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Vineyard, Aquitaine, Gironde

Brilliant Bordeaux

8-day luxury river cruise


Short description

Delve into the acclaimed vineyards, grand chateaux and village-dotted countryside around Bordeaux


  • Visit hilltop Saint-Émilion for exceptional architecture and historic vineyards
  • Enjoy wine-tastings and farmers markets
  • Discover UNESCO protected vineyards dating back to Roman times
  • Take advantage of included tours and curated excursions
  • Experience all-inclusive luxury on S.S. Bon Voyage

In Brief

  • 1 Night Bordeaux
  • 1 Night Libourne
  • 1 Night Pauillac
  • 1 Night Cadillac
  • 1 Night Saint-Émilion
  • 3 Nights Bordeaux


Recommended for:
Food & wine | Natural world | River cruise

Explore the natural beauty and acclaimed gastronomy of France's Bordeaux region on this luxury Garonne river cruise. Sailing out from Bordeaux itself, you'll head to Cadillac for a guided tasting at one of the region's finest estates before calling in to grand Chateaux set against the Gironde Estuary's bucolic backdrop. Then, after a scenic cycle through the vineyards of Médoc, you'll pause at Blaye's cliff-framed delights before looking down on the confluence of the Gironde and Dordogne rivers from gates of a hilltop villa. Saint-Émillon's winding cobblestones signal your next port of call as you explore vineyards first planted by the Romans. Finally, wind your way back to Bordeaux to pair its bustling markets with the grand neoclassical architecture that have afforded the city it's much-deserved UNESCO World Heritage status. This itinerary is also available as a no-fly option.

Day by day itinerary

Day 1

Begin your holiday with included airport lounge access before your flight to Bordeaux–Mérignac International Airport, where you will be greeted by a Uniworld representative and transferred to the ship. Your ship is conveniently docked right in the heart of the city, so if time allows, why not stroll to the nearby food markets or take the tram to the popular Saint-Michel flea market, which is just a few stops away? On board, settle into your splendid stateroom, complete with handcrafted Savoir® Beds of England bed and lavish decor.

Stay: S.S. Bon Voyage

Meals: D

Day 2
Blaye, Bourg-sur-Gironde, Cruising the Dordogne River, Libourne

The Route de la Corniche Fleurie…could this be the most beautiful road you’ve ever travelled? Find out today on the drive to Blaye Fortress, passing through one impossibly picturesque hamlet after another, with exotic flowers (brought here by local sea captains) all along the way. Sail across the peaceful waters of the estuary, where fishing huts rise above grassy marshlands edged by limestone cliffs, as you make your way to the town of Blaye. This afternoon your ship sails to Bourg-sur-Gironde, which you may explore on your own. Climb the steep stone stairs rising from the riverbanks to the top of the village for a view of the confluence of the Gironde and the Dordogne, and be sure to check out the medieval gates and the Moorish villa. A special Captain’s Welcome Reception and dinner will be prepared for you onboard the ship this evening.

Stay: S.S. Bon Voyage

Meals: B L D

Day 3
Cruising the Garonne River and Gironde Estuary, Pauillac

The legendary Médoc region abounds with prestigious wine châteaux in a dizzying array of architectural styles, as well as miles of grapevines stretching to infinity. Enjoy the waters of the Garonne River and the Gironde Estuary before heading to the pretty town of Pauillac, gateway to the storied Médoc wine route and the prestigious “châteaux road.” Take a scenic drive to the tip of the peninsula or join a guide for a vineyard bicycle ride, followed by a wine tasting at a beautiful wine estate. 

Stay: S.S. Bon Voyage

Meals: B L D

Day 4

The French phrase “la douceur de vivre” is an accurate description for your time in Cadillac, known for its deliciously flavoured dessert wines. You’ll meet a local producer and visit one of the area’s finest estates for an intimate wine tasting as special as the wine itself, sampling the unique perfume and flavour of Sauternes. After your tasting, you’ll journey to Château de Cazeneuve, a polygonal 14th-century fortress with a royal pedigree. 

Stay: S.S. Bon Voyage

Meals: B L D

Day 5
Libourne (Saint-Émilion)

With Libourne as your base, travel to nearby Saint-Émilion and immerse yourself more deeply in the region’s history and wine culture. The Romans were the first to plant grapes here, and this was the first vineyard region to be protected by UNESCO because of its history. Shops brimming with wine and wine tools line the steep cobblestone streets; medieval ramparts that bore witness to battles for control between French and English monarchs still stand; and vineyards encroach upon the village. Of all the sights, however, perhaps the most extraordinary is the 12th-century church carved into a cliff. Another treasure awaiting you underground? A wine tasting in the cellars of a premier Grand Cru estate.

Stay: S.S. Bon Voyage

Meals: B L D

Day 6
Libourne, Cruising the Garonne River, Bordeaux

The French insist that the key to their superb wines is the soil in which they’re grown, the terroir. That same terroir also makes for extraordinary produce—the foundation for the country’s acclaimed cuisine—as you’ll discover today at a local farmers’ market. Tonight, see Bordeaux under the stars on an exclusive illuminations tour of the city.

Stay: S.S. Bon Voyage

Meals: B L D

Day 7

The city of Bordeaux is a delightful find, as elegant and sophisticated as big sister Paris, but with a younger and hipper vibe. You have a wonderful selection of exclusive opportunities to see this magnificent place, whose seamless blend of classical and neoclassical architecture led to its being designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. “Do as the Locals Do” with a walking tour of the city, or venture out on a bicycle ride through the city. Either way, you’ll have an up-close and personal view of one of the world’s most bustling and dynamic cities. A special Captain’s Farewell Reception and Dinner will be prepared for you this evening.

Stay: S.S. Bon Voyage

Meals: B L D

Day 8

Disembark the ship where you will be transferred to Bordeaux-Mérignac International Airport for your flight home.

Meals: B


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