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Bordeaux vineyards by boat! And why not?

Published 12 March 2018

One thing is sure: the wine of Bordeaux is linked to its river, the Garonne. To understand this, an immersive tour at La Cité du Vin and wine cruises await you all through the year!


La Cité du Vin: become immersed in the heart of the history of navigation

The spread of wine culture on a global scale is inextricably linked to river and sea navigation. To understand how, the Permanent tour at La Cité du Vin offers you a sensory and immersive adventure through two of its thematic modules:

  • Wine over water: Embark on six journeys through time along the Douro, Rhône, Rhine, Seine, Garonne and Loire. Learn the history of these rivers and their occasionally epic tales of navigation.  These essential waterways helped the establishment and development of major vineyards.
  • All aboard!: Become a passenger on a merchant ship and depart on a historic voyage with four stops across the world’s seas. You will cross the Mediterranean on a Roman tanker vessel, take a 14th-century trip from Bordeaux to England, sail to Japan in a 17th-century Dutch ship, and finally complete an 18th-century transatlantic journey in an English boat laden with Madeira.

For lovers of wine cruises, La Cité du Vin offers direct access to the vineyards by river, thanks to its 90-metre pontoon. Situated on the banks of the Garonne, this provides a link between La Cité du Vin and Bordeaux city centre, using the “Batcub” river bus.

Enjoy lunch and dinner on the Garonne with Bordeaux River Cruise

Whether you’re a couple, a family or a group of friends, enjoy an unforgettable moment on board the elegant Sicambre for dinner as you cruise along the Garonne. In this exceptional setting, you can admire Bordeaux by day and by night, while tasting seasonal foods paired with wines, wonderfully reflecting the local gastronomy.

For around two hours, this guided cruise lets you discover the face of a city that has always been turned towards its river. For centuries, the port of Bordeaux has been intimately linked to the trade in wine. It was from these banks that the barrels were unloaded, stored and dispatched throughout the world.

La Cité du Vin tasting cruise: discover wine from the river

From the foot of La Cité du Vin, embark on a boat trip to discover Bordeaux from a different angle: from the river, with a glass of wine in your hand.

During this tasting cruise of one-and-a-half hours, you will be accompanied by an expert who will introduce two wines illustrating the Bordeaux vineyard. Take advantage of this opportunity to familiarise yourself with the taste and aroma characteristics of Bordeaux wines.

Throughout the high season, wine cruises to Blaye or the Médoc let you discover the vineyard from the river. Leaving from the centre of Bordeaux, disembark at the feet of the finest châteaux and familiarise yourself with the world of wine thanks to visits and tastings given by winegrowers who have a love for their terroir.

Ready to go on a wine cruise?

Find out about all the wine cruises and guided tours from the website or directly from the team in the Vineyard Visit Information Area at reception in La Cité du Vin.

Prepare your wine cruise