I love Bordeaux, France and I’m sharing with you all the reasons why you must visit this beautiful city.
I fell in love with Bordeaux when I visited it a couple of years ago. When I went to Heather Bullard’s Academy, we flew into Bordeaux. Afterwards the workshop, I wanted to explore Bordeaux more before heading off to Paris. Aaron met me in Bordeaux and we spent three days. We were both surprised at how beautiful and clean this old city was.
The City of Bordeaux
Bordeaux is a unique cultural city. It has a mix of old buildings with modern.
It’s a hub for the arts and theatre and is rich in history.
In the middle of the city is this amazing cathedral that has been undergoing renovations since the 1990s.
When we toured inside, there was a service being held.
What we loved about the city is how clean it is and the mix of modern and antique.
You can see in the photo below the train tracks for the modern transit train that ran through the city.
This fountain was not far from the cathedral and had incredible detail and design.
Bordeaux is much like Paris with its narrows streets and cafes everywhere you look.
But there was something more quaint about it.
And it seemed less touristy and more family oriented.
I loved visiting all their shops.
Near the water is the Place de la Bourse with its beautiful fountain and scenic views.
Bordeaux was once a walled city in medieval times and this square represents their freedom.
There are cafes all along the Garonne river so of course we had to partake.
There were some very cool restaurants like this one that was built around a natural stone formation.
You obviously can’t go to Bordeaux without going on some wine tours. They are unbelievable and overwhelming.
The wineries themselves are amazing, the chateaus, the vineyards and the amount of them is overwhelming. I suggest you sign up for a tour where they pick a few for you to go on as the sheer amount of them will instantly overwhelm you.
Here is a map of how many there were in this one region.
Our guide took our small tour to four different wineries and it took the entire day. He went around to different regions to sample different wines.
The thing about Bordeaux wines is that they are regions within that region that I didn’t know about and all of them are drastically different.
Here are just a few different types of earth in the region: gravel / sand / clay / river sediment / limestone.
There are also different sides (left bank vs. right bank) and different types of grapes and different ways they are pruned and made to grow like in these images below (they almost look like the shape of a slingshot).
We now have a bit of an understanding why Bordeaux wines are so complex and most Bordeaux sommeliers know only about Bordeaux wines.
Here are a few of the chateaus we visited on the wine tour.
This winery had old buildings but recently built a brand new building for some more sophisticated techniques.
This chateau had been fully restored and had a modern video display that was shown on this glass.
The sampling room was underground of the chateau.
And so was the cool wine shop.
Some wineries had various ways in which they held they wine.
And some had traditional barrels.
Almost all of the wineries we visited had a museum of sorts that showed the antique vessels for holding and producing wine.
Here are some of the wines that we liked after sampling.
And you can see how cheap they are to buy in Bordeaux (almost 12 euros)! That same bottle would be very expensive back here in Canada ($200)
I hope you enjoyed my tour of Bordeaux. It’s a city I definitely want to go back to one day.
I loved how much it surprised (and surpassed!) my expectations.