What you should know before hiring a car in Bordeaux
|Bordeaux city centre|
|Bordeaux-Mérignac Airport (BOD): 11 km from city centre|
Where to rent a car in Bordeaux?
Located in the southwest of France, the city of Bordeaux is known for its wine and culture. Intersected by the Garonne River, it is home to the 11th century Bordeaux Cathedral, and the Place de la Bourse square with its reflecting pool, the Miroir d’Eau. The city is served by Bordeaux–Mérignac Airport, which operates both domestic and international flights. From here, transport options including taxi, bus and rental car. Visitors opting for the latter have plenty of choice when it comes to which car rental company to choose. Avis, Rhodium, Budget, Goldcar Rental and Europcar are just a few of those offering car rental services in Bordeaux – perfect for a road trip around the vineyards surrounding the city!
Driving in Bordeaux: parking and other tips
Planning to rent a car in Bordeaux? It pays to be aware of the rules of the road before getting behind the wheel. When driving in Bordeaux and the rest of France, drive on the right; don't drink and drive (the legal blood alcohol limit for drivers is 500mg per liter); and pay attention to the speed limits. These are usually 50km/h in built up, urban areas; 80km/h on open roads; and 130km/h on the motorway. Pay extra attention in poor driving conditions, as speed limits can be lower in low visibility or wet weather.
When it comes to parking in Bordeaux, the best way to explore the city is on foot – meaning the best parking options are often those on the outskirts of the city. Leave your rental car in a secure parking lot, and take public transport into the city center for the easiest option. Alternatively, centrally located on street parking is available at a charge, and comes with a maximum stay of two hours.
Road trips from Bordeaux
Bordeaux is known for its wine and renting a car is a brilliant way to explore the area to its fullest. Drive along beautiful French country roads, discovering chateaux and vineyards along the way. Alternatively, head further afield to explore the cities of Toulouse and Nantes. Here are three road trips worth taking by rental car from Bordeaux.
Bordeaux Wine Tour by Rental Car
Bordeaux is famous for its wine, and there is no better way to explore the area's vineyards than by car. From Bordeaux, wine enthusiasts can drive to a number of destinations to taste the region's specialty: Saint-Émilion (29 miles), Médoc (44 miles), and the popular Graves and Sauternes wine route are just a few of the road trip destinations from Bordeaux for those wishing to discover the region's famous wines.
153 miles southeast of Bordeaux by road stands the city of Toulouse. Just like Bordeaux, it sits upon the Garonne River and boasts a plethora of interesting sights and attractions. Spend a few days exploring "La Ville Rose": popular landmarks include the Basilica of Saint-Sernin; the Capitole de Toulouse; and the impressive Toulouse Cathedral.
Discover a city steeped in history with this road trip to Nantes, 220 miles north of Bordeaux. Located on the Loire River, Nantes is filled with historic landmarks and architectural attractions. The Château des ducs de Bretagne is a must-visit, while the Nantes History Museum allows visitors to learn more about the city's past. Don't miss a trip to the Passage Pommeraye shopping mall, with its stunning architecture and interesting shops.