France Travel Planner by Tom Brosnahan & Jane Fisher   Vineyards & Towns of the Médoc
Lovers of Médoc wines should follow the Route des Vignobles through the region, tasting as you go.

Serene - a novel of the Belle Époque, by Tom Brosnahan




Anyone interested in the wines of the Médoc should drive the Route des Vignobles (Vineyards Route), the D2 from Bordeaux 69 km (43 miles) north via Macau, Margaux, Lamarque, Pauillac, Saint-Estèphe, all the way to Saint-Yzans-de-Médoc near the northern extremity of the peninsula (map).

Five Bordeaux-region vineyards—four of them in the Médoc—bear the coveted premier grand cru in the classification of Bordeaux wines carried out in 1855: Château Latour, Château Margaux, Château Lafite Rothschild, Château Mouton Rothschild and Château Haut-Brion.

You can easily spend 500 per bottle for their wines.

But there are dozens of other vineyards and châteaux from modest and bargain-priced to elegant and expensive along the Route des Vignobles. Some of these estates welcome visitors anytime, others require that you make an appointment in advance.

Here are examples, from south (nearer to Bordeaux) to north:

Château Hennebelle

21 Route de Pauillac (D2)(map)
33460 Lamarque, France
Tel : +33 (5) 56 58 94 07
Fax : +33 (5) 57 88 51 13

Hennebelle's drinkable wines merit Appellation Haut-Médoc Controlée, but prices are good. No fancy chateau, just honest, enjoyable wine at affordable prices not far from Bordeaux. Open Monday through Friday from 8am to 12 noon and 3pm to 7pm, weekends by appointment.

Château Margaux

Domaine de Château Margaux,
33460 Margaux, France (map)
Tel: +33 (5) 57 88 83 83

Home of some of the finest and most expensive wines on the planet. A dignified, impressive chateau, estate and vineyards. Visits weekdays by appointment only. No visits on weekends, or in August, or during the vendange, or on holidays.

Château Latour

Route de Bordeaux (D2),
33250 Pauillac, France (map)
Tel: +33 (5) 56 73 19 80

Among the oldest, most renowned vineyards producing some of the finest, most expensive wines. Its beautifully impressionistic website will show you pretty photos, play music for you (whether you want it or not), and will regale you with poetic text, but it is ‎nearly impossible to use for obtaining information, so you may want to telephone to find out about visits and tastings.

Château Pichon-Baron

33250 Pauillac, France (map)
Tel : +33 (5) 56 73 17 17
Fax : +33 (5) 56 73 17 28

Also known as Chateau Pichon-Longueville-Baron (to distinguish it from Chateau Pichon-Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, which is across the road), this offers one of the best vineyard experiences, with a romantic chateau, superb wines, and an informative tour. Visit and tasting by appointment everyday from 9am to 12.30pm and from 2pm to 6.30pm.

Château Loudenne

Saint-Yzans-de-Médoc (map)
Gironde, France
Tel: +33 (5) 56 73 17 80
Fax: +33 (5) 56 09 02 87

This pink château on a hill overlooking the broad Gironde estuary near the northern limit of the Médoc offers tours of the vineyards, winery and gardens daily from April to October at 11 am, 2:30 pm, 4 pm and 5:30 pm; by appointment only during the rest of the year. Lodging is available at the chateau.





Loire Valley


Where to Go in France



Chateau Margaux, Médoc, France

Above, Château Margaux, Médoc.

Below, Château Pichon-Longueville.


Château Pichon-Longueville, Médoc, France
Château Pichon-Longueville.

FTP on Facebook    
Pinterest    Twitter