A Dozen Reasons for Visiting The Médoc
- THE FINE WINE
The Medoc produces THE FINEST RED WINES IN THE WORLD. With over 300 chateaux within the hour to visit for tastings and tours ranging from a modest 4 to 5 Euros to the sky’s the limit Mouton-Rothschild or Margaux.
- THE WILD COAST
The Gironde has 120 miles of unbroken coastline with some of the BEST SURFING BEACHES IN EUROPE.
- THE HOURTIN LAKE
The Hourtin-Carcans lake is the LARGEST LAKE IN FRANCE, 6000 hectares, a paradise for water sports and fishing.
- THE ENDLESS FOREST
The Medoc has the LARGEST EXPANSE OF FOREST IN EUROPE with cycle tracks and trails.
- THE GIRONDE ESTUARY
The Gironde estuary is the LEAST POLLUTED ESTUARY IN EUROPE and has 3 metre sturgeons and a small caviar industry. The little “ports” along the estuary have a charm of their own and have become very fashionable.
- THE CORDOUAN LIGHTHOUSE
The Cordouan lighthouse at the mouth of the Gironde is THE OLDEST LIGHTHOUSE IN EXISTENCE and has a beautiful interior. There are trips available by boat at low tide with picnic provided and a hunt for mussels.
- THE GREAT FOOD
The BEST OYSTERS come from Arcachon. They are served every morning at Montalivet market, 6 with a glass of ice cold wine costs around 5/6 Euros. It is claimed the BEST CEPES (wild mushrooms) COME FROM THIS AREA which is known for its champignons, duck and Pauillac – milk-fed lamb bred on the salt marshes.
- THE HEALTHY LIFESTYLE
The Medoc has the GREATEST NUMBER OF LIVING CENTENARIANS IN FRANCE even though it is the LEAST POPULATED AREA OF FRANCE (1 person every 2 kilometres).
- THE RICH HISTORY
Bordeaux is the BEST PRESERVED EIGHTEENTH CENTURY CITY IN EUROPE with 4000 listed buildings and now a WORLD HERITAGE SITE. Despite its size it is an approachable city and agreeable to explore on foot.
- THE QUIRKY MARKETS
The square around the basilique St Michel, Bordeaux, is taken over by different markets most mornings (bustling antique market on a Sunday from 8-2pm). Montalivet has the LARGEST EVERYDAY MARKET IN FRANCE in summer, with over 150 stalls selling everything you could desire from hippy beads to champagne; it also has wine tasting, champagne and wine by the glass from local chateaux and delicious snacks from around the world.
- THE BORDEAUX SHOPPING
Bordeaux claims the LARGEST PEDESTRIANISED SHOPPING STREET IN EUROPE (rue St Catherine). It is claimed there are more Hermes scarves per sq kilometre than you can wave a Lacroix handbag at! Excellent Sales in July! New trams and gardens make Bordeaux a world heritage site. New bus to Bordeaux from Montalivet: 4 euros return all day from the seafront.
- NUDIST COLONIES
Montalivet has the LARGEST PRIVATE NUDIST COLONIES IN EUROPE with a top class thalassotherapy spa in Euronat, open to all.
Their beaches and facilities are completely separated from Montalivet itself. CHM is 1km away and Euronat is 4km away.
Beach Tomato, 2011.
“It is definitely worth packing up a picnic and setting off on a wine tour of the region.”