South West France

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South West France Travel Information

South West France is a charming pocket of the country most famously known for its wine-producing regions in and around Bordeaux. The area is also highly rich in cultural charm with the beautiful cities of Toulouse and Carcassonne. Bordeaux is today one of the most exciting and dynamic French cities. With its pedestrianised boulevards and restored neoclassical architecture, the city is Unesco-listed, making it the largest urban World Heritage site. A city not to be tied down by past trends, a series of world-class architects have designed a bevy of strong and edgy must-see new buildings - the Herzog & de Meuron stadium (2015) and decanter-shaped La Cite du Vin (2016).
For a wine-lovers dream holiday, travel to Bourg-en-Gironde. Close-by lies La Maison des Vignes, a beautiful 17th Century house overlooking the vine-strewn valley and available to rent by the week. The vineyards include five different varieties of grape; merlot, cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc, malbec and petit verdot.
Travelling to the east lies the the fortified, magical city of Carcassonne. La Cite, as it is now well known, attracts in excess of four million visitors every year. The majestic medieval citadel sits on the hill overlooking the ‘new town’ of the modern-day city. To visit the historic fortress, enter through one of four gates, the common entrance being Porte Narbonnaise. The Cite offers an entire medieval village with its tiny winding alleys and small charming buildings, situated next to impressive buildings such as the Basilique St Nazaire, with its enormous rose windows and home to the biggest organ in the south of France. Come the evening, head to Le Trivalou, an authentic restaurant on the road that connects the town centre to the Cite. Alternatively take a short walk into the main square, where restaurants are clustered with outside tables enabling the perfect opportunity to soak up the buzz of Carcassonne.