Best Wine Tours in Bordeaux

Bordeaux is synonymous with vineyards and wines of extraordinary quality. And there's no better way to enjoy them than on one of the tours I'm going to recommend. Are you up for it?

Sonsoles Jimenez

Sonsoles Jimenez

11 min read

Best Wine Tours in Bordeaux

Lote de corchos de botella |©Jean-Luc Benazet

It is impossible to talk about Bordeaux without mentioning its wines. Any visit to the city or the Gironde region will be enveloped in the aromas and flavours of these wines that have a name of their own. To give you a little idea of what to expect, there are almost 60 controlled appellations here.

So, make a note on your list of top things to do in Bordeaux to immerse yourself in this centuries-old wine tradition. There are many different tours to choose from. The ones I show you below are the most interesting.

Tour the vineyards and wine cellars of Saint Émilion

Saint-Émilion|©Alexis Bazeos
Saint-Émilion|©Alexis Bazeos

This is one of Bordeaux's most renowned and oldest wine-growing areas. So if you book a tour to Saint Émilion they will explain that the main varieties grown here are merlot and French cabernet. And you will discover that its great variety of wines is largely due to the different characteristics of its soils and a truly privileged microclimate.

In Saint Émilion there are many different wineries and wines, and this experience is the perfect excuse to get to know them and taste them. The tours usually also include a visit to one of the vineyards surrounding the town.

A curiosity: the vineyards in this area were the first vineyards to be inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List. But these vineyards were famous long before that. They were already being cultivated in the Roman Empire, although wine production did not spread until the 8th century, thanks to the followers of a Breton monk who retired to these lands. It was this monk who gave his name to this great wine-growing region.

  • Price: from €106 per person.
  • Duration: from 5:45 hours.
  • Advantages: it will be an intensive oenology course.
  • Disadvantages: not all the routes are accessible to people with reduced mobility.

Add lunch and a bike tour to your visit to Saint Émilion

If you feel like doing something different, I propose an even more complete option Book a trip to Saint Émilion from Bordeaux with a bike tour, lunch and wine tasting. This way you can enjoy the beauty of the landscapes of this region more at your own pace. You don't need to be in great physical shape, the terrain is flat and you can choose an electric bike.

The tours usually include wine tasting in a wine cellar or château, as well as a guided tour of Saint Émilion and a small lunch in the middle of the day. All in all, this is one of the most enjoyable day trips from Bordeaux you can take.

  • Price: from €189 per person.
  • Duration: approximately 8.5 hours.
  • Advantages: includes lunch and the bike tour.
  • Disadvantages: rain or cold weather conditions the tour.

Book a trip to Saint Émilion with wine tasting

Discover the most exclusive wines of the Médoc

Médoc|©Steve Lionel
Médoc|©Steve Lionel

The Médoc is a real paradise for wine lovers. Some of the world's most prized wines are produced in this region. In fact, there are up to 60 Grand Crus Classé wines, the highest qualification among Bordeaux wines.

The fertility of its soils, an exceptional climate and wine-making processes that have been carried out with the utmost care and attention to detail have made this possible for centuries. And this is just one of the many interesting things you can learn on this tour, where you will see endless fields of vines on land which, at first sight, is not very suitable for it.

If you book the Medoc wine tour, you may be surprised to learn that there are up to 1,500 vineyards in this region. They are divided into two main appellations: AOC Médoc and AOC Haut-Médoc. And each of them includes other different appellations. You can also book the Medoc wine tour with a visit to the château and get to know this architectural jewel.

Interesting details

  • Price: from 106 € per person.
  • Duration: about 5:45 hours.
  • Advantages: allows you to get to know in depth all the stages of winemaking.
  • Disadvantages: not suitable for people with reduced mobility.

Book a wine tour of the Medoc region

Follow the banks or the waters of the Garonne to Blaye and Bourg

La Garonne, Bordeaux|©Abariltur
La Garonne, Bordeaux|©Abariltur

This tour has a peculiarity: it can be done by land, following the Corniche road or aboard a boat that makes a small cruise along the estuary formed by the mouths of the Dordogne and Garonne rivers. Either way, you will discover the beauty of two other wine-growing areas in the Bordeaux region.

They produce renowned wines with appellation of origin: Côtes de Blaye, Côtes de Bourg and Blaye-Côtes de Bordeaux. You can taste some of them either on board a boat or by stopping at a winery on land tours.

It's not all about vineyards and wines. Blaye, for example, is home to a magnificent citadel which is a World Heritage Site. And, if you opt for the Corniche road tour, you can see troglodyte houses perched on the cliffs.

Interesting details

  • Price: from €70 per person.
  • Duration: around 3 hours for the boat tours, the land tours are slightly longer.
  • Advantages: Possibility to do the tour by boat.
  • Disadvantages: The boat tour does not allow you to get close to the vineyards or visit wineries.

Book a cruise with a glass of wine and canelé in Bordeaux

Wine tour of Bordeaux streets and taverns

Bordeaux wine|©calebegon
Bordeaux wine|©calebegon

This is a tour that will introduce you to the history of the region's wine, its peculiarities and a host of interesting anecdotes as you tour the city. If you are only going to be in Bordeaux for two days, this is a good way to get a first contact with the city and then explore it on your own or with another guided tour.

These tours also include a stop at a wine bar and a tasting of some of Bordeaux's best wines. Under the guidance of an expert, you will learn to distinguish aromas and nuances, and to appreciate the full value of the renowned wines of this wine-growing area.

Furthermore, I must mention that if there is a protagonist on these tours, it is the Chartrons district, whose streets are lined with countless bars and typical taverns. If at the end of the guided tour you feel like having a typical aperitif accompanied by a good wine, this is the perfect place. It is a lively and charming neighbourhood.

Interesting details

  • Price: around 80 € per person.
  • Duration: 2 to 3 hours
  • Advantages: you will discover some of the most representative places of Bordeaux, while getting to know its wines.
  • Disadvantages: you will only have a superficial knowledge of Bordeaux wines.

Book a Bordeaux tour with a glass of wine

Tour of the most charming vineyards: Entre-deux-Mers

Entre-deux-Mers|©Boris Defever
Entre-deux-Mers|©Boris Defever

The Entre-deux-Mers area is called the French Tuscany. Imagine hills and vineyards as far as the eye can see. In fact, it is the largest wine-growing region in Bordeaux.

Guided tours will explain the great peculiarity of this area. As it lies between the confluence of the Garonne and Dordogne rivers, it is particularly fertile. As a result, a wide variety of wines are produced here: Bordeaux Blanc, Bordeaux Rosé and Clairet, Bordeaux Rouge or Crémant de Bordeaux, among others.

The tours include, of course, visits to the cellars and a small wine tasting. But you will discover much more: windmills, fortified villages called bastides and some castles. You will also stop at a jewel of Romanesque architecture, a World Heritage Site, the Abbey of Sauve Majeure. The Benedictine monks who founded it were the first to clear the forest that covered this area and plant vines 1,000 years ago.

Details of interest

  • Price: about 70 € per person.
  • Duration: about 4.5 hours.
  • Advantages: you will discover some of the most beautiful landscapes of the Gironde.
  • Disadvantages: wine tasting included, but no aperitif or lunch.

Tour of the origins of Bordeaux wine: Graves and Sauternes

Château d'Yquem|©bernard_in_va
Château d'Yquem|©bernard_in_va

These are two of Bordeaux's other major wine-growing regions, and you can discover them on an interesting tour. In fact, they have their own wine route. To give you an idea of their importance, it was in Graves that the first vines were planted in Bordeaux no less than two thousand years ago.

These sections produce well-known wines with Designation of Origin, such as Pessac-Léognan, Barsac and, of course, Graves and Sauternes. And you can taste some of them at the stops at local wineries. These wineries, many of them organic, produce their wines in an almost artisanal way.

And it's not just wineries you'll see. Graves and Sauternes are also dotted with beautiful chateaux. Tours often stop at the Château de la Brède. It is not surrounded by vineyards, but by a beautiful park, but it is relevant because it belonged to the famous philosopher Montesquieu.

Interesting details

  • Price: approximately 70 € per person.
  • Duration: about 4.5 hours.
  • Advantages: One of the most interesting alternative routes to Saint Émilion or the Médoc because of the history of the area.
  • Disadvantages: Lunch is not included.

Tour of the flavours and aromas of Bordeaux wines

Wine at the table|©Norio NAKAYAMA
Wine at the table|©Norio NAKAYAMA

If you don't have much time during your visit to Bordeaux to make excursions to the wine-growing areas, you can take a tour of them in a simpler way: in a workshop dedicated exclusively to their best wines. With the help of specialists, you will learn how to distinguish the region's main wines, their aromas, colour and nuances.

They will also explain everything related to them, from vine cultivation techniques to how the grapes are harvested and, of course, the winemaking process in the cellars. It will be like a tour of the French winemaking tradition in a couple of hours and without moving. It is an interesting and, above all, very educational experience.

Interesting details

  • Price: from 40 ¤ per person.
  • Duration: about two hours.
  • Advantages: the best option for very short stays in Bordeaux.
  • Disadvantages: No wineries or vineyards are visited.

Excursion to learn about brandy making in Cognac

Bordeaux & Cognac Region|©G G
Bordeaux & Cognac Region|©G G

If you feel like a different experience and you are going to spend several days in Bordeaux, you can take a short trip to Cognac to learn the secrets of another of the most internationally renowned French beverages: brandy.

These tours usually include visits to a distillery where you will discover how the process of making brandy differs from that of other drinks made from grapes. You will also learn to appreciate its nuances from an expert sommelier. And they will explain many other interesting facts, such as the fact that Cognac is the largest vineyard in France.

Along the way, don't miss the magnificent landscapes of the Charente region, dotted with hills, vineyards, châteaux and charming villages.

Interesting details

  • Price: around 600 ¤ per group of up to 8 people.
  • Duration: about 9 hours.
  • Advantages: allows you to get to know another region of France.
  • Disadvantages: can be tiring due to the length and distance from Bordeaux.

Activities to complete the wine tours in Bordeaux

Cité du Vin|©casteltheodoricien
Cité du Vin|©casteltheodoricien

If you are staying three days in Bordeaux, you have even more activities to delve into the world of wine, not only in France, but also on an international level.

  • A visit to the Cité du Vin, the City of Wine, is a must. This unique building houses a real theme park dedicated to oenology, offering a journey through wines from all over the world.
  • In the city you can also visit the Museum of Wine and Commerce, where tastings are held and where you can see both ancient and modern wine production equipment.
  • To fully immerse yourself in wine culture, another option is to take part in interesting experiences such as a wine masterclass or even activities in which you can make your own drink.

Buy tickets for the Wine and Trade Museum

Tips for enjoying a wine tour in Bordeaux

Comfortable black clothes|© Black Jiracheep
Comfortable black clothes|© Black Jiracheep

To fully enjoy these wine tours in Bordeaux, it is important to keep a few things in mind:

  • If you are going to take part in any of the wine tours through the vineyards of Bordeaux, remember to wear suitable clothing and footwear. In summer, don't forget sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses to protect you from the sun while visiting the vineyards.
  • Any time of year is the perfect time to enjoy these tours. The grape harvest takes place at the end of summer. Meanwhile, watching the vineyards turn a thousand colours is one of the best things to do in Bordeaux in autumn. And in spring, the vineyards are in full bloom.
  • Some of the excursions are not accessible or not accessible at all. If you need an itinerary that is accessible, it is a good idea to check beforehand.
  • Tours that include wine tastings are generally only open to participants of legal age. If you are planning to visit Bordeaux with children, you should look for alternative activities or a tour that does allow children.
  • Wine tastings are usually accompanied by a tasting, usually of local cheeses, or a small aperitif. Make sure this is the case beforehand, and if not, bring something to eat.

Book tickets for the Bordeaux Museum of Wine and Commerce

How long are the wine tours in Bordeaux?

Tourists in the street|©Laure pictures this
Tourists in the street|©Laure pictures this

The length of a wine tour varies greatly. If you have to see Bordeaux in a day or two, my advice is to choose a guided tour of the city that stops at a tavern or bar to taste some of the typical wines. These tours last between two and three hours.

Tours from the city to the wine-growing areas of Bordeaux last a little longer, between four and five hours for the half-day tours and around eight or nine hours for the full-day tours.

If you like the world of wine, a small recommendation: organise your stay in the city well so that you can enjoy several of these experiences.

Book a châteaux and wine tour from Bordeaux

Why take a guided tour?

Barrels in a row|©shankar s.
Barrels in a row|©shankar s.

Bordeaux encompasses several production areas, numerous appellations and an infinite number of different wines. It is difficult to get a general idea of this richness without the help of an expert guide. Otherwise, it is possible to get lost and fail to discover the secrets of the best wines of this area.

Moreover, the professionals will take you to the best taverns, cellars and chateaux, so that you will have the most complete experience. And, most importantly, without wasting time looking for these places and without waiting to visit them. Don't hesitate, booking a wine tour is one of the best things to do in Bordeaux.

Book a wine tour to Medoc region