As we slip lines from Bordeaux’s UNESCO classified quay, our voyage takes us from one of France’s most renowned wine cities, to the elegant port city of La Rochelle, across the notorious Bay of Biscay and into Spain’s bustling port city of La Coruña.
When you think of Bordeaux, it’s wine that comes to mind. And no wonder, with 60 appellations and 7000 winemakers, the city is the capital of a region which is home to some of the oldest vineyards and finest wines in the world. But Bordeaux has so much more to offer, unveiled perfectly during our first 24 hours as we cruise down the River Garonne passing a landscape rich in culture, nature, vineyards and enchanting chateaux.
Soon we sail into La Rochelle, known as La Ville Blanche (the White City), with its luminous limestone facades. One of France's foremost seaports from the 14th to 17th centuries, the city boasts arcaded walkways, half-timbered houses protected from the salt air by slate tiles, ghoulish gargoyles and a fabulous collection of lighthouses – all rich reminders of its magnificent seafaring heritage. Overnight here and then it’s on, across the notorious Bay of Biscay.
There´s nothing our crew like more then to share their knowledge of sailing with our guests, and they will encourage you to get actively involved with all aspects of the ship’s life. Volunteers to hoist and trim the sails for best speed are always welcome, and the feeling of helming a 67m sailing ship with the sensation as she responds to the command of the wheel is something to savor forever.
Knot classes are a great way to learn a new skill whilst sharing sailing stories with shipmates, and if the weather allows there's the opportunity to go up the mast or relax in the bowsprit netting. A drink at sunset on the deck is the perfect way to round off each day.
We finish this voyage in the port city of La Coruna. After disembarking take a moment to explore the city.