The crescent-shaped city on the Garonne River has been the region’s wine capital for decades, its illustrious past on display in the ornate buildings in the Golden Triangle area. In recent years, however, Bordeaux had been plagued by pollution, traffic jams, and decaying docks. But a civic overhaul has spruced up many of the 18th-century buildings, pedestrianized much of the city center, and rebuilt the waterfront area with sweeping promenades that are now lined with chic boutiques and cafés. Today the port city is one of France’s most exciting destinations.
A two-hour wine tasting course—available in English or French—at Maison du Vin de Bordeaux, located near the Golden Triangle.
Splurging on art at Le Passage Saint Michel, where you can find anything from Renaissance pieces to mid-20th-century treasures.
Sampling creative dishes—like tomato ice cream—at La Tupiña.