With its Celtic influence, unique architecture and stylish resorts, the region of Aquitaine and its departments have endless attractions to offer. From spectacular golf courses to famous art, from wine tasting to a huge range of outdoor activities..
But let’s not forget that it has some great festivals and celebrations. Let’s check some of them out.
Here are some of the most famous festivals in Aquitaine, France (please note that we have tried to get the most accurate dates available, however this is subject to the information supplied on the websites concerned)
1. Bayonne Carnival – Town Centre, Avenue du Maréchal-Leclerc, 17th -18th February 2013
This carnival is led by cute nursery school kids, as they proudly parade through the streets. Full of fun and attractions for all the family, enjoy music, face painting, workshops, colourful parades and more during the two carnival days.
2. Carnival on Two River Banks – Garonne River, Bordeaux, 4th March 2013
Every year the Bordeaux Carnival takes on a different theme, but one thing stays the same every year, it is a great chance to party, fun for families and a time to get dressed up. If you have children with you, there are plenty of activities and parades for them, plus the carnival includes aperitifs, workshops and shows.
3. International Festival of Religious Music, Lourdes, 15th to 31st March 2013
This takes place in the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary, on Avenue Monsignuer-Théas. Groups from all over France as well as abroad come to perform classical religious and sacred music.
4. Agen Carnival – Town Centre, Re André Gide, 31st March to 1st April 2013
Welcoming in springtime, this is a chance to dress up and enjoy the festivities on the streets. It is a family friendly affair, so if you have children with you, they should love it too. It finishes up on Pancake Tuesday when the Mr. Carnival (Monsieur Carnaval) effigy is paraded down the streets and then burnt.
5. Gastronomic Feast, Sarlat, Dordogne, 17th to 18th May 2012 (awaiting for 2013)
-Les Journées du Terroir
This is two days of pure and utter foodie-ness! Taste superb local produce such as nuts, truffles, pork products and much more.
It is also a perfect chance to learn how to do interesting tasks like pressing walnut oils, preparing jam or carving a goose. You can return home with some new skills!
There are also workshops for the children, plus they can see the farm animals.
6. Biarritz Arts Festival – Avenue Edouard VII, 2nd to 5th June 2013
Let the fun begin as the artistic performers take over the city of Biarritz! With creativity oozing all over the city, you can enjoy jugglers, dancers, actors, musicians and lots more.
7. Biarritz Oceans Festival – Avenue Edouard VII, 16th June to 23rd June 2013
If you feel up to it you can swim across Biarritz as part of this festival! But apart from that, there are heaps of activities during this festival. Check out street theatre, open air films, lots of entertainment, including Basque music!
8. Bordeaux Wine Festival – (dates to be confirmed) 28th June 2014 to 1st July 2014
If you are visiting Aquitaine and you have a deep sense of liking for wines, then this festival should never be left out of your itinerary. Bordeaux Wine Festival has not surprisingly become famous for wine lovers from France and those coming from other countries. Join another 300,000 or so visitors for this huge celebration on the banks of the Garonne.
You need to get the pass for tasting, as this opens up the possibility to choose from around 400,000 different wine samples and you can even be initiated in the art of wine tasting, not just the old "knock it back" tasting method!
When night falls, enjoy absolutely superb fireworks.
9. Bay of Arcachon Oyster Festival – June, July and August
As the name suggests, this is the festival for oyster lovers or for curious tourists who may be on the look out for an aphrodisiac!
The oysters are fabulous, and the bay has its fair share of lovely charming fishing villages. At last count we reckon that there is over 50 miles of pristine beaches in this area.
This famous export is celebrated from the months of June to August. Indulge yourself to this healthy and scrumptious seafood, meet the oyster growers and when the tide permits, visit oyster beds.
10. The 7eme Festival de Jazz de Sanguinet – 25th to 28th July 2013
A famous festival held in Sanguinet, it presents a spectacular concert from jazz musicians from different parts of the globe. It usually happens during the last week of July and features different types of jazz music including African jazz, swing and blues.
11. Bergerac Summer Music Festival – Awaiting dates (normally end July to mid August)
A big and beautiful music event, as visitors can enjoy music in castles, country houses and abbeys of this area. Featuring concerts and performances across a range of musical genres such as rock, classical, jazz and funk – it has grown to be one of Europe’s most important music festivals.