more attractive and dynamic. This is one of the biggest festivals in the center of Bordeaux and its location only adds to its attractiveness. Take a look at the full program on the site of the festival, for tickets click here.

When: September 6-9
Where: CASERNE DARWIN (87 Quai des Queyries, 33100 Bordeaux) and ROCHER PALMER (1 Rue Aristide Briand, 33152 Cenon)

The March for the Climate

Bordeaux’s Climate March will take place this Saturday (Sep 8) at 12:00. The event will start at le Miroir d’eau with a light picnic. The march itself will begin at 13:00 and will finish at Darwin. The dress code for the event is a white short. For details and updates click here.

When: September 8
Where: Miroir d’eau

Vign en Ville

This is the 3rd edition of Vign en Ville, an event dedicated to the know how of wine making. During the weekend of September 8-9, wine makers from the Bienvenue à la ferme network will teach you all about wine production through a series of workshops and activities. The event will take place in Jardin Public and besides wine activities will include a special lunch (on Sunday) with products coming from different farmers in the area.  The event is free and open to everyone. For more info check out the facebook page of the event.

When: September 8-9
Where: Jardin Public

Get to know your neighbors at the Pique-nique des Quartiers 

Do you ever feel like you have no idea who is living around you? Well this is your chance to socialize a bit with your neighbors. This Friday (Sep 7) Pique-nique des quartiers with take place all around Bordeaux. The picnics were organized by the local associations operating in the neighborhoods. Find the event near you in the list published by the town hall.

Pique-nique des Quartiers 
Credit: Sud Ouest

When: September 7 at 19:00
Where: Different locations in Bordeaux, check out the program

The Pavillon d’été of L’Orangeade

The summer pavilion on le Quai Deschamps on the right bank of the Garonne is a great way to enjoy your evenings during the hot Bordelaise summer days. The pavilion, organized by the Orangeade association, is hosting free music and gastronomy events every Friday and Saturday until September 22. Take a look at the program for this Friday (Sep 7) and for this Saturday (Sep 8).

When: September 7-8, starting 6pm
Where: Quai Deschamps, 33100 Bordeaux

The Medieval Festival in Bouliac

The 20th edition of the Medieval Festival will take place this weekend (Sep 7-8) in Bouliac. The festival will kick off with a medieval night on Friday evening, an event that requires prior reservation (price is 25 euros). The festival which is free to the public will continue with two days of fun activities such as a camp of knights, a street theater, medieval games, a fire show, a market and much more. For more details check out the facebook page and the website of the festival.

medieval festival Bouliac

When: September 7-8
Where: Place Chevelaure, 33270 Bouliac

Fix your furniture or build a new one

Do you have a furniture you love and been wanting to fix for some time now? This is a good opportunity to learn how to do it.  This Saturday (Sep 8) les P’tits Gratteurs association will hold an event called L’ Hôpital des Meubles, where they invite you to come fix your furniture or even build new ones. The association will provide you all the materials you may need and guide you so you can easily realize your project. Fore more info click here.

When: September 8 at 10:00
Where:Place Pierre Renaudel, Bordeaux

The Big Plants Sale

Halle des Chartrons will hold a plants sale this Saturday (Sep 8), starting at 9am. The prices are guaranteed to be quite low (from 2€ to 10€) so it’s a good opportunity to fill your house with winter plants. For more details follow the facebook page of the event.

When: September 8 from 9am to 7pm
Where: 10 Place du Marché Chartrons, 33000 Bordeaux

Buy clothes at the Grande Braderie

Le Relais Gironde will hold a clearance sale this Saturday (Sep 8) where you can buy clothes, shoes, bags and more. This event is quite big and you can find many interesting and useful item for very cheap prices. For more details click here.

grande braderie solidaire Relais Gironde

When: September 8 from 10am to 6pm
Where:517 boulevard Alfred Daney, Bordeaux

Have a drink at the night market

Have a drink at the night market of Halles de Bacalan to celebrate the beginning of the weekend. This Friday (Sep 7) at 18:00 the market will hold an event with music and long tables where you can have a drink and enjoy the tastes of this gastronomic market. Part of the menu (like a cheese plate, tartar and more) will be offered at the price of only 10 €.  For more details click here.

When: September 7 from 6pm
Where: 10 esplanade de pontac, 33300 Bordeaux

Events around Bordeaux 

Medoc Marathon

Running 42km is only a small part of the Medoc Marathon experience. It is mostly about enjoying great wine, food and the great scenery. No wonder that it’s considered the longest marathon in the world. This year the marathon will take place in the vineyards of the Médoc region on September 8 and will include plenty of activities such as: musical breaks, wine tasting stops and eating a steak at the 39th km (try finishing the race after that stop 🙂 ). You don’t have to run to enjoy this event, many activities will take place on the day of the marathon and the day before, follow the program here.  For more info check out the website of the marathon and the facebook page of the event.

When: September 6-8
Where: the Marathon will start in Pauillac

Bordeaux Food truck Festival

This is the biggest gathering of food trucks in the region of Nouvelle Aquitaine, with around 60 food trucks registered to participate in the five events of the festival, which are spread on different dates until the end of September. This festival aims to mix street food with the finesse of the wine world. As part of this gastronomic event, visitors can taste the wines of the hosting châteaux and specialty food coming from all corners of the world: French, Italian, Brazilian and much more. The next food truck event will take place this weekend (September 8-9 ) in Château Léognan. See all the details about the five weekends of the Bordeaux food truck festival here.

When: September 8-9
Where: Château Léognan 88, Chemin du Barp, 33850 Léognan

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 7-9) combines concerts, wine and gastronomy with biking routes taking you to places like Créon, Frontenac, Sauveterre de Guyenne and more. Concerts and gastronomy events will take place in the towns on the bike trail. Most of the concerts are free, some activities (including the shuttle from Bordeaux to Créon) require reservation. See more details and the full program here and updates on the facebook page of the festival.

When: September 7-8
Where: Different places at the Entre-Deux-Mers region (check out the program)

Festival des Gueilles de Bonde in Macau

This is the 16th edition of the Festival des Gueilles de Bonde that will take place Friday and Saturday (Sep 7-8) in Macau, Médoc. The program of this free festival varies from music concerts, street theater and even a big gastronomic market. Check out the program of the festival here.

When: From September 7 at 18:30 to September 8 at 23:30
Where:place de la Mairie, MACAU, 33460

Festival des Coteaux Bordelais

Festival des Coteaux Bordelais is the annual music festival of Fargues Saint-Hilaire (a small town located just a few minutes ride from Bordeaux). The festival will take place this Saturday (Sep 8) at la Plaine de Fargues Saint-Hilaire. Check out the lineup of the performing artists here.

When: September 8 at 18:00
Where: Plaine de Fargues Saint-Hilaire (behind the salle du Carré des Forges)

Festival Teste à Têtes

Teste à Têtes festival, organized by the circus school Komonò Circuc, will take place this weekend (Sep 7-9) in La Teste de Buch. For three days you could enjoy plenty of activities dedicated to street arts and music concerts. You can see the full program here and more details here.

When: September 7-9
Where: Different locations, see the program.

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

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Have a great weekend!

This week we have an opening of a new park in Pessac, many new exhibitions and plenty of music festivals from rock to classical and African music. This is the list of things to do this weekend in and around Bordeaux (July 6-8):

Events in Bordeaux Metropole

Relache Festival

Relache Festival, created by the Allez les filles association, is a series of free concerts that are going to take place at different places and dates during this summer. The 9th edition of this festival will last about 3 months (May 30 to August 31) with performances by both local groups and international acts in many genres of music. The next evening will take place this Friday (July 6) at Bergonie in the Saint Genès neighborhood. Take a look at the full program of events on their website.
relache restival in bergonie

When: July 6. 18:00-01:00
Where: 181 Cours de l’Argonne, 33000 Bordeaux

Inauguration of the new park in forêt du Bourgailh

This Saturday (July 7)  a new park will be inaugurated in the Forêt du Bourgailh in Pessac. The park includes many facilities such as a fitness area, an open- air theater, a skate park, wall climbing and more. Several events and activities will take place during the day, among them a guided tour that will start at the kids’ new playground and will finish at the zoo of Pessac. Two music concerts will take place starting 18:00 with the bands Royals (pop-rock) and Bazars et bémols (classic jazz). See more details on the site of the town of Pessac.

jeux-foret-bourgailh- pessac
credit: M.Bosredon/20Minutes

When:  July 7
Where: Forêt du Bourgailh, Pessac

Senefesti

Senefesti is a festival celebrating African culture through dance and music performances. The next two events of the festival will take place at the Rocher de Palmer in Cenon. On Saturday (July 6) a new photography exhibition will be presented and on Sunday (July 7) an African music festival will take place from 14:00 to 2:00. For more details check out here. 

When: July 6-7
Where: Le Rocher de Palmer, 1 rue Aristide Briand, 33150 Cenon

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 south Bordeaux. The festival is taking place this week (July 4-8). Look at the full program of events here.

When: July 4-8
Where: Different locations next to Marché des Douves in Bordeaux Sud (check out the program).

Puppets Theater for Kids

Le Guignol Guérin, founded in 1853, is the oldest puppetry in France which holds daily spectacles for kids in Parc Bordelais during the summer  (July and August). The shows usually starts at 16:00 but can be cancelled or postponed when it’s raining or getting too hot. Read more about the theater here.

When: Daily during July – August
Where: Parc Bordelais

Vide Dressing

A big event of vide- dressing (second hand clothes sale) will take place at the Grande Poste this Sunday (July 8). Come and refresh your closet with the most famous marks at affordable prices. See more details here.

vide dressing grande poste

When: July8  – starting  10:00
Where: 7 Rue du Palais Gallien, 33000 Bordeaux

Learn how to Tango

Like every summer the Tango Bordeaux association organizes pubic tango events in Jardin Public,  Place de Quinconces and la Grande Poste. The next evening will take place this Friday (July 6) at Place de Quinconces. The rest of the events will take place during the summer (until September 7 ) – you can see the full list of events for this summer on the website of the association.

tango in Jardin public

When:  July 6 (21:00-midnight)
Where: Place des Quinconces, Bordeaux

 

Events around Bordeaux

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). The 11th edition of the festival in Saint-Médard-en-Jalles will take place on July 5-7 and includes bands like Circa Waves, Dewolff, Burning Heads and Himalayas.

For more details check out the website of the festival.

When: July 5-7
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 that takes place every year in the charming medieval town of Rions. This year the festival was expanded to three days (July 6-8) 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 6-8
Where: Rions
How much: 12.80€ /one day 16.80€ /two days 24.80€/ 3 days

Sous les Oliviers à Langon

Sous les Oliviers is a series of events organized by the city of Langon and the cultural center Carmes taking place over six evenings in July. The first event takes place this Friday (July 6) and will be dedicated to French songs. See the full program for the summer here.

When:  July 6 (19:00)
Where: Centre Culturel Des Carmes,  8 Cours des Carmes, 33210 Langon

Sentout Festival

Every summer the Sentout festival creates three magical evenings where you get to enjoy the worlds of music, wine and gastronomy combined. The festival will take place on July 5-7 in the little village of Lignan de Bordeaux which is located at the entrance to  the Entre deux Mers area (the wine region of Bordeaux). Every evening the program offers a different music style: on the first evening you get to dance to the Peruvian Cumbia, then listen to French rock on the second night and finish with Swing and Jazz. The menus proposed by the chef Jacinthe Dos Santos will be inspired by the the musical program. To see the full program of concerts check out the facebook page of the event.

Sentout Festival

When: July 5-7
Where: Santout, 43 Route de la Lande, 33360 Lignan-de-Bordeaux

Nuits Atypiques Festival

This multidisciplinary festival in South Gironde has been taking place every summer since 1992. During the months of July (July 1-28) 17 events will take places in 15 towns in the Gironde department: Bassanne, Bazas, Bernos-Beaulac, Cadillac, Cazalis, Cudos,Gajac, La Réole, Podensac, Preignac, Saint-Macaire, Saint-Michelde-Castelnau,
Saint-Symphorien and Villandraut. The program includes a variety of activities such as: concerts, theater, films, debates, tours to discover the towns and more. Check out the full program for the upcoming weekend here and all the info about the locations here.

Nuits Atypiques program

When:  July 1-28
Where: South Gironde- check out the exact location of every event in the program.

Summers 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. Seven concerts will be performed in different châteaux Between July 3 and July 13 – See the full program here.

When:  July 3-13
Where: See the location of every concert in the program

CULTURE

Dance show by three famous choreographers

A co-production of the National Opera of Bordeaux and the Opera of Limoges presents an evening of three works by three famous choreographers: Petite Mort by Jiří KyliánLe Chant du compagnon errant by Maurice Béjart and Le Concert (ou Les Malheurs de chacun) by Jerome Robbins. The last show will be presented at the Opera of Bordeaux on July 6.

For more details and tickets see the website of the Opera.

When:  July 6
Where: Grand Théâtre, place de la Comédie, 33000 BORDEAUX

Painting of Bordeaux at Cour Malby

An expo of paintings of the streets of Bordeaux will be presented at la Cour Malby until July 8. The paintings are part of a contest organized by Agora des Arts.

When:  until July 8
Where: Salle Capitulaire de la Cour Mably, 3 rue Mably, 33000 BORDEAUX

Chromatic Shadow Exhibition

La Galerie D.X will be presenting the works of the French American painter Jérôme Lagarrigue until July 13.
See more details on the galerie’s website.

JÉRÔME LAGARRIGUE

When: June 8– July 13
Where: 10 Place des Quinconces, 33000 Bordeaux

Exhibition dedicated to Jack London

A photography exhibition that follows the life and the work of the famous author, Jack London, will be presented in the Musée d’Aquitaine from May 29 to December 2. Besides photographs, the museum will put on display many objects and documents from his journey through the islands of the South Pacific, San Francisco and Sydney between 1907 and 1909. See more info on the site of the museum.

When:  May 29 to December 2
Where:20 Cours Pasteur, 33000 Bordeaux

New exhibition at the Musée des Beaux-Arts

“Par delà les frontières” is a new exhibition displaying materials representing relations and cooperation of American and Bordelaise artists, such as photographs, design pieces, interviews, videos and more. The exhibition will be presented at the Museum of fine arts from June 30 to September 16. For more info click here.

Par delà les frontières
Credit: Musée des Beaux-Arts de Bordeaux

When:  June 30- September 16.
Where: 20 Cours d’Albret, 33000 Bordeaux

 

Hope you enjoyed the list! Now don’t be shy, share it with your friends!

Do you have other events to add to the list? Please share them in the comments so all of us can enjoy them 🙂

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

Have a great weekend!

If you are living in France or just passing by and you wish to discover one of its most important regions, now is an excellent time to be heading to Médoc, one of the most famous wine growing regions in the world, located in the Gironde department, north of Bordeaux.  To celebrate the beginning of the spring the Maison du Tourisme et du Vin de Pauillac will hold an open doors weekend on April 7-8, where you will be able to visit all the chateaux of the Médoc region and do a lot of wine tasting.

Le Week-end Portes Ouvertes (open doors weekend) in Médoc is an annual event that officially starts the tourist season in the wine region of South west France. The first time that vineyards have collectively decided to open their doors to the public was in 1991 and it was an immediate success. Starting its third edition, the  Week-end Portes Ouvertes has seen tens of thousands of visitors and the tradition of the open house was copied to other chateaux in France. This tradition has grown so much that it became a challenge to pickthe best chateaux to visit during that weekend.

Sixty three châteaux (Château Clarke will eventually not be participating in the open house weekend) from eight different AOC (appellation d’origine contrôléewill participate in the Portes Ouvertes weekend:  MEDOC, HAUT MEDOC NORD, PAUILLAC, SAINT ESTEPHE,  SAINT JULIEN, LISTRAC, MOULIS, MARGAUX. The AOC is the French certification for geographical indications for agricultural products such as wine and cheeses. To see what châteaux are participating in the event, see the full list and the map below.

Although visiting the cellars and wine tastings are still at the heart of the event, today the various chateaux try to attract visitors with additional attractions such as the restaurant of the chateau, music, games, art expos and activities for kids. If you don’t have a specific chateaux in mind you can choose one according to the proposed activities . What follows is a listing of chateaux according to their proposed activities:

Fine dining

Wines are not the only product the Médoc region does well, it is also famous for some of its gastronomic specialties, such as: l’agneau de Pauillac (Pauillac lamb), l’entrecôte cuite aux sarments (entrecote cooked with vine shoots), les chocolats de Mademoiselle de Margaux and more. In addition to in house restaurants, some of the chateaux offer gourmet markets, food trucks and bars. So, besides tasting great wine you are guaranteed to have a great culinary experience.

See the plan of the participating ChâteauxSaint-Hilaire – Saint-Christoly – Chantelys – Castera – Tour des Termes –Tronquoy Lalande – St-Estèphe – Le Crock – La Rose Pauillac – Julia – Hourtin Ducasse – Cassana – La Tour Carnet – Lanessan – Lauga –Lamothe Bergeron – Malescasse – Reverdi – Baudan – Vignerons associés Grand Listrac – Fonréaud – Chasse Spleen – Meyre – Bellevue de Tayac  – Haut-Breton Larigaudière – Ferrière – Lascombes – Marquis de Terme –  Prieuré Lichine – Desmirail – Dauzac – Larrieu-Terrefort – Belle-Vue – Clos la Bohème –  Maucamps – Paloumey – Agassac – Ségur – Saint Ahon – Taillan

chateaux desmiral

Art in the Chateaux

Some of the châteaux will host exhibitions of paintings, sculptures and photography of both local and international artists.

in Châteaux Saint Hilaire, for example, two Medoc artists will present their aquarelle paintings  and photographs. Châteaux Lanessan will give visitors the opportunity to see the family’s carriage collection, dated to the 19th century. And in Châteaux Castera, one of the most ancient chateaux of the region, you could see the permanent sculpture exposition “Les bouteilles de vincent libecq”. Follow the list of the participating chateaux to see the kind of art  on display.

castera chateaux
photo by: castera chateaux

See the plan of the participating ChâteauxSaint-Hilaire – La Tour de By – Saint-Christoly – Chantelys – Castera – Tour des Termes – Tour Sieujean – Lanessan – Moulin Rouge – Granins Grand Poujeaux – Chasse Spleen – Bellevue de Tayac – Clos La Bohème – Cantemerle – Paloumey – Ségur – Saint Ahon – Magnol

Visiting with kids

Many people take the chance to  make the chateaux visit a family trip, and rightly so as kids can appreciate the charming chateaux and their gardens.  Nonetheless, having to look after your little kids while wine tasting can definitely undermine the experience. That is why some of the chateaux propose activities to entertain your kids while you are tasting wine.

For example: Château Lamothe Bergeron will hold creative workshops as well as grape juice tasting for kids,  Château Hourtin-Ducasse will entertain your kids with activities like coloring, ping pong and comics; and Château Ségur  will hold an egg hunt and a mask coloring workshop.

See the plan of the participating ChâteauxSaint-Hilaire – Saint-Christoly – Livran – Lilian-Ladouys – Julia– Hourtin-Ducasse – Lanessan – Lamothe Bergeron – Fonréaud – Haut-Breton Larigaudière – Marquis de Terme – Prieuré Lichine – Clos La Bohème – Paloumey – Agassac – Ségur – Saint Ahon – du Taillan – Magnol

 

Getting to know the wine world

The world of wine is a huge body  of knowledge and many of the châteaux would like to see you experience more than just wine tasting. Some of them organize workshops and activities revolving around the production of wine. Those can come in the form of a demonstration of the different tractors they use (Château Maucamps), discovering your sensors in blind wine tasting (Château Ségur), a vines workshop (Château Chantelys) and more.

See the plan of the participating ChâteauxChantelys – Lilian-Ladouys – Hourtin-Ducasse – Lamothe Bergeron – Haut-Breton Larigaudière – Prieuré Lichine – La Tour de Bessan – Dauzac – Maucamps – Paloumey – Ségur – Saint Ahon

A Map of all the Châteaux participation in the Portes ouvertes weekend:

 

Most of the Chateaux require prior reservation to the wine tasting and cellar tours, so if you found a chateaux you would like to discover this weekend, hurry up and make a reservation by email or phone. All the details, including the address, the activities proposed, the hours and the contact details appear in the link of the participating chateaux above. For more info, go to the site of the event.

Enjoy your glass of wine and the official beginning of Spring in the region!

UPDATE: If you want to know what’s happening in Bordeaux in April 2019 – click here.

Don’t let the rain get you down, spring is almost here and the Bordeaux area will soon start flourishing with interesting things to do.  Now all we need is the sun to come out so we can get our spring party started. Meanwhile, take a look at all the great events Bordeaux has to offer this month.

This is my list of things to do in April 2018 in Bordeaux and the surroundings. I didn’t want this list to be too long so I focused on the big events, however I do plan to publish updates so stay tuned.

Treasure Hunt on Pâques Weekend

The first weekend of April is the long weekend of Easter in France and the area of Bordeaux offers a great deal of activities to entertain you and your kids. Egg hunting, visits in beautiful chateaux and chocolate workshops are only some of the activities you could do this weekend. To discover all Pâques events in and around Bordeaux read my article about “What to do in Bordeaux  in Easter 2018“.

Huge chocolate egg, easter in Bordeaux
photo by: Ramon Szmuk

Festival Musical Écran

Festival Musical Écran is a very unique film festival all dedicated to documentaries about music. This year the program of the festival includes 20 films from four different countries. The festival will be held April 1-8 in different places in Bordeaux: Cinéma Utopia, Cour Malby, Bibliothéque Mériadeck, Institut Cervantes, Université de Bordeaux Campus Victoire.

Queercore: How to Punk a Revolution
Queercore: How to Punk a Revolution

When: April 1-8
Where: see locations.
How much: 39 € for the whole festival

Bicycle spring sale

Are you looking to buy or sell a bicycle, the big spring bicycle sale is just around the corner. Bordeaux bicycle stock exchange will take place  April 1 at Quai Louis XVIII. Those who wish to sell their bike can do it between 9:30 and 11am and the buyers will be able to start buying after 10am.
For more details.

bourse velo Bordeaux

When: April 1 (9:30 to 17:30)
Where: Quai Louis XVIII

Esclave du livre (literature festival)

Esclave du livre  is a literature association whose goal is to promote reading and to support the creation of new literature. April 6-8 they will hold a literature festival that will bring together authors and illustrators for debates, public readings, performances and uncovering of pieces that haven’t been published yet.

When: April 6-8
Where:  Place Renaudel – Quartier Ste Croix

Convention Tattoo Bordeaux 

The international tattoo convention of Bordeaux will take place on the weekend of April 14-15 in Hangar 14, which is located at Quai des Chartrons.  The program includes: tattoo contest, expositions, live concerts and different activities such as jungling and brakedancing.

a girl with tattoos
Photo by Timothy Paul Smith on Unsplash

When: April 14-15
Where: hangar 14, 115 Quai des Chartrons, 33000 Bordeaux
How much: 15 € /day

Brocante des Quinconces

The big brocante of Bordeaux is hosted twice a year at place des Quinconces with 200 antique dealers, horticulturists, restaurants and craftsmen. This spring is the 100th edition of the brocante and it will take place from April 20 to May 8.

brocante des quinconces
photo by: Ira Szmuk

When: April 20 – May 8
Where: Place des Quinconces

Art

Digital Abysses at Base Sous-Marine 

If you still didn’t have a chance to visit the incredible Base sous- Marine, it’s time to do it. The first exhibition, Digital Abysses, ( 9 March to 20 May 2018 ) is by the digital artist Miguel Chevalier, which explores nature through underwater plants and wildlife. The characteristics of this unique place with the combination of fixed works and interactive digital installations makes it a special experience.

base sous marine
photo by: Ira Szmuk

Address:  Boulevard Alfred Daney, 33300 Bordeaux

Street Color at Institut Bernard Margez

An extensive street are exhibition will be presented from April 5 to June 24 at the Institut Bernard Magrez. The expo will include some well known street artists (mostly French ones), such as MAD C (GER), Seth (FRA), d’Alexöne (FRA) and more. This institute is a historic monument dated to the 18th century, so the combination of an ancient chateau with street art will most certainly add to the atmosphere of the exposition.

For more info and tickets.

seth-street-art merapi indonesia
Seth street art-Merapi Indonesia

Address:  16 rue de Tivoli, Bordeaux

Luminopolis at Cap Sciences

The Luminopolis  exposition of Cap Sciences has been running from June 2017 and if you haven’t had the chance to go there yet, it’s time to do it now before the museum gets crowded with a lot of tourists. Luminopolis is a light exposition that have been structured as an Escape game where you need to answer questions about light in order to get out.
The expositions runs from June 2017 to September 2017 ,the ticket price is 8 euros and the minimum age is 6.

For more info.

Address: Cap Sciences Hangar 20, Quai de Bacalan, 33300 Bordeaux

Concerts:

Lisa Stansfield

The famous British 90s start, Lisa Stansfield will perform at Theatre Femina on April 28 at 20:00.

For more info and tickets

When: April 28/ Where: 10 Rue de Grassi, 33000 Bordeaux

Virginia Rodrigues in Cenon

Virginia Rodrigues, the Brazilian singer with the amazing voice will give one concert at Le Rocher de Palmer in Cenon in April 6.


When: April 6 / Where: 1 Rue Aristide Briand, 33152 Cenon

Imagine Dragons

The american rock band, Imagine Dragons, will stop by the Bordeaux Métropole Arena  on April 4 as part of their world tour. 

For more info and  tickets

Address: 48-50 Avenue Jean Alfonséa, 33270 Floirac

Portes Ouvertes

Open doors in Médoc 

To celebrate the beginning of the spring the Maison du Tourisme et du Vin de Pauillac will hold an open doors weekend where you’ll be able to visit all chateaux of the Medoc region and do a lot of wine tasting. The event will take place April 7-8.

For details about all the participating chateaux.

When: April 7-8
Where:  different locations (see the site)

Open doors in Saint-Emilion

An open door weekend will take place on April 29 to May 1 at Saint Emilion where 84 chateaux will hold open door events and will propose different activities to the visitors. Some châteaux (such as Château Fleur Cardinale) will start the open door weekend April 28.

On the event website you can see the participating châteaux , the activities and the wine tasting proposed for that weekend – see more info.

When: April 28 – May 1
Where: 7 Thibaud, 33330 Saint-Étienne-de-Lisse

Meetings

If you’re craving for some activity with other English speakers, like going to Utopia cinema or just having a coffee together , check out the monthly planning of the ICB (International Club of Bordeaux)- see agenda.

Do you have any interesting events you know about? Please share with us in the comments below.