Culture and the art of cooking in Bordeaux – a glass of wine in southwest France

You’d like to discover a city as pretty as Paris but with fewer tourists? A trip to Bordeaux is worth it. Travel blogger Tobias Hoiten takes you to the UNESCO World Heritage Site and on the wine route.

The UNESCO World Heritage Site in the early morning

No other old town resembles Paris as much as Bordeaux’s. More than 350 buildings belong to the UNESCO World Heritage Site, so a stroll through the many beautiful alleyways is really rewarding. Especially in the morning just after sunrise, when the streets are still empty and the light of the sun touches the roofs of the multi-storey buildings. The town gate Porte Cailhau, Place de la Bourse and the Pont de Pierre stone bridge need to be seen in either the morning or evening light.

Eating in the middle of the Chartrons quartier: Casa Gaia

In the centre of the Chartrons district between Rue Notre Dame and the Garonne riverbank, lies Casa Gaia. Calm and atmospheric. Far from the hustle and bustle of the town, so that you can really enjoy the food here. At lunchtime and in the evenings, a varied seasonal menu is served in Casa Gaia. The restaurant emphasises local products, starting with meat and ending with local wine. The patio in the inner courtyard is particularly lovely to sit around in for hours.

Eating in the middle of the Chartrons quartier: Casa Gaia

In the centre of the Chartrons district between Rue Notre Dame and the Garonne riverbank, lies Casa Gaia. Calm and atmospheric. Far from the hustle and bustle of the town, so that you can really enjoy the food here. At lunchtime and in the evenings, a varied seasonal menu is served in Casa Gaia. The restaurant emphasises local products, starting with meat and ending with local wine. The patio in the inner courtyard is particularly lovely to sit around in for hours.

Learn more about wine in the Cité du Vin

Are you interested in learning more about the French, their wine culture and history? Then you should have a look at the Cité du Vin which impresses even from afar with its unique architecture. The Cité du Vin is like a wine museum, in which you learn more about the history of wine and of course about the current wine culture in France in a playful and creative way. Afterwards, a visit to the rooftop bar of the 58-metre high tower is particularly recommended. From up here you have a fantastic view of the town, naturally accompanied by a glass of wine.

Bordeaux’s gourmet mile: Les Halles de Bacalan

Right next door to the Cité due Vin is les Halles de Bacalan – a food market place which only opened in November 2017. More than 25 individual food stands display what makes up the region around Bordeaux: many regional products like truffle cheese or shrimps, and of course Bordeaux wines. Les Halles de Bacalan invite you to have something to eat, and then buy something to take home. During the week you can get away from the many tourists and come for your lunch here to catch the locals taking their lunch break. A great atmosphere.

Bordeaux’s gourmet mile: Les Halles de Bacalan

Right next door to the Cité due Vin is les Halles de Bacalan – a food market place which only opened in November 2017. More than 25 individual food stands display what makes up the region around Bordeaux: many regional products like truffle cheese or shrimps, and of course Bordeaux wines. Les Halles de Bacalan invite you to have something to eat, and then buy something to take home. During the week you can get away from the many tourists and come for your lunch here to catch the locals taking their lunch break. A great atmosphere.

Art goes on a boat trip in Musée Mer Marine

The Musée Mer Marine freshly opened in summer 2019 and appears to be constantly expanding and changing. It will be complete only by summer 2021. Bordeaux’s shipping and marine museum combines a classic exhibition on shipping with art. So in the entrance area, you find a huge installation of a shark by a local artist, symbolising danger. Is the shark actually a threat to people, or are people a threat to the shark? A very inspiring exhibition that is constantly changing.

Non-stop inspiration in the CAPC

The CAPC is the museum of contemporary art in Bordeaux. Here you’ll find art which inspires and is only limited by its own imagination. The CAPC is housed in an old warehouse which was previously located not far from the Garonne. Goods were stored here before being shipped to Bordeaux. The ceiling height is imposing but still modest, because warehouses had to be practical, not palatial. Nowadays you’ll find temporary exhibitions in the CAPC which inspire.

Non-stop inspiration in the CAPC

The CAPC is the museum of contemporary art in Bordeaux. Here you’ll find art which inspires and is only limited by its own imagination. The CAPC is housed in an old warehouse which was previously located not far from the Garonne. Goods were stored here before being shipped to Bordeaux. The ceiling height is imposing but still modest, because warehouses had to be practical, not palatial. Nowadays you’ll find temporary exhibitions in the CAPC which inspire.

Cashless payment and delicious food in La Boca Foodcourt

The La Boca Foodcourt is located right by the Garonne – by foot about a quarter of an hour from the old town. The food court is a large market hall which is particularly well attended in the evenings. At the entrance you receive a La Boca card which you top up and then use to pay – cashless – at one of the many food stands. Tapas, pizza, Asian food or burgers – whatever you want the choice is large and the atmosphere very informal.

Tip: Stay sustainably in Hotel Eklo

In the Bastide district on the other side of the Garonne, a new budget hotel has been developed in the Eklo. Eklo aspires to do more for the environment. So the hotel’s building was designed so that it would use as little energy as possible. The rooms are small, but sufficient and the breakfast buffet consists of only regional or sustainable products. A good tip for an affordable and sustainable overnight’s stay.

Tip: Stay sustainably in Hotel Eklo

In the Bastide district on the other side of the Garonne, a new budget hotel has been developed in the Eklo. Eklo aspires to do more for the environment. So the hotel’s building was designed so that it would use as little energy as possible. The rooms are small, but sufficient and the breakfast buffet consists of only regional or sustainable products. A good tip for an affordable and sustainable overnight’s stay.