BAZAS, 15km east os Sauternes has a laid-back, southern air. Bazas' most attractive feature is the wide, arcaded place de la Cathédrale, overlooked by the grey, lichen-covered Cathédrale St-Jean-Baptiste, which displays a harmonious blend of Romanesque, Gothic and classical styles in its west front.
Two other excellent reasons to include Bazas in your itinerary are its restaurants. Bistrot St-Jean (Tel:05.56.25.18.53), under the colonnades facing the decorative facade of the cathedral, has great lunch menus for 12 with generous helpings and friendly service (closed evenings except weekends in summer). In the evening, you should try Les Remparts (Tel:05.56.25.25.52; closed Sun evening and Mon), opposite, which has a good view from its terrace and more sophisticated, gastronomic fare on set menus for 25 or 50. On the southern outskirts of the town is a place to stay in pampered luxury: the Domaine de Fompeyre (Tel:05.56.25.98.00, Web: www.monalisahotels.com ; Price: 101-120) has tempting rooms set in extensive grounds with a pool. For more modestly priced lodgings, ask at Bazas' tourist office (Tel:05.56.25.25.84, Web: www.ville-bazas.fr ) for the list of chambres d'hôtes in the area, whose rates begin at around 45.