Things to do in Bordeaux

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    Place de la Bourse: One of many architectural sights in Bordeaux

    Photo courtesy of thierry vialard/iStock

Get Your Bearings in Bordeaux

By Biju Sukumaran
Travel Expert

Stay
Eat
See & Do
Party
Where to Shop

Where to Stay

The best Bordeaux accommodations are found near the Garonne River close to downtown, within walking distance of many attractions. Budget hotels include Hotel Des Voyageurs, located close to the main bridge across the river, within a 10-minute walk to the city center. Luxury hotels include the Hotel Continental, a converted 18th-century town house and Seeko'O Hotel, offering up-scale amenities like a Turkish bath.

Take It or Leave It:

The high-end hotels are located near Quinconces square and Gambetta square.

What to Eat

Restaurants in Bordeaux are plentiful and tend to focus on the regional French cuisine. The wine is world-renowned, and is an important base for many local dishes. The city is filled with bistros featuring seasonal menus and seafood. However, excellent Asian, African and Arabian restaurants can be found throughout the city.

Be Sure to Sample:

Try the lamprey dishes, featuring the local fish in wine sauces.

Things to See

Bordeaux features many historic monuments, like the Victory Arch, and examples of Roman architecture. Walk the Les Quais, an area close to the Garonne river, which offers a chance to ride a ferry, view the Aquitaine Bridge or just take in the excellent view of the city and surrounding area. Bordeaux has many museums, including a Modern Art museum and the Musee D'Aquitaine, specializing in Roman history. The region is famous for its wines, and the city's many chateaus offer tours of their vineyards.

Caution:

Reserve wine tours in advance.

Places to Party

Sports enthusiasts can head to La Victoire, which houses many sports pubs and bars. Or go to an actual soccer game at the city's boisterous stadium, home to the local club, the F.C. Girondins. La Quais is the dance club district, where establishments play everything from rock to techno music.

Caution:

Games against the city's main football rival, Marseille, sell out quickly.

Where to Shop

The city's main shopping street is on Rue Sainte Catherine, a pedestrian area filled with vintage and second-hand clothing stores. The area also has shops specializing in food and wine and hand-crafted items. The area around Gambetta Square is the place to head to for luxury items like clothes, fashion accessories and wine.

Caution:

Be aware of customs regulations regarding the export of wine from Bordeaux.

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