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There are a thousand châteaux in the Bordeaux wine region which makes it almost impossible to choose just a few when you visit this region. However, if your timing is right, you might be visiting during one of the open doors weekends taking place at the wineries of Bordeaux throughout the year. There are around 60 different appellations in the Bordeaux wine region with many of them hosting “Portes Ouvertes” (open doors) weekends at least once a year. These events are usually hosted by the wineries of each appellation and include free tastings, tours, and activities for kids. In this article, I will be listing all the open doors weekends in the wineries in chronological order. Don’t worry If you’re visiting outside of these specific dates, many of these châteaux offer tours and tastings (by appointment). In the article, I will also recommend my favorite wineries to visit in each appellation of Bordeaux wine. The list is long so let’s go!

The Blaye Spring Wine Festival

The Blaye Spring Wine Festival is usually the first event to start the wine festivals season in the Bordeaux region. The event takes place at the Blaye citadel at the beginning of April, bringing together more than 80 winemakers from the Blaye appellation. The program includes discovery workshops (introduction to tasting, mixing, and food and wine pairing), guided visits to the citadel, and more. For the full program and tickets click here.

Open doors in the Médoc wine region

The first open doors event of the year is always the Portes Ouvertes weekend in Medoc, taking place in April. During the festive weekend, you can visit plenty of châteaux in the Medoc region and taste some of the finest wines in the world. I usually update about the event and the wineries you can visit in this article. This year the event takes place on April 8-10.

If you wish to make this trip an unforgettable experience, you should go on the Medoc wine road trip that includes all the wonders this area of Gironde has to offer. I personally did the Medoc wine route a few years ago and wrote a very detailed article about it, read it here

Medoc portes ouvertes - open doors in the chateaux of Bordeaux
Chateau d’Arsac

Recommended wineries in Medoc you can visit all year long 

Château du Taillan (book a visit here), which is owned by 5 sisters, is one of the closest wineries to Bordeaux. Château d’Arsac, is one of the most beautiful properties in Medoc with an extravagant display of art in its enormous gardens (book a visit here). Closer to Margaux you have the charming family-run Chateau Siran (book a visit here), Chateau Kirwan (book a visit here), or the beautiful Chateau Marquis de Terme (book a visit here). 

Open doors at Lalande de Pomerol

Another Open doors weekend in April is taking place at the Lalande de Pomerol appellation. A neighbor to the highly prestigious wines of Pomerol and Saint Emilion, this appellation produces some great wines you’d really enjoy discovering. Some of the Lalande de Pomerol properties are owned by famous wine families, such as La Fleur de Boüard, which is owned by Hubert de Boüard of Château Angélus. If you want to learn more about the Lalande de Pomerol appellation and its châteaux, click here. This year the event takes place on April 23-24.

Recommended wineries in Lalande de Pomerol you can visit all year long 

Château Siaurac is one of the best wineries to visit in that part of Bordeaux’s wine region (check out their website). A bit less famous but also a great estate to visit is Château Tournefeuille (Book your visit here).

Open doors in Saint-Emilion

Saint Emilion, the most famous wine appellation in Bordeaux, celebrates its open doors weekend at the beginning of May. The weekend will include many activities such as wine tastings, visits to the chateaux, games for kids, and bike rides. Check out the full program for the participating châteaux, the activities, and the wine tasting proposed for that weekend – here. You can also plan your trip to this wine region with my detailed guide to Saint Emilion. This year’s open doors weekend takes place on April 30-May 1.

Chateau La Croizzille - portes ouvertes in Saint Emilion
Chateau La Croizzille in Saint Emilion

Recommended wineries in Saint Emilion you can visit all year long 

I tend to visit the Saint Emilion region quite often so I have many recommendations for wineries to visit there. I put some of them in my article about the best chateaux to visit in Saint Emilion

Grand Crus Weekend

One of the most anticipated events in Bordeaux’s wine world is the Grand Crus Weekend that is usually taking place in June.  This event, organized by the Union des Grands Crus (the regional wine classification), aims to create an international meeting of wine lovers. The highlight of this weekend is the major wine tasting event with more than 100 Grand Crus where you get to meet different chateaux owners. Read more about the event and the full program here. This year the event will take place on June 17-19.

If you want to visit some of the Grand Cru châteaux in Bordeaux, here are a few recommended ones:

In Saint Emilion: Chateau Franc Mayne (Book your visit here) and Chateau Beau Sejour Becot (Book your visit here).

In Pessac and Leognan: Château Larrivet Haut Brion (Book your visit here), Château Pape Clement (Book your visit here) and Château Latour Martillac (Book your visit here).

In Medoc: Château La Tour Carnet  (Book your visit here), Chateau Fourcas Hosten (Book your visit here) and Chateau de Camensac (Book your visit here). 

Open doors in the Côtes de Bourg appellation

Ô Chais is the annual open doors event taking place at the Côtes de Bourg appellation situated on the west end of the Dordogne river before it flows to the Gironde estuary. It’s less known than the renowned Saint Emilion or Medoc appellations but it’s an excellent wine you should try when visiting the Bordeaux wine region. This year the event is taking place on May 7-8. See more details here

Château le Clos de Notaire  in Bourg
Château le Clos de Notaire

Recommended wineries in Bourg you can visit all year long 

One of my favorite châteaux in Bourg is Château le Clos de Notaire with its amazing view (see their website).

Bordeaux Wine Festival

Bordeaux Fête le Vin is the biggest wine event in Bordeaux! Once in two years in June, the banks of the Garonne river in Bordeaux are taken over by wine enthusiasts celebrating the Bordeaux wine festival. Apart from wine tastings, you should expect plenty of music, good food, and activities for kids. See more details here. This year the event takes place on June 23-26. 

Sauternes Fête le vin

Sauternes is a prestigious wine area famous for its sweet white wines. This is the only wine appellation in Bordeaux that hosts two open-door events every year. The summer event is the Sauternes wine festival, which this year will take place on June 18. For more details click here

Recommended wineries in Sauternes you can visit all year long 

Château Guiraud is one of the most beautiful estates in Sauternes and often hosts interesting events (book you visit here). Also don’t miss the magnificent Château Lafaurie-Peyrague and its Michelin restaurant (book your visit here). Another fun option is the Château d’Arche (Book you visit here).

Open doors at the châteaux of Cadillac Côtes de Bordeaux

Another smaller and less known appellation in Bordeaux wine is Cadillac Côtes de Bordeaux. This appellation has a very active Maison du Vin which organizes an annual open doors event every June, with close to 50 participating chateaux. This year the event will take place on June 4-5. See the list of participating Chateaux.
When there, don’t miss the beautiful Château de Cadillac, one of the most important historic monuments in Gironde. Check out other beautiful towns you can visit in that part of Gironde in my article about the most beautiful villages around Bordeaux.

Portes Ouvertes de l’Appellation Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux

Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux appellation hosts its annual open doors event in early September and it’s usually a great event to start the Autumn with. Contrary to other appellations where you get to visit different châteaux, this one is a rather small appellation and the event usually takes place at the beautiful Château de Pitray, with many stands of smaller producers. See more info here.

Château de Pitray- Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux - open doors
Château de Pitray- Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux

Les châteaux de l’appellation Blaye Côtes de Bordeaux

Another hidden gem in Bordeaux wine is Blaye Côtes de Bordeaux, located near the Blaye citadel in the north of Gironde. I already mentioned this wine appellation in the first event of the year, however, in September, there’s a real Open doors weekend where you get to visit the winemakers in their châteaux. Many of them are family-owned wineries and the visit there feels very cozy. The information about their next event will be published here

Open doors in the Chateaux of Graves

Graves is another famous sub-region of Bordeaux wine, located on the left bank of the Garonne river. It’s a huge appellation that includes within itself a few other appellations like Pessac Leognan, which often participate in the Open doors weekend as well. The event usually takes place in October with more than 70 participating chateaux. See more info here

If you want to visit Graves at any other time, one of the most interesting wineries to visit in that appellation is Chateau de Portets (book your tour here).

Portes ouvertes in Fronsac

Another great wine to try in Bordeaux is Fronsac & Canon Fronsac and their Portes Ouvertes is a good opportunity to do just that. The event usually takes place at the end of October with more than 30 chateaux hosting people for free tastings, guided tours, and more. One of the main events is taking place at the magnificent Château de la Rivière. The info about the next event will be published here

Château de la Rivière in Fronsac - vin de Bordeaux
Château de la Rivière in Fronsac

Recommended wineries in Fronsac you can visit all year long 

Château de la Rivière is probably one of the most interesting wineries to visit in the region (Book your tour here) however there are other great places to visit such as Chateau de la Dauphine with its impressive vat room (book your visit here) and Chateau George 7 with their fun summer terrace (see all the info here). 

Open doors in the Chateaux of Sauternes et Barsac

The second event of Sauternes et Barsac wine appellations takes place in November. This wine area is famous for its sweet white wines and some of the chateaux look like historic monuments and are worth a visit. You can find the full program here closer to the event. 

Recommended wineries in Sauternes you can visit all year long 

Château Guiraud is one of the most beautiful estates in Sauternes and often hosts interesting events (book your visit here). Also, don’t miss the magnificent Château Lafaurie-Peyrague and its Michelin restaurant (book your visit here). Another fun option is the Château d’Arche (Book you visit here). Another amazing vineyard to visit in Barsac is Chateau de Myrat (book your visit here).

Portes Ouvertes in Pomerol

Pomerol is probably the most prestigious wine appellation in the Bordeaux wine region, however, for some reason, its Open doors weekend is not as well known as the other ones. The event usually takes place at the end of October and it’s a rather straightforward one. Most of their chateaux don’t offer tours or special activities during the event because they really only want you to taste their wine. But it’s Pomerol, so amazing wine is guaranteed! The list of the participating chateaux is usually published here.

Château Beauregard - Pomerol- portes ouvertes
Château Beauregard – Pomerol

Recommended wineries in Pomerol you can visit all year long 

Château Beauregard has one of the most impressive Vat rooms I have ever seen and is one of the best places to visit in Pomerol (see info about visits here). Château de Sales is another magnificent chateau to visit, and they offer many different activities on and around their property (book a visit here)

les Journées Gourmandes Loupiac & Foie Gras

les Journées Gourmandes Loupiac & Foie Gras is a great opportunity to get familiar with the sweet wines of Loupaic, meet the farmers of the department, and taste their gourmet production. The event always takes place on the last weekend of November. See the list of participants here.  

Open Doors in the Châteaux of Pessac-Léognan

The Pessac-Léognan appellation is usually the one closing the year with its Open doors weekend in December. This event includes tens of wineries that offer wine tastings, tours, gourmet food, and activities for kids. All the information about the event is published on this website. Pessac is a beautiful little town near Bordeaux so if you want to spend the day there, check out my article about it

Chateau pape Clement Pessac
Chateau pape Clement

Recommended wineries in Pessac and Leognan you can visit all year long 

Château Larrivet Haut Brion (Book your visit here), Château Pape Clement (Book your visit here), and Château Latour Martillac (Book your visit here), as well as the renowned Château les Carmes Haut-Brion (info about visits here).

I gave you a lot of information to process hoping it will help you choose the best time to come to Bordeaux. If you’re interested in more events taking place in Bordeaux, don’t forget to check out my monthly lists and also subscribe to my newsletter where I update you about all the best things to do in Bordeaux and the region every weekend. 

Cheers everyone! 

*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 🙂

Is it your first time in Bordeaux? If it is you should definitely 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 to help you find your preferred AirBnB 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:

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 All the bars and restaurants are currently closed which probably makes you want to skip this Valentine’s day altogether. But during these tedious times, celebrating love is more important than ever and nature could be a magnificent scenery for that. In this article, I gathered a few fun ideas for couples to do together this Sunday on Saint Valentine’s day. So grab your bottle of wine, maybe even a picnic, and follow me to the most romantic places around Bordeaux. 

See the sunrise from Plage de la Pointe aux Chevaux

The Pointe aux Chevaux beach in Petit Piquey is one of the most magical beaches in Cap Ferret. Surrounded by pine trees and a few oyster cabanes, it looks like a place taken for a movie. The beach worth a visit any time of the day but if you’re a morning person, I would really recommend leaving the house early that day and go see the sunrise, nothing will give you more romantic vibes than that. 

Sunrise in Cap Ferret
Sunrise in Cap Ferret by Lost in Bordeaux

Dune du Pilat

Our beloved Dune cannot is a permanent resident on a list like this. The panoramic view of the forest and the ocean is quite hard to compete with. Of course, the ultimate pleasure would be to see the sunset from the top, but as there’s a curfew at 6pm, you’ll have to do with a romantic picnic on the top of the dune instead.

Saint Croix du Mont

This is one of my personal favorites in the region. Saint Croix du mont is a small village located in the south of the Entre Deux Mers region and is known thanks to its excellent white sweet wine. There’s not much to do there but the view from the top of the village is absolutely stunning. During the summer there is a nice bar there but currently, you’ll have to bring your own bottle of wine to enjoy the view. You can also do a little hiking trail from the top of the village. 

Saint Croix du Mont

Visit a winery 

Did you know that many of the wineries in the region are open for visits? They are allowed to have up to 6 visitors but as there aren’t any tourists here, you’ll most likely be alone and have a romantic wine tour and tastings just for yourself. The choice, of course, is enormous so you’ll have to do some work to see which are currently open. Here are a few suggestions of wineries to visit in Saint Emilion

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

Go biking together

There are plenty of beautiful biking paths in the region. If you want to stay in the city, you can cycle on the promenade from both sides of the Garonne. But if you don’t mind getting a little farther away, Roger Lapébie Bicycle path can be a great romantic adventure. 

You can start your path from Pont Pierre in Bordeaux and cycle on the right side of the river until you get to Latresne, where the official path starts (follow the river bike path to Latresne). The official path is 57km long and it goes through the Entre Deux Mers region until it gets to Sauveterre-de-Guyenne. Here’s an article with more instructions. 

Visit the smallest village in France 

There’s something cute and romantic about being the smallest village in a country and in our case the smallest village in France is located in Gironde and called Castelmoron d’Albret.

roses in castelmoron d'albret

There’s not a whole lot to do there, the town is simply very cute and you can have a picnic while enjoying a beautiful view. If you want to visit another place in that region you can stop by Duras or Sauveterre-de-Guyenne. For more info about villages to visit in Gironde read this article.

Go hiking 

There are plenty of beautiful hiking routes in this region and if the weather is good, it can make a perfect Valentine’s day activity. Hostens is definitely one of the best hiking trails in this region but if you prefer going to Arcachon over the Landes forest, The Domain of Certes-Graveyron is a perfect place to spend the day.

For more experienced hikers, go to Saint Emilion and challenge yourself with more hilly trails. Here’s an example of a medium level hiking trail in Saint Emilion – https://www.saint-emilion-tourisme.com/bdd_fichiers/file_1564493621.pdf

For hiking ideas in Bordeaux, be sure to check out my article.

Do a fun street art day

If you love street art there are many places to discover in the region but nothing can be compared to Angouleme, the street art and comics capital of France. Tens of beautiful mural and funny comics decorate the city walls and it will take you hours to spot them all, a full fun, and romantic day :). It’s only 1.5 hours drive from Bordeaux and you can even reach there by train. Check out my guide to the street art of Angouleme before going.

Go to the Pyrenees to see snow

There’s so much snow this year, you must go see it before spring starts. Spend the day in one of the lovely ski towns in the Pyrenees and enjoy the tranquility created by the beautiful white powder. All the ski facilities are closed this year but you can go to Cauterets and enjoy this charming ski resort town. Then drive up the mountain to Pont D’Espagne for a hike in the snow. 

Hautacam in the French Pyrenees

That’s it for our romantic weekend! 

I hope you find it useful and if you travel to one of these places don’t forget to tag me in your stories on Instagram @lost_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:

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Saint Emilion is one of the most popular day trip destinations from Bordeaux. It’s a beautiful medieval town, abundant with historical monuments and surrounded by its famous vineyards. I receive plenty of messages from tourists wondering about the best way to get from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion. So in this short article, I’m going to cover all the ways you can easily get to Saint Emilion and where you can park in case you come with a car. 

Before visiting Saint Emilion you might want to check out my articles about what to do, see and eat in Saint Emilion and the best wineries to visit in Saint Emilion.

How to get to from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion without a car

How to get from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion by train 

If you don’t have a car, the easiest way to get to Saint Emilion is by train! There’s a direct train from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion leaving from the Saint-Jean train station in Bordeaux. The 40 km ride takes approximately 35 minutes by train. The first train leaves at around 6 am and then every one/two hours until 10 pm. You can check the time table here. The price of a one-way ticket is € 9.50 and you can book it online or buy the ticket directly at the station. 

I recommend buying a return ticket to Bordeaux as the ticket vending machines at the little station in Saint Emilion are often broken. If you’re not sure about your return time, you can buy an open return ticket at the agent’s desk with no additional cost. 

The Saint Emilion station is about a 15 minutes walk from the city center. Alternatively, you can reserve a tuk-tuk shuttle service that will cost you 4 euros per person. Call +33640836260 or [email protected] to book it in advance (only from April to October). 

Take a Bus from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion

Taking a bus to Saint Emilion is a much cheaper option than taking a train as the price is only € 2,60. The TransGironde company has a regular line from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion that takes about one hour. However, it operates only during the high season and otherwise stops only in Libourne, which makes the tour too complicated. Bus number 302 leaves from the Quinconces station in Bordeaux and stops just a few minutes’ walk from the center of Saint Emilion. You can check out the timetable here

By Bike – an adventurous way to get from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion

If you’re in shape, making a bike trip to Saint Emilion can be a pretty amazing experience. You begin your trip cycling along the Garonne river, then continue on the Roger Lapebie cycle path where you can stop for lunch at one of the charming villages on the way. After you cross the Dordogne river you start the famous route through the vineyards of Saint Emilion. The route is quite long and will take at least three hours without stops.
You can see the exact cycling road map here

Take a guided tour to Saint Emilion

Another option is taking a guided tour from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion. There are several options for day/ half-day tours to Saint Emilion, both group tours and private ones.

This is one of the most popular half-day tours from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion. Besides the ride to Saint Emilion from Bordeaux the tour also includes several wine tastings and a visit to two wine chateaux which for many people is plenty for one day. The price is €94 per person. You can find all the details of the tour and book directly here.

This is a half-day tour in Saint Emilion with a visit to one winery for € 75 per person. It’s rather intimate as they book small groups meaning you get to actually listen and ask questions. You can check out the details and get your ticket here.

A full day trip from Bordeaux to Saint Emilion, visiting three different chateaux at € 125 per person. This is a great option if you want to see different techniques of winemaking and taste different wines from the same area. You can see all the details and get your ticket here.

One of the cheapest tour options (€ 42 per person) is a half-day trip to Saint Emilion leaving on Wednesdays and Sundays that also includes a visit to a chateau. The downside is that these groups are quite big so don’t expect an intimate experience. See all the details and get your tickets here.

By car  – the best way to go to Saint Emilion

If you just want to visit the city and a winery next to the city center, a train will do just fine. However, the Saint Emilion wine area is quite big and if you want to discover more distant beautiful chateaux, you must rent a car. Also, if you’re more than two people traveling, renting a car might be a much cheaper option. There are plenty of rental companies both at the airport and Gare Saint-Jean, the main train station, so renting a car is very easy. 
To get to Saint Emilion by car take the N89 (Bordeaux – Libourne) route. 

Where to park in Saint Emilion

There’s a free parking lot at the Gendarmerie (police station). However, this parking is often full so on busy days you can leave your car at the free parking next to the train station. There are several paid parking lots (about 2euros/ hour): around the collegiate church (the upper town) and Place Bouqueyre (bottom town).

*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 🙂