Your main risks in Bordeaux are likely to be sunburn, foot blisters, insect bites and mild stomach problems from eating and drinking with too much gusto.

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Before You Go

Recommended Vaccinations

No vaccinations are required to travel to France but the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that all travellers be covered for diphtheria, tetanus, measles, mumps, rubella and polio, regardless of their destination.

Health Insurance

Citizens of the EU, Switzerland, Iceland, Norway or Liechtenstein receive free or reduced-cost, state-provided health care cover with the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) for medical treatment that becomes necessary while in France. Each family member will need a separate card. UK residents can get application forms from post offices, or download them from the Department of Health website (, which has comprehensive information about the card’s coverage.

The EHIC does not cover private health care, so make sure that you are treated by a state health-care provider (conventionné). You will need to pay directly and fill in a treatment form (feuille de soins); keep the form to claim any refunds. In general, you can claim back around 70% of the standard treatment cost.

Citizens of other countries will need to check if there is a reciprocal arrangement for free medical care between their country and France.

In Bordeaux

Tap Water

Tap water is perfectly safe to drink.

Medical Services

Several hospitals come under the umbrella of the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Bordeaux (CHU;, each of which have an urgences which you can go to in case of accident or emergency, including:

Hôpital Pellegrin Bordeaux's main hospital is 3.5km west of Esplanade des Quinconces. To get here it is an easy 20-minute tram journey from the centre (rue Ste-Catherine) on tram line A.

Hôpital St-André