Bordeaux, France 2024: Best Places to Visit (with Map & Photos)

The world's wine capital, Bordeaux is an intoxicating mixture of 18th century grandeur, first-class museums, ancient churches and vibrant neighborhoods. Recent renovations have made the city known as the pearl of Aquitaine even more beautiful and attractive. The historic city center has been completely renovated and gardens, parks and outdoor cafes are lined up along the banks of the Garonne River. 

1. Pont de Pierre

The oldest bridge in Bordeaux, the Pont de Pierre was built in the early 18th century by order of Napoleon Bonaparte. 17 arches on which the bridge rests, according to the creators' plan, symbolize 17 letters of the name of the emperor. Each of the spans is also marked with a white medallion in honor of Napoleon. The Pont de Pierre bridge offers a beautiful view of the recently renovated Bordeaux promenade.

Pont de Pierre
Pont de Pierre, Bordeaux Landmarks

2. Porte de la Grosse Cloche Bordeaux

This is a real medieval entrance to Bordeaux, which consists of a tower with a gate. The Porte de la Grosse Cloche gate was named after the "large bell" installed in its central tower in 1775. The entrance was built over the remains of an earlier gate to the 13th century city, and the bell tower itself was added in the 15th century. The bell tower with two towers is one of the most beloved attractions in Bordeaux.

Porte de la Grosse Cloche
Porte de la Grosse Cloche guided tours of Bordeaux

3. Museum of Fine Arts of Bordeaux (Musée des Beaux-Arts de Bordeaux)

Art lovers are sure to be impressed by the wonderful Museum of Fine Arts of Bordeaux (Musée des Beaux-Arts de Bordeaux). Founded in 1801, its permanent collection includes masterpieces of European painting from the 15th to the 20th century. Seized during the Napoleonic Wars, the exhibits include works by some of Europe's greatest artists, from Titian and Veronese to Renoir and Rubens. The museum is renowned for its outstanding collection of French and Dutch craftsmen. The 19th century French and Dutch are well represented. This is a real attraction in Bordeaux.

Musée des Beaux-Arts de Bordeaux
Museum of Fine Arts of Bordeaux (Musée des Beaux-Arts de Bordeaux)

4. Basilica of Saint Michael, Bordeaux

Basilica of Saint Michael, a gothic gem of Bordeaux, built between the 14th and 16th century. The basilica 's main attractions include the altarpiece depicting the triumph of Michael over the dragon and beautiful medieval stained glass windows.

But the church itself is in the shadow of its free-standing bell tower, which reaches a height of 114 meters and catches the attention of the church. From June to September, you can go inside the tower and climb to the top, from where you can enjoy a beautiful view of the surroundings. To visit all the sights of Bordeaux, be sure to book a city tour.

Basilica of Saint Michael, Bordeaux
Basilica of Saint Michael, Bordeaux Landmarks

5. Main Gate of the City (Cailhau Gate Bordeaux)

Located on the banks of the Garonne River, Porte Cailhau Gate Bordeaux once served as the main entrance to the city. Built as a monument to Charles VIII, the medieval entrance looks like it did in 1495 when it was built. All of its 10 floors were once included in the fortress wall. The gate is of architectural interest because it contains both Gothic and Renaissance features.

Cailhau Gate Bordeaux
Cailhau Gate, Bordeaux Landmarks

6. Rue Sainte-Catherine

Rue Sainte-Catherine One of the longest pedestrianized streets in Europe, Sainte-Catherine has been closed to traffic since 1984 and completely renovated in the early 2000s. This street is one of two main lines running through the historic part of the city. At the top of the street is one of the entrances to the Bordelaise Gallery, a shopping center that opened in 1834. The hottest time is undoubtedly during the sales, which take place twice a year, in February and July.

Rue Sainte-Catherine
Rue Sainte-Catherine, Bordeaux Landmarks

7. Museum of Aquitaine (Musée d'Aquitaine)

The Musée d'Aquitaine presents the history of the city and province of Bordeaux, the museum spans a huge chronological range from prehistoric times to the present, through its excellent collection of archeology, history and ethnography. 

Musée d'Aquitaine
Musée d'Aquitaine, Bordeaux Landmarks

8. Bordeaux Cathedral

The Bordeaux Cathedral is known for the fact that it was here in 1137 that 13-year-old Eleanor of Aquitaine married Louis VII. Bordeaux Cathedral is located in the southern part of the historic district of the city. The cathedral is a Roman Catholic church , the seat of the Archbishop of Bordeaux. Cathedral, national monument of France. This is the largest religious building in the city. Included by UNESCO in the list of World Heritage Sites since 1998.

Bordeaux Cathedral
Bordeaux Cathedral, Bordeaux Landmarks

9. Grand Theater de Bordeaux (Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux)

The Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux was opened on April 17, 1780. It was in this theater that the young Marius Petipa staged some of his first ballets. The theater was built by the famous architect Victor Louis. The Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux is a true cultural landmark of Bordeaux. Its neoclassical exterior, with a grand entrance decorated with Corinthian columns, lets visitors know that they are on the doorstep of a temple of the arts. Inside the theater, the foyer is adorned with marble statues that lead into stunning blue and gold halls decorated with frescoes and massive crystal chandeliers. 

Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux
Grand Théâtre de Bordeaux, Bordeaux Landmarks

10. Place de la Bourse

No visit to Bordeaux is complete without a visit to the city's most famous square. Place de la Bourse has been a symbol of Bordeaux since its inception in the early 17th century. Conceived by Jacques Gabriel, court architect to King Louis XV, the square ended the fortified cities of the medieval era and gave birth to open-plan squares.

Place de la Bourse
Place de la Bourse, Bordeaux Landmarks

11. Bordeaux Wine Country

The Bordeaux area produces over 70 million gallons of wine each year, including some of the finest red wines in the world. Many vineyards are small family businesses with no staff to serve tourists, but there are also larger, more famous wineries that organize wine tastings and excursions to cellars and vineyards. To hike the sights of a charismatic city like Bordeaux, take a guided tour.

Bordeaux Wine Country
Bordeaux Wine Country, Bordeaux Landmarks

Bordeaux Map