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Bordeaux Vineyard by food self guided

Reference: UT20

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS 

  • Absorbing this quintessential wine-growing region on foot
  • Sampling the exquisite cuisine this region is renowned for and tasting the superb wines
  • Soaking up the atmosphere in charming guesthouses

Walking in the Bordeaux wine region

Bordeaux Vineyard by food, staying in charming guesthouses, hotels and magnificent castles or wine chateaux, this trip is full of postcard-perfect landscapes, cultural heritage and many opportunities to sample world-famous wines of the Bordeaux region. Accessed from the city of Bordeaux, you will spend two delightful days and nights in and around St Emilion. Marvel at the monuments and vestiges from Roman times and visit the fascinating underground galleries. Hike among the surrounding landscape - a series of narrow, vine-covered valleys listed as a UNESCO World Heritage region. Wander through woods, vineyards and old-world villages in the Entre-Deux-Mers area between the Dordogne and Garonne rivers and stay in the medieval city of St Macaire with its historic buildings. Sample sweet white and red wines from vignerons such as Chateau d'Arche and Chateau Gravas in the vicinity of Sauternes, the latter with a wine history dating back to the 12th century. 

 

Cost per person twin-share accommodation: From $2,150


Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive in Bordeaux and transfer to St Emilion

On arrival at the train station or airport of Bordeaux, you will be transferred by taxi to your guesthouse accommodation in St Emilion, in the heart of one of the most prestigious wine growing areas of the world. Your route notes will be waiting for you at your hotel.

Meals:  Nil

Day 2  St Emilion vineyards walk (2.5 or 4hrs)

St Emilion is surrounded by vineyards, grand chateaux and wine cellars. Famous houses such as Petrus, Château La Clotte and Beau Séjour can be found here. There are two options for your walk today, both involving a circuit through this lovely landscape of rolling vine covered hills. You can (usually) visit and taste at the Château du Clos de la Madeleine (Grand Cru) during the walk. Overnight St Emilion. 10 or 15 km/6.2 or 9.3mi, ±70m/230ft gradient

Meals:  B

Day 3 Guided visits of St Emilion winery and underground, transfer to Entre-Deux-Mers area

This morning is a treat as you have a private guided visit of one of the oldest wineries of St Emilion and one of its jewels: The Couvent des Jacobins, after which there will be a wine tasting of 3-4 great wines of St Emilion and/or Pomerol (approx 1.5hrs). In the afternoon you will have a guided tour of the underground monuments of the city (approx. 1 hr). Built in an amphitheatre shape, the town of St Emilion is an open air museum. Its troglodyte tradition is fascinating with more than 70 hectares of underground galleries dug in the calcareous rock. View the monuments and vestiges of Roman times found in the winding lanes of the village. Later in the afternoon a taxi transfer will take you to St-Martin-de-Lerm or Camiran in the Entre-Deux-Mers area for dinner and overnight.

Meals:  B,D

Day 4  Garonne valley walk to Caudrot village, transfer to hotel (4hrs)

Today you explore the Entre-Deux-Mers area, between the Dordogne and the Garonne Rivers, passing vineyards that reap the rewards of their perfect position on the slopes of the Garonne. You'll pass the winery of Domaine de Bouillerot, established in 1874 and vine growers for 3 generations, where you can enjoy a wine tasting. Later in the afternoon you transfer from Caudrot back to Camiran or Saint Martin de'Herm. Your hosts will serve dinner again this evening. **Note: we recommend that you order a picnic lunch from your hosts on the evening of Day 3 to take with you this morning as lunch supplies are limited during the day (cost is approx EUR12pp). 15km/9.3mi, ±100m/328ft gradient

Meals:  B,D

Day 5  To the medieval town of Saint-Macaire (3hrs)

This morning you transfer back to Caudrot to begin your walk. In a landscape of greenery, passing vines and along the estuary of the Gironde, you'll view the sights of the area, from castles to fishermen’s huts. Take a break at the port and its locks, marking the start of the famous “Canal du Midi” which links the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea. The trail takes you directly to the medieval town of Saint-Macaire, a site protected for its historic buildings. Dinner and overnight here, and our usual hotel has a swimming pool. 10km/6.2mi, ±25m/82ft gradient

Meals:  B,D

Day 6 Loop walk to Ste Croix du Mont, transfer to Sauternes (2.5 or 4.5hrs)

Above Saint-Macaire, the hills offer splendid scenic views. In this landscape of hills and small valleys, you will pass many mills and castles. The trail takes you to the “Domaine de Malagar”, which was the residence of the writer François Mauriac, and to the tomb of the famous painter Toulouse Lautrec. You can visit Château Laurette (a sweet white wine producer) or Château Loubens before reaching the village of Sainte Croix du Mont, perched on a slope and offering a spectacular view of the Garonne Valley. The area is remarkable for its wines and caves. Later in the afternoon, return to the hotel at St Macaire and transfer by taxi to Sauternes. Overnight in a guesthouse or hotel in Sauternes. *As accommodation in Sauternes is limited, if this is not available you will stay for two nights in Barsac. **Note: we recommend that you order a picnic lunch from your hosts on the evening of Day 5 to take with you this morning as lunch supplies are limited during the day (cost is approx EUR12pp) 8 or 16km/5 or 9.9mi, ±100m/328ft gradient

Meals:  B,D

Day 7  Sauternes to Barsac exploring vineyards, overnight chateau hotel (4.5hrs)

Located on the left bank of the Garonne, the wines of Sauternes are here to be discovered. Throughout the route today you will walk amongst well-known wine producers such as Château La Tour Blanche and Château Rayne Vigneau, and appreciate the small local landmarks (churches, mills) and natural landscapes of vine and forest. The Ciron river is a small, wild river, formerly used for transporting timber. The soil in this area is particularly conducive to vine cultivation, which together with over two hundred years of know-how results in the quality and prestige of the local wines. Dinner and overnight in either the chateau hotel of Camperos, with its preserved 18th century elegance and 19th century Néo-Renaissance charm, or comfortable hotel with swimming pool, surrounded by the vineyard Château de Lionne (dependent on availability). Note: If you stayed overnight in Barsac on day 6, a short transfer takes you to the start of the day's walk. 15km/9.3mi, ±60m/196ft gradient

Meals:  B,D

Day 8  Trip ends with a transfer to Barsac or Langon train station

After breakfast a transfer is provided to the train station of Barsac or Langon, where arrangements conclude. The train to Bordeaux is approx EUR7. An optional extension in Bordeaux can be arranged, staying in a 3 star hotel in the heart of the historic region - please ask us for details.

Meals:  B


Grading

introductory to moderate   

This trip involves 6 days walking along undulating to flat trails and some small roads. You need to be sure footed. The trip requires a reasonable level of fitness to fully participate in this adventure. During the walking stages you will need to carry your daily requirements in a day pack such as waterbottle, camera, waterproofs and lunch.


 

What's included

  • 7 breakfasts – continental breakfasts are served and usually consist of breads, jams, coffee, tea and juices
  • 5 dinners – usually 3 courses with regional specialties featured (including table wine & coffee)
  • 7 nights in a combination of charming guesthouses, 3 star hotels and a chateaux hotel on a twin share basis with ensuite facilities
  • Information pack including route notes and maps per room booked
  • Couvent des Jacobins guided visit and wine tasting and guided tour of St Emilion underground
  • Taxi transfers as per itinerary
  • Emergency hotline

What's not included

  • Travel to Bordeaux and from Barsac or Langon station
  • Lunches and drinks, dinners in St Emilion
  • Entrance fees to museums, chateaux, parks and archaeological sites
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Local visitor taxes
  • Tour guide – this is a self guided trip
  • Travel insurance - mandatory
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