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Bucket list experience:

Last updated: 01 November, 2022
Expert travel writer: Dana Facaros

Bordeaux hosts an enormous festival every summer, but alternates the theme between two of its passions: its river, and its wine scene. In even-numbered years it celebrates wine, with a remarkable parade of Bacchus floats, massive wine tastings, visits to vineyards, wine classes in tents, and more. In odd-numbered years, the festival’s focus is on its beloved river with historic boats, regattas and races.

Both festivals feature concerts, sound and light shows, and massive fireworks displays over the Garonne River.

Price: Free
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 18+
Frequency: annually
When: June/July
Duration: 4 days

Getting there & doing it

Tickets for paid events such as wine tastings are available online from April, though many of the events are free. They may also be purchased on the day at the Bordeaux Tourist Office, and from supermarkets and other locations in the region (see festival websites for details).

On festival days, arrive early to get a good spot at the free public outdoor events, especially the sound and light shows at Place de la Bourse.

When to do it

The festival takes place every year, in late June or early July.

Our writer’s picks of the best places to stay near this experience, closest first

L’Hotel Particulier Bordeaux

Bordeaux, Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France

Once a cardinal’s luxurious townhouse in the heart of Bordeaux, now a charming little hotel with characterful guestrooms and apartments. An excellent base for first-time visitors.

Official star rating:

Le Burdigala Hotel

Bordeaux, Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France

This comfy, chic boutique hotel is within walking distance of the city’s historic centre, with excellent food and drink.

Official star rating:

Hotel de Seze

Bordeaux, Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France

An historic, elegant 18th-century hotel ideally located in Bordeaux’s swish Golden Triangle, with a locally-rated spa and restaurant.

Official star rating:

Hotel de Tourny

Bordeaux, Nouvelle-Aquitaine , France

This stylish but friendly and unfussy boutique hotel is conveniently located in the heart of Bordeaux. Perfect as a base for sightseeing, and great value for the location too.

Official star rating:

Destination guides including or relevant to this experience


Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France

A vintage wine and culture destination with delicious tastings, grand architecture, gourmet restaurants and a glorious coastline. 

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