Paris To Dordogne & Bordeaux 3-Day Private Tour Itinerary

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Explore Dordogne & Bordeaux from Paris

Discover the wonders of Bordeaux and the Dordogne, now effortlessly accessible in just around two hours from Paris thanks to the high-speed TGV train. Our 3-day tour itinerary is thoughtfully designed to immerse you fully in the region’s charms.

Whether your interest lies in exploring renowned vineyards and majestic châteaux or simply soaking in the picturesque beauty of Dordogne’s quaint villages, Luxury France Tours has put together an itinerary that enables you to delve into the rich culture, history, and gastronomy of these iconic French destinations.

Highlights of our Dordogne & Bordeaux tour

Day 1: Bordeaux - A Journey Through History and Wine

Place de la bourse in the evening in Bordeux.
Place De la Bourse, Bordeaux, France

Your day begins with a luxurious touch as your chauffeur collects you from your hotel and escorts you to Montparnasse for a first-class train journey to Bordeaux. Sit back and relax as you speed towards one of France’s most celebrated cities.

Bordeaux: UNESCO World Heritage City

Upon arrival in Bordeaux, France’s fifth-largest city, you’ll be greeted by its rich history and cultural heritage.

Awarded UNESCO World Heritage status in 2007, Bordeaux boasts the largest estuary in Europe and over 350 ‘Monuments Historique’, second only to Paris. Its architectural splendor is a tapestry of historic significance.

Architectural Wonders and Gastronomic Delights

Your private tour commences at the stunning Place De la Bourse, designed by Jacques Gabriel, the principal architect of Versailles. Admire the Neoclassical buildings before experiencing the contemporary wonder of the Water Mirror, the world’s largest reflecting pool, offering mesmerizing photo opportunities. Don’t miss the medieval La Grosse Cloche and its historic prison and dungeons.

As you meander through the city, explore its culinary scene with over 35 Michelin-starred restaurants and the bustling Rue Sainte Catherine – Europe’s longest shopping street, brimming with designer brands and local artisan shops.

The Iconic Cité du Vin

The afternoon is dedicated to the Cité du Vin, an unparalleled wine experience. This architectural marvel, designed by French company XTO and exhibition designs by British firm Casson Mann, offers an immersive journey through wine’s global history. The museum’s 3,000m² space features 19 seamlessly integrated themed areas.

Embark on a World Tour of vineyards, where you’ll be transported through time and space, from ancient Greek and Roman wine routes to 17th-century Japanese wine trading. The tour culminates at the Belvedere wine bar, boasting panoramic views of Bordeaux. Here, you can enjoy a sumptuous dinner, toasting to a day steeped in history and flavor.

As you explore the museum, discuss with your guide your interests to tailor the experience to your tastes. Whether ancient wine history or modern viticulture techniques, the Cité du Vin has something to captivate every wine enthusiast.

Your first day in Bordeaux is not just a tour but a journey into the heart of one of France’s most iconic cities, where history, architecture, and the art of winemaking converge in a symphony of experiences.

Day 2 - Option 1: Discovering the Charms of Arcachon

Dune of Pyla, Arcachon, France

Your day begins with a visit to the stylish town of Arcachon, established in 1857 and a favorite of Napoleon III. Renowned for its oysters, stunning architecture, and the Pilat Dune, Arcachon evolved from a 19th-century health retreat for TB patients into a fashionable holiday spot for Parisian and Bordeaux elites, with famous residents like Dumas and Toulouse-Lautrec.

Today, it’s a chic destination, offering a blend of culinary delights, historical charm, and natural beauty.

Oyster Tasting at Local Sheds

Upon arrival, immerse yourself in the heart of Arcachon’s oyster culture. Visit the iconic oyster sheds, each a testament to the town’s rich seafood heritage. Here, indulge in a tasting of fresh Arguin Banc oysters, perfectly paired with a crisp white wine, fresh baguette, and lightly salted butter – an authentic gourmet experience for any oyster lover.

For lunch, choose from a selection of high-quality seafood restaurants along the shore. Your guide can recommend and book a spot at one of the exquisite beachfront eateries, offering a perfect blend of culinary excellence and stunning views of Arcachon Bay.

The Dune of Pilat Adventure

Post-lunch, head to the Dune of Pilat, Europe’s largest sand dune. In the summer, a staircase with 170 steps is erected to protect the dune while making it accessible. Climbing to the top rewards you with breathtaking views of the bay and the lush pine forest beyond.

Alternative: A Relaxing Pinasse Boat Ride

For those seeking a more leisurely afternoon, embark on a serene boat ride aboard a traditional “Pinasse” – wooden boats dating back to the 1500s, originally used for fishing.

This peaceful journey offers a unique perspective of the bay, its oyster farms, and the picturesque “Tchanqués” huts on Birds Island. Enhance your experience with an onboard oyster tasting, complete with a picnic and wine, for a delightful blend of local flavors and scenic beauty.

OR Day 2 Option 2: Sarlat Culinary Delights and Medieval Marvels

private tours of Sarlat Village, France
Sarlat Village, France

Begin your day in Sarlat, one of Europe’s finest and most intact examples of a medieval village.

Nestled just north of the Dordogne, this enchanting town is characterized by its yellow sandstone buildings, half-timbered houses, and cobbled streets. Your journey starts along Rue de Republique, the town’s main artery. With your guide, delve into the charming squares and hidden alleyways that make Sarlat a history and architecture treasure trove.

Cheese Cellar Visit in a Historic Mansion

Your first gourmet stop is at a cheese cellar located within a 13th-century private mansion in Sarlat’s Old Town, a building listed as a historical monument.

The cellar’s environment is ideally suited for aging cheeses. Here, cheese experts will lead you through a tasting of 3 to 4 different cheeses, each offering a unique taste of the region’s dairy heritage.

Local Delicacies and Wine Tasting

Continue to a family-run local delicacies shop, established in 1973. Sample delicious toasts spread with foie gras accompanied by a sweet wine.

Savor a local tapas (meat product) with a glass of Red Bergerac wine, followed by a tasting of Trappe d’Echourgnac cheese, known for its unique fermentation process. Conclude this part of the tour with a delightful walnut liqueur tasting.

St Mary's Church and Covered Market

Next, visit St Mary’s church, which houses the covered market. This market is a hub for various local specialties. Take this opportunity to taste diverse and unique regional flavors.

Gourmet Finale: Walnut Cake Tasting

End your gourmet journey with a visit to a local walnut cake producer’s stall. Dordogne is famous for its walnuts, and you’ll have the chance to taste homemade walnut cake and croquants, a crunchy caramelized sugar biscuit.

This culinary experience in Sarlat offers an authentic taste of the region’s rich gastronomic culture, combining historical splendor with exceptional local cuisine.

Day 3: The Historic Charm and Vinicultural Elegance of St Emilion

group of people walking through a vineyard in st emillion on a french wine tour
St Emilion Vineyards, France

Begin your day in the historic town of St Emilion, a fortified medieval gem known for its impressive entrances and gates.

One of the most striking features is the Porte de la Cadene, part of the original city walls built by the English. Wander through the quaint, paved streets, leading you to the extraordinary Monolithic Church of St Emilion.

Monolithic Church of St Emilion: A Subterranean Marvel

Your exploration leads you to the Monolithic Church, an underground wonder carved from limestone. Carved from a single piece of stone, this church is a marvel of medieval architecture, with half of its structure underground. Remember, photos are not permitted inside, making a visit essential to fully appreciate its grandeur.

Witness this architectural feat, a testament to the ingenuity and skill of the 12th-century builders. The church’s unique structure, with much of it hidden beneath the ground, offers a fascinating insight into medieval ecclesiastical architecture.

Vineyard Journey in Scenic Countryside

Your afternoon is dedicated to the vineyards of Saint Emilion, a region draped in rows of vines bearing the prestigious Saint Emilion AOC designation. This scenic journey takes you through a landscape that epitomizes the beauty of French winemaking regions.

Exclusive Winery Visits and Tastings

Dive into the world of Bordeaux wines with visits to renowned Saint Emilion wineries.

Each winery offers a unique perspective on the region’s winemaking traditions, focusing on the dominant Merlot grape varietal, often blended with Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Your tour includes an exclusive visit to a Grand Cru Château, where you’ll be introduced to the sophisticated winemaking process. Learn about the region’s grape varieties, soil composition, and the meticulous techniques honed over centuries.

Tasting the Essence of Saint Emilion

At each winery, indulge in tastings that showcase the depth and complexity of Bordeaux wines. Experience firsthand the journey from grape to glass as expert vintners share their passion and knowledge.

This immersive wine experience in St Emilion is not just about tasting exquisite wines but also about understanding the rich history and culture that shape each bottle.

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If this itinerary has piqued your interest, please reach out to us to make a reservation or to discuss a customized version tailored to your preferences.

We’re here to ensure your journey through these captivating regions of France is nothing short of extraordinary.

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