Bordeaux is packed with good restaurants to suit any budget, and because it’s close to the coast there’s excellent seafood. The streets around rue du Parlement St Pierre and rue St Remi are full of eateries, and upmarket options crowd around place de Parlement and towards Chartrons. For picnic supplies, head to the market on place des Grands-Hommes. At rue de Montesquieu (just off place des Grands-Hommes), Jean d’Alos runs the city’s best fromagerie. Bordeaux’s sweet speciality is the canelés – made from custard-like batter flavoured with rum and vanilla. The best place to buy them is Baillardran, on 55 cours de l’Intendance. The student population ensures a collection of young, lively bars, especially around place de la Victoire, and the city has a strong gay scene. Live music is ten a penny, and the weekend generally begins on Thursday.

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