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Skirting the green coast of the estuary, oenologic cruises offer tastings of local appellations, paired with whatever is served. High above the water, crowning the rocky outcrops, the towns of Bourg and Blaye are two highlights of this fluvial journey—the lovely villages are a treat for the eyes and the palate!
In Bourg, it's the most enthusiastic and instructive winemakers that welcome epicurious travelers. Inside the doors of the "Maison des vins" (the House of Wine), found in the high village, visitors discover a modern bar and vaulted cellar storing 150 bottles of the appellation. It's the ideal occasion to sample the unique wines with the people who made them.
Well known for its ramparts and military fortifications, the Blaye Citadel has been progressively transformed into an artisan's village. Visitors can take advantage of many interesting activities here, but the most unusual is without a doubt the micro-vineyard, which grows over 1500 m² (16,000 ft²) above the water. Cultivated by biodynamics, the Clos de l’Échauguette is plowed by horses, harvested by hand, and inhabited by the chickens who cluck among the vines. Curious visitors can visit the parcel of land and buy the rare wine, of which only 700 bottles are produced each year.
The Bourg Tourism Office had the excellent idea to offer electronic bikes to visitors all year long. From the route de la Corniche, cyclists can admire the limestone cliffs that plunge into the water on one site, and the blond-stone architecture framed with flowers on the other. Taken in from the heights of Bayon-sur-Gironde, you can see the vines of the Eqyuem chateau—from here, the view of the confluence of rivers is spectacular!
Nestled between the prestigous houses of Château Mouton Rothschild and Château Lafite Rothschild, a cooperative resists the call of grand crus rankings: La Rose Pauillac, founded in the 30s by small-time owners concerned with providing a grand wine at an affordable price. Situated in an old farm in the heart of Pauillac, the cellar of the co-op hosts many unusual activities, like a tasting in the dark that's full of surprises!