Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Along the Garonne in Bordeaux

We walk through the Bordeaux old town to the Garonne River and head up the esplanade toward the the Cité du Vin wine museum and the port of Bordeaux (Bordeaux Port Atlantique), which is about 55 km (34 miles) from the Atlantic Ocean.  We first pass the Pont de Pierre, the Place de la Bourse, and the flower gardens along the river.

Pont de la Pierre, Place de la Bourse

Flowers along the river

River taxis run up and down the Garonne shortening the trip along the esplanade for those who prefer a ride on the water.

River taxi, esplanade

In the distance, Pont Jacques Chaban Delmas, crosses the river near the wine museum, with river cruise boats tied up half-way to the bridge and museum.

Pont Jacques Chaban Delmas, river cruise boats

We pass a statue honoring Marthe Adelaide Modeste Testa, a slave brought to Bordeaux from East Africa and later deported to Saint-Dominique to work on a plantation.  Born in 1765, she became free in 1795 and lived until 1870 (105 years), while her grandson became president of the Republic of Haiti in 1888.  The statue pays tribute to the 150,000 slaves who were deported to the Caribbean through the Port of Bordeaux.

Marthe Adelaide Modeste Testa

Passing the river cruise boats, we reach wharfs converted into shops and restaurants.

Getting closer to the bridge, passing the cruise boats

Former warehouses, now shops/restaurants

The old port

We are nearing the Port of Bordeaux and start to see ocean-going vessels.

Serious ships

At the locks near La Cité du Vin and alongside Les Halles de Bacalan food hall, artists have brightened up the industrial feel of the lock buildings and controls.

Decorating the buildings of the locks

Returning down the esplanade, we find a ceremony at the statue of Marthe Adelaide Modeste Testa, celebrating the day with song and speeches

Ceremony at the statue

Meanwhile, along the esplanade, people are relaxing and enjoying the music of a small band that has assembled to play for us all.

Relaxing on the esplanade


The walk from Pont de Pierre to Pont Jacques Chamant Delmas is about 3 km (1.8 miles) and treats us to a lot of variety, fun, sights, and sounds.

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