Bordeaux, with a population of just 250,000, is an easy city to get around for pedestrians and there are plenty of green spaces to enjoy, even in the city centre. The vineyards out of town are ideal for walking and hiking and there are several good golf courses in the vicinity.
1. Go cycling
Bordeaux is extremely flat and is regarded as one of the best cities in the world for cyclists, who can pick up a bike for hire at any of the 160 Vcub hire stations dotted around the city. It costs E2 an hour to borrow one of the 1,700 bikes on offer – and Bordeaux has extensive bike lanes.
2. Walking the quays
You'll find many locals getting their daily exercise by walking the wide and pedestrian-only quays that stretch along the banks of the Garonne River. There are several kilometres of walkways and cycle paths – and the waterfront strip also contains several small garden areas.
3. L'Orangerie in the Public Garden
The Jardin Public, created in 1746, is a lovely green area for a stroll – similar in style to the Luxembourg Gardens in Paris. It is a little slice of the country in the city. After exercising you can enjoy a juice under the sun umbrellas at this terrace café.
4. Golf du Medo
There are two 18-hole courses at the Golf du Médoc resort; Les Châteaux, which has hosted the French Open, and Les Vignes. Les Châteaux is inspired by the links courses of Scotland. Each hole is named after a wine producer. Les Vignes was built in a former pine forest.
5. Parc Bordelais
The biggest green space in Bordeaux, the Parc Bordelais, is n the Cauderan district, and is extremely popular with walkers and joggers. Opened in 1888, it is a place where locals come to play sports or picnic. Wild ducks and swans live on a lake that contains fish.
Swimmers and sunbathers can enjoy a beach overlooking the city's urban lake – but only in summer. Bordeaux-Lac, to the north of the city, is easily reached by tram. The district contains a camping site, sailing and rowing clubs, a fitness trail, golf course and a new football stadium.
7. Botanical Garden de la Bastide
Walkers are very fond of the new Botanical Garden, which covers four hectares on the right bank of the Garonne River, opposite the city centre. Here you'll find several replicas of regional landscapes, including forests, vegetable gardens, wild flowers and picnic areas.
8. Arès salt marshes
At the tip of the bay between Arcachon and Lége-Cap Ferret are 200 hectares of salt marshes, with dunes, forest, marshland and mud flats offering some challenging walks which change seasonally. A chance to escape the tourist areas and commune with nature.
9. River Garonne Quay Run
This is a 6.7 km running route along Bordeaux’s renovated quays. It crosses the two main bridges in the city, the old Pont de Pierre and the brand-new Chaban Delmas. From the right bank of the Garonne there are excellent views of the UNESCO classified city.
10. Saint-Emilion Bike Tour
Spend a full day exploring the beautiful vineyard region surrounding UNESCO heritage-listed Saint-Emilion on a guided and organised bike tour that includes a train or minibus trip from Bordeaux, a walking tour and a chance to cycle through the vines with lunch and wine tastings included.