La Compagnie des 2 Rives (“The 2 Banks Company”)
What pleasures await on the Gironde Estuary and around Blaye? OP:
As a UNESCO World Heritage listed site, the “Verrou Vauban” (the Citadel of Blaye, Fort Médoc and Fort Pâté) is incontestably the jewel of the Gironde Estuary. Other historical sites like the gallo-roman villas of Plassac also attract many visitors. In the last few years, the small wine growing properties- whose wines are shaped by the estuary’s microclimate- have especially benefited from the development of wine tourism. The shift in the economic and and touristic dynamic that Bordeaux is undergoing is really very profitable for the region as a whole; we are seeing the difference all along the Garonne, right up to the estuary and its archipelago.
In what way do you help visitors discover the estuary’s archipelago? OP:
Departing from Blaye, as well as from Cussac-fort-médoc and Pauillac, we take them around the estuary with our partners, Bordeaux River Cruise. They can stop off at l’île Nouvelle or at the refuge of Patiras, where visitors can take a walk, a wine tasting or dine according to the order of the day. In addtion, there is the Route de la Corniche which links Blaye and Bourg-sur-gironde. We are also developing citadel-to-citadel excursions which take passengers to Fort Médoc while sailing past Fort Paté.
Beyond the nature of your excursions, what sets you apart from the other river cruises? OP:
We make a special effort to ensure that each of our trips are convivial and interesting. That is what fundamentally sets us apart from the others who mainly offer to sail passengers from one destination to another with an offer of hospitality. We really listen to our customers who know that they can enjoy a personalised cruise onboard the 2 Rives. Seminars, cocktails, Gascon snacks, wine tastings conducted by the winegrower, etc: passengers ( including businesses and associations) have so many options. Sometimes the fun goes on late into the night.
Born in Bordeaux, Olivier Pedarros learned to sail along the Gironde estuary. As the owner of the boat Les 2 Rives for 15 years now, he strives to share the treasures of “his estuary’s” heritage under a friendly atmosphere.