If wine is your thing, then Bordeaux is your destination. Not only is this region responsible for producing the bulk of France’s wine, it tops the charts as the highest quality wine producing region in the world. The city of Bordeaux is at the centre of the wine region and is a fantastic place from which to explore the surrounding wineries. The city is a centre of shopping, culture, and fine dining, making it a must visit, even if only for the weekend.

The main wine regions run in a semi-circle around the city of Bordeaux, with the Medoc region to the north, St-Émilion to the east, and Sauternes to the south. Most tours will take you through the more well known regions; you’ll find yourself cycling on quiet country roads, surrounded by sunflowers, and visiting charming rural villages. When leaving the Bordeaux wine region, heading east or west will see you in two very different, yet just as enjoyable, cycling areas. To the west lies the beautiful and sandy Côte d’Argent, the longest unbroken stretch of beach in all of Europe. This coast has less development than you would think despite the favourable weather, and the 75 km (47 mi) cycling pathway that winds itself through pine forests and seaside villages is absolute heaven on two wheels.

To the east of Bordeaux lies the picturesque Dordogne River; the surrounding valley is filled with over 1,500 castles and medieval villages. The rolling countryside is well connected with cycling pathways, both on and off road, and the leafy green coverage makes it a little more tolerable in the mid summer heat. In Dordogne you will find rock arch bridges, winding country roads, and, of course, epic food and wine.

The Bordeaux, Dordogne, and Côte d’Argent are neatly placed halfway between the Loire River Valley to the north and the Pyrenees mountains in the south, making it a fantastic destination to explore both on a longer ride. Many operators will provide tours that can take you into many of the surrounding regions from Bordeaux, so don’t feel like you have to stay put.

Best Seasons:Apr - Jun; Sep - Oct
Popular Locations:Bordeaux wine tours, Lascaux cave paintings, Cycle and canoe trips on the Dordogne River, Cote d’Argent