The vine was introduced to the Bordeaux region by the Romans, probably in the mid-first century, to provide wine for local consumption, and wine production has been continuous in the region since. >> *Bordeaux wine / Vins de Bordeaux (CIVB) official website / French Wine Guide / *Bordeaux Wine Official Classification of 1855
Cité du Vin (map) is a museum as well as a place of exhibitions, shows, movie projections and academic seminars on the theme of wine.
Bordeaux is home to one of Europe’s biggest 18th-century architectural urban areas, making it a sought-after destination for tourists and cinema production crews. The city is home to 362 monuments historiques (only Paris has more in France) with some buildings dating back to Roman times.
Bordeaux’s centrepiece is the elegant riverfront and former port, where fine 18th-century buildings stretch for 3 km (2 mi) along the west bank of the Garonne, from Quinconces in the north to St Croix in the south. The old central districts of St Pierre (map) and St Michel extend inland for about 1 km. Most city sights are in this area.
Musée des Beaux-Arts de Bordeaux (map). The museum is housed in a dependency of the Palais Rohan in central Bordeaux. Its collections regroup paintings, sculptures and drawings from the 15th to the 20st century. The painting collection is the largest one and its strong points are works by French and Dutch painters.
Musée d’Aquitaine (map). The different collections include more than 70,000 pieces. They trace the history of Bordeaux and Aquitaine from Prehistory to today. 5,000 pieces of art from Africa and Oceania also testify to the harbor history of the city.
In the heart of Bordeaux is Rue Sainte-Catherine (map). This pedestrian-only shopping street has 1.2 kilometers (0.75 mi) of shops, restaurants and cafés; it is also one of the longest shopping streets in Europe.
Most tourist hotels are close to the railway station (that is, close to the Quais). There are some luxury hotels close to Gambetta square and Quinconces square, which are really nice but rather expensive.
Saint-Émilion (map), a well known AOC (c.f. Saint-Émilion AOC) surrounding the UNESCO Heritage village by the same name. Here, the most famous chateau are Château Ausone and Château Cheval Blanc. Nearby, in the Pomerol AOC, lies Château Petrus. In addition, the Entre-deux-Mers between the Garonne river and the Dordogne river has a large variety of old castles and wineries that produce Bordeaux Superieur wines.