What To Do In Bordeaux If You Have 1 Or 2 Days

Emma Kershaw

By Emma Kershaw
11 Sep 2020

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France's sixth largest city, Bordeaux is a cosmopolitan delight that's a must-add to your travel bucket list.

A culture lover's playground with the highest number of preserved buildings second after Paris, explore the magnificent museums and marvel at the magnificent architecture that earned the city its UNESCO world heritage site status. For the gastronomical traveller, bask in one of the many food and drink experiences on offer, from vineyard wine tasting to cooking up some traditional french fare during a must-do culinary workshop.

Whatever your travel style, say Bonjour to Bordeaux.

1 day in Bordeaux | The Must Do’s

Day one in Bordeaux should begin in no other place than Marché des Capucins, the city's biggest and main market. Rightly so, this hugely popular market gets busy really quickly so it is best to brave the crowds as early as possible, enjoying a traditional French continental breakfast of cured meats, fruits and pastries at one of the many food and beverage stalls. To get a picturesque view of the colourful market that will make a great photo opp, make your way up to the first floor car park.

The gateway into the city centre, head to Grosse Cloche after breakfast. A stunning bell tower, is one of the most emblematic monuments in the city and a must-see when you visit Bordeaux. Easily recognisable by its stunning exterior, Grosse Cloche is a 15th-century gate to the city centre and features on the Bordeaux coat of arms. Previously a part of the city's town hall, Grosse Cloche once served as a juvenile prison.

For a little slice of history, make your way to Bordeaux Cathedral, also known as Cathédrale Saint-André. The cathedral, home to the Marcadé collection, a group of forty-two illuminations, paintings and sculptures, dates back to the 11th century and was consecrated in 1906 by Pope Urban II.


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Catedral de Saint-André de Bordeaux. Ubicada en la ciudad homónima, comenzó a ser construida en el siglo XI. El estilo dominante es el gótico angevino, típico del oeste de Francia. #France #Francia #LaFrance #Bordeaux #PortDeBordeaux #BordeauxFrance #BordeauxàVille #CoucherDuSoleil #BordeauxCathédrale #CathedraleSaintAndre #Catedral #Atardecer #Torres #Tours #CielBleu #Gotico #CieloAzul #Gothique #GothiqueFrancais #GothiqueFrance

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Next, head to the Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux. Built towards the end of the 18th century, the theatre was designed by Victor Louis with a strong influence from the Franc-Maçons. Today, the place is the headquarters of the National Opera of Bordeaux, with regular operatic and ballet performances taking place throughout the year.

Take the short walk to the Place de la Bourse, one of Bordeaux's most recognisable sights. Designed by architect Ange-Jacques Gabriel, the impressive building dates back to the 16th century and was built between 1730 and 1775. With its mirror of water, or miroir d’eau, place de la Bourse has symbolised the city for hundreds of years and has played a huge part in its development and trade.

Nearby Place de la Bourse is BIG Bistrot Girondin, a popular French restaurant serving up traditional dishes and modern favourites. Stop here for a spot of lunch, complete with a cosy interior and if it's a sunny day, an outdoor seating area where you can enjoy your meal with a glass of Bordeaux wine.

This afternoon, take the tram from the Berges de la Garrone tram stop to la cité du vin, an interactive museum and exhibition based on the theme of Bordeaux's wine culture. With plenty of permanent exhibitions, special events and a wine tasting room that offers paramount 360 degree views of the city, a visit to la cité du vin is a must.

Finish off your first day in Bordeaux with a dinner river cruise. Four days a week all year-round, Bordeaux River Cruises offer a gourmet river cruise along the beautiful UNESCO World Heritage quays. Indulge in a freshly prepared three-course menu complete with a welcome drink and unparalleled scenery.

If you have more time | local experiences

Start day two of your trip with a picnic in Jardin Public, Bordeaux's biggest and most popular park. Fuel your day and grab some classic french pastries from one of the many local bakeries.

Next, make your way to Rue Sainte-Catherine, Bordeaux's longest shopping street. Shop 'til you drop as you wander 1.2km of high street and designer stores.

After you're all shopped out, stop at one of the many independent cafes for a lunch break. Whether you're after a sandwich or something a little more filling, there's plenty of different options.

The rest of the day is perfect spent at Saint Emilion, the historical village that's in the heart of the famed Bordeaux wine region. Around 25 miles from the centre of Bordeaux, Saint Emilion is easily accessible by train or tram. Additionally, there are many tour operators who offer guided tours with departures from the city. Explore the village and take in the rich culture before embarking on a two thousand year history tour with a wine tasting experience.


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Finish off the day at one of the village's selection of restaurants, savouring some of the best culinary delights France has to offer.