While Bordeaux isn’t considered a winter destination, it has quite a lot to offer for people visiting it in December. From wine-tasting events to kids’ theatre and a cinema festival, everyone can find something they’ll enjoy this month. In this article, I gathered all the best events and concerts taking place in December in Bordeaux and its surroundings.
If it’s your first time in Bordeaux I recommend reading my article about the best things to do in Bordeaux and about the best districts in Bordeaux in case you’re still looking for accommodation. If you need day trip ideas, check out my article about day trips from Bordeaux.
Now let’s start with my list of things to do in Bordeaux in December 2023.
Best things to do in December in Bordeaux in 2023
The Christmas season in Bordeaux has plenty of great markets to attend and buy presents! The official Marché de Noël de Bordeaux with all the traditional stands and a lot of vin chaud (hot wine) will take place at Allees de Tourny from November 24 to December 27.
If you want to discover other markets taking place in Bordeaux and other parts of Gironde, take a look at my Christmas Markets in Bordeaux article.
Escape the rain
My list mostly includes events and concerts, but If it’s cold and raining and you’re not in the mood for an event you can always choose one of the cool places on my list of things to do when it’s raining in Bordeaux and things to do with kids when it’s raining.
Open Doors in the Chateaux of Pessac-Léognan
The Pessac-Léognan appellation is hosting its annual open-door weekend on December 2-3. 34 wineries will take part in the event with wine tastings, tours, gourmet food, and activities for kids. Some of the participating chateaux are Château Brown, Château Pape Clément, and Château Haut-Lagrange, for the full list of Chateaux and more info about the open doors weekend click here.
If you’re also in the mood for a little day trip you can spend a nice half-day in Pessac – check out my article about it.
When: December 2-3 / Where: Pessac Leognan region (Check out the link above for the full list of chateaux)
I also have an article with all the open doors events to take place at the wineries of Bordeaux throughout the year, so check that one out as well.
Cabanes en fête
Cabanes en fête is the oysters and wine celebration taking place in Andernos-les-Bains on December 2. The program includes music concerts, shows, exhibitions, and more. This year, you must purchase a pass to be able to take part in this event. See all the details here.
When: December 2/ Where: Port Ostreicole, 33510 Andernos-les-Bains
*If you want to discover more places around Andernos les Bains, check out my article about the best day trips to Arcachon Bay.
Dali and Gaudi – Les Bassins de Lumières
Les Bassins de Lumières is hosting a beautiful immersive exhibition dedicated to Dali and Gaudi. Les Bassins de Lumières is a visual arts space, situated in an old submarine base, that is known for its immersive exhibitions. The Dali exhibition will be presented from February 3 to January 7, get your tickets here.
Starting October 20, the Tin Tin exhibition will be running there a few times a week, so be sure to check out the hours when booking your tickets.
When: February 3 – January 7, 2024 / Where: Imp. Brown de Colstoun, 33300 Bordeaux
Taste the best French wines
In December you also have a chance to taste some of the best French wines in one place at an event called “Bordeaux Tasting”. During two days (December 9-10) tens of wine houses from Bordeaux and other regions in France will be there to present their best wines. The tasting will take place at different sites around Place de la Bourse.
For more details click here
When: December 9-10 / Where: Place de la Bourse, Bordeaux
Brocante des Quinconces
The big brocante of Bordeaux (antique/flea market) is hosted twice a year at Place des Quinconces with 200 antique dealers, horticulturists, restaurants, and craftsmen. This fall edition of the market will take place from November 24 to December 10. Although it’s quite upscale, you can find some fine antiques and vintage pieces at a bargain price. See more info here.
When: November 24- December 10 / Where: Place des Quinconces
Strolling the different brocantes of Bordeaux is one of my favorite activities here. Check out all of the other options in my article about the 50 best things to do in Bordeaux.
International Animated Films Festival
Les Nuits Magiques is an annual international festival of animated movies taking place at Cinéma la Lanterne in Begles from November 29 – December 10. This is the 32nd edition of the festival, which over the years gained a reputation in the animation and special effects world. Check out the full program here.
When: November 29 – December 10 Where: 151 Boulevard ALBERT 1er, 33130 Bègles
Les Lumières de la ville
Les lumières de la ville is a great chance to discover how Bordeaux’s monuments look at night. It’s a two-hour biking tour, starting at Place de la Victoire and finishing with Christmas drinks.
On the way, you will get to see the most important monuments and all the beautifully decorated little streets of Bordeaux. The event will take place on December 8 at 19:00, it’s free and open to all. For more details click here.
When: December 8 / Where: Place de la Victoire, 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.
La grande Sainte-Luce
La Brede (a little town in the South of Gironde) is hosting a big gastronomic festival called La grande Sainte-Luce with more than 60 local producers of caviar, duck products, cheese, and more.
The event will also include many Christmas-related activities. The market will take place on December 9-10 at Parc de l’Espérance at La Brede. See more details here.
When: December 9- 10 / Where: Parc de l’Espérance, La Brede
Concert De Noël
The orchestra of Bordeaux will perform four concerts to celebrate the end of the year. The concerts will take place on December 14-17 at the Auditorium of Bordeaux. See more details here.
When: December 14-17 / Where: 8 – 13 Cr Georges Clemenceau, 33000 Bordeaux
Festival « Sur Un Petit Nuage » de Pessac
The city of Pessac invites you to a fantastic kids’ festival with plenty of live shows. The festival Sur un Petit Nuage will take place on December 10-20 in different locations in Pessac. You can see the full program here.
When: December 10-20 / Where: different places in Pessac
The Giselle Ballet at the Opera
During December The ballet of Bordeaux will perform 21 shows of the famous ballet Gissele. The shows will be taking place at the Grand Theatre from December 6 to December 31. You can buy tickets here.
When: December 6-31/ Where: Opera de Bordeaux
Christmans concert by the Harmony Orchestra
L’lOrchestre d’Harmonie de Bordeaux will perform its annual christmas concert on December 22. The concert will take place at the Salle des fêtes du Grand Parc. For more info click here.
When: December 22 / Where: 39 Cours de Luze, 33000 BORDEAUX
Harry Potter – en ciné concert
Follow Harry, Ron, and Hermione in their eventful third year at Hogwarts, during an exceptional film concert with more than 100 musicians and singers on stage. The concert is taking place at Arkea Arena in Bordeaux on December 29. See all the info here.
Pat’ Patrouille En Avant les Pirats
If you’re looking for fun stuff to do with little kids in Bordeaux during Christmas week, here’s one great option. The most popular dogs in the world PAW Patrol (La Pat’ Patrouille in French) are coming to visit the city on December 30 with a musical adventure full of humor and action. The show will take place at Arkea Arena. You can purchase tickets here.
A traditional marionette theater
Guignol Guérin is the oldest family-run marionette theater in France. Their traditional winter spectacle takes place in Théâtre l’Inox between December 23 and January 4. For more details click here.
When: December 23 to January 4 / Where: 13 Rue Fernand Philippart, 33000 Bordeaux
Visit wineries in Sauternes and Barsac
Sauternes and Barsac are two of Bordeaux’s most prestigious wine appellations. Here is the SW It’s also known as the Christmas wine. So if you happen to be in the region, why not go and actually visit some of the beautiful chateaux of Sauternes? Many of them are open all year long. See the list of my favorite wineries in Sauternes.
Best things to do in December in other parts of the Southwest
Festival des Lanternes in Montauban
This year Montauban (about 50 km from Toulouse) is hosting yet another lanterns festival. The event called le Jardin Fantastique will host 40 artists from China that will present their monumental sculptures. This event will take place on Cours Foucault from December 15 to February 11, 2024. See all the info here.
When: December 5 – February 11 / Where: Cours Foucault, Montauban
Toulouse Christmas markets
Another fun place to celebrate Christmas is Toulouse. Not only it has one of the biggest markets in the region taking place on Place du Capitole but it also has many other smaller chic events. See all the details in my article about the best Christmas markets in Toulouse.
La Flamme de l’Armagnac
Armagnac is one of the best products in the Southwest of France! Its production spreads over three departments in this region: Les Landes, Lot et Garonne, and Gers, all located within a 1-2 hour drive from Bordeaux. From the end of October to the beginning of January, the producers of Armagnac celebrate the distillery period with fun events at the chateaux and in small towns in the regions. see more details here.
Sur la Route des Vins du Jurançon
How about discovering another wine region in the Southwest of France? If you don’t mind driving, the Jurançon wine appellation, which is located close to the city of Pau is hosting its annual open doors weekend on December 10. See all the details here.
When: December 10 / Where: Route de Lacommande, 64360 Monein, France
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 of the Southwest of France and starting mid-December it hosts several truffles markets in its different villages. You can see the full list of truffles markets taking place from December to the end of January here.
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 South of France, the Sarlat Christmas market. 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. For more info click here.
When: December 6-31 / Where: Place de la Grande Rigaudie , 24200 Sarlat-la-canéda
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:
*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 🙂