Travel  /  

Jul 30, 2019

How to Spend a Weekend in Bordeaux

We don’t know about you, but we feel most at home in wine country. If bold red wines are your jam, then Bordeaux should be at the top of your travel bucket list! It’s a gorgeous city just a 2-hour train ride from Paris, and well worth adding to your next European itinerary. We were so excited to visit the region where so many of our favorite wines are made, so we’re reporting back with a Bordeaux guide of what to eat, where to stay, and what to do in Bordeaux for a perfect weekend getaway. So pour yourself a glass of your favorite red, and take a seat because we are going to break down how to spend a weekend in Bordeaux that will leave you feeling a little bit buzzed, and a whole lot of inspired! 

Where to Stay in Bordeaux: 

Intercontinental Bordeaux Le Grand Hotel – For our weekend trip to Bordeaux, we stayed at the Intercontinental Bordeaux Le Grand Hotel. The location was amazing – Walking distance to different restaurants, shopping, and easy public transportation. Even better than the location, however, was the amazing level of service that everyone at the hotel gave to us as guests! Above all, this hotel is truly the definition of luxury, and you’ll feel pampered the entire time you’re there.

The rooms are decorated in the traditional French style, and the all-marble bathroom is a dream! During your stay, make sure you take advantage of the spa and rooftop bar with incredible views of the city. It gets pretty crowded at night so you might have to wait for a table, but it’s worth it, we promise. We also highly recommend enjoying their breakfast buffet before heading out for a day full of wine tasting! 

Yndo Hotel – This 5-star property is newly opened inside of a typical 19th century Bordeaux mansion. It’s such a unique hotel with incredible design, gorgeous rooms, and amazing customer service! This hotel is perfect for the couple looking for a chic stay within walking distance to several shops and restaurants. 

What to Do in Bordeaux:  

The one thing we can’t recommend enough is to take a private wine tour while you’re in the Bordeaux region. We booked a tour through Bordeaux with Elodie, and her team put together a totally custom wine tour based on our travel dates and overall tastes in wine. We chose a tour through the Medoc region, because it’s most well known for its stunning chateaus and strong red wines! 

Our tour guide, Marina, picked us up at our hotel, and gave us an overview of the history of the region on the short drive out to our first winery. Our first stop was at Chateau Paloumey, where we learned about the traditional process of making wine in Bordeaux and tasted a few of their different vintages.

Next, we went to Chateau Gruad Larose, one of the largest chateaus in the region. Chateau Gruad Larose is probably most well-known for having a huge tower on property that has hands down the best overall view of the Medoc region. They also have some of the most delicious wines we tasted on our tour!

After exploring the property, we headed to Chateau Lafon Rochet, a bright yellow chateau in St. Estephe. We took a tour of the winemaking process, and even got to taste wine straight from the barrel! After tasting (& buying) bottles from each chateau, we started the drive back to the city center.

Finally, as a bonus, our guide took us by Chateau Pichon Baron – A seriously stunning castle on our way back! We popped champagne and celebrated a perfect day in wine country.  

We can’t recommend Bordeaux with Elodie enough – It’s female-run (Woot!), they put together a perfect itinerary based on our interests, and we learned SO much! 

If you have an extra day in Bordeaux, head to Chateau Pape Clement. It’s the only chateau inside Bordeaux’s city limits, and it has such an amazing history. The grounds are stunning, and the wine is delicious, too! 

Where to Eat in Bordeaux: 

La Reserve – Located on a cute square (the Chartrons area of Bordeaux) is the newly remodeled La Reserve! It’s the perfect spot to grab a table outside and share a bottle of wine and a variety of tapas. We ordered the burrata, ahi tuna, and croque monsieurs, and we can’t recommend them enough. The croque monsieurs were one of our favorite dishes of the entire trip! 

Le Saint Julien – We stopped here on our day of chateau tours and wine tastings for a much-needed lunch on the recommendation of our Bordeaux with Elodie tour guide. Located in the cutest small town on the wine trail, it’s a must-stop spot. It’s a prix fixe menu full of delicious appetizer options, perfectly cooked meats, and desserts. If you aren’t wined out already, they have a great wine list, too! 

La Belle Saison – La Belle Saison is a must when you’re in Bordeaux. It’s on the other side of the river from the Intercontinental Le Grand Hotel, and they have a gorgeous open-air patio with a view of the entire city. The interior is just as stunning, too! Think pampas grass, greenery, and sea glass inspired decor. We ordered their special cocktails, a variety of appetizers (get the hummus!), and the steak tartare. Make a reservation because you’ll want to get a table with a great view! 

What to See in Bordeaux: 

Maison Sarah Lavoine – This interior design and furniture store is worth stopping by while you’re in Bordeaux! It’s colorful and modern, and truly embodies a cosmopolitan Parisian spirit. 

La Cité du Vin – France’s premier wine museum is a must for any wine-lovers visiting Bordeaux! They have interactive exhibits and a wine tasting on the top floor – Need we say more? 

Jane de Boy – If you have time to shop while you’re in Bordeaux, stop at the ultra-chic concept store, Jane de Boy! They have everything from clothing and accessories to home decor and beauty. You can’t leave Bordeaux without a souvenir! 

Now that we’ve convinced you to add Bordeaux to your summer travel schedule, check out these 5 European Cities to Visit This Summer or read our Complete Guide to Exploring Ireland!

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