Saint-Émilion – Medieval City
A beautiful historic village on a small hill surrounded by vineyards and chateaux. The railway station is right in the middle of picturesque vineyards and you can either walk (a pleasant 20ish min) for those with average fitness or there is transport that can be organised…a bit like an Asian Tuk Tuk (see photo).
We left Bordeaux on the morning train – it left at 10am (ish) from the main station – it takes less than an hr and the countryside on the way is very pretty, of course, lots of vineyards. After walking up the hill on a warm day, we stopped for cold drinks followed by a coffee and a pastry at a small cafe – if you walk a few blocks away from the touristy square you’ll find good coffee at half the price in a pleasant setting. We then strolled around the “town” – quite small and easy to walk around (see photos). We had a late, light lunch at another cafe – most cafes serve wine so we sampled a few. We were going out for a special dinner in the evening (back in the City) so we decided not to have a large lunch with matched wines – in the village there are many restaurants where you can do that. The other option is to visit one (or many more!) of the many chateaux in the region. We hope to return and do that. More information can be found at: saint-emilion-tourisme.com; there is also a museum that we hope to visit next time. The first photo of Cafe Du Levant is across from the station (La Gare) – it was popular on every day we passed by but we preferred the cafe inside (where we spent an hr or so on our day of departure for Sans Sebastian). There’s no kiosk or similar on train to Saint-Emilion. On the walk up & back to the station be prepared for lost French drivers asking for directions to the “City” (more like a small town) – we helped (we hoped!) the best we could but that reminded us to brush up on a few more words (time/distances/parking info etc). If taking a car there is a car park near the station but it doesn’t look secure.