France Travel Planner by Tom Brosnahan & Jane Fisher   Aquitaine, France Guide
This large and historic région of France stretches along the south Atlantic coast to the Pyrénées, and includes some of the world's finest wine-making areas.

 


   

 

Aquitaine is a historic region in southwestern France (map) that includes the famous wine-making regions of the Gironde département around the regional capital of Bordeaux, the rich winegrowing district of Médoc and Saint-Émilion, the Atlantic seaside resort town of Arcachon, the beautiful Dordogne region, the Atlantic Pyrenees département (France's Basque country), and more.

The first known occupants of Aquitaine were Cro-Magnon people 40,000 years ago in the caves of Lascaux and Les Eyzies. (Here's a novel about them.)

Later a Roman province, then part of a Visigothic kingdom, and after that a duchy, Aquitaine has had a colorful and sometimes violent history, including periods when it was controlled by the English crown.

Basque, Occitan, and several ancient dialects of French are still spoken in Aquitaine.

Nouvelle-Aquitaine

Starting in 2016, the region has been officially defined as Nouvelle-Aquitaine, comprised of the départements of Dordogne, Gironde, Landes, Lot-et-Garonne, and Pyrénées-Atlantiques. It's a large région stretching along the Atlantic coast from Bordeaux and the Médoc in the north to Bayonne, Biarritz and St-Jean de Luz, inland along the Pyrénées to Pau and northwest to Brive-la-Gaillarde in the Dordogne.

Poitou-Charentes

To the north of Aquitaine is the région of Poitou-Charentes, with the historic cities of Poitiers, Angoulême and Saintes, wonderful Cognac, its important naval port of Rochefort, and the delightful resort islands of Île-de-Ré and Île d'Oléron. More...


Bordeaux

Médoc Vineyards

Saint-Émilion

Dordogne

Midi-Pyrenées

Loire Valley

Paris

Where to Go in France

 

Paris Girls Secret Society, a novel by Tom Brosnahan

 

Sailing ship, Bordeaux, France

Sailing ship moored in Bordeaux.

       
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