Running route through Old Bordeaux
A 3.8km (2.4 mile) near flat route through the historic center of Bordeaux taking in must see monuments, squares and quays.
Straight on from the Girondins statue at Place des Quinconces to the Place de la Comedie (The Opera) : 360m
Turn right onto the Cours de l’intendance until the Rue du Temple (follow the Tram B) : 340m
Turn left onto the Rue du Temple until the Place Pey Berland (follow the Tram B) : 430m
Continue following the Tram B until the Cours Victor Hugo : 370m
Turn left onto the Cours Victor Hugo until the Bourgogne Gate : 800m (0.5 miles)
Pass the Bourgogne Gate and join the quay of the Garonne
Turn left onto the quays until Place des Quniconces : 1.1km (0.7 miles)
Turn left onto the Place des Quinconces until the Girondins statue : 380m
THE GRAND THEATRE
The architecture of the Grand Theatre is heavily influenced by freemasons. The facade has 12 Corinthian columns, the same number as the freemason’s sacred triangle. The theatre imitates the Temple of Salomon with an east-west orientation, a paved mosaic floor and a double staircase symbolising reality and law.
HOTEL PREFECTORAL (17bis Rue Vital-Carles)
On the 14th of June 1940, the German invasion of France forced the French government to proclaim Bordeaux as its capital and the French President, Albert Lebrun moved into the Hotel Prefectoral. General de Gaulle staying nearby at the hotel Majestic on the Place des Quinconces was in disagreement with the government and left Bordeaux 3 days later for London from where he gave his famous radio address to the French on the 18 of June 1940. [17 bis rue Vital Carles]
LA GROSSE CLOCHE (THE BIG BELL)
The Big Bell is the symbol of Bordeaux and can still be seen on the coat of arms of the city. The Big Bell was primarily a prison but Bordeaux’s magistrates also used to sound the bell to indicate the start of grape harvesting in the vineyards as well as to alert the population that a fire had started.
PLACE DES QUINCONCES
Quinconces is the biggest square in France. Until 1818 a huge royal castle by the name of Trompette occupied the square. It was built by King Charles VII at the end of the 100 year war with England in order to protect Bordeaux’s population from an attack from the Garonne river. But the castle also protected the royalists from an attack from Bordeaux’s population that reclaimed an alliance with the King of England following 3 century’s of English occupation of Bordeaux.
Parcours proposé par Simon Liddiard