Things to do in Bordeaux!

So we went to Bordeaux in South West France for a weeks holiday. It was one of those last minute ‘Where will we go?’ holidays. Only a two hour direct flight from Cork, Bordeaux was perfect! The cute animal in the photo above is from a travelling Circus that passed through the city whilst we were there.
The photo above is the 15 euro sea food platter or ‘Assiete de Petit Commerce’ that I got in the incredible seafood restaurant Le Petit Commerce. It was incredible value, two large prawns, two oysters, periwinkles, whelk things, and a load of shrimp, and garlic butter. It really was gorgeous and some lovely crisp white wine. It was chardonnay and it actually tasted buttery. We went to Le Petit Commerce three times. When you find a good thing, stick with it! We also had a huge bowl of razor clams and they were gorgeous! And grilled mussells, a huge platter of grilled langoustine. And the fish platter for main course is unbelievable, Tuna, Swordfish, Salmon, Langoustine and a few prawns for 21 euro??!! Cest tres cheap, no? The atmosphere is bustling but relaxed, the staff are so nice and friendly but also very relaxed so don’t expect to be in and out in half an hour!

La Tupina is one of the most famous restaurants in Bordeaux. I had seen it on Rick Stein a few years ago and they have a massive open fire and real traditional menu etc. A little bit of a touristy thing but no harm in doing that every now and again! The food was perfect. Chilled tomato soup and 17 euro salad for starters, 70 euro rib steak for two as a main course, and the beautiful creme brulee above for dessert. Everyone else in the restaurant was taking photos of their food and ooohing and aahing too! An expensive, but perfect once off!
On Sunday morning there’s a gorgeous market along the quays with incredible bread stalls, fruits, vegetables and pastries. At the end of the market was a stall selling plates of oysters, Directly opposite was a wine stall. Perfect! I’ve always been a bit wary of oysters. I want to like them but, ugh. I’ve already been won over by anchovies so why not oysters? Then as we sat in the sunshine with our cups of white wine and dozen oysters I watched a four year old french girl shucking her oysters like a pro. If she could do it so could I!

The supermarkets over there were fantastic too. We stayed in an apartment so were able to cook all the gorgeous produce we wanted!

Another lovely restaurant is Le Boucher. It used to be a butchers but now it’s a relaxed family style restaurant. Chequered table cloths, duck fat chips and Ricky Martin blaring from the radio. Who could ask for more? All of the steaks are cooked on a fire out near the tables by the waiters and there is a huge poster of Don Juan in the bathrooms.
Another gorgeous place is Le Bouchon Bordelais. Really inventive, creative and subtle food. With an incredible selection of wine.

A nearby daytrip to St. Emillion was brilliant. Vineyards everywhere and so historical. The area is full of caves, Europe’s largest underground monolithic church and a massive belltower.
We also climbed ‘Europes largest Sand Dune’. It’s so massive that it already ‘consumed’ several houses and a hotel! Climbing vertical hot sand in your bare feet in 30 degree heat is… challenging. Your calves will thank you for it in the long run though! And the descent was great fun!

And of course the fantastic Tour de France passed through the city. The atmosphere was electric and we stood around for the whole day waiting for the cyclists to zip past us! It was only when I was home that my eagle eyed cyclist sister Raedi spotted the incredible Lance Armstrong in our photo below!

So that’s pretty much it! I’ll do a separate post about the galleries and museums (yaaawn!).

Lilly x

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