15 Best Things To Do In Bordeaux

Bordeaux, France is a beautiful city, filled with plenty of Bordeaux attractions for travelers to explore. From its renowned Bordeaux wine region to its iconic monuments, such as the Water Mirror, a Unesco World Heritage site, Bordeaux is a remarkable destination that offers a variety of experiences for all types of visitors. Whether you're looking for some relaxation or an adventure, this guide will provide you with the best things to do in Bordeaux. We'll cover everything from sightseeing and shopping, to nightlife and outdoor activities.

1. Place de la Bourse

Place de la Bourse Pin

Place de la Bourse is one of the best places to visit in Bordeaux, France. It is situated at the heart of the city and was built in 1720 by Jacques Anomie. The square’s design resembles a horseshoe with two symmetrical wings on either side and two fountains located at its center. Place de la Bourse has been an important part of Bordeaux since it was constructed as it serves as a meeting place for locals and tourists.

The square offers many attractions to visitors such as museums, cafes, shops, theatres, art galleries and plenty more. What makes this spot particularly special is La Grande Fontaine des Quinconces which is an impressive fountain featuring 33 water jets that spray up in delicate patterns over its edge.

2. Quais de Bordeaux

Quais de Bordeaux Pin

Quais de Bordeaux is a great place to visit in the beautiful city of Bordeaux. Situated between the historic center and Pont de Pierre, the quay walls are a spectacular sight with their constant comings and goings of people, boats, bikes and more. This area is particularly popular among tourists because it offers a unique opportunity to explore some of Bordeaux's most important attractions while enjoying stunning views along the Garonne River.

The Quais de Bordeaux offer an eclectic mix of cultural experiences such as traditional street performances and art galleries, modern shopping areas and culinary delights in trendy cafes. During summer months visitors can enjoy outdoor activities at Place des Quinconces or take a romantic walk along the riverside promenade at Place de la Victoire.

3. La Cité du Vin

La Cité du Vin Pin

Located in the fascinating city of Bordeaux, La Cité du Vin has quickly become one of the top attractions in Bordeaux. This unique museum and cultural center is dedicated to educating visitors about the history and culture of wine. The permanent exhibition takes you on a journey through 8,000 years of wine-making, while interactive activities such as tastings and workshops give you a closer look into how different kinds of wines are made in the Bordeaux region.

You can also explore the world's best vineyards with 3-D tours and screenings that give you an in-depth look at various regions in France. La Cité du Vin is not only educational but also entertaining—there are even several immersive spaces where guests can enjoy live music performances or attend lectures by celebrated authors.


Address: 134 Quai de Bacalan, 33300 Bordeaux, France

Phone: +33 5 56 16 20 20

4. Musée du Vin et du Négoce

Musée du Vin et du Négoce Pin

When you visit Bordeaux, the Musée du Vin et du Négoce is a fascinating destination for anyone interested in France's wine making culture. Located in the heart of Bordeaux, the museum was founded in 1993 with the intention of educating visitors about the region's long-standing vini culture tradition and the history of wine. The museum takes tourists on an interactive journey through time, beginning with a display of artifacts from ancient vineyards and ending with modern day wine production techniques.

Aside from its permanent collection, the wine museum also hosts special events throughout the year that focus on various aspects of wine making and other related topics. Guests can attend educational lectures and wine tastings hosted by leading figures in the industry or take part in hands-on workshops to hone their own skills. You can even rent out spaces within the building for private events such as corporate dinners or weddings.


Address: Cellier des Chartrons, 41 Rue Borie, 33300 Bordeaux, France

Phone: +33 5 56 90 19 13

5. La Grosse Cloche


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La Grosse Cloche is an iconic bell tower located in the center of Bordeaux. Built in the late 1600s, it stands at a majestic 85 feet tall and offers the best views of the Bordeaux metropole. As one of Bordeaux's oldest monuments and being the tallest bell tower in France , La Grosse Cloche has served as both a symbol of French heritage and a practical timepiece for hundreds of years.

The bell itself was cast from bronze in 1686 and weighs over eight tons. Each hour on the hour rings out from La Grosse Cloche, echoing through the streets and squares of Old Town Bordeaux. Visitors can ascend to the top of the tower to hear this iconic sound up close and take in breathtaking views across the city skyline. The bells are even known to chime spontaneously during thunderstorms giving locals a sense that they are being watched over by something greater than themselves.


Address: Rue Saint-James, 33000 Bordeaux, France

Phone: +33 5 56 00 66 00

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6. Porte Cailhau

Porte Cailhau Pin

Porte Cailhau is a historic gate that was built in the 15th century and stands as an impressive witness to the city's past. According to legend, its construction was undertaken at the behest of King Charles VIII who wanted a way to re-enter the city after his marriage in 1490.

The imposing structure features three large arches and two towers with conical roofs made from slate tiles. Its sides are decorated with numerous statues depicting figures from French history and mythology, including Hercules, Saint James, Alexander the Great, and Julius Caesar.

The real purpose of Porte Cailhau is still unclear but it has become emblematic of Bordeaux's rich cultural heritage over time.


Address: Pl. du Palais, 33000 Bordeaux, France

Phone: +33 5 56 00 66 00


7. Places des Quinconces

Places des Quinconces Pin

Places des Quinconces is one of the top things to see in Bordeaux city. Situated near the banks of the Garonne River, this large public square is known for its impressive monuments and sculptures, as well as its surrounding parks and gardens.

Visitors to Places des Quinconces can explore its many attractions, including a number of historical statues, a beautiful fountain, and an equestrian statue from 1838. The Fontaine des Quatre Parties du Monde is a highlight of any visit to Place des Quinconces as it celebrates global unity with its four female figures adorned with typical costumes from all around the world.

The memorials represent important figures from French history and are surrounded by lush green gardens perfect for strolling or enjoying a picnic.

8. Bordeaux Cathedral

Bordeaux Cathedral Pin

Bordeaux Cathedral (officially known as the Primatial Cathedral of St Andrew of Bordeaux) is one of France’s most impressive cathedrals. Built in the 12th century, it stands as a testament to Bordeaux’s long history as an important port city. Sitting on top of St. Andre Hill, the cathedral overlooks the Garonne River and provides panoramic views of Bordeaux. Its imposing stone façade is fronted by two towers which reach up 72 meters high, making it the tallest church in France.

Inside the cathedral, visitors are greeted with a vast nave filled with soaring arches and medieval stained glass windows that cast a soft light onto its intricately carved columns and vaulted ceilings. The jubé, also known as the choir screen, has been standing since 1525 and features hundreds of figures illustrating stories from both the Old and New Testaments.


Address: Pl. Pey Berland, 33000 Bordeaux, France

Phone: +33 5 56 44 67 29

9. Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux

Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux Pin

The Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux is a beautiful and popular theater that has been in existence since the 18th century. This architectural masterpiece was built in 1780 by Jacques-Germain Soufflot, and it continues to draw in thousands of visitors each year.

The building itself is made from limestone and has a neo-classical style reminiscent of antiquity, featuring an impressive grand portico with eight Corinthian columns flanked by two statues. One statue symbolizes comedy and the other tragedy, which gives an insight into the performances held at this theatre over its long history.

The Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux gets many renowned performers due to its stellar reputation as one of France its best theaters.


Address: Pl. de la Comédie, 33000 Bordeaux, France

Phone: +33 5 56 00 85 95

10. Jardin Public

Jardin Public in Bordeaux Pin

The Jardin Public is a beautiful public park situated right in the heart of the Bordeaux center. This stunning oasis offers a variety of attractions that make this park a great place to go and relax during your stay in Bordeaux. The gardens are filled with trees, shrubs, and flowers that attract butterflies, birds and other wildlife. It is also home to an ancient Sycamore tree which has been standing there for over 200 years.

The public park also offers an array of recreational activities to enjoy such as cycling, walking paths, jogging tracks and playgrounds for children. There is even an outdoor pool where you can cool off on hot summer days. Vacationers can also spend time playing chess or petanque under the shade of the trees while enjoying views of the nearby Gironde river.


Address: Cr de Verdun, 33000 Bordeaux, France

Phone: +33 5 56 10 20 30

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11. Musée d'Aquitaine

Musée d'Aquitaine Pin

The Musée Aquitaine is one of the best museums in Bordeaux, and with its 3,000 m² , the museum encompasses prehistoric times, Eleanor of Aquitaine, the Black Prince, Montaigne, Tourny, etc.. It provides an insight into the history and culture of this region, featuring a variety of collections, exhibitions and events. The museum was established in 1883 as an annex to Bordeaux's University Museum, and it has since grown to become one of the most popular Bordeaux tourist attractions.

The permanent collection is divided into several sections, including archaeology; ancient artefacts; artworks from France, Europe and the Middle East; Renaissance furniture; coins and medals; numismatics; as well as tapestries. There are also various interactive educational activities for guests to enjoy. In addition to its permanent exhibits, the Musée d'Aquitaine also hosts temporary special exhibitions throughout the year that focus on different aspects of local history or culture.


Address: 20 Cr Pasteur, 33000 Bordeaux, France

Phone: +33 5 56 01 51 00

12. Rue Sainte-Catherine

Rue Sainte-Catherine Pin

Rue Sainte-Catherine is one of the largest shopping streets in France. Spanning over two kilometers, Rue Sainte-Catherine is lined with a variety of stores and boutiques, catering to all tastes and budgets. The street is popular among tourists who come to enjoy its cosmopolitan atmosphere as well as locals who flock here for its array of shops and eateries.

On weekends, the streets get especially crowded with shoppers looking for unique items to bring home from their visit to Bordeaux. The street’s elegant architecture adds to its appeal; narrow passages filled with small shops give way to wider thoroughfares that open up into beautiful squares surrounded by cafes and restaurants.


13. Place de la Victoire

Place de la Victoire Pin

One of the top destinations in Bordeaux is the Place de la Victoire. It is located in the middle of the city, near many local attractions and shopping centers. This square was built during the 18th century to celebrate a royal victory and its large fountain is an ode to that event. The site has been further embellished over time with statues, trees, and other decorations making it one of the most beautiful things to see in Bordeaux.

The centerpiece of Place de la Victoire is its grand fountain which stands tall at 37 feet. Built by sculptor Nicolas Pineau, this magnificent structure has several levels representing water gods, lion heads, and dolphins; all surrounded by a low wall where visitors can sit on balustrades for relaxation or reflection.

14. Pont Jacques Chaban-Delmas

Pont Jacques Chaban-Delmas Pin

Pont Jacques Chaban-Delmas is a suspension bridge located in Bordeaux. It is notable for being the longest suspension bridge in Europe at the time of its construction. Completed in 2013, it spans 793 meters across the Garonne River and stands as a remarkable engineering feat. Standing at an impressive 135 meters tall, the bridge has become an iconic landmark and symbol of modern Bordeaux.

The design of Pont Jacques Chaban-Delmas was conceived by architect Marc Mimram, who won the competition to build the impressive structure in 2005. The goal of his design was to create something that embodied both tradition and innovation. His design embraced traditional elements like stone masonry arches while also incorporating modern elements such as sleek cable stays that hold up two distinct concrete roadways that make up this grand bridge’s structure.

15. Pont de Pierre

Pont de Pierre in Bordeaux Pin

The Pont de Pierre, or Stone Bridge, is a historic landmark in the city of Bordeaux. Constructed from 1810–1822, it was designed by renowned architect Jean-Marie Duthilleul and engineer Louis Vicat. The bridge is built of stone blocks with five main arches spanning the Garonne River. It stretches 366 meters long and 12 meters wide, connected to two sets of roadways on the banks of the river.

Pont de Pierre has become an iconic symbol of the history of Bordeaux. It serves as a reminder of Napolean's rule over France when it was constructed under his orders as part of a plan to modernize infrastructure in major cities across the country.


Address: Entre la place Bir Hakeim, Pl. de Stalingrad, 33000 Bordeaux, France

Phone: +33 5 56 00 66 00

Best Flights To Bordeaux

Quickly search the best flights from the widest selection of airlines flying to Bordeaux. Regardless of what airline you go with, you can save money by comparing. Skyscanner is the best airline price comparison service specifically for Bordeaux.


Q: What is Bordeaux best known for?

A: Bordeaux is best known for being the home of some of the finest wine producers and vineyards in the world. The region's favorable climate, a combination of mild summers and long autumns with ample rainfall, creates ideal conditions for grape cultivation. The history of winemaking in Bordeaux dates back more than 2,000 years when ancient Romans first introduced viticulture to the area.

The reputation of Bordeaux wines rests on their exceptional quality and diversity. The region produces red wines primarily from Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot grapes, which are often blended to create complex flavors. These elegant reds are characterized by their deep colors, rich aromas of black fruits, and well-structured tannins that enable them to age gracefully over time.

Q: How far is Bordeaux airport from the city center?

A: Bordeaux airport, also known as Bordeaux-Mérignac Airport, is located around 12 kilometers west of the city center. Travelers can easily reach the city center from the airport by using public transportation or private vehicles. There are regular shuttle buses that operate between the airport and the city center. These buses provide a comfortable journey with multiple stops in key locations throughout Bordeaux. Additionally, taxis are readily available at the airport, offering a direct transfer to your desired destination within the city.

Q: Do I need a car in Bordeaux?

A: Bordeaux itself is a compact city with an efficient public transport system, making it easy to navigate its streets and visit its many attractions without needing a car. The city center is pedestrian-friendly, with most landmarks within walking distance of each other. Additionally, there are extensive tram lines that connect various neighborhoods, making it convenient to travel around the city.

However, if one desires to venture beyond Bordeaux and explore the surrounding wine regions or countryside, having a car would undoubtedly provide greater flexibility and convenience. The vineyards that make Bordeaux famous are scattered throughout the countryside, often in remote locations not easily accessible by public transportation.

Q: What is the most famous food in Bordeaux?

A: That would be none other than the delectable canelé. The canelé is a small pastry with a soft custard center and a caramelized crust on the outside. It originated in Bordeaux during the 18th century and has since become an iconic symbol of the city's gastronomy. The recipe for this delightful treat has been passed down through generations, ensuring that it remains true to its origins. The secret lies in using copper molds coated with beeswax and butter to achieve that perfect caramelization and distinct shape.

Canelés are typically enjoyed as a sweet indulgence alongside a cup of coffee or tea. They have gained such popularity that they can now be found not only in bakeries but also in specialty shops dedicated solely to their production.

Q: Are there beaches in Bordeaux?

A: Yes, there are indeed beaches in Bordeaux. One of the most popular beaches in Bordeaux is Plage du Lacanau, situated about 45 kilometers west of the city center. This expansive beach attracts both locals and tourists with its golden sand dunes and clear waters. It's a perfect spot for swimming, sunbathing, or even trying out water sports such as surfing or windsurfing. Another notable beach is Plage de la Corniche, located closer to the city center along Boulevard de l'Atlantique. This sandy stretch overlooks the Bay of Arcachon and offers breathtaking views of the ocean along with various seaside activities like beach volleyball and picnicking.

Q: Is Bordeaux a party city?

A: While it does offer a charming nightlife scene with a variety of bars and clubs, the overall atmosphere leans more towards sophistication rather than wild revelry. One of the main reasons why Bordeaux is not typically considered a party city is due to its focus on quality over quantity. The city takes pride in its exceptional wines and gourmet cuisine, which attracts a more refined crowd. Consequently, you won't find rowdy all-night parties or raucous street celebrations like you might in other French cities such as Marseille or Nice.

That being said, Bordeaux does offer a vibrant nightlife experience catering to those who appreciate good music and stylish ambiance. The Quai de Paludate district boasts several trendy nightclubs where locals and tourists can dance until dawn. Additionally, there are numerous cozy wine bars scattered throughout the city that provide an intimate setting to enjoy local wines while socializing with friends or fellow travelers.


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Don’t Forget Your Travel Insurance

Travel insurance will protect you against illnesses, an injury, luggage theft, and even trip cancellations. It’s a comprehensive protection in case anything goes wrong during your trip. I never travel to Bordeaux without it as I’ve had to use it several times in the past. My favorite travel insurance companies that offer the best service and value are:

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