The southwest of France is probably one of the best places in Europe for a retreat! I know I’m not very objective as I live here, but let’s just look at the facts. The stunning landscapes, historic villages with their weekly markets, amazing food, and world-renowned wine, should I continue? 

Luckily, there are quite a few great retreats in the Bordeaux region. So whether you’re a foodie who wishes to embark on an in-depth discovery of the gastronomy of the region. Or a tired mom who needs a relaxing time without cooking. Or maybe you just want to get into meditation but do it in a very beautiful relaxing setting. This region has something for everyone!

Meditation and yoga retreat near France
Photo by Patrick Malleret

If you’re looking for a  great way to start the next year, take a break from your daily routine and reconnect with yourself. Here’s my list of all the best gastronomic and yoga retreats in the Southwest of France (the Bordeaux region).

Gastronomy and wine retreats in Bordeaux and the southwest of France

7 Day Gastronomada – a Culinary and Wine Experience in Bordeaux Region

The Gatronomada retreat is all about gastronomical experiences in beautiful settings. During 7 days you get to enjoy a culinary tour, guided market tours, a meal at a 2 Michelin-star restaurant, and more. One of the most magical experiences of this retreat is the Cruise on the Garonne River with a private chef. 

This is a perfect retreat for those looking for a culinary vacation in the Bordeaux region in a small intimate group (up to 8 participants)

Gastronomada - gastronomic retreat near Bordeaux
Credit: Gastronomada

Family vibe
Hosted by Telmo & Eva, this retreat’s accommodation is at the ecolodge of Susanna – Telmo’s mother, which is located 25 minutes from Bordeaux. It is a charming guest house that combines luxury and ecology, a mix particularly liked by the French. 

To sum it up
Discover the southwest of France through the taste buds with the help of a wide variety of fine culinary experiences. The schedule sounds busy but offers room for flexibility and customization for you to have time to travel and enjoy the good life of Bordeaux!

The next retreat is about to take place very soon in December 2023, so hurry up and book it here

8 Day Spa, Cycling, and Wine Tasting Holiday in Lot-et-Garonne

This delightful retreat takes place in the small village of Moncrabeau in the Lot et Garonne department. You will be staying in the heart of rural southwestern France, just a 1.5-hour drive from Bordeaux. 8 days of sports activities (cycling, canoeing, and more) and culinary experiences in a picturesque setting. Add to that some spa treatments alongside a glass of wine from the region’s best wineries. And what else do you need really?

Cotes de bourg vineyards

The program includes several visits to local markets, which is one of my favorite activities. It’s a great way to get to know the local culture and discover the unique flavors and views of the region.

During the retreat, you’ll be staying at a beautiful 150-year-old farmhouse with an open-plan traditional kitchen where you can share meals. And did I mention that there’s also a pool, where you can relax after your sports activities? 

In conclusion
A good departure from the routine, an opportunity to move your body but also to rest well, and to experience particularly beautiful and delicious experiences.

The next retreat is in March, book the sports and food retreat here.

8-Day Intensive Cooking Course with a Michelin-Star Trained Chef

This is yet another fabulous gastronomic retreat taking place in the same farmhouse (Baron-Figuès) in Moncrabeau. It’s an 8-day journey to elevate your cooking skills through daily cooking workshops with the Michelin-Star Trained Chef, Jerome. 

This retreat is taking place in the heart of Gascony, a region famed for its agricultural richness, which makes it a perfect destination for a cooking retreat. You will be creating fish and meat dishes, sauces, pastries, and desserts using the best local produce this region has to offer. Jerome will guide you to choose the right ingredients, teach you cooking techniques, and equally important, the presentation itself (it’s a French chef after all).

A cooking retreat with a Michelin-Star Trained Chef
Credit: Tripaneer

During the week, you will have the chance to eat gourmet dinners with the best local ingredients, visit the village markets, and try wine and Armagnac from the region. 

In conclusion,
If there’s one thing the French are particularly good at, it’s living the good life. They love eating good food, sipping good wine, and taking long vacations, lots of them. So besides learning how to cook, which is the primary focus of this retreat, you can see it as an introduction to the French way of life. 
The next retreat starts on March 15, you can book it here.

Yoga and spiritual retreats in the southwest of France

Beginners Zen Yoga and Meditation Retreat in Dordogne 

This yoga and meditation retreat takes place in the heart of the Dordogne countryside, about 25 minutes away from the white city of Perigueux (130km from Bordeaux). The goal of the 4-day retreat, guided by Valerie, is to help you unwind and renew your energy for the year. 

Just take a look at this relaxing program: a morning meditation session, followed by yoga practice and a daily guided forest walk. Nutrition-wise, this retreat offers a daily vegetarian brunch and dinner.  

You’ll be staying in a traditional farmhouse with a stunning view of the Dronne Valley in northern Dordogne. You can also choose to spend a beautiful afternoon canoeing along the river or receive a spa treatment. It is a safe and cultivating space for you to re-discover yourself.

A yoga retreat in southwest France - near Bordeaux
Photo by Manja Vitolic

Good to know
The yoga practices here are of a zen type: it is a practice of consciousness and slow movements that provide an opportunity to go deeper and become stronger. You don’t have to be an experienced YOGI to go on this magical journey, this retreat is actually best for beginners. 

A Weekend of Slowing Down
It sounds a little counterintuitive, but the truth is that most of us could benefit from learning how to slow down, and it’s much harder than we think. This retreat will allow you to put aside the stress and noise of the outside world and take time for self-discovery and rejuvenation. 

So if you need to fill your cup, this is the retreat for you! The next opening is in April 2024, book it here.

Boutique Yoga Holiday in a château near Bordeaux

The Boutique Yoga Holiday is a 5-day retreat in the countryside of Bordeaux (about 100km from the city). The program brilliantly combines yoga and meditation sessions with other delights this region has to offer. You will enjoy wine tasting, a cacao ceremony under the stars, a day in Bordeaux, and more. As a bonus, you even have a private jacuzzi to enjoy at the end of the busy day.

“It’s all about YOU” they say about this retreat, which I think is a message most of us forget in our daunting daily routines.  We all need a break sometimes to recharge, clear our thoughts and just be in the present. And that’s exactly why one needs a retreat!

Sleeping in a Châteaux is something to experience at least once in your life!
You’ll stay in the beautiful Château de Grenier. The 17th Century Château is nestled in the heart of the South-West of France, about one hour away from Bordeaux. It’s a wonderful way to explore the gastronomy, the vineyards, and the rich heritage of southwestern France. 

The next Boutique yoga retreat will take place on April 2-6, book your place here

7 Day Family and Postnatal Fitness Retreat

This Fitness Retreat is the perfect break after the arrival of a new baby to the family. True, it is mainly us moms who need a break. I mean, we’re in desperate need of physical and mental recovery after giving birth. But recognizing that fathers also need some self-care time, this retreat’s plan is suitable for the entire family. It will allow you to simply- take a break and breathe together. 

7 Day Family and Postnatal Fitness Retreat
Family and Postnatal Retreat – Credit: Manoir La Croix de La Jugie

Stunning location
You’ll be staying in Manoir La Croix, a beautiful 18th-century family manor house, located near Limoge (about 3 hour’s drive from Bordeaux). Prepare yourself for breathtaking landscapes of fields, meadows, and orchards providing a calming setting both for you and the little ones

So what’s the plan? 
Get back in shape, feel better, eat better, relax! From mindfulness workshops to massage treatments, fitness workouts with personal trainers, and excellent meals (that you didn’t have to cook!). This is a great opportunity for new parents to take good care of themselves! 

So if you’re waiting for a cute baby to join the family soon, you can book the retreat now as the next one will be taking place in June 2024.

Hope you treat yourself to a magical retreat in the Southwest of France 🙂

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:

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*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 🙂 

When visiting Bordeaux, you absolutely must leave yourself at least a few days to explore the magical Gironde region. The wine capital is surrounded by charming villages, impressive chateaux, vineyards, and sandy beaches. There are plenty of amazing day trips from Bordeaux however they are not very easy to find online.

In this article, I created a list of some of my favorite favorite day trips from Bordeaux. I tried to make it as diverse as possible and to include everything from famous wine areas to medieval villages and oyster farms. So I promise you that everyone can plan a perfect excursion from Bordeaux using this list.

It’s important to note that most of these locations are not very accessible by public transport, so renting a car is recommended. If want to avoid driving be sure to check out my article about the best day trips from Bordeaux by train.

A day trip to the vineyards of Bordeaux

Visiting Saint Émilion and its wineries

Saint Émilion is probably the most famous day trip from Bordeaux. The world-renowned wineries and its picturesque center abundant with wine shops and restaurants attract more than a million visitors each year.  

The charming medieval town is worth a visit even if you’re not a wine lover. Important historical monuments, dating back as far as the 11th and 12th centuries can be found here in abundance. One of the famous monuments is the 11th-century Monolithic church, the largest underground church in Europe carved from a limestone cliff.

You can plan a perfect day trip from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion with my detailed guide.

Saint Emilion - the best day trip from Bordeaux
The Medieval town of Saint Emilion – Lost in Bordeaux

The Saint Emilion region is however most famous for its fabulous wine. So if you made it all the way there, I highly recommend visiting at least one winery. I have a list of some of my favorite wineries to visit in Saint Emilion, that I’ve built following many numerous visits there. 

It’s quite easy to organize a self-guided day trip to Saint Emilion but I know that many people rather take a guided tour. In this area, there are quite a few companies specializing in tours to the wine region. One tour that I highly recommend is a full-day trip to Saint Emilion offered by Ophorus. The tour includes a visit to three wineries and a walk in the medieval city center. 

How to get there: My personal recommendation is to rent a car. It will allow you to visit any chateau you like and not only the ones that are close to the center of Saint Emilion. Having said that, Saint Emilion is one of the easiest places to get to by public transport from Bordeaux. A direct 40-minute train from Gare Saint Jean in Bordeaux will take you to the train station of Saint Emilion. You can buy the tickets online or at the train station.

The Medoc Wine Route – La route des châteaux 

La route des châteaux in Medoc is the most scenic route in the Bordeaux wine region. The famous wine route (on the D2 road) starts at the northern part of Bordeaux Metropole (in the town of  Blanquefort) and continues to the northern part of Gironde. All along the way you can admire captivating châteaux embellishing the endless landscape of lush vineyards. 

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. 

Château Cos D’estournel - one of the most beautiful wineries to visit in Medoc
Château Cos D’estournel – Lost in Bordeaux

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 Lamothe Bergeron and Château Cos d’Estournelle

I have a list of all my favorite wineries to visit in Medoc that can help when planning your day trip. Some wineries have restaurants or wine bars for a drink in the summer (like Château Marquis de Terme and Château Chasse-Spleen). Make sure you book your visit to the wineries before going there as it can get quite busy in the summer.

Personally, the Medoc is one of my favorite areas to visit around Bordeaux and I think it deserves at least a weekend. If you have the chance to spend more time here, read my article about a weekend in Medoc

How to get there: Just like Saint Emilion, I believe that wine routes are best discovered by car. Here’s a good website to look for car rentals in case you don’t have a car. However, there are a few great wineries you can visit by train from Bordeaux – here’s my article with all you need to know. If you don’t want to go through the hassle of organizing the trip, you can take a great half day guided tour to Medoc and visit two wineries.

Cognac – the town and the Brandy

Wine is not the only alcoholic drink Southwest 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 charming town of Cognac, located in the Charente department, merits a visit even if you’re not a big Cognac lover. The old center of the city is characterized by narrow paved streets with houses dating from the 16th and 17th centuries. You can read about the best places to visit and where to eat in my article about Cognac

Tasting Cognac
Tasting Cognac – Lost in Bordeaux

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. Here’s my article on the best distilleries to visit in the Cognac region. 

How to get to Cognac: you can get there by train but not a direct one. You’ll have to change trains in Saintes or Angouleme, depending on the time of your departure. You can book your tickets here. You can also take this excellent private tour from Bordeaux to Cognac. On this tour, you get to visit the town as well as three Cognac distilleries.

Discover the best beach towns around 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’s drive from Bordeaux, you get to swim in the ocean, eat oysters and see extravagant villas. 

A day to Arcachon is best to be combined with a trip to the Dune du Pilat, the tallest sand dune in Europe. To help you organize the trip I wrote a detailed guide about how to spend a day in Arcachon. There I included everything from restaurants, hidden gems, and ways to get there and to the dune. 

A day trip to Dune du Pilat
Pune du Pilat – Lost in Bordeaux

The Arcachon Bay is also home to many other smaller and undiscovered villages. So if you have a car and a bit more time I highly recommend visiting them too. Here’s my article about all the places to visit on the Bay

How to get to Arcachon: the town of Arcachon is one of the easiest day trips by train. However, if you want to easily visit some of the other places on Arcachon Bay, renting a car is highly recommended. 

If you don’t really want to visit another town and just wish to taste oysters and visit the dune, I recommend taking this tour.

For those who have more than a day to dedicate to Arcachon, I highly recommend spending the night there. Here’s my article about the best hotels in Arcachon.

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 and is even nicknamed “little Arcachon”. The city center looks like Ville d’été and the impressive 18th-century villas look just like Ville d’Hiver. The town has some of the most beautiful beaches on the Atlantic coast, attracting many French tourists. There are plenty of cute little restaurants both in the center and on the promenade. 

Villas in Soulac sur Mer
Villas in Soulac sur Mer

When there, take a map from 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.

How to get to Soulac: If you don’t want to drive for 1.5 hours from Bordeaux, you can take a direct train from Bordeaux. You can buy tickets here.

Cap Ferret

The Cap Ferret peninsula is located in the Western part of Bassin d’Arcachon (Arcachon Bay). Shaped like a narrow tongue it runs along a string of beautiful sandy beaches on the Atlantic Ocean and small villages on the Bassin side.

Its most southern village, called Cap Ferret, has been traditionally known as a summer getaway for the French upper class. Despite its growing popularity among locals and tourists, it has yet to lose its relaxing seaside village atmosphere.

Cap Ferret - on of the best day trips from Bordeaux
The Cap Ferret peninsula – Lost in Bordeaux

Cap Ferret is also known for being one of the biggest oyster-growing areas in Frace. Its strategic location on Arachon Bay creates perfect climate conditions for the ostréiculture industry. You can find numerous oyster huts in every port in Cap Ferret and other oyster-farming villages like L’herbe and Le Canon. Having a plate of oysters with a glass of cold white wine is an absolute must! 

How to get there: You can get there by bus number 601, but honestly it’s a long journey that I wouldn’t recommend. The best way is to get there by car. It’s also possible to get there by boat from Arcachon town.

The Biscarrosse lake

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. If you need an idea for a day out of Bordeaux with kids, a trip to Biscarrose is perfect!

Plage de Caton - Lac Cazaux, Biscarrosse
Plage de Caton – Lost in Bordeaux

There are several beaches to choose from, some of my favorites 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.

If you prefer ocean beaches head to Biscarrosse Ocean, a seaside town with a huge beach and plenty of restaurants. You need a car to get to all these beaches from Bordeaux. 

A day trip to the beautiful villages and towns around Bordeaux


Bazas is a beautiful little 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. On your stroll, you’ll see the Gothic cathedral (a UNESCO heritage site), old mansions, gardens, and historic monuments.

Bazas by lost in Bordeaux

Architecture is not the only attraction in Bazas, it’s actually 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, I highly recommend this guided tour. Anne, an American living in 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.


Blaye is one of the most beautiful villages in the Bordeaux area, located only about 50 km (30 miles) from Bordeaux. This little town has a long military and strategic history and is mostly known for its remarkable Citadel. 

The Citadel and the city walls are recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 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 – by Lost in Bordeaux

Blaye is also known for its wine, which ia labeled under the Blaye – Côtes de Bordeaux appellation. You can visit the Maison du Vin on the main street (12 Cours Vauban). They will gladly introduce you to the wines of the area and the chateaux you can visit around Blaye. Château Monconseil-Gazin is one of my favorite red wines from Blaye and you can book a visit there

How to get to 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, see the schedule.

Visit castles in the South of Gironde

South Gironde is a magical landscape of history and gascon tradition. It’s a rural area, abundant with beautiful medieval villages and ancient castles. One of the most impressive castles is Château de la Brede, located only 30 minutes from Bordeaux. The 14th-century castle, built in a Gothic style was the residence of Montesquieu. Today the castle is a museum dedicated to the life and work of the famous French philosopher. The château is open for visits from April to November.

Château de la Brede
Château de la Brede

Another castle to visit is Château de Cadillac located in a charming little town that goes by the same name. The impressive chateau 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.

Other stunning castles include Château de Roquetaillade, Château Royal de Cazeneuve, and Château de Vayres. You need a car to be able to visit the castles of Gironde. You can easily find a car from the center of Bordeaux here.


I can go on and on about day trips you can do from Bordeaux to the Dordogne region. You can visit stunning castles, gardens, and some of the most beautiful French villages in less than two hours drive. 

But for the purpose of this article I decided to choose one destination in Dordogne, the town of Bergerac. The charming capital of Purple Perigord is one located about 115 km from Bordeaux, about 1.5 hours drive, without traffic. When you decide to go there, take a look at my detailed guide to Bergerac to help you plan the day. 

Bergerac labeled as Ville d'art et d'histoire
Art in Bergerac – Lost in Bordeaux

Bergerac is seated on the banks of the Dordogne giving it a beautiful view of the river. You can take a tour of the gabarre (Dordogne’s traditional boat) and discover the history of the city as well as the natural reserve around it. In the city center, you’ll find plenty of restaurants, a great market, and long shopping streets. 

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.

Château de Monbazillac
Château de Monbazillac – lost in Bordeaux

 If you’re going to Bergerac on a Saturday, don’t miss the great market in Sainte Foy la Grande which is just on the way from Bordeaux.

How to get to Bergerac: There’s a direct train from Bordeaux to Bergerac, the same one that stops at Saint Emilion. You can buy your tickets online or at the train station. 

It’s your first time 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.

Before I end my article, here are a few other articles you might want to read when you’re traveling around Bordeaux:
The best beaches around Bordeaux
Best places to visit on the Arcachon Bay
A weekend in Medoc- Bordeaux wine tours
What to do and eat in Saint Emilion
A weekend in Toulouse

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

Facebook |Instagram |Email | Facebook group

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

While Bordeaux is not a winter city, in December it gets very festive and beautiful! Around the end of November, Christmas lights and little Pères Noels (the French Santa) are starting to decorate the streets of the city. 

Like many other French cities, Bordeaux has a big Christmas market but also a few smaller, fun markets around the Metropole. In this article, I gathered all the best Christmas markets in Bordeaux in 2023, some are in Bordeaux itself and some are in other towns in Gironde.

If it’s your first visit to Bordeaux don’t forget to check out my ultimate guide to Bordeaux to get familiar with all the must-see places in the city. To help you choose a hotel I’ve gathered a list of the best hotels in the center of Bordeaux as well as a guide to the districts of Bordeaux.

The best Christmas markets in Bordeaux in 2023

Marché de Noël de Bordeaux 

The traditional Christmas market of Bordeaux will take place between November 24 and December 27. This is one of the biggest Christmas markets in the region with 150 pavilions selling all the traditional Christmas merchandise such as clothes, decorations, jewelry, toys, and local products.

Even if you don’t intend to buy any gifts at the market you can still enjoy the Christmas spirit with some hot wine and roasted chestnuts.  For more info click here.

When: November 24 – December 27 / Where: Allées de Tourny, 33000 Bordeaux

Xmas Market – Darwin

This market is gradually gaining status as one of the main Christmas markets in Bordeaux. Like Darwin itself,  the Xmas market is an alternative event with craftsmen and regional creators. The market will include stands of clothes, jewelry, accessories, art objects, books, sports accessories, and organic products.

This year the market is taking place not once but twice! The dates are December 8-10 and December 15-17, for more info click here.


When: December 8-10, 15-17 / Where: 87 quai des Queyries, 33100 Bordeaux

IBOAT • Super marché de noël

IBOAT & Blonde Venos will host their annual Christmas market on December 2-3. IBOAT’s Christmas market is always a super fun and chic event, with plenty of stylish stands, activities for kids and alcohol :). For more details click here.

When: December 2-3 / Where: Esplanade du pertuis, cours Henri Brunet, Bassin à flot n°1, Bordeaux

Kids Day: la boum de Noel en famille

Another fun event at the Blonde Venos this year is the kids’ Christmas party that will take place on December 17. The program includes DIY workshops, tattoos, sweets, snacks, and good music. See all the details here

When: December 17 / Where: Esplanade du pertuis, cours Henri Brunet, Bassin à flot n°1 33300 Bordeaux

Marché de Noël in Saint-Émilion

The traditional Christmas market in Saint Emilion will take place on December 16-17. You will find tens of exhibitors at the main locations of the historic center: the square of the monolithic church, the old market hall, and the cloister of the collegiate church. For more details click here.

If you want to make a fun Christmas weekend out of it, here are a few recommended hotels in Saint Emilion.

When: December 16-17 / Where: Saint Emilion – center

Arcachon fête Noël

The city of Arcachon invites you to its traditional Christmas celebration with beautiful decorations and activities for kids. The event will take place from December 9 to January 7 at Place des Marquises. See more details here.

When: December 9 – January 7 / Where: Place des Marquises, Arcachon

Marché de Noël in Bazas

Bazas will host its traditional Christmas market at the main square on December 10. Besides the traditional Christmas stands, the market will have activities for kids, concerts by local bands, and Santa Clauss of course :). For more info click here.

When: December 10 / Where: Place de la Cathédrale, 33430 Bazas

Christmas markets in other parts of Southwest France

Marché de Noël à Sarlat 

If you’re in the mood to travel a bit, why not go to one of the most impressive Christmas markets in the region, le Marche de Noel of Sarlat

Sarlat is a magical place that is worth a visit any time of the year, but this market makes it even more worthwhile. The village includes 70 chalets selling local products, clothes, decorations, hot wine and more. The market will take place on December 6-31 in the city center. For more info click here.

When: December 6-31 / Where: Place de la Grande Rigaudie , 24200 Sarlat-la-canéda

Noël à Bergerac

Another great destination in Dordogne which is much closer to Bordeaux is Bergerac. Bergerac is one of the best Christmas markets in the south-west region with tens of stands, beautiful decorations and activities for kids. The market and the kids’ village will take place on December 9-24. More details are to come soon on this website.

When: December 9-24/ Where: different locations in 24100 Bergerac

Christmas markets in Toulouse

Toulouse is another city in the southwest of France to host great Christmas markets and in general a fun destination for a weekend at any time of the year. See my list of the best Christmas markets in Toulouse.

I hope you enjoyed my Christmas market list!

Throughout the month I’ll give plenty of updates about Christmas-related events in and around Bordeaux in my newsletter so be sure to subscribe here.

Also, if it’s your first time in the region, know that many wineries are open during December as well, so it’s worth contacting them and scheduling a meeting. If you’re planning to go to Saint Emilion here are my recommendations for wineries to visit there. If you’re more into Medoc wine, in this article you’ll find plenty of wineries to visit in the Medoc wine region. If you rather stay in Bordeaux city, Chateau Pape Clement is a great winery to visit by public transport from the city center – book a visit 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:

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Gastronomy is a serious business throughout France and les Bordelais make no exception. Nestled between ocean, countryside, and mountains, the Bordeaux region’s prime position produces some of the country’s finest fare. With great importance placed on terroir (the balance of climate, soil, and environment), Bordeaux cuisine celebrates local and seasonal produce from the land and sea. 

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. Bordeaux is a veritable haven for food lovers, from refined Michelin-starred establishments to humble family-run bistros.

Whether you’re into hearty stews, delicate fruits de mer, or crave desserts, Bordeaux has the goods. And what better way to uncover the essence of a city than through its food?! If your mouth is already watering, come with me for a degustation of 10 must-try Bordeaux specialties!

Before we start!
One of the best ways to discover local specialties is by taking a food tour. If you’re time-limited,  you can create your own guided tour by following this list and the articles about Bordeaux’s main market and the foodie streets of Bordeaux. All that information will help you build your gastronomic journey in Bordeaux.

Bordeaux specialties you must try


Just an hour away from Bordeaux lie the glittering waters of the Bassin d’Arcachon and the Cap Ferret peninsula. This area of the Atlantic Coast is home to hundreds of farms that make up one of France’s major oyster-producing regions.

Oysters are generally enjoyed au naturel throughout France, with maybe just a spritz of fresh lemon to enhance the taste of the ocean. For a great day out, visit one of the many cabanes à huîtres (oysters huts) located in and around the bay. Their menu usually includes not only the famous oysters of Arcachon meaty prawns and squishy whelks too.

Marché des Capucins - the best place to have oysters in Bordeaux
Oysters at the Marché des Capucins

Of course, you can also find oysters in Bordeaux seafood restaurants such as Le Petit Commerce in the Saint-Pierre area or La Cabane Cent Un in Chartrons Square. Or for more rustic vibes, slurp up these briny delights at the Marché des Capucins or the Marché des Quais.


Another water-based delicacy produced in the Bordeaux area is caviar. Centuries ago, sturgeon were naturally abundant in the Gironde and were caught widely for their meat. A lack of knowledge on how to prepare caviar meant the eggs were discarded.

This all changed during the 1920s when a Russian princess (says the legend) informed some local fishermen of the error of their ways. This chance encounter led to the boom of caviar production in France.

Caviar is one of Bordeaux food specialties

The demise of the wild sturgeon population due to demand for these black pearls saw France ban the capture of sturgeon in 1982. The rise of aquaculture has since taken off as a result, with some of the biggest names such as Sturia and Caviar d’Aquitaine to be found in the region. Their range of luxury products can be found at many of the épiceries in town.

Some farms welcome visitors; one of these is the beautiful Caviar de Neuvic, where you can experience delicious tastings and a behind-the-scenes tour of caviar production. Or you can head over to their chic caviar bar in town 

White asparagus

Located just 50 kilometers north of Bordeaux, the town of Blaye is renowned for its magnificent UNESCO-listed citadel that overlooks the Gironde estuary. Its other, lesser-known claim to fame, is that of white asparagus, les asperges du Blayais

With its rich black sandy soils and mild humid climate, the Blaye region has been growing asparagus since the 15th century. According to legend, this delicate vegetable was introduced to Louis XIV’s court by the Marquis de Vauban, the man who constructed the town’s medieval citadel.

Synonymous with spring, the appearance of these sweet and tender spears heralds the turning of the season. Only harvested from the end of February until June, be sure to keep your eyes peeled for them at restaurants and markets in Bordeaux and the region. 

White asparagus is one Bordeaux's best produce

Or why not combine a trip to visit the citadel with a whole festival dedicated to this regional specialty, La fête de l’asperges du Blayais, held over the last weekend in April.  

One place that makes the most delicious white asparagus dishes is Tutiac, Le Bistro Vignerons, which happens to be one of the best wine bars in Bordeaux


Cèpes are widely used in French cooking and are the most consumed mushroom throughout the country. With its small cap, large base, and ability to grow up to 40cm, the cèpe de Bordeaux (Boletus edulis) is hailed as the king. Sprouting from the fertile undergrowth of oak, pine, and chestnut forests, these juicy porcini mushrooms are loved for their slightly nutty flavor and fleshy texture.

cèpe de Bordeaux- Bordeaux's famous mushrooms

A seasonal delicacy, the Bordeaux cèpe makes its appearance towards the end of August and usually grows through to November. Throughout the season you’ll find them gracing the tables at restaurants. Commonly found in omelette aux cepes or sauteed simply in butter with parsley, cèpes are often used in wine sauces to complement robust meat dishes.

If you like cooking, in Autumn you’ll find them at every market and you can even join mushroom foraging tours offered in the region. 

Bazas beef

Calling all meat lovers! Some of the region’s finest beef comes from the area around the town of Bazas, about 60 kilometers south of Bordeaux. Bazadaise cows roam free in pastures and are fed on grass and grains. The delicious meat has a subtle hint of hazelnut and is exceptionally tender, thanks to its marbled and aromatic fatty flesh.

boeuf de Bazas - the most famous meat from the Bordeaux region

With its protected geographical status and “Label Rouge” (a sign of quality assurance), boeuf de Bazas is only available to buy from 13 approved butchers. Keep an eye out for the sticker signaling this approval. It can be found on the menus of Bordeaux’s finest steakhouses, including Brasserie Bordelaise

Better still, visit the Fête des Boeufs Gras de Bazas in February, where the prized cattle are paraded through the streets, decorated with flowers and ribbons. Dating back more than 7 centuries the festival is held on the Thursday before Mardi Gras. The event, which attracts visitors from all over the region, celebrates cows, epiphany, regional traditions, and gastronomy in one fell swoop.

Foie Gras / Duck products

Whilst it was the ancient Egyptians who discovered it, Foie Gras is considered an institution in the south-west of France. The Dordogne region, bordering the Bordeaux region, is renowned for being the capital of this gourmet product, which is often served on special occasions.

You can find a huge slelction of duck products in the Bordeaux region

The name foie gras means “fatty liver” which is exactly what it is; the fattened liver from a duck or goose. The production of foie gras in France dates back centuries and is legally protected to ensure the high welfare of the birds. 

It is typically eaten as a starter, with its rich and buttery goodness found in various forms; cut into thick slices and seared, mi-cuit and served on individual toasts or even whipped up in a mousse. 

Luckily for us, It is not just the liver that is revered. Duck is considered a specialty in itself too, with the breasts, legs, and wings all claiming their rightful place at the table. The breasts (magrets de canard) are grilled to perfection whilst the legs and wings are preserved in the fat and served confit-style; both are a staple in Bordeaux bistros.

Grenier Médocain

Little known outside the region, Grenier médocain is a special charcuterie that originates from the Medoc area. Back in the days when wine from the Medoc was not as popular as it is now, families kept a couple of pigs to ensure their supply of meat for the year. In making use of the whole animal, the stomach was used as the main ingredient for Grenier médocain and it became a popular dish often served during the grape harvests.

It is also rumored that General de Gaulle was a huge fan and had it delivered to the Élysée Palace every week!

Grenier Médocain - a traditional charcuterie from Bordeaux
Grenier Médocain and other charcuterie typical to the Bordeaux region

So what is it you ask? Pork stomach is seasoned generously with salt, pepper, garlic, and a blend of spices, then rolled up into a ball, sewn together, and braised in vegetable stock. Once cooked, the dish is thinly sliced and typically served cold as part of an apéro or as a starter. 

I’ll admit it doesn’t look overly appetizing the first time you see it at the butcher or the market (a bit like the inside of a brain!) but if you’re adventurous, give it a try! Your tastebuds will thank you for it.


Canelés are petite, cylindrical pastries with a crispy, caramelized shell that give way to a sweet, chewy interior. With a history dating back to the 18th century, canelés are reported to have originally been created by nuns using leftover egg yolks from winemaking. Nowadays, they are often enjoyed as a sweet treat with a cup of coffee or as a sophisticated dessert after a fine French meal.

canele in Bordeaux

The secret to their unique flavor lies in the combination of vanilla and rum, infusing each bite with a delicate sweetness and a subtle hint of warmth. Traditionally baked in copper molds to achieve their signature caramelized exteriors, canelés boast a contrast of textures that culminate in a harmonious marriage of crispy and creamy.

Canelés are readily found in boulangeries across Bordeaux and every Bordelais has their favorite place to buy local pastries. But two main producers in Bordeaux specialize solely in these little fluted treats, Canelés Baillardran and La Toque Cuivrée (my personal favorite!). Here you will find them in a variety of sizes, from bite-sized morsels to larger, more indulgent versions. You are also going to get them on any food tour you’ll take in the city.

If you have a sweet tooth you should also check my article about the best sweet specialties in the region

Les Guinettes Bordelaises

Les Guinettes Bordelaises are bite-sized delights combining velvety dark chocolate, tangy cherries, and a dash of alcohol. Whole ripe cherries are immersed in a bath of Kirsch (cherry brandy) for several months before being individually dipped in sugar fondant and then enrobed in a dark chocolate case. After popping one into your mouth, you have two options – either crack the chocolate shell immediately or let it melt slowly – to release the fragrant liqueur and the juicy cherry.

Saunion - the best local chocolate including Les Guinettes Bordelaises
Saunion – the best place to find Les Guinettes Bordelaises

Guinettes can be found in specialty chocolate shops across Bordeaux, especially in the fancy Triangle d’Or part of the city. Two such places are Saunion and Cadiot-Badie.

You can discover other chocolate shops in my article about the best chocolatiers in Bordeaux

Puits d’amour

Puits d’amour translates to “wells of love” in English and the pastries themselves are just as sweet as their name. A small choux pastry shell is filled with chiboust cream, a pastry cream mixed with an Italian meringue. The addition of this meringue creates a light and airy texture which contrasts beautifully with the delicate crackle of caramelised sugar on top. 

Head to Maison Seguin to try these delectable pastries, either at their stall at the Capucins market or at their boutique in Chartrons.

(if the above trio of petites gourmandises have left your sweet tooth wanting more, be sure to check out more goodies here.

Bordeaux Wine

Of course, no Bordelaise feast would be complete without a glass (or two) of the region’s most well-known and loved product… le vin! Whether it’s a bone-dry white to wash down your oysters or a full-bodied red to pair with a rich meat dish, Bordeaux wine has got you covered.

Tasting Bordeaux wine is a must in the region

There are a myriad of places in the city to sample the mighty Bordeaux grape; I have compiled a a list of places that offer wine tasting. If you don’t really need any explanation and simply want to sip some wine, check out my list of the best wine bars in Bordeaux

And if you fancy getting out to see where the magic happens, take a look at my detailed guide on the different regions and how to visit them

Where to try local food in Bordeaux?

So now you’ve read about all these mouthwatering dishes, where can you get your hands on them?! 

Several restaurants in Bordeaux specialize in dishes typical of the region, such as Cochon Volant, Le Noailles, and Big Bistrot Girondin. Other two Bordeaux gastronomic institutes include La Tupina and Brasserie Bordelaise

Brasserie Bordelaise - one of the best restauratns to try Bordeaux's cuisine
Brasserie Bordelaise – by Lost in Bordeaux

If you want to try cooking up a storm yourself, head to one of Bordeaux’s bustling markets to pick up some wonderful produce. 

You can also discover many of these delicacies if you take a food tour in Bordeaux.

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

Facebook |Instagram |Email | Facebook group

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

When you live in the world’s wine capital, you can be sure that making a list of the best wine bars is not going to be an easy task. Bordeaux boasts numerous wine bars, the majority of which offer an extensive array of exceptional wines. So how did I end up choosing this particular list of 10 wine bars in Bordeaux you ask? 

My three main criteria: the wine selection, great service/atmosphere, and the food menu. 

Not every bar on my list has a proper dinner menu but all of them offer a great selection of bites and nibbles to complement the wine tasting. 

My article includes bars in five different neighborhoods in Bordeaux, as I love to make you discover other districts surrounding the city center. If you’re looking for a wine-tasting experience, rather than just a wine bar, see my recommendations for wine-tasting in Bordeaux

What are the best wine bars in Bordeaux?

Le Bar à Vin

I’m going to start with one of Bordeaux’s classics, Le Bar à Vin. If you’re looking to explore Bordeaux’s wines, this wine bar is likely the best place to begin your journey. The bar is located in a stunning 18th-century building which is also the residence of Bordeaux’s Wine Council (CIVB).

Le Bar à Vin - one of the classic wine bars of Bordeaux

If you ever had the chance to read about the Bordeaux wine region, you must know that there are tens of appellations under that umbrella. At le Bar à Vin, you can try wine from all the main appelations like Medoc, Saint Emilion, and Sauternes but also from less familiar ones like Blaye or Cadillac. 

On their wine menu, you’ll find a big price range, starting at about 4€ and going up to 10€ per glass. The best part though, is that you can order half a glass for half the price!

Food-wise, le Bar à Vin has quite a limited menu, with classic things like fromage and charcuterie and some local specialties like foie gras and wine salt. Try not to come too hungry as this place will not replace a dinner. 

The bar is open from Monday to Saturday (not many bars are open on Monday so this is a big bonus) from 11 am to 10 pm.
Where: 3 Cr du 30 Juillet, 33000 Bordeaux

Vins Urbains 

This bar is a favorite spot of my friend Julie, who’s one of my best sources for bars and restaurants in Bordeaux. I can confidently say that they have one of the city’s finest wine lists, and every wine they offer is typically excellent. 

Most of the place consists of a long bar with many high chairs where you can sit and chit-chat with the owner about your wine preferences. A lovely guy, who would happily advise you about the wine you’ll likely enjoy most. If you come with a small group of friends there are also a few tables in the back. 

Vins Urbains - a great menu to accompany the wine
Vins Urbains – by Lost in Bordeaux

Vins Urbains is both a wine bar and a wine cellar where you can buy the wine you like to take home with you. And with about 250 bottles from all over the world, you have a huge selection to choose from. 

Vins Urbains is located in the heart of the historic center of Bordeaux on the charming rue des Bahutiers. 

The bar is open from Tuesday to Saturday from 6 pm to 12 AM
Where:  27 Rue des Bahutiers, 33000 Bordeaux


Let’s move to Saint Michel, another lively neighborhood in the center of Bordeaux. The district of the main market of Bordeaux is known for its many bars and bustling nightlife. However, when it comes to wine bars in Saint Michel, Julo is my top choice. 

A simple wine and tapas bar with a huge selection of French wines accompanied by some of the best charcuterie and cheese from France, Spain, and Italy.

Julo - agreat place for a glass of wine on a teracce table in Bordeaux
Julo wine bar- by Lost in Bordeaux

For the best experience, consider booking a table on the square just behind the Saint Michel Basilique. Here, you can enjoy the sight of people strolling by as the neighborhood transitions into its evening ambiance.

The bar is open from Tuesday to Sunday 

Where: 11 Rue des Faures, 33000 Bordeaux


Moving slightly away from the city center to Fondaudege, a calm neighborhood that many locals have took to heart in the past few years. With many food stores, bakeries, and restaurants, it attracts people from all over the city. 

There are plenty of hidden gems to discover in this neighborhood and one of them is the wine bar L’officine.

The bar boasts a warm and charming design with a piano and plenty of funky furniture and decor that create a relaxed vibe.

L’officine – a wine bar in Bordeaux

The owners are very nice and will be happy to help you choose the wine from their large selection of French wines. What sets this place apart is the extensive snack menu that goes beyond the typical charcuterie boards. So if you’re after a more local experience with a great bar menu, that’s your place.

The bar is open from Tuesday to Saturday.

Where: 48 Rue du Dr Albert Barraud, 33000 Bordeaux


Another special place is Yarra, a wine bar located on the main street of the posh Chartrons neighborhood. The bar was opened a few years ago by a French-Australian couple who cultivated a very international ambiance in Yarra. Many expats, locals, and tourists come here to sip wine, watch games, and participate in cultural evenings organized by the owners Aaron and Albane.

Yarra - the wine bar in Bordeaux with the best ambiance
Yarra – by Lost in Bordeaux

The bar is located in a typical Chartron building in what used to be its wine cellar. The interior is an interesting mix of an industrial bar at the front with a more cozy sofa area at the back. So you can choose where you want to sit depending on your mood and energy that evening. 

Yarra offers a great variety of wines from famous wine regions in France as well as smaller and less-known appellations from around the world which they love recommending. When it comes to food, Yarra has one of the best bar menus on this list. You can find anything from antipasti to duck tartare and even some vegan options.  

Yarra is open from Wednsday to Sunday

Where: 18 Rue Notre Dame, 33000 Bordeaux

Wine More time 

Wine More Time is an established wine bar that enjoys popularity among numerous wine enthusiasts in Bordeaux. It’s located on one of the most charming streets of Bordeaux, rue Saint James, leading to the stunning Grosse Cloche. If you choose a table on the terrace this historic monument will be your view. 

The bar offers a selection of more than 400 bottles, sorted by wine appellation and county. Each section offers a nice range of prices allowing you to taste great wines from Saint Emilion or Medoc at affordable prices. The idea is for you to take your time and choose the wine that will suit you best that night. 

Wine more time - one of the best wine bars in Bordeaux
Wine More TIme – by Lost in Bordeaux

All the employees are very knowledgeable and passionate about wine and will gladly guide you if you feel a bit lost. 

Wine More Time has a great menu with many local delicacies like foie gras, cheese from the Pyrenees, and a lot of Gascony specialties. 

The bar is open from Monday to Saturday

Address:  8 Rue Saint-James, 33000 Bordeaux


L’ampelo in the Quinconces district is one of the newest wine bars in Bordeaux. The modern bar offers a neat concept allowing you to taste a huge variety of wines by glass without the need to open a bottle. Similar to places like Max Bordeaux, L’ampelo uses special machines for the open wine bottles and all you have to do is press a button to get your glass filled.  

L’ampelo  - wine bar in Bordeaux
L’ampelo – by Lost in Bordeaux

The bar has a huge selection of French wines as well as from many other wine regions across the globe.
If you’re in an experimental mood, you can charge the card they give you and try different wines from their machines. They also have a nice tapas menu, which is great for an apéro with friends. 

The bar is open from Tuesday to Saturday. 

Where: 3 Rue Gobineau, 33000 Bordeaux

Tutiac, Le Bistro Vignerons

Tutiac maybe started as a wine bar, but within the years it has transformed into a proper restaurant with amazing wine. 

The wine bar was opened a few years ago by “Les Vignerons de Tutiac”, a group of 500 wine growers from different parts of the Bordeaux wine region. The members represent winegrowers from 15 different Bordeaux appelations and that’s the wine you’ll find in Tutiac. You can say that it’s the only wine bar in Bordeaux where you can buy wine directly from the winemakers.

In 2020, a more gastronomic aspect was added to Tupiac when it became a chef’s restaurant with delicious local cuisine. If you’re looking for a wine bar, a great restaurant, and a wine shop in one place, Tupiac is where you should go. 

Open daily for lunch and dinner and drinks in between. 

Where: 10 Pl. du Palais, 33000 Bordeaux

Les Trois Pinardiers

Les Trois Pinardiers is a chic wine bar and shop located a few steps from Place Gambetta. The bar has a fun terrace on one of the pedestrian streets of Bordeaux, which is perfect for a drink with friends on a sunny day. 

The bar also offers great wine-tasting sessions where you get to taste some of the best Grand Cru Bordeaux wines. This is one of the best wine-tasting experiences for beginners in Bordeaux. See all the details here

Les Trois Pinardiers - A great wine bar in Bordeaux
Les Trois Pinardiers – Lost in Bordeaux

The bar is open daily from 5 pm to midnight.

Where: 2 Rue Georges Bonnac, 33000 Bordeaux

La Manufacture Le Bayon

The last place on the list is not a classic wine bar in Bordeaux, but a place I just love and had to add it to my article. La Manufacture Le Bayon is a combination of a bar, restaurant, deli, and coffee place. 

The place is run by a lovely couple, Clotilde and Loic, two food enthusiasts who decided to open it after leaving their careers as chefs in gastronomic restaurants. 

As you enter, the first thing you’ll see is their deli with amazing delicacies all made by the talented couple. They work with a variety of local producers, insisting on using only the best products in their kitchen. 

They usually offer a lunch menu as well as a brunch on Saturdays. But you can come whenever you want if you want a glass of wine and something from their deli to go with it. 

La Manufacture Le Bayon - a special kind of wine bar in Bordeaux
La Manufacture Le Bayon – by Lost in Bordeaux

I love to go there after work and enjoy their famous pâté en croûte with white wine. The best tables are of course outside, here you get to enjoy the beautiful view of the Pey Berland tower. 

La Manufacture Le Bayon is open from Tuesday to Saturday

Where: 23 rue des Frères Bonie, 33000 Bordeaux 

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

Facebook |Instagram |Email | Facebook group

Ending your day dipping in refreshing water can easily uplift your stay in Bordeaux, especially as our wine capital tends to get very hot in the summer. 

And while there are quite a few stunning beaches in the region, there’s nothing like having a pool in your hotel. In this article, you’ll find the list of the best hotels with pools in Bordeaux. 

It’s worth noting that some of the luxury hotels on this list can be quite expensive, but I’ve also featured a few more budget-friendly alternatives. If you’re seeking even more relaxation, check out my recommendations for the best spa hotels in Bordeaux

Other related articles: where to stay in Bordeaux, best wine hotels in Bordeaux, family-friendly hotels in Bordeaux

Best hotels with pools in Bordeaux for a refreshing stay

Maison La Course

Located just next to Bordeaux’s main park, Jardin Public, Maison La Course is a romantic hidden gem you don’t want to miss. Set in a beautiful Haussmannian building, this hotel is a perfect place to enjoy the more elegant parts of Bordeaux, such as the Fondaudege and Chartrons neighborhoods

Maison La Couse offers five spacious rooms all carefully designed using a mix of old and modern.
The boutique guest house has a cozy terrace to eat your breakfast as well as a lounge area with a fireplace and comfy sofas. Its small pool is located on the rooftop and has an amazing view of the city rooftops.  While the rooms themselves don’t have a kitchen, there’s a central kitchen that all guests can use. 

Apart from the stylish decor they also pride themselves on their spa and wellness facilities. The hotel often organizes wine tastings and can help you plan a perfect stay in Bordeaux. 

Maison La Course is located within walking distance from the Grand Theatre and in proximity to many great restaurants and coffee places. 

Book your stay here

Villas Foch Boutique Hotel & Spa

For those of you looking for a luxury experience in the city center, Villas Foch is the place for you. A 5-star luxury hotel known for its spa facilities and specifically for its stunning indoor swimming pool. 

The hotel is located in one of Bordeaux’s beautiful 18th-century buildings, bursting with style and charm in every room. 

It’s located in proximity to the city center but within a quiet neighborhood. A few minutes walk will bring you to the Place des Quinconces, Jardin Public, Place de la Bourse, and the old town of Bordeaux. 

Book your stay here.

Le Palais Gallien Hôtel & Spa

Another fancy hotel with a pool in Bordeaux is Le Palais Gallien Hôtel. The 5-star hotel resides in a 19th-century building with a gorgeous facade and 18th-century limestone columns. 

The hotel offers a variety of beautiful rooms including a Prestige room with a private Jacuzzi and the 100m² Montesquieu Suite with a private cinema and sauna. 

Le Palais Gallien offers extensive spa facilities, including massages, beauty services, a jacuzzi and Turkish bath, personal trainers, and yoga classes, just to name a few.  The highlights of the hotel are its rooftop with a cocktail bar and the garden with a heated outdoor pool. 

Le Palais Gallien Hôtel & Spa in Bordeaux
Le Palais Gallien Hôtel & Spa – Lost in Bordeaux

The hotel is located in the quiet and posh Fondaudege neighborhood and has a great restaurant called La Table de Montaigne.

Book your room here.

Renaissance Bordeaux Hotel 

Moving now from Bordeaux’s historic center to one of the younger and trendier neighborhoods, Bassins a flot. The relatively new Renaissance Bordeaux is located at the port of Bordeaux, neighboring one of Bordeaux’s best markets Halles des Bacalan, and the famous wine museum, Cité du Vin

Renaissance Bordeaux Hotel features a big indoor swimming pool, a  restaurant, and a fitness center. One of its best features is its rooftop bar Gina, a popular place for cocktails in the summer

The 4-star hotel offers 149 spacious rooms and suites, all with a stunning view of either the river or the port of Bordeaux. 

Whenever you want to get to the center of Bordeaux, jump on tram B which will take you there in 10 minutes. Or you can have a pleasant walk on Bordeaux’s riverfront and get there in about 25 minutes.

Book your stay here.

Loft Luxe Hyper Centre

This is a perfect place for people who prefer an apartment over a hotel, but still desire a refreshing swim at the day’s end. The Luxe Loft with its clean modern design, features a stunning terrasse with a pool and an amazing city view. The apartment includes one big bed, perfect for a couple, a dining table, an equipped kitchen a TV, and more. 

The Luxe Loft is located in Triangle d’Or, the posh neighborhood in Bordeaux with many luxury boutiques and restaurants. 

Nearby you’ll also find the Grand Theatre, Bordeaux’s stunning opera house, and is overall perfectly located to discover Bordeaux. 

Book your stay here

B&B Maison Rosa

If you’re looking for a more cozy family-owned place, Maison Rosa is what you might be looking for. A warmly decorated guest house located in a typical Bordeaux house. There are only three guest rooms in B&B Maison Rosa so it’s a very small and cozy place. The house is designed as a family home and that’s exactly how you’ll feel staying there. 

Maison Rosa - one of the best hotels with pools in Bordeaux
Credit: Maison Rosa

In their charming garden, you’ll find an outdoor swimming pool, perfect for the hot summer days of Bordeaux. 

The guest house is located between Bordeaux’s two stunning parks Jardin Public and Parc Bordelaise. The nearest tram station is within a five-minute walk from the house, take line D and you’re in town in just a few minutes.

Book your stay here

Hôtel Maison Pavlov

Another stunning hotel offering Spa facilities with a pool is Hôtel Maison Pavlov. The hotel is located in one of Bordeaux’s best suburbs, le Bouscat, and has a direct tram line to the city center. 

The hotel offers the serenity and isolation of the countryside while only being a short tram ride from the city center. 

Hôtel Maison Pavlov is situated in a chartreuse (a French-style manor house) and offers eight rooms and suites hidden at the end of a lush garden. In the backyard, just next to the restaurant’s terrace, you’ll find the spacious heated pool. 

Maison Pavlov also has an amazing restaurant that brings many people from the city center, attracted to this calm, charming place. Everything is sourced from local farms, except for the restaurant’s aromatics and herbs, which are harvested directly from the property’s garden. 

Reserve your room or treatment here.

Is it your first time visiting Bordeaux?

If it’s your first time visiting Bordeaux I have a few articles that will help you get the best out of your first stay. Start with my 50 favorite things to do in Bordeaux followed by my ultimate guide to Bordeaux, which will get you familiar with all the “must” places to visit in the city. Also, check the guide to the Bordeaux wine region to learn how to visit the wineries of the region.

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:

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

The Dordogne region is known for its gastronomy and breathtaking villages. To celebrate them, there are plenty of amazing events and festivals taking place in the Dordogne department throughout the year. Apart from different food festivals, Dordogne also hosts many music, art, and theater events you don’t want to miss. 

In this article, I gathered all the best events taking place in Dordogne every month. Not surprisingly, most of the festivals take place in the summer, however, even if you visit off-season, there are plenty of nice surprises waiting for you on this list.  

See events in Dodrgone in: January to March, April to June, July and August, September to October, and November to December.

Let’s start!

Events in Dorodgne in January, February, and March 

Fête de la Truffe in Sarlat

Every January Sarlat hosts one of the biggest truffles markets in the region. To celebrate the truffles season in the Dordogne, the event usually includes many activities and demonstrations for the public. See all the details here

In 2024, the truffles festival is taking place on January 20-21

When: January / Where: Sarlat

Festival International de la Bande Dessinée d’Angoulême

Every January, the comics capital of France, Angoulême, hosts a big International Comics Festival. Angoulême is located in the Charente department, about an hour’s drive from the north of the Dordogne Department. If you’re a comics fan, this festival is worth the drive. 

Street art in Angouleme

In 2024, the International Comics Festival of Angouleme is taking place on January 25-28

If you decide to go there, prepare yourself with my article about Angouleme so you won’t miss the most beautiful murals in the city

When: January / Where: Angoulême, Charentes

Sarlat en Périgord Fest’oie (Goose Festival)

Another food-related event in Sarlat is the Goose Festival which takes place there every first weekend of March. In the program, you can find live music, great food, a big market, tours of the historic city, and more. See more details here

When: March  / Where: Sarlat, Dordogne

Festivals in Dordogne in April, May, and June

Châteaux En Fête

Châteaux En Fête is one of the best events the Dordgone department has to offer. In mid-April, tens of castles in Dordogne host plenty of fun activities for kids, festive evenings, and guided visits. The program of the event and the participating castles will be published here

In 2024, Châteaux En Fête will take place on April 13-28. 

Chateau de Milandes in Dordogne
Chateau de Milandes – Lost in Bordeaux

When: April / Where: all over Dordogne

Fête de la Fraise

The annual Strawberries Festival takes place every May in Beaulieu-sur-Dordogne in the Corrèze department (very close to Northwest of Dordogne). This region of France is known for amazing strawberries so they are right to celebrate it 🙂  For more details click here.

When: May / Where: Beaulieu-sur-Dordogne, Corrèze 

Les Floralies – Flowers weekend

Saint-Jean-de-Cole, one of Dorodgne’s most beautiful villages is hosting a big flower fair every May. See more info here

When: May / Where: Saint-Jean-de-Cole, Dordogne

Rendez-vous aux Jardins

Every June, you have the opportunity to visit more than 200 parks and gardens in the Southwest of France (public and private). Dordogne is known for its impressive gardens, so don’t miss this event when in the region. See the list of participating gardens here. For the full list of parks and gardens click here.

In 2024, the event will take place from May 31 to June  2

Les Jardins de Sardy - gardens to visit when visiting Dordogne
Les Jardins de Sardy – Lost in Bordeaux

When:  the beginning of June / Where: All over Dordogne

Bordeaux Wine Festival

If you’re traveling in Dordogne, a visit to the wine capital Bordeaux, is almost a must. And what better time to do that than when Bordeaux celebrates its wine? 

Bordeaux Fête le Vin is a big wine festival taking place every June on the banks of the Garonne River. Discover more details about the festival here

If you’re staying near Bergerac, Bordeaux is a perfect day trip to take. In 2024, the Bordeaux wine festival is taking place on June 27- 30

When:  June / Where: Bordeaux, Gironde

Festivals in Dordogne in July and August

Festival Cultures aux Coeurs

An annual festival takes place every July in Montignac-Lascaux in Perigord Noir. A world music and dance festival with a very rich program that includes, concerts, spectacles, open bars along the river, a world culture market, and more. See the complete program here.

In 2024 Festival Cultures aux Coeurs will take place on July 22- 28.

When: July / Where: Montignac, Dordogne

Souillac en Jazz

Every July the town of Souillac in the Dordogne Valee hosts a big Jazz festival. See all the details here

In 2024 the festival will take place on July 13-20

When: July / Where: Souillac, Lot

Vesere Festival 

The Vezere festival is a classical music festival taking place every summer in the Brive area in the Corrèze department. The program includes a long list of concerts taking place in beautiful chateaux and charming villages in the region. See the program here

When:  July- August / Where: Different locations around Brive

Ete Musical en Bergerac

The Musical Summer in Bergerac is an annual event taking place in the first two weeks of August. All the concerts and shows are taking place in different castles in the Bergerac. See the program here.

When:  August  / Where: the Bergerac region

Beau C’est Festival

Beau C’est Festival is a music and theater festival happening in August in Bosset, a little town close to Bergerac. See all the details here

When:  August / Where: Bosset, Dordogne

The Sarlat Theatre festival

The Sarlat Theatre Festival is one of the biggest theatre festivals in the region. From mid-July to the beginning of August the medieval town turns into a big theater stage with plenty of performances in different parts of the city center. See the program here

When:  July- August / Where: Sarlat, Dordogne

La Bataille de Castillon

La Bataille de Castillon is a spectacle taking place during several weeks 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 around the big show: tours of the city, exhibitions, workshops of medieval art, and more. For more info and tickets click here.

When:  July and August / Where: Castillon-la-Bataille, Gironde

Festivals and events in Dordogne in September and October

Perigueux Vintage Days 

Since 2014, the city of  Périgueux has been hosting one of the biggest vintage events in France. Every first weekend of September the town immerses itself in vintage vibes with costumes, old cars, dancing, concerts, and more. You can find all the details about the Périgueux Vintage days here

When: September / Where: Périgueux 

Montgolfiades de Rocamadour

One of the most beautiful festivals in the Dordogne Valee is the September hot-air balloon festival of Racamadour. It’s one of the most beautiful festivals in the region, attracting tens of thousands of people every year. See all the full programs here

When: September / Where: Rocamadour

Journées Européennes du Patrimoine

The European Heritage Days are a great opportunity to discover some of Dordogne’s most stunning monuments. During one weekend in September, many public and private places will open their doors for visits and special activities.

You can see the full list of the places that will be open for visits here.

Sarlat celebrates gourmet taste

Journées du Goût et de la Gastronomie is a fun culinary event taking place every year in the medieval town of Sarlat. Every fourth weekend of September Sarlat is holding an event that celebrates the gastronomy of the region with a big market, an open-air meal, and a walk to see the seasonal migration ramble. See more details here.

When: September / Where: Sarlat, Dordogne

Halloween in Dordogne

Every year, around the last two weeks of October, kids in France have a two-week school break that’s called Vacances de la Toussaint. During that time there are plenty of Halloween-related events in the castles of the region. You can see at least some of the events here or in my Halloween list

When: October / Where: Dordogne

Events in Dordogne in November and December

Festival du Livre Gourmand

Created in 1990, the Périgueux Food Book Festival is one of the most famous literary festivals in France. Taking place in November every two years, the festival attracts many gastronomy loafers as well as famous chefs from all over France. See more details here

In 2023, the Festival du Livre Gourmand is taking place on November 17-19.

When: November / Where: Périgueux, Dordogne

Marché de Noël à Sarlat 

Every December Sarlat hosts one of the best Christmas markets in the Southwest of France. Marche de Noel of Sarlat. The Christmas village includes 70 chalets selling local products, clothes, decorations, hot wine, and more. The market usually takes place in the last three weeks of December in the city center. For more info click here.

In 2023 – Marché de Noël in Sarlat is taking place on December 6-31.

When: December / Where: Sarlat-la-canéda

Go to Truffles markets in Dordogne

December is the start of the winter truffles season with many truffles markets in the region taking place between December and February. The Dordogne is known as the capital of truffles in the Southwest of France and starting mid-December it hosts several truffles markets in its different villages. You can see the full list of truffle markets taking place from December to the end of January here.

I have plenty of other articles about the Dordogne you may find useful when planning your trip, so be sure to check them out!

Where to stay in Dordogne
What to do in Bergerac
What to do, see and eat in Sarlat
The most beautiful villages to visit in Dordogne 
The best castles (chateaux) to visit in Dordogne
The most beautiful gardens in Dordogne
The best things to do with kids in Dordogne
The most beautiful villages in Purple Perigord
The best places to do Kayaking on the Dordogne River
A day trip to Eymet, a beautiful village in Dordogne.

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:

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Medoc is one of the most renowned wine regions in the world with chateaux that look like they were taken from a fairy tale. 

Many visitors to the Bordeaux wine region tend to visit Saint Emilion due to its beautiful medieval village and superior wine. And while I agree that Saint Emilion is kind of a must-visit in the region, I think that the Medoc region should not be overlooked. 

If you have a few days to spend here, I have a very detailed guide about visiting the Medoc peninsula, including its wineries and beaches

However, in this article, I want to recommend specific wineries in Medoc, for people who are primarily interested in wine. If you need help with planning your trip to the Medoc, here’s my article with the best ways to get to the Medoc wine region as well as details about a great guided tour that can take you there from Bordeaux. 

The best wineries to visit in Medoc
Wineries in Medoc – Lost in Bordeaux

The best wineries to visit in the Medoc wine region 

The Medoc wine region consists of eight appellations (AOC), which include Médoc, Haut-Médoc, Margaux, Pauillac, Saint Julien, Saint-Estéphe, Moulis, and Listrac. 

The Medoc wine is classified according to the Bordeaux wine official classification of 1855 and its five levels with “Grand cru classé, Premier cru classé” being the highest of the five. 

There are 60 Grand cru classé wineries, craft and cooperative chateaux, and many other incredible wine chateaux that you can visit on the Medoc route. 

During the years I’ve been living here I had the chance to visit dozens of wineries in the region. In this article, I want to recommend the wineries that I thought offered the best visiting experience. I take into account the guides, the wine, and the estate itself and generally how enjoyable the visit was.

Château Hourtin-Ducasse 

Let’s start with the one I enjoyed the most!

This family-owned winery in the Haut-Médoc AOC is located in the small village of Saint Sauveur in the west part of the Medoc wine region. In their 18-hectare vineyard, they grow Cabernet-Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot which they later use as their grape varieties. 

The couple that runs the winery are two of the more welcoming people I’ve met in this region. On special events, you can meet their lovely 7 kids who come to visit and help at the chateaux. 

Château Hourtin-Ducasse  - one of the most fun wineries to visit in Medoc
Château Hourtin-Ducasse  – Lost in Bordeaux

The place and especially the cellar has a very personal touch to it. It feels like a brocante within a winery. Tasting tables and cozy sofas are spread over the aisles, the vineyard, and the courtyard. A perfect atmosphere for an aperitif with friends!

It’s one of the most kids-friendly wineries I have had the chance to visit in Medoc. Your little ones can find plenty of toys in the garden that will occupy them for hours while you enjoy the estate. Here are more ideas for family-friendly wineries in the Bordeaux wine region.

Château Hourtin-Ducasse is open most of the year upon appointment only.

You can book a tour here

Address: Lieu-dit Le Fournas, 3 Rte de la Chatole, 33250 Saint-Sauveur

Chateau d’Arsac 

One of the most beautiful wineries in the Margaux wine region is Chateau d’Arsac. This huge wine estate spreads over 250 hectares, including 108 hectares of vineyards. They produce wines under three different appellations: Margaux, Haut Medoc, and White Bordeaux (only red wines can be labeled as Medoc AOC)

If you’re interested in art, this is one of the best wineries for you to visit in Medoc. The château has an impressive collection of modern art sculptures spread all over the property, making visits there feel like an art tour. Every year, the owner of Chateau d’Arsac expands the collection by acquiring new artworks so it’s a spot worth coming back to.

Chateau d'arsac - one of the most beautiful wineries in Medoc
Chateau d’Arsac  – Lost in Bordeaux

The château offers a variety of tours, which include wine, art, and live music. You can book a visit or just stop by the stunning gardens which are open from Mon to Fri from 9:00 to 17:00.  

Book your visit here

Address: 1, allée du Comte Arsac-en-Médoc, 33460 MARGAUX

Château Marquis de Terme

Château Marquis de Terme, located in Margaux, has been owned by the Sénéclauze family since 1935. The fourth classified growth winery spreads over 40 hectares of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, and petit verdot grapes. 

I highly recommend visiting this chateau during the summer so you can enjoy their open bar in the garden. Château Marquis de Terme also has a great restaurant which is yet another reason to go there. 

Château Marquis de Terme - medoc - one of the only wineries in Bordeaux you can visit by public transpot
Château Marquis de Terme – by Lost in Bordeaux

If you’ve already visited a few wineries in your life and don’t necessarily want to go through yet another explanation about winemaking, this place also offers wine tasting without a tour. 

You can book your visit here

The winery is located close to the center of Margaux, a few minutes walk from the train station, which makes it one of the best wineries to visit by train

Address: 3 Rte de Rauzan, 33460 Margaux

Château Ferrière

Another great winery to visit in Margaux is Château Ferrière, founded in the 18th century by a shipbroker named Gabriel Ferriere. In 1988 the château was sold to Jacques Merlaut, the owner of Château Chasse-Spleen, La Gurgue, and Haut-Bages Liberal. 

The Merlaut family revived the winery and produced its first vintage in 1992. Today, the château is run by the granddaughter, Claire Villars, who took over the family business after the tragic death of her parents in a car accident. 

Château Ferrière - one of  the best wineries to visit in Medoc
Château Ferrière – Lost in Bordeaux

A variety of tours are available to you at Château Ferrière, all of which include wine tasting, of course. One of their popular tours takes you through the history of the chateau while another is more focused on the agricultural aspect of wine production.

Book your tour at the Château here

The winery is located in the center of Margaux and is one of the best wineries to visit by train

Address: 33 bis Rue de la Tremoille, 33460 Margaux-Cantenac

Château Malescasse

Located in the village of Lamarque, Château Malescasse is known for its unique terroir and wine. The winery sits between Margaux and Saint Julian and produces Haut-Médoc wines. That’s a great appellation to try if you’re not a fan of the tannic wines produced in Paulliac and Saint Estephe. 

In recent years Château Malescasse has been renovated and is now home to one of the most beautiful tasting rooms in Medoc.

Château Malescasse in Medoc with its stunning tasting room
Château Malescasse – Lost in Bordeaux

Since 2020 the winery has been classified as Cru bourgeois exceptionnel, a classification that was created to include wineries that weren’t included in the 1855 classification. The winery offers several wine-tasting experiences, you can book them here. You can also privatize the chateau for special events

Address: 6 Chemin du Moulin Rose – 33460 Lamarque

Chateau du Taillan Medoc 

Château du Taillan is a beautiful Bordeaux wine estate dating back to the 19th century. Today it’s owned by five sisters who all contribute in some form to their wine-making business. The winery produces red, white, and rosé wines and is classified as “Médoc Cru bourgeois”. 

The winery offers several visits. The classic one allows you to taste two wines of Château du Taillan. While their most expensive tour takes you on a more intimate journey to discover the house where the sisters grew up. This one ends with tastings of four different wines accompanied by cheese and chocolate. You can read about all their tours and book your visit here.

Château du Taillan - how to visit wineries in Bordeuax without a car
Château du Taillan by Lost in Bordeaux

During the high season, you can also order a picnic basket from the château and have a fabulous lunch in their garden. You can see more info about that here

Château du Taillan is located in Le Taillan-Médoc, one of the towns of Bordeaux Metropole and you can visit it by bus

Address: 56 Av. de la Croix, 33320 Le Taillan-Médoc

Château Lamothe Bergeron 

The stunning Château Lamothe Bergeron is located in Cussac-Fort-Médoc between Margaux and Saint Julian. The Cru Bourgeois classified winery produces Haut Medoc wine, using Cabernet sauvignon and Merlot as their only grape varieties. 

Château Lamothe Bergeron  offers some of the most interesting visits in Medoc
Château Lamothe Bergeron – Lost in Bordeaux

One of the highlights of the visit is the 19th-century château that has been fully renovated in 2015. Touristic experiences are a high priority for Château Lamothe Bergeron which has recently received an award for their quality.

The winery offers a variety of tours and activities that can fit both wine amateurs and professionals. You can choose anything from wine-tasting training to a cellar visit, a wine siesta, and a gourmand visit. See all the available tours here.

Address: 49 Chem. des Graves, 33460 Cussac-Fort-Médoc

Château Cos D’estournel

You can guess from my list that I really love the Haut Medoc and Margaux appellations. But the list won’t be complete without at least one winery from the northern part of Medoc. 

So I decided to finish the list with one of of the most prestigious wineries in Medoc, Château Cos D’estournel. Located in the Saint Espehe wine appellation region, the estate was classified as Deuxièmes Crus (Second Growths) in the 1855 Bordeaux Wine Official Classification.

The vineyards cover around 91 hectares and primarily grow Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot grapes, resulting in wines of great finesse and depth.

Château Cos D’estournel - one of the most beautiful wineries to visit in Medoc
Château Cos D’estournel – Lost in Bordeaux

While driving on the route des chateaux (the Medoc route of castles) it will be impossible to miss this unique estate. The château’s architecture is a striking fusion of Eastern and Western influences, showcasing exotic elements that make it stand out among the traditional Bordeaux châteaux. This distinctiveness has earned it the nickname “The Oriental Palace of Saint-Estèphe.” 

The winery can be visited upon appointment, you can contact them here

Address: Cos S, 33180 Saint-Estèphe

If you’re interested in other parts of the Bordeaux wine region you should also check my articles about:

A detailed guide to the Bordeaux wine region
A day trip to Saint Emilion
Wineries to visit in Saint Emilion 
Wineries to visit in the Sauternes wine region 
Wineries in Bordeaux to visit by public transport
A weekend in Medoc

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

Facebook |Instagram |Email | Facebook group

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

Temperate weather, ocean views, a city packed with culture, and gorgeous architecture are just a few of the attractions of Bordeaux. But once you’ve really tapped into Bordeaux wineries? You might never leave. 

With so many delicious wines to sample in the Bordeaux wine region, how should you choose? The answer to that question will depend on the kind of wine you like, how you want to feel drinking it and what should be the setting.

In this article, I’m about the introduce you to all the Bordeaux wine regions. You will learn about the grapes used in every region and what type of wine they produced. And finally, I’ll provide detailed information about how to visit wineries in the Bordeaux region.

For every region, I also added a few recommendations of wineries to visit.  So by the end of this article, you should have a rough idea of where to go while visiting the Bordeaux wine region. If you want to stay the night in a winery, check out my article about the best vineyards accommodation in Bordeaux.

Bordeaux wine region map
By Domenico-de-ga, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1599323

Bordeaux wine region- what you need to know

There are a stunning 7,000 wineries in Bordeaux and 57 appellations in the Bordeaux wine region. The appellations range from the world-famous Medoc appellation to the lesser-known but lovely Entre-Deux-Mers. Unbeknownst to many, the Bordeaux wine region produces delicious whites on top of its famous reds. Altogether, Bordeaux wineries produce 2.5 billion dollars worth of wine per year from 900 million bottles!

Over 86% of wines in the Bordeaux wine region are reds made from Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc grapes.

Wine harvest in Medoc - one of Bordeaux wine regions
Harvest in Medoc by Lost in Bordeaux

The Bordeaux wine region is arguably the most famous wine region on Earth. The unique nutrient-dense soil has filtered down over centuries from the Pyrenees mountains, through the Garonne and Dordogne rivers, into the ocean, forming the Bordeaux wine region.

You may also find that the people from this region of France are more down-to-Earth and welcoming than their Northern neighbors. This makes touring Bordeaux wineries a warm and pleasant experience.

For a closer look at the appellations, let’s pull out the Bordeaux wine map

South of the Gironde estuary, we have the Left Bank, which includes eight Medoc appellations (including Margaux, Haut-Médoc, Pauillac, etc.), Graves (including Pessac- Leognan), and Sauternes and Barsac.

To the north of the estuary is the Right Bank, which includes the Blaye, Côtes-de-Bourg, Fronsac, Pomerol, and Saint Émilion appellations. 

Finally, the Entre-Deux-Mers sub-region is between the two banks. That’s the biggest wine sub-region of Bordeaux and where most of the white wines are produced.

The amount of wineries here is overwhelming and it’s really to decide what region you should go to. 

However, here’s a tip from me! Check your visit falls on one of the portes ouvertes events in the region. These are open-door events organized by the different appellations where you have the opportunity to visit several wineries at once. The open-door events are free and open to all. Check out my article about the open days in the chateaux of Bordeaux, to see all the upcoming events.

Château Beauregard - Pomerol- portes ouvertes
Château Beauregard – Pomerol

The 5 Bordeaux wine sub-regions you need to know

Saint Emilion – the Most Famous Bordeaux Wine Region

Saint-Emilion is famous for the hillside architecture that makes it a UNESCO World Heritage site. But don’t let your eyes distract your taste buds. This region’s wines are made from deep Merlot and Cabernet Franc, making the wine soft, and tannin-light. It is home to around 800 wineries.

Saint-Emilion is a land, or terroir (break that out for your tour guide for brownie points), of contradictions. Its people and its wine are warm and approachable, but absolutely elite. The Saint Emilion appellation and its four satellite appellations ( Lussac-Saint-Émilion, Montagne-Saint-Émilion, Puisseguin-Saint-Émilion, and Saint-Georges-Saint-Émilion.) are home to generational wineries. Think old-school families that bought the land years ago and saw the value skyrocket since. But also think of centuries of passed-down knowledge.

The strict guidelines that Saint-Emilion wines must follow are even presided over by the Jurade – a group of people that “bear witness to the traditions of the past.”

Pomerol is another rich red found in the Saint Emilion region. It is fruity, dark, and very drinkable. 

Best wineries to visit in Saint Emilion - Chateau de Pressac
Chateau Pressac in Saint Emilion – by Lost in Bordeaux

Consider visiting Chateau Pressac for beautiful views and rich family history, Chateau Bernateau for a family-run visit and open grounds, and Chateau Coutet for a 400-year-old winery and scenic view. More information on each can be found in my guide to the wineries of Saint Emilion here.

Before going be sure to check out my articles about Saint Emilion:

A detailed guide to Saint Emilion
How to get to Saint Emilion from Bordeaux
The best wineries to visit in Saint Emilion
Where to stay in Saint Emilion

Medoc –  the most prestigious wine region

Instead of a heavy reliance on Merlot like Saint-Emilion, the 584 Medoc wineries grow a more diverse mix of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot grapes. The Medoc is located on the peninsula between the Gironde estuary and the Atlantic Ocean. 

Over many years, the estuary carried mineral-rich water from the Pyrenees, through the Garonne and Dordogne rivers, to form the peninsula. As a result, the soil is resistant to moisture, and is ideal for slow-ripening grapes, resulting in some of the most expensive wines in the world. With good reason – they’re delicious.

Besides being prestigious, Medoc is a leader in innovation for winegrowers across the world. Medoc winemakers were the first to exclude rotten grapes from the vinification process and to age wine in oak barrels, for two of many examples.

Some of the comforting flavors of Medoc wines are red and blackberries, dark cherry, hints of vanilla, and roasted coffee with aging. A perfect wine to relax at home with once you leave the beautiful vineyards of the Medoc. You can imagine that you’re back to bright green vineyards overlooking the water as far as the eye can see!

Chateau loudenne on the Medoc wine route
The pink house – Château Loudenne by Lost in Bordeaux

Some suggestions of wineries to visit in the region are Chateau Loudenne (a chateau with a private port),  Château Beychevellel, or Château Lamothe Bergeron. You can find out about visiting these chateaux in my article on visiting the Medoc region.

The best way to explore the Medoc is to rent a car but you can also visit many chateaux in Medoc by public transport. Read my article to discover all the wineries reachable by train from Bordeaux.

Graves and Pessac Leognan – The Oldest Wine Region in Bordeaux

The most unique feature of this region is its pine forests. The trees protect the vines from the humidity and wind native to the Bordeaux wine region. It is the only region that makes a significant amount of both red and white wines. If you love the outdoors, this is the region for you, with the beautiful vineyards and pines all around.

The red wines created by Pessac’s 29 wineries have a breadth of flavor that is unique to the region: from smoky and cassis-filled wines to light, drinkable wines. The reds are made from Cabernet Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, and Petit Verdot. The whites are made from Sauvignon Gris, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, and Muscadelle.

The dry white wines produced here are crisp and citrus, green apples, and honey. Just the smell transports me to one of the oyster shacks in the Bassin d’Arcachon. Bordelais people flock to these incredibly cheap and high-quality oyster providers every spring, summer, and fall (whenever they can) to gorge themselves on oysters, shrimp, and glasses of Pessac. If you’re interested in combining these two great pleasures of the region – its wine and oysters – see my article on the Bay of Arcachon.

Some winery suggestions in Pessac Leognan are:

Château Pape Clément in Pessac

Château Pape Clément is a Grand Cru Classé wine labeled under the Pessac Leognan appellation. The château offers daily visits in both French and English as well as winemaking workshops where you can assemble your own wine. 

You can book the tour online – just click here. It’s also one of the most beautiful luxury hotels in Bordeaux

Château Larrivet Haut Brion

A beautiful estate with stunning gardens and a very artistic Vat room. The winery is located around 20 minutes’ drive from Bordeaux. Book your visit here

Château Larrivet Haut Brion - Pessac Leognan with kids
Château Larrivet Haut Brion

The best way is to rent a car but you can also visit many chateaux in Pessac Leognan by public transport. Find more details in my article on car-free winery visiting.

Sauternes and Barsac -discover the white sweet wine of Bordeaux

To take a break from dry white wines and dive into sweet ones, Sauternes is your go-to. The subregion benefits from noble rot – the shrooms that form on the vines from the morning mist from the humidity of the Garonne and Dordogne rivers. This gives the grapes a great variety of concentration, acidity, and complexity. The assemblages produced here include Semillion, Sauvignon Blanc, Sauvignon Gris, and Muscadelle grapes.

As a fan of the occasional glass of sweet wine, I find the rich, amber color and the sweet flavors of peach and even “brioche” are the perfect end to a weekend spent among friends and family. A sweet – but not too sweet! – end to time spent enjoying myself before starting the working week.

Château d'Arche in Sauternes - wineries in Bordeaux
by Lost in Bordeaux

My favorite wineries in this region include Château Lafaurie-Peyraguey if you’re feeling fancy, Chateau d’Arche for 17th-century views, and Chateau Guiraud, which has made it into the big leagues: Grand Cru Classé. There are only 27 wineries in this region. You can find more details on these vineyards in my guide to Sauternes here.

How to Get There

You have to have a car to visit this region. Otherwise, take a train to Langon and a taxi from there.

Blaye and Bourg

This region is actually two regions, named – you guessed it – Blaye and Bourg. It produces dry white wines from Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon grapes and drinkable red wines from Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. The region contains another UNESCO world heritage site in Bordeaux – the Vauban Citadel. 

Both are two of the most beautiful villages around Bordeaux

What is unique about the region is the ability to see it from the boat, on the river. It is a quieter experience than some of the other subregions and has its own wonders. These include white stone buildings, valleys of green vineyards, water views, and roman churches. Imagine yourself as the hero or heroine in a movie about “remote” romantic wine regions in France. 

Wineries to Visit in Blaye and Bourg

In Blaye, think of visiting the Chateau Monconseil Gazin. In Bourg, consider the Château le Clos de Notaire with its amazing view (see their website).

Château le Clos de Notaire - Bourg one of Bordeaux's wine regions
Château le Clos de Notaire – by Lost in Bordeaux

Entre Deux Mers – the white wine of Bordeaux

Entre-deux-Mers is located between the Garonne and Dordogne rivers and is bordered by the estuary formed by the two rivers in the North. Its soil is made of gravel and limestone. It classically produces dry white wines that are wonderful for a lunch on the terrace. 

 However, in the 20th century, winery owners in the region saw the writing on the wall and many replaced their white grape plants with red. 

Only the white wines from the region can be labeled under the Entre deux Mers appellation. The red varieties produced in this region can only be called Bordeaux or Bordeaux Superior. Although wine experts claim that the wine in this region pales in comparison to that of the other wine regions, Bordeaux Superior is pretty good. It is soft, but not light, and makes me think of charcuterie boards shared with a loved one in a cramped Parisian apartment, vespa rides, and discovering France.

In the Entre Deux Mers region, you can also find excellent sweet wines like Sainte-Croix-du-Mont and Loupiac.

The view from the beautiful Chateau Malrome in Entre Deux Mers
The view from Chateau Mallrome in the Entre deux Mers region – by Lost in Bordeaux

Entre Deux Mers is home to Chateau Biac, home to the Asseily family. Youmna, the matriarch, is well-known for her mastery of wine and French food and for her amazing hospitality. A visit to Chateau Biac feels like a visit between friends. Youmna is a perfect example of the warmth of the vineyard owners in this region. 

Another great estate to visit is Chateau Lestrille, which produces red, white, and rose wines.

How to Visit Wineries in Bordeaux

There are many ways to visit wineries in the Bordeaux wine region. You can take a group tour, or a private guide, or do it on your own by train, car, or even biking. 

Let’s break down the options. 

Taking a tour guide in Bordeaux

Going on a group/ private tour will most probably leave you with better knowledge about the wines of Bordeaux. It also takes off the stress of organizing the visit and you can drink a lot of wine without worrying about driving back to Bordeaux. 

The downside of it is usually the price. Taking a guide can be pretty expensive. 

If you’re looking for a wine tour from Bordeaux, here are a few good options:

Saint-Émilion Food and Wine Tour – day trip to Saint Emilion that includes a visit to three different chateaux and a fun picnic. Book it here

Afternoon Wine Tasting in the Medoc RegionAn afternoon trip to Medoc that includes two types of chateaux, a Great Classified Growth estate, and a small. Book the tour here

An electric Bike wine tour – a fun bike tour that includes a visit to two chateaux, a picnic, and a stunning ride in the vineyards of Saint Emilion. Book here.

Wine tour in Saint Emilion
A tour in Saint Emilion – by Lost in Bordeaux

Wine touring by public transport

Most wineries are located in very rural parts of the region and require a car to get to. Having said that, you have a few great chateaux in Saint Emilion, Medoc, and Pessac Leognan you can visit by train or buy. 

Read my article about the best wineries in Bordeaux to visit by public transport

Visiting wineries by car

Now let’s talk about my favorite option which is discovering the wineries of Bordeaux on your own by car. I feel like driving along the vineyards is an important part of the experience, which also allows getting to more distant chateaux. 

Also if you have a car or rent one in advance, it can be a rather cheap experience, compared to an organized wine tour. If you’re looking to rent a car, here’s a website to help you choose the best deal in Bordeaux

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

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

Facebook |Instagram |Email | Facebook group

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

I know that most people travel to Bordeaux for its vibrant city life, amazing wine, and beautiful surroundings, but why not make a real treat out of it on the way? Bordeaux has some amazing Spa hotels with spa treatments, pools, and luxury restaurants. In this article, I’ll help you find the best Spa hotels in Bordeaux. 

Every hotel I decided to include on this list offers something unique but all of them offer unforgettable experiences. I tried to include hotels in different parts of the city as well as a few in its stunning surroundings. If you want to stay in Bordeaux and are not sure what’s the right neighborhood for you, I invite you to read my Bordeaux Districts guide first. 

Spa hotels in Bordeaux - by Usen Parmanov

If you’re looking for a hotel located in a vineyard, be sure to look at my winery hotels list too. And now let’s dive into the best Spa hotels in Bordeaux. 

Spa Hotels in Bordeaux 

Villas Foch Boutique Hotel & Spa Bordeaux

Villas Foch is a standout in this article for its beautiful architecture and its proximity to unbeatable sites like Jardin Public, Bordeaux’s most beautiful park. Classic Bordeaux architecture is similar to the architecture of Paris, both of which were largely built by the famous architect Georges-Eugène Haussmann, and Villas Foch offers no shortage of this beautiful style.

Villas Foch is a 5-star luxury hotel that perfectly combines a modern interior design with Bordeaux’s famous architecture and 18th-century limestone. If you want to feel like a prince or princess in Sleeping Beauty (Bordeaux’s nickname), this is the place for you.

It has on staff a butler, a bellhop, a concierge, a driver, room service, and a bar on site. Its spa facilities include a lovely heated swimming pool, a sauna as well as a fitness room. Its quiet yet central location and amazing facilities make it one of the best Spa hotels to stay in Bordeaux.

Reserve your room here.

Hôtel de sèze

Hôtel de sèze is a 4-star hotel in the fancy Triangle d’Or district next to many luxury boutiques and wine and chocolate shops. Situated in a beautiful 18th-century building, the hotel has 55 rooms with 18th-century decor that gives it an exquisite look. It also harbors a spa, a beautiful library, and a golf course (15 minutes by shuttle).

When it comes to location, this is one of the best choices on this list. It falls along the Allées de Tourny, which is the central boulevard in Bordeaux. This means that it is steps away from Place des Quinconces, the Grand Théâtre (my favorite Bordeaux building), and the Eglise Notre Dame, Bordeaux’s hidden church.

The spa is lovely and beneath the hustle and bustle of the city. It boasts a Hammam, Sauna, Jacuzzi, Sensory Shower, Ice Fountain, and Herbal Tea Room. The restaurant, the Comptoir, is a favorite among the Bordelais and is frequently full for lunch. It is also available for breakfast for hotel guests, either as a continental or a full breakfast. 

Reserve your room or treatment here.

Le Palais Gallien Hôtel & Spa

Le Palais Gallien Hôtel & Spa looks like it should be exclusively a hotel for royalty. It is located in the quiet and posh Fondaudege neighborhood in Bordeaux. The 5-star rating of the hotel is immediately apparent as soon as you see the gorgeous facade, 18th-century limestone columns illuminated by discrete soft lighting. 

As stylish as all the other hotels on this list, a major bonus is its beautiful pool out back lined in wooden deck and bookended by manicured hedges. Enter the building through its gorgeous marbled entryway with the classical-style hanging lantern and squared archways. 

The sports facilities and spa have much to offer, including massages, beauty services, a jacuzzi and Turkish bath, personal trainers, and yoga classes, just to name a few.  There is a parking garage for those who drive into Bordeaux hoping to visit some vineyards during their stay.

Le Palais Gallien Hôtel & Spa in Bordeaux
Le Palais Gallien Hôtel & Spa – Lost in Bordeaux

Many guests laud the staff for being extremely friendly and helpful, and they appreciate the quiet nature of the neighborhood while still being very close to the center. Many of the rooms overlook the rooftops of Bordeaux. The hotel is also home to an amazing chef’s restaurant called La Table de Montaigne.

Reserve your room or treatment here.

Hôtel Maison Pavlov

Hôtel Maison Pavlov is located in one of Bordeaux’s best suburbs, le Bouscat, and has a direct tram line to the city center. The hotel offers the serenity and isolation of the countryside while actually only being a short tram ride from the city center. 

The hotel is a standalone building made with … you guessed it, 18th-century limestone. The owners imagined it with wellness at its center. 

The restaurant is renowned not only for its delicious dishes but from its direct-from-the-source nature. Everything is sourced from local farms, with the exception of the restaurant’s aromatics and herbs, which are harvested directly from the property’s garden. They even get their honey from local beehives. The rooms are spacious, and you will be welcomed with a tray of little candies and other treasures from local providers. 

The spacious pool is heated and directly in the backyard. Children are even given alarm bracelets for security. The hotel also offers fitness classes and private coaching.

Reserve your room or treatment here.

Radisson Blu Hotel Bordeaux

Everyone’s heard of the Radisson, and this one offers everything that the world-renowned brand brings to mind. It also has an amazing rooftop overlooking Bordeaux’s port and the Base sous Marine building, an old submarine that is now hosting one of the best immersive exhibitions in town

The neighborhood, known as Bassin à Flot, is home to many of the city’s hipper clubs and restaurants and is where many boats come in and out. It’s also next to Les Halles de Bacalan, a food court that is the perfect place to try all French cuisine at once, and the Cité du Vin, the city’s endlessly interesting wine museum overlooking the Garonne River.

Its spa, Sothys, offers every treatment imaginable, including makeup application sessions, and sells many of its own products.

Reserve your room or treatment here.

InterContinental Bordeaux Le Grand Hotel, an IHG Hotel

This is the most central and famous hotel in Bordeaux, where all the stars stay on their visit to Bordeaux. The decor is a bit outdated, but the service is amazing. It’s one of the only 5-star hotels in Bordeaux. The rooftop is also highly sought after for its views overlooking the Grand Théâtre and the Garonne River beyond that. 

Its spa, of course, does not disappoint. The Spa Guerlain consists of a fitness center, indoor swimming pool, hammam, and sauna. The spa has 10 treatment rooms including 2 couple rooms and an outdoor terrace with a hot tub.

Grab a coffee on their terrace that overlooks Place de la Comédie to people-watch. In the winter, they replace the outdoor decor with bubbles that have heating inside, as if you’d been placed inside a snow globe without the snow (that’s kind of the idea).

This grand dame boasts 19th-century furniture in all of the rooms and will make you feel like royalty. The hotel’s 2 Michelin star restaurant is called the Pressoir d’Argent and is owned by the famous British chef Gordon Ramsay. 

Book your room, table, or treatment here.

Spa hotels around Bordeaux (Gironde)

Les Sources de Caudalie 

If you’re willing to drop a dime on staying at heaven-on-Earth, Les Sources de Caudalie is an excellent option, located in the luxurious Chatêau Smith Haut Lafitte vineyards. This is where the king and queen of England stayed on their visit to Bordeaux in September.

You can stay in a suite on the property. Each of them has been designed with its own unique design using antique furniture and mood lighting. Also, if you’re looking to pair the wines with great food, there’s no need to leave the property as the hotel offers a few dining options: a two-star Michelin restaurant, a bistro, a bar, and a grocery store.

The spa is focused on what the property calls “vinotherapy.” The entire spa is made of all-natural materials and the water for the hammam comes from a natural hot spring in the area. It includes an outdoor pool and jacuzzi. 

So if you’re looking for a sophisticated yet cozy atmosphere in the magnificent grounds of one of the best wineries of Pessac Leognan, this hotel Les Sources de Caudalie is your place. 

You can book your stay here.

Château Léognan

Located in the heart of my favorite wine sub-region, Pessac Léognan, Chatêau Leognan’s impressive facade will make you feel like you’ve entered Never Never Land. Built from beautiful stone, it boasts two turrets that frame a covered front porch, and it is buffeted by its beautiful vineyards.

The spa is special in that the services are offered in yurts or lodges, which overlook the vineyards, countryside, or lake – up to you! 

After your spa treatment and a vineyard tour, consider any of the château’s other activities – Thursday acoustic nights, family lunches, the property’s guingette (French for pop-up party), or Cocktail Fridays.

The rooms are tastefully and beautifully done with natural earth tones highlighted by notes of luxury in the form of crystal chandeliers and velvet chairs. 

Book your room, tour, or treatment here.


Ha(a)ïtza is the sister hotel of La C(o)orniche, a beautiful hotel and restaurant overlooking the region’s famous sand dune, Dune du Pilat. The design is one of Philippe Starck’s projects in the region, which successfully created a delicate style with warm white tones and touches of steel. 

It’s yet another 5-star luxury hotel that hosts one of the best restaurants in Arcachon – the two-Michelin-starred Le Skiff Club. They also have a bistro with great food and more affordable prices. 

The highlight of the hotel is the covered swimming pool under a glass roof that’s open all year long. Ha(a)itza also offers other great facilities like a spa, a fitness room, and a hairdresser. 

The hotel is located on the main street of Pyla sur Mer, the quiet town of Dune du Pilat. Within a few minutes walk from the hotel you can enjoy the calm beaches of Dune du Pilat which are the best ones to go to when the main beaches are getting too crowded. 

Book your room here.

For more hotel options in Arcachon, check out my article about the best hotels in Arcachon.

Is it your first time visiting Bordeaux?

I have a few articles that will help you to get the best out of your first stay.

Start with my 50 favorite things to do in Bordeaux followed by my ultimate guide to Bordeaux, which will get you familiar with all the “must” places to visit in Bordeaux. To help you to choose a hotel in Bordeaux I’ve gathered a list of the best hotels in the center of Bordeaux as well as a guide to the districts of Bordeaux to help you choose your preferred location.

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

Facebook |Instagram |Email | Facebook group

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