For a solid itinerary in France's wine capital, we recommend at least three days—ample time to explore the city's elegant streets and modern attractions with a day-trip to nearby chateaux. Of course, a fun-filled day or two lets you experience a slice of the urban action while having closer to a week allows more freedom to discover UNESCO-listed treasures and beaches along the Atlantic coast. Let this local guide steer you in the right direction.
Best of Bordeaux
A food- or wine-focused walking tour provides the perfect introduction to Bordeaux. You can sample delicacies on a stroll through the traditional Capucins market or immerse yourself in the lore of winemaking at the architecturally stunning Cité du Vin, one of the best places in France to learn about (and taste!) wine. Vineyard tours can’t be missed, and you can visit the properties of the Grand Crus as well as smaller family-owned wineries that provide an intimate and authentic setting for wine tasting. Away from the city, you could also go for a bike tour in pretty, vineyard-surrounded Saint Emilion with wine tastings along the way, or make for the seaside for a climb up Pilat, Europe's highest sand dune.
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Known for its signature wine, Bordeaux's surrounding vineyards and La Cité du Vin museum might be its biggest draws, but there's plenty to enjoy in the city and beyond. With the Garonne River weaving through Bordeaux's center, you can explore the city by foot and boat. Stop at vibrant markets and wine shops, tasting gourmet goodies like canelé, oysters, cheese, chocolate, and, of course, a glass of red. Then, enjoy discovering the countryside havens of Gironde and Dordogne, full of picturesque hamlets and vineyards.
This 2,000-year-old city isn't only about wine, as you'll learn in these stylish and historically influenced abodes. Stay in the city center for easy access to the wine bars and cobblestone strolls, with options like a former coach inn or classic 18th century building, or head into the countryside for a luxurious vineyard spa retreat.
France is an active traveler's dream, with sandy beaches in the north, the towering Alps in the southeast, several river valleys across its heartland, and a rocky southern coastline dotted with inlets, caves, and coves. You can easily spend your time cycling through vineyards and from one chateau to another, riding horses in the surf, kayaking the famous Calanques, and hiking in the mountains. Or, if you're more of a city person, add a bike tour or vineyard stroll to your exploration of hubs like Paris.
This 5-day itinerary is the perfect introduction to Bordeaux—hub of the famed wine-growing region in southwest France. Known for its stunning architecture (both old and new), this lively UNESCO-listed city will be your base for a series of tours to markets, vineyards, beaches, and beautiful chateaux around the region which you'll explore with the help of friendly English-speaking guides.
Find some of your new favorite spots with five days in western France. Stroll through the streets of Le Marais, ascend the Eiffel Tower, and experience the fabulous wine and food scene in Bordeaux to leave you feeling relaxed and refined.
Spend a full week savoring the food and wine of France on this itinerary. Sit in the sidewalk cafes and stroll the markets of Paris before you catch the train to Bordeaux, where you'll cruise through historic towns and vineyards that date back hundreds of years.
Enjoy eight days of epicurean indulgences against the backdrop of two of France's most famous cities. In Paris, you'll hear from cheese masters, market vendors, and expert cooks as they impart their wisdom to you. Then travel on to Bordeaux to sample the region's famous food and wine amid historic architecture.
See spots you've only heard referenced by your favorite sommeliers on this 13-day journey. Whether you're tasting wine in a Parisian covered passageway, lined with mosaic-tiled floors and glass ceilings, amidst the vines of centuries-old estates along sedate rivers, or overlooking villas on the Atlantic coast, you'll soon realize that the best pairing for any glass of wine is a good view.
Travel the Atlantic coastline from the vineyards of Bordeaux to the contemporary art of Bilbao on this 11-day itinerary. After exploring the wine regions of Bordeaux, you'll continue with bike tours of the countryside and the seaside glamour of Biarritz before you arrive in artsy Bilbao to wrap up your trip with a museum tour and a few more glasses of wine.
Savor six days amidst scenic and savory sights on this itinerary. You'll take in the beauty of Paris and the Bordeaux region while also ingesting the products of the local cheesemakers, artisan markets, and renowned vineyards to satisfy all of your senses.
Spend 16 splendid days savoring the western regions of France. Meet with a master cheesemaker in Le Marais, bake amidst Les Batignolles, and recline in the vineyards of the Loire Valley. You'll traverse the "Route des Chateaux” in the Médoc, then cruise down the Gironde estuary to sample all the riversides of the Bordeaux region before a relaxing end to your trip in the seaside resort town of Arcachon.
Food isn't the only indulgence western France has to offer on this two-week itinerary. Lounge in the gardens of the Palais Royal, once the personal residence for Cardinal Richelieu; see through the eyes of artists like Degas and da Vinci in Montmartre and Amboise, and stroll through cobblestone village streets and seaside boardwalks as you sample the best the area has to offer.
Experience three of the major regions of France with this trip through Bordeaux, the Loire Valley, and Paris. Start off shopping in the morning markets and sipping wine in historic vineyards, continue to tours of Renaissance-era castles and classic châteaux, and end your trip amid the city streets and cultural institutions of the City of Lights.
A French lunch break can be up to two hours long, but you get nine full days to sample the country's food and wine on this itinerary. Visit the artsy alleys and markets of Le Marais and Montmartre, then travel to the Loire Valley and Bordeaux to tour the vineyards that made French wine famous.
Learn how to say important phrases like, "no more, thank you, I'm stuffed," on this 15-day itinerary through the epicurean delights of western France. Whether you're sampling cheese and pastries in Paris, the mushrooms and wines of the Loire Valley, cannelé pastries and even more wine in Bordeaux, or oysters in Arcachon, there's a new gastronomical adventure around every corner.
This 10-day itinerary is ideal for those seeking the splendor of French wine, history, and gastronomy. Traveling by train, you'll start in Bordeaux for architecture—both old and new—and tastings at some of the best vineyards in the world. Next is the Loire Valley for a range of gorgeous castles surrounded by bucolic landscapes. Finish the adventure in Paris and experience top sites with the help of a local expert.
Traveling by train, this weeklong French adventure covers three destinations with a focus on history, architecture, food, and wine. Start in Bordeaux to experience the city's UNESCO-listed streets and world-renowned vineyards. Then head to Amboise for stunning castles and gardens surrounded by bucolic landscapes. Finish with two nights in Paris and let local experts show you the quintessential attractions.
There are enough French cheeses that you could eat a different one every day for a year. This itinerary only takes you as far as 10 days, so you'll have to eat a little faster than that. Start by consulting a cheesemaker in Le Marais, then ascend the Eiffel Tower to see Paris from the sky. You'll then head to the castles of the Loire Valley, followed by three nights in Bordeaux to sample vintages dating back centuries.
Eleven days driving though the pretty countryside of western France—what could be better? Start your trip in Paris—land of espresso, world-famous art, and the gilded halls of Versailles. Hit the road for the Loire Valley, where 300+ castles, each one lovelier than the last, await exploration. End with three days in Bordeaux for a visit to the market and tasting of Arcachon’s oysters.
France is the world's second-largest exporter of wine, but you can sample the bottles they keep for themselves on this 11-day itinerary. Start off in Paris, strolling the Palais Royal and covered markets, before you travel to the Loire Valley to relax under the vines where da Vinci spent the last years of his life. Then finish your trip in Bordeaux to compare the wines of the left and right river banks, just to make sure you've tried them all.
View art in Paris, enjoy beaches in Normandy, and taste oysters in Bordeaux on this twelve-day road trip through western France. Spend four days in the City of Lights (with a day trip to see Versailles), then head to the Atlantic Coast for seafood and WWII history. End in Bordeaux, where the wine flows freely and the food is world-class.
This 12-day luxury itinerary through three of France's regions is a feast for both your eyes and your stomach. From the museums and markets of Paris to the castles and vineyards of the Loire Valley there's always a new sensory delight to be found. End in your tip in Bordeaux, where historic villages, unparalleled hospitality, and renowned cuisine and wines await your exploration.
Paris, the Loire Valley, and Bordeaux—when it comes to French history and wine, what more do you need? This nine-day road trip includes this and more: from world-famous art in Paris and the famed castles of Tours to the unparalleled Bordeaux wine and fresh-caught Arcachon oysters. Dive into the French lifestyle as you enjoy fresh seafood in a typical brasserie and haggle with burly vendors at an 18th-century market.
From the streetside cafes of Paris to the fresh seafood markets of Normandy, this seventeen-day road trip through western France has it all. Spend a few days in the capital viewing art and eating your weight in pastries, then head west along the coast to vacation like the French on the Normandy seaside. Wrap the trip up in the Loire Valley and Bordeaux, famous for their countryside castles, 18th-century farmer's markets, and the freshest oysters in France.
If spending thirteen days driving from Paris through Normandy to Bordeaux sounds like your perfect getaway, this trip is for you. Get to know the sweet side of France on a pastry tour in Paris, breathe in the fresh ocean air in Normandy, and view castles (including da Vinci’s former residence) in the Loire Valley. End in Bordeaux to sample the best of France’s wine and cuisine.
This spectacular road-trip adventure through Western France provides a subtle mix of history, culture, cuisine, wine, and outdoor activity—and plenty of picturesque landscapes between stops. Over the course of two weeks, you'll spend quality time in Paris, Normandy, Bordeaux, and the Dordogne region with a combination of tours led by English-speaking local guides and free time to explore on your own.
You will be delighted by this trip in Paris, Normandy, Bordeaux and the Dordogne region. This is a subtle mix of French history and culture, wine and flavors, and some bucolic landscapes such as the Atlantic coast and Dordogne perched villages. A great road trip adventure for the whole family!
Spend two weeks exploring the highlights of western France, from the City of Lights to the quiet villages of the Loire Valley. Sample pastries in Paris and head underground to see the catacombs, then hit the road for the beaches on the Normandy coast. End the trip in Bordeaux, where you’ll haggle with vendors for fresh seafood at an 18th-century market.
If driving from Paris through western France for ten days sounds like a dream come true, this itinerary is for you. Start in Paris, where art at the Louvre, flaky croissants and a day trip to Versailles will capture your imagination and taste buds. Continue to the Loire Valley to see the famed castles and see where da Vinci lived, then end in Bordeaux for world-famous oysters and wine.
Road Trip Through Western France: Paris, Normandy, Brittany, Loire Valley, Bordeaux, & More - 15 Days
Fifteen days is enough time to get off the beaten path in western France on this road trip from Paris to Bordeaux. Start in the capital city, where you'll visit the Louvre and enjoy afternoon walks along the Seine River. Head west along the Atlantic Coast to explore WWII history and explore small fishing villages and beaches, then continue south for countryside castles, Bordeaux wine, and the famed Arcachon oysters.
Spend sixteen days exploring everything western France has to offer, from the metropolitan culture of Paris to the peaceful countryside of Bordeaux. See art at the Louvre, take a day trip to the gilded halls of Versailles, and vacation like the French on the Normandy seaside. Visit Mont-Saint-Michel—the abbey on an island—before continuing south to the land of resplendent châteaus and free-flowing wine.
Ask soon-to-be honeymooners around the world to reveal their dream destinations for getting away together, and the chances are many would be in France. The settings for vacationing newlyweds do not get much more iconically romantic than a view of Paris, the 'city of love' from atop the Eiffel Tower, a sip of champagne in the region where the drink is exclusively produced or a stroll through ornamental gardens depicting four different sorts of love in the Loire Valley. From a very long and lovely list, here we select the best destinations in France for a honeymoon and what to do in each.
Spend 11 days exploring western France with your family on this packed itinerary. Experience Paris at night, go on a treasure hunt in the Louvre and fill up on French patisseries. Continue west to immerse yourself in the history of D-Day, spend time on the beach, and explore medieval castles.
If twelve days in France with the family sounds perfect, keep reading. From art museums and chocolate pastries in Paris to small Bordeaux towns and the Normandy countryside, this trip gives you a taste of it all. As a final hurrah, travel back in time to the age of Cro Magnon as you explore the Cave Paintings of Dordogne.
Road Trip Through Western France: Paris, Normandy, Brittany, Loire Valley, Bordeaux, & More - 18 Days
If spending eighteen days driving from France's capital down the western Atlantic Coast sounds like the perfect getaway, this itinerary is for you. Start in Paris for flaky croissants and strong espresso, then hit the road for the coast. Vacation like the French on the Normandy seaside as you explore medieval and WWII history, then continue to the Loire Valley to see resplendent châteaus. End in Bordeaux, where the wine and oysters are unparalleled.
Drive along the Atlantic Coast on this nineteen-day road trip through western France. Start in Paris to see world-famous galleries at the Louvre and walk along the Seine River, then head west to explore the fishing villages and beaches of the Atlantic Coast. Visit Mont-Saint-Michel, the abbey on an island, and enjoy fresh seafood in a typical brasserie. End the trip in Bordeaux to sample the best of France’s wine and cuisine.
If you've got thirteen days off and a family that wants to head to France, consider yourself lucky. Start in Paris, where art museum scavenger hunts and delicious treats keep youngsters entertained, then head west to the windswept beaches of Normandy to see the D-Day landing site and tour the 1,000-year-old Mont-Saint-Michel, among other ancient castles.
Vacation like the French on the Normandy seaside on this 20-day road trip through western France. You'll walk through the gilded halls of Versailles, immerse yourself in history on the D-Day beaches, and sample the best of France’s wine and cuisine in Bordeaux. For a taste of authentic western France life, haggle with vendors for your lunch at an 18th-century market, then head to the beach to enjoy wine and seafood on the water.
Two weeks is the perfect amount of time to dive deeper into some of France's western regions with the family. Start in Paris to see the highlights like the Eiffel Tower and Louvre, then head off the beaten path in the west. Older kids will enjoy learning about history at the D-Day site and canoeing in Dordogne, before traveling back in time to explore the prehistoric Lascaux cave.
Your fifteen-year-olds might smell like Cro Magnon man, but they've never seen anything like the prehistoric Lascaux cave—a perfect recreation of the original. See this and more on this fifteen-day tour, including ascending to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris, viewing a D-Day documentary film in Normandy, and learning to make Bordeaux caneles (the sweet cakes) as a family.
With sixteen days in France with the family, the world is your Normandy oyster. Eat the oyster (and other seafood, too!) as you tour the Normandy coast, famous for its fresh seafood. You'll also feast on French pastries in Paris, check out medieval castles, and walk the streets of various small towns as you explore the Bordeaux region.
If you think it's hard to drag your 17-year-old along on family vacations, try deciding between chocolate and plain croissants in Paris. Thankfully, that's the hardest choice you'll make on this 17-day itinerary of Paris and western France, including Normandy, Brittany, and the Bordeaux region. End your trip in Basque Country, where they have entire museums dedicated to cakes.
There are countless reasons to head to western France with the family, but this itinerary gives 18 great ones. Spend the trip exploring museums in Paris, enjoying the beaches of southern Brittany, and browsing small farmers' markets along the coast. End your trip in Bordeaux and Basque, where you'll learn to make caneles and eat your weight in fresh fruit and olives.
Spend nineteen days exploring Paris and western France with the family on this comprehensive itinerary. Start in Paris where a Louvre scavenger hunt will entertain kids of all ages, then head west along the coast. Follow your nose to the paella booths at small-town farmer's markets, visit the 1,000-year-old Mont-Saint-Michel, then end your trip near Bordeaux to see prehistoric caves and medieval villages.
Dive into history, culture, and nature on this comprehensive 20-day family itinerary of western France. Start in Paris for city highlights, like the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame, then head west to see the site of D-Day and tour medieval castles. Round your trip out with canoeing on the Dordogne, traveling back to the time of Cro Magnon in the Lascaux Caves, and sampling seafood on the Brittany coast.
From art museums in Paris and WWII history in Normandy to the pirate's haunt of Saint-Malo and the beaches of Southern Brittany, there's plenty for kids and young adults alike to do on this three-week adventure through France. And if your family likes to drink wine together, you'll especially look forward to the days in Bordeaux—one of the world's leading winemaking regions.
Paris · Provence · French Riviera · Nice · Normandy · Loire Valley · Aix-en-Provence · Lyon · Rhône Valley · French Alps · Bayeux · Amboise · Brittany · Avignon · Saint-Malo · Cannes · Annecy · Marseille · Tours · Dordogne · Verdon Gorge · Burgundy · Dijon · Sarlat · Champagne · Reims · Colmar · Strasbourg · Alsace · Mont Saint Michel · Honfleur · Saint Rémy de Provence · Mont Blanc Region · Chamonix · Basque Country · Corsica · Saint-Louis