Gironde is a famous city in France offering visitors great sights, from sand dunes and classical coastal resorts to the exotic wine regions of the Saint-Emilion and Medoc vineyards. The department of Gironde falls into four distinct regions.
Bordeaux: One Of The Most Distinguished Cities In France
Bordeaux in itself is a classic region with exotic architecture dating back to the 18th century, an eye-catching river front area, museums, galleries and the longest street in France for shopping.
Bordeaux also known as the ‘City of Culture’ has become a world heritage site with a highly efficient public transportation system.
The city of Bordeaux has lately changed beyond recognition and has become one of the most charming cities of France.
The Coastal Region Along The Medoc Peninsula And Arcachon
To the west of Bordeaux, is the coastline of Gironde featured with sandy beaches of Cote d’Argent. Archchon the most important town is more of a seaside resort with interesting architecture. The largest sand dune in Europe Dune de Pilat is easily accessible from here. The Atlantic coast extending over 120 kilometers of sandy beaches, backed by large sand dunes, is close to Arcachon. Some lakes have been formed by water getting trapped behind the sand dunes like Lacanau, Hourtin-Carcans, Parentis and Cazaux. Leisure activities have been developed around these lakes for enjoyment like lake beaches and sailing.
The Great Forest of the Landes is the largest forest in Europe, and is home to the Natural Regional Park of Landes and Gascony. This forest offers opportunities for cycling, walking, and canoeing on River Leyre.
Bordeaux Wine Areas Of Margaux And Saint-Emilion
Bordeaux is the hall of fame of vineyards that include Medoc, Fronsac, Pomerol, Saint-Emilion, Bordeaux Superieur and many more. This is an ideal place for wine enthusiasts with the best wines coming from this region. People generally visit Bordeaux to either visit the various wine chateaux or to restock their cellars. The most famous wine regions are Medoc and Saint Emilion. The Medoc Region has various wine chateaux based around Margaux and Pauillac. Saint-Emilion itself is a very attractive historical town with local vineyards and exploring them is highly recommended.
Eastern Part Of Gironde Adjoining The Dordogne River
The eastern and south-eastern parts of Gironde are generally less visited, but there are some places worth seeing like the historical center of Libourne and the bastide town of Sainte-Foy-la-Grande. These fortified towns tell of the history of the area when, during the Hundred Years’ War, towns were strengthened against attacks.
Several historical monuments that are of interest are the Chateau de Cadilllac, Chateau de la Breda, Chateau de Malle that are more like gothic style castles. The ruins of Abbey de la Sauve-Majeure, at La Sauve, are a French National Monument on the east of Gironde. In the south, another traditional 13th century bastide town is Monsegur.