The "Grosse Cloche" Is Not a Clock
Favorite thing: Cloche is French for bell and clocher means belfry (or bell-tower), derived from Celtic clocca or clang (the sound of a bell). A large clock in French is "horloge". This tower (actually originally a belfry part of a gate in the city wall is from the 13C. There were no clockwork mechanisms developed at that time. There is a modest bell in the arch about midway up and a small clock as well below it. When built it was used to send various messages (church belfries indicated time because they called monks to their time related services). Much of this structure and the bell were destroyed long ago by a king as a punishment to the unruly Bordelais.
- Family Travel
St.-Michel's Belfry & Freestanding Others
Favorite thing: The belfry of the Church of St.-Michel was erected at the end of a church complex at the end of the 15C. The intervening church buildings were destroyed during the Revolution. This is what also befell buildings at the Cathedral leaving the Tour Pey-Berland isolated. This is why there are many free standing belfries like this in France (We have seen another in Auxerre). This tower has a hexagonal base with a 12 sided spire. It is 114 meters tall and is the tallest steeple in the South of France, and of course the tallest spire in town.
- Family Travel
Where comfy shoes to explore this wonderful city
Favorite thing: I would recommend highly that while you are visiting Bordeaux to wear comfortable shoes. It's an easy navigable city and most of the sights you will want to see are within short distances from eachother. Wearing comfortable shoes is a must since some of the streets are cracked or uneven. Even if you wear comfortable shoes beware, as you can take a fall and get hurt.
I know this first hand, while walking to St. Bruno there was a crack in one of the streets and I took a tumble and hurt my knee very badly (I admit I am always on the ground, lol). We spent the better of an hour looking for a pharmacy for some first aid.
Fondest memory: Not my fondest, but I guess I will remember the tumble I took while walking to St. Bruno. My comment to my fellow travelers is that I need to "Christian" the streets of any city with my knees...lol
Finding your way around Bordeaux
Favorite thing: You really won't get lost in Bordeaux if you have a sense of direction and good map, but even thought we were prepared, somehow we just couldn't find St. Andre (it was literally a few minutes walk from where we were).
We had to stop and take a better look at where we were and where we were going...we eventually found our way with a little help from a friendly local.
Fondest memory: Exploring Bordeaux with some really great people
Hit the Streets
Favorite thing: This Narrow street just beside the La Grosse Cloche \ the big Clock.
Streets are narrow and houses tall, so no much sun gets here. If you have a car you better leave it at your hotel, because finding a place to park here is almost impossible.
Hit the Streets
Favorite thing: If you want a glimpse of art or history in Bordeaux, however, all you need to do is walk through the city’s streets. Many buildings in Vieux Bordeaux have retained their charm and character over time. If you’re looking for historical views of the city, you can walk through the Quartier Saint-Eloi.
Fondest memory: We were lucky enough to be in Bordeaux for a mini wine festival. This festival was held along the banks of the Garonne and it was an all day event with food, wine, games, etc. Many parents brought their kids along too - they start drinking at an early age in this area! We spent a good part of the day accumulating tokens and trying to get drunk for free. It probably wasn't the place for a real wine connoisseur but was perfect for us.
- Wine Tasting
Fondest memory: After dinner at La Tupina, I took a walk towards the River. It was in May and the sun did not set until 10PM. I got some nice shoots of the bridge using my Nikon camera.
If you are taking the tram, it is at the Bourgogne stop on the C line.
Favorite thing: While two members of our party decided to take a quick coffee brake, Chris, Patrick and myself decided to continue walking and came across the esplanade. Located in the grand esplanade, which is sorrounded by trees, are the two statues of Montaigne and Montesquine. The statues are located on top of twin pillars facing the river towards the end of the espanade.
Dune of Pyla
Favorite thing: The 105-metre high Great Dune of Pyla, classified since 1978 as a Major National Site, is a splendor of nature, increasingly remodeled by the wind from the ocean, where everyone can indulge for the space of a few hour in dreams of infinity...
Les Jardins Publiques-a place to relax completely
Favorite thing: The Jardins Publique near to Quinconces are perfectly manicured but welcoming gardens featuring huge tree and shrub specimens, green lawns, water features and crunchy gravel paths winding throughout. Birds hop right up to you to say hello and all is right with the world. There is a small childrens play area but there are no screaming kids running wild here and no dogs are allowed off their leash. Also, the lawns bear no stiff signs asking you to keep off the grass and appear to be kept immaculate by an unknown force of nature. Plenty of benches line the paths to allow you to stop for a while and take in the beauty around you, but you could be just as happy flopping down on the grass under a tree. This park is a haven for a little peace and tranquility on a hot and sticky day. Wonderful.
Favorite thing: Arcachon has been already in XIXth century a renowned seaside and climatic station, centre of attraction of the European upper class. Nowadays numerous animation and sports activities enrapture the summer visitors as well as his marina and its ten kilometres of beaches of fine sand, next to Basin which carries its name.
Not far from Arcachon there is the Dune of Pyla - the highest of Europe... Arcachon is also famous by excellent oysters.
Favorite thing: I have found this so called "play-cafe" by luck during my walk in Bordeaux where I have spent a week visiting my friends. Actually it's not a cafe, but a boutique of games or better to say - a playroom.
In brief, you enter, you choose a game among hundred of them, you sit down comfortably and a superb play party is started.
People, who work there, recommend the game, explain the rules, offer you the drinks.
All the games you play in ze zem are also for sale there.
12 rue saint James - 33000 Bordeaux
tél. : 05 56 51 00 21
mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
tuesday - sunday 2pm - 2am
La Maison du Vin de Bordeaux
Favorite thing: Before going off to visit the vineyards, stop by the Maison du Vin de Bordeaux, which is situated in the heart of the city, just in front of the Tourist Bureau.
Here you'll find precise information such as maps, vineyard guides, information on each district or appellation, etc. in English, French, German, and many other languages.
Each week a tasting is planned at which the House Sommelier comments on the two wines being tasted. In addition, throughout the year wine classes are offered in-house at the Ecole du Vin in several languages and at two levels. The schedule for the tastings and the wine classes is also available from the Maison du Vin at the address above.
3, cours du 30 juillet, 33075 Bordeaux Cedex
Tel: +33 (0)5 56 00 22 88 / Fax: +33 (0)5 56 00 22 77
Hours: 9.00AM to 5.30PM all year long.
World Wine Headquaters
Favorite thing: If you have never being to Bordeaux before, I will advice you visit St Emilion if you really love French wines. You have the opportunity of tasting any type of wine for one Euros, or for free in some cases if you end up buying the particular wine.
Fondest memory: Just Wine everywhere.
- Wine Tasting
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