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Ophorus Tours - Saint-Émilion

Aquitaine

Saint-Émilion

We organize private wine tours or sightseeing tours departing from Saint Emilion. We will come and pick you up at your accommodation and take you to the major wine regions including saint emilion, médoc and graves & sauternes. We can also organize a private tour to Bordeaux including a guided walking tour of the town and visit to La Cité du Vin wine museum.

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Learn more about Saint-Émilion

Saint Emilion Travel Guide (Nouvelle Aquitaine, France) Saint Emilion is a small village located approximately a 45 minute drive from Bordeaux.  A bit of History The medieval village of Saint Emilion is all the more charming because it is so different from all the other French medieval villages. Emilian, a Benedictine monk, was born in Brittany in the 8th century, to a modest family. The count who ruled the province chose him to be his financial steward, which turned out to be an unfortunate distinction in his life: Jealous rivals accused him of thievery to discredit him in the eyes of his master and confidant. After some turmoil, his path eventually led him to a forest where, captivated ...

Saint Emilion Travel Guide (Nouvelle Aquitaine, France)

Saint Emilion is a small village located approximately a 45 minute drive from Bordeaux. 

A bit of History

The medieval village of Saint Emilion is all the more charming because it is so different from all the other French medieval villages. Emilian, a Benedictine monk, was born in Brittany in the 8th century, to a modest family. The count who ruled the province chose him to be his financial steward, which turned out to be an unfortunate distinction in his life: Jealous rivals accused him of thievery to discredit him in the eyes of his master and confidant.

After some turmoil, his path eventually led him to a forest where, captivated by the serenity of the area, he dug out a cave and dedicated his life to God. The hermit had performed so many miracles and done so much good around him that his name was given to the place where he had lived (after his death in 767) which became known as St Emilion.

Visit The Underground Monolithic Cathedral

Discover a very unusual place not to be missed: the underground monuments including the monolithic church. 125 ft long, 66 ft wide and 36 ft high, all you can see from the exterior are a few windows on the one facade and the steeple, topped with a Gothic arrow 174 ft high. Benedictine monks were the inspiration for this church carved out of solid rock which is Europe’s largest monolithic cathedral! The jurisdiction of Saint Emilion was listed a Unesco world heritage site in 1999.

As you enter, following a long gallery, one comes across an altar oriented towards the west, rather than the east as is the Christian tradition. The sobriety of the ornamentation stands in stark contrast with the wealth of lessons to be learned from them.

And Learn About The Local Wine

When John ‘Lackland’ succeeded his brother, Richard Lionheart, to the throne of England in 1199, he signed the ‘Falaise Charter’. This accorded Saint Emilion the statute of a free and independent commune, with the right to be administered by a mayor, twelve members of the Jurade (the town council) and twelve advisers elected by the town’s notables.

These councilmen had vast power that included rendering justice. Wine growing was such an important part of the local economy that they also regulated the manufacturing process and the sale of wine, and even publicly announced the start and the end of the grape harvests.

Saint Emilion wines are blended wines that are usually blended with several grape varieties such as Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. From the village, we organize walking tours and private tours to any of the wine regions of the Bordeaux vineyards. 

Saint Emilion Wine Tours & Day Trips from Bordeaux

Our winery tours will take you to Classified growth Chateaus where you will understand the wine making process and follow a wine tasting tour. Conducted by English speaking guides, expert in Bordeaux wines, we can have you visit any vineyard of Bordeaux including the Pomerol appellation.

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FAQ

  • What to do in Saint Emilion France?

    Nestled in the heart of the renowned Bordeaux wine region in France, Saint-Émilion is a picturesque village steeped in history, vineyards, and exquisite wines. With its cobblestone streets, ancient architecture, and world-class wineries, this UNESCO World Heritage site offers a plethora of attractions and activities for wine enthusiasts and history buffs alike. If you're planning a visit to Saint-Émilion, let's uncover the top things to do and make the most of your experience in this enchanting wine destination. 1. Explore the Historic Village: Begin your journey by exploring the historic village of Saint-Émilion. Meander through its charming cobblestone streets, adorned with ivy-clad buildings and quaint squares. Marvel at the well-preserved Romanesque architecture and visit the impressive Monolithic Church, an underground church carved out of limestone. Climb the King's Tower for breathtaking views of the village and the surrounding vineyards. 2. Tour Prestigious Châteaux and Wineries: Saint-Émilion is renowned for its world-class wineries and vineyards. Embark on wine tours and tastings at prestigious châteaux, where you can sample the region's exceptional wines, including the renowned Saint-Émilion Grand Cru. Learn about the winemaking process, stroll through vineyards, and indulge in the rich flavors and aromas that have made Saint-Émilion wines famous worldwide. 3. Visit the Underground Catacombs: Delve into the depths of Saint-Émilion by exploring its underground catacombs. Beneath the village lies a labyrinth of ancient tunnels and caves carved out of limestone. Take guided tours to discover the fascinating history of these catacombs, which once served as quarries and later became cellars for storing wine. Marvel at the intricate underground structures and gain insights into the village's rich heritage.. 4. Sample Gourmet Delights: Indulge in the gastronomic delights of Saint-Émilion. Savor delectable local cuisine at charming restaurants, where you can pair your meal with the perfect Saint-Émilion wine. Try regional specialties such as entrecôte bordelaise (steak with bordelaise sauce), cannelés (sweet pastries), and macarons. Explore the vibrant farmers' market to discover fresh produce, cheeses, and other artisanal products. 5. Admire Vineyard Views: Immerse yourself in the scenic beauty of the Saint-Émilion wine region by taking a leisurely walk or bike ride through the vineyards. Enjoy breathtaking views of rolling hills, meticulously tended grapevines, and charming châteaux dotting the landscape. Take in the fresh air and tranquility while appreciating the natural splendor that surrounds this idyllic wine-growing region.
  • Where is Saint Emilion France?

    Located in the heart of the prestigious Bordeaux wine region in France, Saint-Émilion is a captivating village that embodies the essence of French winemaking heritage. With its rich history, scenic landscapes, and world-renowned vineyards, Saint-Émilion offers an unforgettable experience for wine enthusiasts and travelers seeking a taste of authentic French culture. If you're wondering where Saint-Émilion is located and considering a visit, let's delve into the details and uncover the allure of this enchanting wine destination. 1. The Geographical Location of Saint-Émilion: Saint-Émilion is situated in the Gironde department in southwestern France, approximately 35 kilometers northeast of Bordeaux. Nestled amidst rolling hills and vineyards, the village lies on the right bank of the Dordogne River. Its strategic location within the Bordeaux wine region positions it as a prime destination for wine connoisseurs and travelers seeking a genuine wine-tasting experience. 2. Explore the Historic Village: Immerse yourself in the rich history of Saint-Émilion by exploring its charming village center. Walk along the narrow, winding streets lined with limestone buildings and admire the well-preserved medieval architecture. Discover hidden squares, ancient churches, and centuries-old monasteries. Visit the impressive Monolithic Church, a remarkable underground church carved into the limestone cliffs, showcasing the village's unique heritage. 3. Vineyards and Wine Tours: Saint-Émilion is synonymous with world-class wines, and a visit wouldn't be complete without exploring its renowned vineyards and participating in wine tours. Embark on guided tours to prestigious châteaux, where you can witness the winemaking process, stroll through the vineyards, and indulge in wine tastings. Sample the distinct flavors of Saint-Émilion wines, including the prestigious Saint-Émilion Grand Cru, renowned for its quality and refinement. 4. Discover Saint-Émilion's Underground Catacombs: Delve into the hidden depths of Saint-Émilion by exploring its fascinating underground catacombs. These ancient tunnels and caves, carved into the limestone, were originally quarries and later transformed into cellars for aging wine. Join guided tours to discover the labyrinthine network of catacombs and learn about their historical significance. Marvel at the unique architecture and the centuries-old tradition of wine storage. 5. Experience Gastronomic Delights: Indulge your taste buds in the gourmet delights of Saint-Émilion's culinary scene. Discover charming restaurants, cozy cafés, and wine bars offering a delectable array of local dishes and wine pairings. Sample regional specialties such as magret de canard (duck breast), foie gras, and locally sourced cheeses. Immerse yourself in the art of French gastronomy and savor the authentic flavors that complement the village's wine culture.

Reviews from our Saint-Émilion trips

  • Sherpa412904

    03, Aug 2021

    Karim was a great guy and passionate about wine. Learned a lot, had fun, definitely worth it. Got even a nice gift.
  • Raul Fernandez

    02, Oct 2021

    Good transportation and knowledgeable guide
  • Adnand Zaimaj

    28, Sep 2021

    Esperienza molto piacevole e gran capacità di coinvolgimento da parte della guida Luigi. Da consigliare!
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