8 Day Bordeaux/Dordogne Tour

NEW 2025 Daily Itinerary

8 Day Bordeaux & Dordogne Tour

NEW 2025
Daily Itinerary

Day 1- Welcome to Bordeaux!

Welcome to magnificent Bordeaux! Known worldwide for its exceptional wines, Bordeaux is also one of the most popular cities in France thanks to its idyllic lifestyle and abundance of cafés, restaurants and more. This elegant city resembles a smaller Paris, with glamorous 18th-century architecture gracefully spanning the Garonne river. Read our blog here to see why we love Bordeaux so much!

Your Bordeaux adventure will begin between 11am - 4pm when we pick you up from either the Bordeaux airport or train station. We'll drive you to the lovely Chartrons neighborhood to check in to the 4* Hotel Vatel, your home for the next four nights. After unpacking and relaxing, we'll gather again for a happy hour to enjoy some drinks and snacks while mingling and getting to know each other before our Welcome Dinner at a traditional French restaurant.

Tip: If you have the option, we recommend arriving 1-2 days early in Bordeaux in order to adjust to the time difference and have a buffer in case you encounter travel delays. During our trip you will enjoy a walking tour of the city center, a Medoc wine masterclass at the Vin & Negoce museum, and a visit to Les Bassins de Lumieres. You will also have 2 free evenings in Bordeaux to explore restaurants and wine bars. With extra days before the tour you could visit the Cite du Vin museum, Medoc wineries, spend extra time shopping in Bordeaux, and more! You can add the extra nights directly at booking for Hotel Vatel. Feel free to email us if you would like a list of additional activities and sightseeing recommendations.

Pick up from 11am to 4pm, Hotel Check in - Happy Hour, Welcome Dinner - 4* Hotel Vatel Bordeaux

Vatel Bordeaux Hotel
Bordeaux dinner cruise small group tour France

Day 2- Highlights of Bordeaux & Medoc Masterclass

Today you'll become intimately acquainted with magnificent Bordeaux on a walking tour of the city's landmarks and historical sites. We'll stroll the Garonne riverfront quai, learning about Bordeaux's Roman settlers and its rise as a port town. You'll admire some of the most famous landmarks of the city including the Miroire d'eau, Porte Cailhau, Eglise St Pierre, Place du Parlement, Rue St Remi, and the Gallerie Bordelaise. We will finish our walk by the Sculpture Sanna in front of the historic Grande Theatre and reward ourselves with a delicious lunch at one of our favorite restaurants in Bordeaux. 

After a lunch break, we'll head to the Musee du Vin et du Negoce for a Médoc wine masterclass and tasting. We will discover the nuances of Médoc wines and explore this small but fascinating museum filled with artifacts chronicling Bordeaux's wine commerce history. (This museum is not La Cite du Vin)

Tonight, enjoy your first free evening in glamorous Bordeaux and discover the city's vibrant restaurant scene. We will email you a Bordeaux guide with restaurant recommendations to try, or you can grab some treats from a local bakery for a light dinner and relax in your comfortable hotel room.

Bordeaux Walking Tour, Wine Museum and Medoc masterclass - Free Evening - 4* Hotel Vatel Bordeaux

Bordeaux, One of the Most Elegant Cities in France
Wine tasting Bordeaux Small Group Tour

Day 3- Wine Country & Saint-Émilion

Today we will explore the exquisite world of Bordeaux wine. After crossing both the Garonne and the Dordogne river, we will arrive at a lovely boutique winery where we will visit the estate and sample the wines while the owner tells us her inspiring story. The real treat of this stop is having a delicious lunch together overlooking the endless vineyards of Bordeaux, carefully prepared just for us by the owner. A perfect time to relax and enjoy the beautiful countryside.

Next we'll take a short 30-minute drive to the picturesque village of Saint-Émilion for a walking tour of this medieval gem. Here you will wander cobblestone streets and soak in fascinating history, legends, and architecture like the 12th-century underground church and catacombs- a highlight most visitors miss. The postcard-worthy scenery of vineyards and limestone buildings surrounding this countryside village will be sure to impress!

Our last stop of the day will be at a family-run winery to discover Saint-Émilion's famed wines - some of Bordeaux's most renowned and coveted reds. Tour the vines and old underground quarry cellars of this storied region, whose winemaking pedigree dates back to Roman times. We will finish with a tasting of their delicious wines.

Tonight is your final free evening in Bordeaux - make it memorable! Savor one last magical night at a Michelin-starred restaurant or cozy French bistro. The perfect finale to your Bordeaux experience.

Winery Visit, St-Émilion Tour, Winery & Underground Tunnels - Free evening - 4* Hotel Vatel Bordeaux

bordeaux dordogne small group tour
Small Group Tour Dordogne Bordeaux Wine
Underground Tunnel Winery St Emilion

Day 4- French Bread & Sarlat-la-Canéda

This morning we will check out of the hotel and embark on the next leg of your journey, venturing into the captivating region of Dordogne, famously known as "the valley of 1,001 castles." This enchanting area, sculpted by the meandering Dordogne River, stands as one of the most picturesque landscapes in all of France and will be your home base for the next 4 nights.

Our first stop along the way will be to dive into the UNESCO-recognized savoir-faire of the French Baguette at a historic water mill. The experience starts with a fascinating bread-making demonstration followed by a guided tour of the mill, where the rhythmic symphony of ancient machinery reveals the intricate process of transforming grains into flour. Discover the captivating tales of the mill's historical significance within the local community and unveil traditional techniques passed down through generations, a highlight of the tour!

After the mill visit and a nice lunch, we will get back on the bus for a scenic drive through the countryside to reach our next home base for 4 nights: the boutique Hotel Naad, nestled in the beautiful village of Sarlat, short for Sarlat-la-Canéda. You will have some free time to relax and settle in when we get to the hotel.

Later in the evening we will gather again for a night out, and step back in time to begin to explore the town which stands near the top of the official list of the "most beautiful villages of France." Your guide will lead you on a guided tour as we meander through it's historic streets adorned with well-preserved architecture dating back to the medieval times to formally acquaint you with the village, and you will be able to get to know it much more on your free evenings throughout your stay. We will finish with a group dinner in the heart of the picturesque town, indulging in Périgord cuisine before ending the day.

Check out, Bread Mill, Lunch, Check-in, Sarlat Tour  - Group dinner in Sarlat - 3* Boutique Hotel Naad

Bread making demonstration 8 day Bordeaux & Dordogne Tour
Sarlat la Cadena Dordogne
Boutique Sarlat la Caneda

Day 5- Dordogne, Prehistoric Cave &
Milandes Castle

Today we will begin to explore the castles and prehistoric art that the Dordogne is famous for. We have selected two of the best castles in the region to show you in depth on the tour, and the first is the Château des Milandes. Built around 1489 by a Caumont Lord in the Renaissance style to impress his wife, this fairytale castle continues to impress with its timeless looks and most gorgeous gardens. It housed the Caumont family until the French Revolution, after which it eventually became the home of the famous American-born French entertainer and activist Josephine Baker who lived an interesting life and even was a member of La Resistance in WW2! The castle is certainly worth a visit for its rich history and beautiful gardens.

Our exploration continues with a visit to the prehistoric site of Le Moustier where the important discoveries of 2 prehistoric shelters were made, followed by a delightful lunch in the charming village. Continuing our scenic drive, we'll pause at La Roque St Christophe, offering a glimpse into prehistoric timesWe'll then delve into the fascinating Grotte de Rouffignac, known for its prehistoric art. An electric train ride will guide us through its intricate cave systems, where genuine Paleolithic cave art, over 15,000 years old, adorns the limestone walls. Your expert tour guide will provide insights as you witness these remarkable drawings from our ancestors, preserved in their original setting, creating an incredible life experience that establishes a profound connection to our shared prehistoric heritage

Following our explorations, we'll end the day back at Hotel Naad where you have a free evening to enjoy Sarlat as you wish. (We will send you by email a list of recommended restaurants in Sarlat.)

Chateau Milandes, Rouffignac Cave & Prehistoric Vézère Valley - Group Dinner in Sarlat, 3* Boutique Hotel Naad

Les Milandes Castle, Dordogne, France, Small Group Tour
Rouffignac Prehistoric Cave Tour Dordogne
Sarlat-la-Caneda, one of the most beautiful villages of France

Day 6- Cliff-Hanging Villages of Dordogne

Today we will retrace the steps following centuries of countless pilgrims with a walking tour of Rocamadour, a medieval hillside village that seems straight out of a postcard. You will be amazed at the harmony of man’s creation and nature as the buildings and landscape complement each other perfectly. Rocamadour holds spiritual significance, notably recognized as a site of pilgrimage and also an alternative route on the Santiago de Compostela Road. During our visit, we'll delve into the fascinating history of the village, particularly focusing on its revered relics. Read more about Rocamadour fascinating history here.

Following the walking tour, you’ll have some free time to explore the village before we drive to our lunch spot—a refined restaurant with an incredible view of the cliff-hanging village of Rocamadour.

On the way back to your hotel, we will make a stop at the picturesque village of La Roque Gageac, which is labeled as "one of the most beautiful villages of France". You will have some free time to wander around and explore this picture perfect village by the Dordogne river, gaze up at the limestone cliff, and see remnants of a troglodyte fortress above the town before we head back to our beautiful hotel.

When we return to the hotel you will have another free evening to enjoy Sarlat for your last free evening.

Rocamadour, La Roque-Gageac - Free Evening, 3* Boutique Hotel Naad

Rocamadour Cliff village
Rocamadour small group tour (1)
Dordogne Valley France must see

Day 7- French Market, Castles & Gastronomy

Today you will live out a dreamy French experience - visiting a local village market! You will have a free morning in Sarlat-la-Canéda for their famous market day. You will be able to use your map that we give you to explore the town and the bustling market stalls filled with regional delicacies, fresh produce, artisans and more. Lunch will also be on your own to try any restaurants you might have your eye on, or get some local food at the market!  

In the afternoon we will meet as a group to get on the bus. Since Dordogne is known for its gastronomic culture and being the duck, walnut and truffle capital of France, it only makes sense that we would take you to a truffle and walnut farm! We will meet with one of the employees of this local truffle farm and walk amongst the trees while they share their passion and knowledge of cultivating and locating these delicacies with beloved dog Noxo. We will finish this special encounter with a tasting of their homemade truffle butter.

Following the farm visit, we will stop nearby just to have a look at the Castelnaud-la-Chapelle, where our guide will quickly tell us the history about this castle. We simply cannot just pass by this imposing fortress without saying a word about it, but we have saved the best for last. For the grand finale of our castle visits, we end with a guided tour of our favorite castle in Dordogne: the majestic Beynac Castle. Perched dramatically on a limestone cliff, this 12th-century fortress offers breathtaking valley views that are nothing short of awe-inspiring. The medieval charm and incredible vistas of Beynac Castle promise an unforgettable experience. After the tour, we'll gather for dinner in the village, savoring a delightful Perigord meal together to conclude a day filled with history, culture, and culinary delights.

Sarlat Market, Truffle Farm, Castelnaud-la-Chapelle, Beynac Castle - Group Dinner in Beynac, 3* Boutique Hotel Naad

Sarlat la Cadena Dordogne market
Truffle farm tour Dordogne
Dordogne Beynac Small Group Tour France Off Beaten Path

Day 8- Lascaux Cave & Farewell Dinner

Today we check out of the hotel to head back to the airport for our last night in Bordeaux, but the fun is not over yet! We certainly cannot leave Dordogne without visiting the fascinating and famous Lascaux IV museum containing an exact replica of the prehistoric cave paintings discovered here in 1940 by four local teenagers. This immersive exhibit lets you relive the wonder and excitement the four adventurous boys must have felt when they made the original discovery of the Lascaux cave and stumbled upon hundreds of 15,000 year old paintings. We will also have a quick lunch here on site before the guided tour. 

After our cave tour, we'll bid adieu to idyllic Dordogne and drive back to Bordeaux where we have one last fun activity together, going to an art and light show! We will visit one of the city's most in-demand attractions: Les Bassins de Lumieres. Culturespaces is a company known for converting abandoned buildings into immersive light show art galleries. Bassin de Lumieres is their most interesting and largest one yet, as they converted an old German U-Boat base into an art center! The unique light show showcases art from the most famous artists in history and integrates music into the show for an unforgettable immersive experience. 2024 Program: From Vermeer to Van Gogh - The Dutch Masters (Read More)

In the evening we will check into the Sheraton Hotel at the airport where you'll have free time to refresh and relax before we gather one last time for our farewell dinner. Over a gourmet meal, we'll reminisce on our week of food, wine, history, culture and camaraderie. It's been a trip to remember!

The next morning you will head home (or continue your adventures!) with hearts full of memories, already dreaming of your next visit. 

Check-out, Lascaux IV, Les Bassins du Lumieres, Check-in - Farewell Dinner, 4* Sheraton Hotel Bordeaux Airport

small group tour dordogne bordeaux
Bassins de Lumieres Bordeaux
Sheraton Bordeaux Merignac

Day 9- Departure

The time to say goodbye to beautiful Bordeaux and newfound friends. The hotel shuttle will take airport-departing guests to catch their flights home. For those leaving by train, we'll arrange transportation to the St Jean train station.

We hope you've enjoyed experiencing France as a local thanks to our carefully crafted itinerary and intimate style of small group travel.  Wherever your next destination is, may it be filled with more French joie de vivre. Safe travels and au revoir, for now 🙂 Departure for your train or plane before noon.

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