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Bordeaux is one of those cities that quickly won me over. Ideally located in relation to the ocean, Bordeaux is an ideal place for cultural and gastronomic visits and outdoor activities.

If you’re planning a trip to the city, here’s my selection of things to do in Bordeaux. I’ve narrowed it down to 15 so that I can concentrate on the ones I love.

The Cité du Vin

Address: Esplanade de Pontac, 134 Quai de Bacalan, 33300 Bordeaux

  • Inaugurated in 2016.
  • The popular Cité du Vin attracts wine lovers from all over the world.
  • The building’s evocative, modern shape symbolizes the movement of wine in a glass.
  • Wine-tasting experiences and interactive exhibitions on the theme of wine.

Buy your tickets for La Cité du Vin.

Bordeaux’s Cité du Vin is a must see for wine lovers. It offers a complete sensory experience. As soon as you approach the building, you’ll be struck by its bold architecture, an allegory of wine as a link between peoples and cultures.

Once inside, visitors can browse the permanent and temporary exhibitions. They explore all aspects of viticulture and wine tasting.

For more information, please read my article on La Cité du Vin.


Bordeaux’s historic center

bordeaux historic center
Source: bepsy –
  • Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2007.
  • A mix of medieval, classical and neoclassical buildings.
  • Rue Sainte-Catherine is one of Europe’s longest pedestrian shopping streets.
  • Numerous bars and restaurants to liven up the evenings.

Strolling through Bordeaux’s historic center is a delightful experience. Every street corner reveals elegant facades and inviting squares. The warm hue of Bordeaux stone gives the city a special light at the end of the day.

In the evenings, especially in summer, the center becomes more festive. Restaurant terraces fill up.

To get around Bordeaux’s historic center easily, I recommend using the public transport network. Between buses and streetcars, it’s easy and inexpensive to get around.


Bordeaux gastronomy at the Marché des Capucins or in Michelin-starred restaurants

Address: Marché des Capucins, Place des Capucins, 33800 Bordeaux

  • An impressive wealth of gastronomic delights, from cannelés to entrecôtes à la bordelaise.
  • Nicknamed the “belly of Bordeaux,” the Marché des Capucins is the city’s largest market.
  • Several Michelin-starred restaurants are located in the city center.

Book a guided tour dedicated to Bordeaux gastronomy.

Gastronomy in Bordeaux is a pillar of local culture and a true art of living. Along with Lyon, Bordeaux is perhaps France’s most famous city for its gastronomic riches.

I recommend both local markets and gourmet restaurants.

The Capucins market is the ideal place to start your culinary discovery. You’ll find a huge selection of local produce.

For a gourmet meal, Bordeaux has no shortage of establishments. These include Le Pressoir d’Argent Gordon Ramsay (Place de la Comédie) and La Grande Maison de Bernard Magrez (10 Rue Labottière), Le Chapon Fin (Rue Montesquieu).

As well as good food, visit a wine cellar and take home some bottles as souvenirs.


The Public Garden

Address: Cours de Verdun, 33000 Bordeaux

  • Created in 1746 and refurbished in English style in 1856.
  • An 11-hectare green oasis in the heart of the city.
  • Children’s play areas, a toy train, puppets and a café.
  • The Bordeaux Natural History Museum is also located here.

The Jardin Public is the prettiest park in the center of Bordeaux. This English-style park skillfully blends open spaces with wooded areas, water features and winding paths.

I recommend it for a break between your various visits to the city.

The park is home to the Natural History Museum. It’s not an extraordinary museum, but if you have an empty slot in your tourist calendar, it’s still a nice visit.


Pey-Berland Tower

Address: Place Pey Berland, 33000 Bordeaux

  • Built between 1440 and 1500, next to St Andrew’s Cathedral.
  • One of the finest panoramic views of Bordeaux.
  • Listed as a historic monument in 1862.
  • Home to an 11-ton bell, one of the largest in France.
  • Access via 233 steps.

Tour Pey-Berland is one of Bordeaux’s most important landmarks. Standing proudly beside Saint-André Cathedral, it offers visitors who dare to climb its narrow steps a breathtaking panorama of the entire city.

During the high season, it’s best to arrive early, as many tourists visit. What’s more, I think it’s easier to climb the steps in the morning than in the heat of the afternoon…

But it’s not all about the view. The history of the Tour Pey-Berland is very interesting, and the sight of its huge bell is surprising.


A cruise on the Garonne

cruise garonne bordeaux
Source: Mystic Stock Photography –

Departure address for the main cruises: Quai des Chartrons, 33000 Bordeaux

  • From cruises lasting a few hours to day trips.
  • Accessible to all audiences.
  • More pleasant in spring and summer, but available all year round.

Book a guided cruise on the Garonne.

A cruise on the Garonne is a peaceful and original way to discover Bordeaux.

Whether it’s a short river trip or a full-day excursion, it’s always a good time. A cruise is suitable for everyone. Families are entertained, while couples find the moment romantic.

Cruises can be short, taking in the best of Bordeaux from the Garonne River, or longer, with a gastronomic service.


An escapade in the vineyards

vineyard bordeaux

  • Médoc, Saint-Émilion, Pomerol, and many more to discover.
  • Tastings, cellar tours, meetings with winemakers.
  • Some properties may require advance booking.

Book a vineyard getaway.

Exploring the vineyards of Bordeaux is a popular activity with foreign tourists. You have two options.

The easiest way is to visit the wine cellars dotted around the area and stop off on some of the hiking trails to take some great photos of the vines.

The best option is to take a real guided tour or book a winery tour. This is the best way to discover the vineyards of Bordeaux. The winegrowers explain the history of their winery, and their way of producing and marketing wine. A wine tasting session completes the experience. If you’re already an enology connoisseur, you can express your knowledge. And if you’re just a consumer, you’ll learn how to taste and rate wine.

Of course, I can only recommend that you buy a few bottles directly from the winemaker.


A concert at the Auditorium

Address: 9-13 Cours Georges Clemenceau, 33000 Bordeaux

  • Praised for its exceptional acoustic quality.
  • Can accommodate up to 2,144 spectators.
  • Welcomes a wide variety of musical genres, including the Orchestre National Bordeaux Aquitaine.
  • The interior is both modern and warm.

If you love music, attend a concert at the Auditorium de Bordeaux. The acoustics are often praised by music lovers and help to make every performance memorable.

Whether you’re a fan of classical music, jazz or other genres, the varied program is sure to meet your expectations. Try to book your tickets several weeks, even months, in advance of your event, as the venue remains small for a metropolis and most concerts are sold out.


The Museum of Fine Arts

art museum bordeaux

Address: 20 Cours d’Albret, 33000 Bordeaux

  • Founded in 1801 by Cardinal Joseph Fesch, Napoleon’s uncle.
  • A permanent collection ranging from the Renaissance to the 20th century.
  • Has a charming garden.

The Musée des Beaux-Arts de Bordeaux collection features major works by the great European masters. You won’t find the density of a Parisian museum like the Musée d’Orsay, but the number of works is substantial.

The permanent collection is segmented by century, from the Renaissance (15e century) to the 20e century. You’ll also discover a number of sculptures in a section entitled “3D meets painting.”

The setting, a sumptuous private mansion, is also an asset. From the moment you step outside, you know you’re in for a treat.

The museum manages to maintain an intimate atmosphere, despite the size of its collections and the large number of visitors.


The National Customs Museum

customs museum bordeaux

Address: 1 Place de la Bourse, 33000 Bordeaux

  • This is the only museum in France dedicated to the history of customs.
  • Located in the former hotel des fermes du Roi.
  • Presents artifacts and documents from the Ancien Régime to the present day.

The Musée National des Douanes is a hidden treasure well worth a visit for anyone interested in France’s economic and administrative history. I discovered it recently and was very pleasantly surprised.

Located on the Place de la Bourse, the museum has a wealth of information on the role of customs over the centuries. The quality of the exhibits and documents on display helps visitors to understand the challenges faced by this administration, which is often summed up as a mere checkpoint at freeway toll booths….

Since you have to read a lot to appreciate this museum, it’s not necessarily a place that appeals to young children.


Aquitaine Museum

Address: 20 Cours Pasteur, 33000 Bordeaux

  • Rich archaeological and ethnographic collections recounting the history of Bordeaux and its region from prehistory to the present day.
  • Host lectures, films and a variety of temporary exhibitions.

The Musée de l’Aquitaine focuses on the historical and cultural role of Bordeaux and its region.

Visitors are often surprised to discover that the oldest objects on display dates back to prehistoric times. The collection is varied and appeals to all ages, while the entrance fee is a pittance compared with the museum’s quality.

Personally, my favorite part of the museum is the Gallo-Roman period.

The Museum also includes a section of the Second World War, with the fate of Bordeaux’s Jewish families, and the Centre Jean Moulin.

Last but not least, the Goupil Museum.


La Grosse Cloche

grosse cloche bordeaux

Address: 45 Rue Saint James, 33000 Bordeaux

  • Second vestige of the town’s ancient ramparts, dating from the 15th century.
  • Its bell, weighing around 7,800 kg, was used to ring the city’s major events.
  • A remarkable example of Bordeaux’s medieval civil architecture.

The Grosse Cloche is an emblem of Bordeaux. Its imposing structure makes it a popular subject for photographs by visitors.

Its Gothic architecture and imposing clock bear witness to the town’s past.


Saint-Michel Basilica

Saint-Michel Basilica

Address: Place Meynard, 33000 Bordeaux

  • A masterpiece of the flamboyant Gothic style.
  • You can climb up to the spire of a breathtaking view of the city.
  • Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site as part of the Pilgrim’s Way to Santiago de Compostela.
  • Home to a monumental organ much appreciated by music lovers.

The Basilique Saint-Michel, with its soaring spire, is a must-see landmark for Bordeaux residents. The basilica’s interior is as impressive as its façade. Probably the most impressive feature is the great organ.

During your visit, climb to the top to enjoy a unique view of Bordeaux.


Les Bassins des Lumières

Address: Impasse Brown de Colstoun, 33300 Bordeaux

  • Located in the former German submarine base in Bordeaux.
  • 6 visit areas

Buy your tickets online to avoid the wait.

Les Bassins des Lumières is a popular artistic experience in Bordeaux. This former bunker has been transformed into a digital art center.

The Bassins des Lumières has 6 visit areas:

  • Le Cube showcases immersive art in a large, fully soundproofed space
  • La Citerne Immersive, featuring digital exhibitions
  • Les Grandes Bouées d’Amarrage used to project images from the water exhibition
  • The Base Museum, retracing the history of the submarine base
  • An educational area
  • A mezzanine with a stage and bleachers.

Visitor reviews are excellent. The Cube is the most impressive space.


The Wine and Trade Museum

Address: 41 Rue Borie, 33300 Bordeaux

  • Located in a historic merchant district.
  • Learn more about the history of the Bordeaux wine trade.
  • Housed in an 18th-century building.

Get tickets with free cancellation.

The Wine and Trade Museum of Bordeaux is a key stop for wine lovers wishing to understand Bordeaux’s central role in the global wine trade. It is often preferred to the Cité du Vin by wine enthusiasts.

The museum is in the heart of the Chartrons district, known as the historic birthplace of wine merchants.


As a professional blogger, I take advantage of my flexible schedule to travel a lot. I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list!