From unusual to hair-raising or simply amusing... Out-of-the-ordinary activities abound in Bordeaux! Here is a review of some favourites...

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Architecturally inspired shelters

Since 2010, ten rather curious looking shelters, in the shape, for example, of a shell, an owl, and a star, have appeared on the walking trails in Bordeaux Metropole. Their purpose? To enable walkers to circumnavigate the urban area. In 2017, the collection grew with the installation of Neptunea, a small shell-house on the edge of the Lac de Bordeaux. Designed by the artists Mrzyk & Moriceau, the construction evokes a giant gastropod, or an Italian-style ice-cream... or a Barbapapa character. Free online reservations.

Looking for something a little different?

Bordeaux’s streets are full of surprises! Le bar Castan is one of the oldest bar of Bordeaux, and surprise with its grotto-style interior; the oldest restaurant in Bordeaux, it was once frequented by Sarah Bernhardt, Aristide Briand and King Alfonso XIII of Spain. At the Wave Surf Café you can have a drink and then go surfing... or the other way around! If you fancy a meal inside an old church, then head for the Utopia Café. Eat or watch a show? You can do both at the Grande Poste, a new arts centre with a bar and restaurant. Finally, L’Autre Petit Bois, with its full-size trees, garlands of lights and baroque décor offers a fairy-tale setting for a cup of tea, or a meal.

Return to the 1920s

The result of a meeting between the Bordeaux industrialist Henry Frugès and the architect Le Corbusier, the Cité Frugès - Le Corbusier consists of 50 houses that were built between 1924 and 1926 in Pessac, with a view to making high quality social housing more widely available. With its geometric shapes, different colours and use of materials, the housing project represented a complete break with Bordeaux’s architecture at that time; it has since become a landmark site for architecture enthusiasts. It was listed as a UNESCO world heritage site in July 2016.

Sample Bordeaux whisky in a World War II bunker

Moon Harbour: the name of this new brand of whisky refers to the moon-like shape of the Garonne River as it wends its way through Bordeaux. The whisky has two unusual characteristics: the distillery is located in an old bunker in the Bassins à Flot, and the resulting nectar is finished in Sauternes oak casks for the 45.8% blended whisky, and in fine Bordeaux red wine casks for the peated malt whisky.

A digital treasure hunt in Lormont

A geocaching concept, Terra Aventura consists of an entertaining 5 kilometre stroll on Bordeaux’s right bank, during which participants use a mobile application to help them discover the secrets of Lormont. With puzzles to solve and a treasure to find, adults and children can enjoy exploring the narrow streets, parks and banks of the Garonne… with the added bonus of locating a series of tiny creatures called Poï’z! 100% free, the game is available in French and English.