My friend and I headed to Bordeaux for an overnight trip. Although I did bring my workout gear, I didn't end up using it because (1) our apartment was in a weird location, not close to a running path and (2) we walked 6.7 miles on the first day (!).
We did not walk that much on purpose. We tried to book a wine tour the week before. Since we were off peak season, only available on Saturday afternoon, didn't have a car, and didn't want to spend hundreds of dollars, we quickly found out that we had limited options. While a tour isn't necessary, it would have made our very short trip a bit easier.
We took the tram from the St. Jean Station to the Bordeaux Office of Tourism, and they were extremely helpful. All the tours were sold out, but they gave us instructions on how to get to St. Emilion without a car. We were told to head straight to the St. Emilion Office of Tourism. We took the tram to our Airbnb and then walked from there back to the St Jean train station.
Interestingly, the Bordeaux Office of Tourism and an American we met on the tram asked us if we had appropriate footwear. We both were wearing comfortable sneakers so we didn't think much of it.
Don't be fooled by the picture! The walk into the town was beautiful but definitely long and uphill. But that was nothing compared to the short but steep, wet cobble stone ramp to the Office of Tourism. It actually reminded of me of hiking. Yup, hiking!
The St. Emilion Office of Tourism instructed us to call the vineyards and see who might be open, and we got lucky and found one less than a 10 minute walk from the Office of Tourism. We learned that there are only two Chateaux "in town" and the remaining require a car or a decently long walk.
While we were waiting for the start of the tour, we visited one of the many wine stores to do a quick tasting. Since there was basically NO ONE around, we ended up talking to the wine store owner (Marion - site here) who not only explained the wines, but told us about several wine classifications in the area. We came back after our Chateau tour to buy wine and chat some more. Here's me after we got our wine:
We also visited a very small pastry shop diagonal from the wine shop. My friend got a box of the famous macarons and canelé, and I got the Bordeaux candy. The macrons and canelé were amazing...full disclosure, we ate all the entire box of canelé before leaving St. Emilion.
After we arrived back in Bordeaux, we planned to get a late dinner. Pretty much every restaurant was booked, but we ended up at a delicious and comfy restaurant called Papy Fait de la Resistance. Our new friend from the wine store recommended aux 4 coins du vin. Unfortunately we didn't go there because it was booked on Saturday and closed on Sunday.
Perhaps you can see why I skipped the run on Sunday, although we ended up walking 6 miles anyway!
Kate Scott is an avid runner, who has completed three marathons and numerous half marathons. She travels frequently, most recently to Toulouse and Bordeaux in France. She currently lives in Northern Virginia and is a certified public accountant.