Traveling alone in France? Just say ouj! As a female solo traveler, I am always on the lookout for cities with an amicable atmosphere. In this big world, the choice seems limitless which leads to confusion. When you travel alone, you wish to make the most of your journey. If you only have 3 days in Bordeaux, make the most out of them with this itinerary.
This post will answer your questions of:
- How many days do you need in Bordeaux?
- Is Bordeaux worth visiting?
- Would Bordeaux be considered a walkable city?
- Where to stay in Bordeaux?
- What is the best 3 days in Bordeaux Itinerary?
How Many Days Do You Need in Bordeaux?
The most popular I get asked as a traveler is how many days do I need in a specific destination? A question that isn’t always that easy to answer, but in most cases, the answer is 3 days. As for Bordeaux, I would say you need 3 days for visiting.
The number of days you need in Bordeaux is always in direct relation to your travel style. If you are an active person, 3 days is plenty. Mainly because Bordeaux is a smaller city. Having experienced both the vivid big top destination life and the enchanting small cities around Europe, I prefer the latter.
When saying small cities in France do not envision isolated villages that may depress an energetic female solo traveler. Think medium-sized, great transport links and not too touristy. Seeing all of Bordeaux in just 3 days is a bit ambitious, but you can get a good overview in that amount of time.
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Is Bordeaux Worth Visiting?
I answer this question with a resounding, YES, Bordeaux is worth visiting. Personally, I would rank Bordeaux worthy of a visit over Paris. It isn’t that I didn’t like Paris, I just like Bordeaux a whole more. The reasons Bordeaux is worth visiting are:
- More affordable than Paris
- Friendlier people
- Smaller city and much less crowded
- Cleaner overall
Bordeaux a Walkable City?
Bordeaux is very walkable since it is a small city you can easily get around without ever needing public transit. Bring your comfortable shoes, as the cobblestones can be hard on your feet!
Where Should You Stay for 3 Nights in Bordeaux?
The perfect hotel for 3 days in Bordeaux is Hotel de Tourney. This boutique hotel is located in the city center of Bordeaux. It is within walking distance of Monument aux Girondins. My room was modern, sparkling clean, and offered free wifi. When returning to Bordeaux, I will make sure to stay at this hotel.
For other top hotels in the area, check out these ones:
3 Days In Bordeaux Intinerary
Day 1 in Bordeaux | Transit From The Airport
When arriving in Bordeaux by plane, you have a couple of options to get to the city center. The obvious first choice is a taxi. This could cost you about 43 euros. Or, you can take the bus to the train. Taking public transit will double the time to arrive in the city center of Bordeaux, but it’s a fraction of the cost of a taxi.
The transit time on public transit is about an hour, vs the taxi transit time of 30 minutes. The shuttle bus to take is the Navette Shuttle 30 Direct, and it will take you to Gare de Bordeaux St. Jean. The cost for one way adult ticket is 8 euros. The schedule is here: Schedule
The Bordeaux City Pass is a great option when spending 3 days in Bordeaux. This pass includes transit within Bordeaux city for buses and trams. Also, enjoy free entry to museums, and discount tickets to excursions around Bordeaux.
I always recommend utilizing a city pass or bus tour on the first day of any trip. Getting a broad overview of the city highlights is the best way to see everything you want to see.
City Pass for 48 -72 hours cost 39 euros. It includes :
- Unlimited access to tram, bus, river shuttle
- 20 museums and monuments
- 1 guided tour
- Many discounts on cruises, wine tours and more
- Great for day trips from Bordeaux
Top Sites When Visiting Bordeaux Day 1
Cathedrale Saint Andre I enjoy visiting a church more than visiting a museum. This is not because I am a religious person, I just find a building more interesting than a bunch of old artifacts.
Exploring the cathedral is a lovely way to spend a morning or afternoon in Bordeaux. Don’t forget to check out the tower.
An extra tip from A Solo Woman Traveling: The wait for tickets can be a bit long, so go early. It’s a tight stairwell, so if you have issues with being in small spaces, you should reconsider.
The Girondins Monument is an incredibly beautiful fountain with a towering column erected to honor Girondin revolutionaries.
The monument is located in the center of Bordeaux close to the Garonne River. This is the perfect spot to visit at sunset.
The Girondins Monument is a major tourist attraction, so to avoid the crowds you may need to visit in the early morning.
If I was only going to visit one monument when visiting Bordeaux, this would be the one. It was a wonderful experience for me.
Shopping on Rue Sainte Catherine is a wonderful female-friendly activity. Here you will find all the shops of famous brands, as well as some local designers.
The streets of Bordeaux are lined with the most idyllic cafes for when you need to take a break from the shops.
Be advised that shops are closed on Sundays and holidays in France! Sadly, I didn’t realize this when I planned to arrive on a Sunday. Luckily the cafes were open, so I just enjoyed window shopping and coffee drinking.
Visiting Bordeaux Day 1 Restaurants
La Diplomate is a tea house serving the best tea and most incredible ambiance in all of Bordeaux.
I highly recommend spending some time enjoying infused tea and a piece of cake.
Nama a fantastic choice visiting Bordeaux! This restaurant has a mystery menu that will leave you wishing for more! If you aren’t feeling adventurous, you can order a la carte.
The service here is fantastic which can make a huge impact on your experience.
If you are vegetarian and gluten-free, there is an option for you!
I would highly recommend making reservations at this restaurant. Nama is closed on Mondays, and open from 19:30 – 22:30 the remaining days of the week.
Day 2 In Bordeaux | The Food and Wine Walking Tour
I can’t think of any better way to experience Bordeaux than taking a Food and Wine Walking Tour. If this is your first time traveling as a solo woman, I highly suggest you take the city tour. Not only is it a fantastic way to dive into Bordeaux, but you could also make new friends or merely socialize!
If you do decide to skip the walking tour, be sure to visit the Place de la Bourse and the Miroir d’eau on your own. After 20 years of construction, this 18th-century palace is a crowned jewel of Bordeaux. It was built outside the medieval city walls, evidencing the growth of Bordeaux.
Some other Bordeaux highlights are :
- Quais de Bordeaux Walk The walk is along the Garonne river and has lovely views of Bordeaux.
- The Grosse Cloche The passage through is open to the public. You will need a guide to show you the dungeons that were used to keep young people who did not respect curfew or public order.
Visiting Bordeaux Day 2 Restaurants
Bar Primi is a wonderful choice if you are in the mood for a little Italian meal! I know you might be thinking, I am in France, why would I eat Italian Food? Sometimes you just need to mix it up!
The menu is small and to the point with some classic pasta dishes and antipasti. Bar Primi is located close to the Grosse Cloche, perfect for lunch.
I want to offer you a variety of choices when it comes to restaurants, so below you can find a list of some of the best in Bordeaux!
- La Belle Epoque I had a wonderful lunch at this friendly bistro close to the river in Bordeaux. It is a French cuisine inspired menu, with very reasonable prices.
- Nofa is a creative restaurant serving French and Italian fusion. This place is tiny, so pre-book. The staff is friendly and seems happy to have you as their guest.
- Berthus is classic french cuisine, served in a cozy environment. The service was fantastic, and the prices were perfectly reasonable. You will need a reservation, which can be made online.
Day 3 in Bordeaux | Day Trips From Bordeaux
I can’t think of any other activity more female-friendly than wine tasting! Even if you have just 3 days in Bordeaux, there is time for wine tasting! If this interests you, then this is a perfect day trip from Bordeaux.
Luckily, Bordeaux is one of the top locations in Europe for wine tasting. A great way to see more of the surrounding areas without having to do any of the planning is a day tour. I chose this tour company for my day tour to St. Emilion and I couldn’t be happier!
This tour has a duration of 5.5 hours and hits all the highlights of St. Emilion. The van ride is about 40 minutes to the winery where the tour would start. The drill is as follows – first comes wine theory such as harvesting and production and then comes the practical bit that is drum roll wine tasting.
Following the tasting, you are taken to the town of St Emilion. I can highly recommend visiting this charming village! As a single female, you will feel incredibly safe and homey walking these cobblestone streets alone.
After about a 45 minute walk around the town on your own, you meet back with the group and head back to Bordeaux.
I hope you enjoyed your 3 days in Bordeaux! I would love to hear about it in the comments below!
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