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Bordeaux has to be the one wine city in the world that every wine lover should visit at least once, and we offer many Bordeaux wine tours throughout the year. Sitting alongside the Garonne river, Bordeaux is surrounded in nearly all directions by its world-famous vineyards. To the North there is the Medoc and the communes of Margaux, Pauillac, St Julien and St Estephe being the most famous wine-wise; to the South is the Graves and Sauternes, and to the East St Emilion, Pomerol and Fronsac known collectively as the “Right Bank”, meaning of the Gironde.
As a wine region the area produces the world’s highest concentration of fine wines not only in France but throughout the world. The success of wine production here is attributed to its proximity to sea and rivers which give it a moderate climate with a low risk of severe frosts; the Forest of the Landes (which is in fact the largest forest in Europe), lies to the south-west which protects the vines from the strong salty winds.
The predominant red grape varieties are Cabernet Sauvignon (which is mostly grown in the Medoc) and in the right bank Merlot and Cabernet Franc thrive. In the Graves and Sauternes region, the grape for wine principally changes to white and to the Sauvignon and Semillon varieties. Arblaster & Clarke Wine Tours visits all of these regions on the wine holidays below.
You should definitely take the opportunity to visit the city itself with its many magnificent 18th and 19th century buildings which were in fact built from the wealth derived from the sugar trade. Along the river front you find the “Quai des Chartrons” where many of the chateaux have their main administrative offices and where the Town Hall is to be found. It was here that the famous classification of 1855 was drawn up. In the centre of town there are many beautiful buildings to visit including the cathedrals of Saint Andre and Saint Michel, recently selected World Heritage listed monument by Unesco. The theatre is worth visiting too, for its magnificent staircase. If you decide to opt for a more relaxed afternoon, Bordeaux has a wealth of luxury shops in the area called “The Golden Triangle” right in the city centre.
Also you will discover that in Bordeaux the passion for wine is shared with the passion for gastronomy. High on the menu you will find duck, often grilled over “sarments” (vine cuttings) and with the proximity of the Arcachon basin, oysters are a must! You’ll also find foie gras – which is perfect with a glass of sauternes at the start of your meal.
Getting to Bordeaux for your wine tour by air is very easy as the airport is close to the centre of town and the many vineyards. Also there are many direct flights from around the country. You could also drive out, stopping en route in the Loire or take the TGV via Paris.
Rain, 13C, Bordeaux
Bordeaux Wine & City
11 - 14 April 2013, 14 - 17 November 2013
Bordeaux First Growths at Château Pichon Longueville
25 - 29 November 2013, 10 - 14 March 2014
Bordeaux First Growths
11 - 15 March 2013
Bordeaux Vineyard Walk
10 - 16 September 2012
Bordeaux ‘en Primeur’
11 - 15 June 2012