Home > In Velo Veritas: Bordeaux vineyards for avid riders
When you think of Bordeaux, one image likely comes to mind: you, watching the sunset over miles of vineyards, a glass of wine in hand. It’s not far from the truth! From Pauillac to Saint Emilion, the Bordelais region is world-famous for its fine wines, and this tour will allow you to become familiar with all the reds, whites, and rosés (but mostly reds) you could wish for. Cycle at your own pace through vineyard after vineyard, visit château after château and taste the wine to your heart’s content.
Believe it or not, though, there is more to Bordeaux than just wine. The tour will also take you through medieval villages and historic ruins, with more World Heritage Sites than you can count. You’ll enjoy an amazing blend of past and present, history and culture, all set to a picturesque landscape...and a deep Bordeaux red.
For travel and cycling tips to Bordeaux, visit our "Travel and cycling tips" section.
Upon your arrival to Bordeaux by rail or air, we will transfer you to Margaux, where you'll have a briefing with our local representative and get your bikes. As there’s nothing on your schedule until the next day, you are free to explore this beautiful town and enjoy its wines at your leisure.
On your first official day of cycling, you will discover the incredible Medoc region! Here is where that bottle of “Grand Cru” (highest quality) wine is born, in the vineyards of Margaux, Haut Medoc, Moulis, Saint Estephe, and Pauillac. From Margaux, you will meander 70 km (43 miles) on your bike towards the village of Pauillac, the region’s capital. Nestled on the banks of the Gironde Estuary, Pauillac and its surroundings boast a variety of amazing wines. Lucky for you, the Chateau Lynch-Bages is a convenient 6-minute ride from your hotel, offering tours and wine-tasting 7 days a week (reservation required). A relaxing ride or stroll along the Gironde is the perfect way to cap off the day.
Today you will be cycling along “La route des Chateaux”, a 100 km (62 miles) stretch that combines the most prestigious wines with the most unexpected architecture. “Chateau” in this sense does not mean “castle”, but refers rather to a wine-producing estate…though some do have a castle! At Lamarque, you and the bike will cross the Gironde on a ferry, which will take you to the magnificent Blaye Citadel, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. From there, hop back on your bike and continue along the Châteaux Route, where you’ll be immersed in a variety of landscapes—from the vineyards of Blaye and Bordeaux to the picturesque banks of the Gironde.
The final stop of the day is the famous Saint-Emilion—yet another World Heritage Site! Don’t worry if you pedal late into town—the next day of the tour is fully dedicated to exploring this fascinating historic village and its surroundings.
A village dating back to prehistoric times, Saint-Émilion is sure to feed your sense of discovery. A guided tour can introduce you to the village’s underground heritage, while the bike is best for visiting the monuments and ruins that are scattered throughout this medieval city. The Great Wall, the Cordeliers Cloisters, the Monolithic Church…there are so many to choose from! However, this tour stop is not all about the past—it’s also about wine. Today’s 55 km (34 miles) loop will take you through the vineyards of Saint-Emilion and neighboring Pomerol, where you’ll be practically bathing in Merlot and Cabernet from all the wineries in the area! Just don’t indulge too much…you still need to bike back to Saint-Émilion at the end of the day.
As you pedal out of Saint-Emilion, you will cross the Dordogne River on your way to the vineyards of the Entre-deux-Mers wine region. Part of the ride will be on a bike path, allowing you to fully admire the impressive Grande-Sauve Abbey and the village of Créon. Stop for a glass of wine at the Maison de l’Entre-deux-Mers, a winery located inside a 14th century abbey farmhouse!
Cycling from Entre-deux-Mers along the banks of the Garonne River, you will pass a succession of vineyards and historic Bordelais villages, including Cadillac (yes, the same as the car brand), until you reach Saint-Macaire. Be sure to check out the grand arcades of the historic Place du Mercadiou, a mere 2-minutes’ walk from your hotel!
Today’s journey will bring you full circle (and cycle) back to Bordeaux. Cross over to the left bank of the Garonne, where you will bike towards the prestigious Sauternes vineyard and its famous Chateau Yquem wine. Chateau Yquem is known for its sweetness and its longevity—a bottle of this wine can keep for over a century! Fortunately, it won’t take you quite so long to reach your destination—just 46 km (29 miles) separate Sauternes from the port city of Bordeaux, where you’ll end the tour.
Once you’ve dropped off the bikes at the hotel, you are free to explore this beautiful city. Wander through the historic districts and along the quays—the left bank is particularly gorgeous. And be sure to visit the famous “Miroir d’eau”(Water Mirror), where you can admire the surrounding 18th-century buildings and their stunning reflections.
You are free to depart at any time, though you may need to make extra room in your luggage for all your newly-acquired bottles of wine…
6 nights' accommodation in 3-star hotels