Avoid This Common Clothing Mistake When Visiting France's Best Wine City, Bordeaux

France is internationally known as a fashionable destination. The enchanting city of Paris is continuously ranked the most stylish city in the world. The French are famously well-dressed, and their Parisian-chic aesthetic is copied worldwide. The classic style of the French often stands in contrast to the much more casual and colorful fashion trends favored in the United States. While certain looks favored by Americans, like athleisure and streetwear style clothing, have become more common in France, it's still often easy to spot a tourist from the United States while traveling around the European country.

Along with fashion, France is known for its incredible wine, much of which is made in the breathtakingly beautiful Bordeaux wine country. Located in Southwestern France, the region produces some of the best wine in the world. Bordeaux has long been a popular summer destination for lovers of wine, natural beauty, history, and French culture. If you're planning a trip to Bordeaux, avoid looking like a tourist by packing some elevated outfits so you don't feel underdressed. If you're usually the type of traveler who sticks to jeans, t-shirts, flip-flops, and tennis shoes — you may need to dress up a bit more than you're used to on a trip to Bordeaux to ensure you look your best on vacation. 

What not to wear

The Bordeaux region of France is seeping with simple luxury. The city, located along the Garonne River, is nicknamed "Sleeping Beauty" due to its charm and peacefulness. Aside from drinking plenty of wine, travelers can visit historic châteaus, dine on mouthwatering culinary creations, and meander through streets lined with quaint shops and cafés. With plenty of 5-star hotels and expansive vineyards with generations of wine-making traditions, it makes an ideal destination for luxury travelers looking for the ultimate relaxing vacation.

You'll want to reserve your super casual attire for the hotel room. Common wardrobe staples like flip-flops, sweatpants, and ripped-up blue jeans will cause you to stick out like a sore thumb in Bordeaux. Flip-flops are only appropriate when you're heading to the beach. In all other cases, opt for a comfortable pair of leather sandals. Comfortable walking shoes are a must, but consider a stylish option like these leather shoes that travel experts swear by instead of chunky athletic footwear. 

When dining out, don't dress down. You don't need to pack for a black-tie event, but it's important to look nice and put together. Comfort should always be a major priority when traveling. To blend in, you must put extra effort into your appearance, especially when you visit a winery, bar, or restaurant. Even mid-range eateries that you may expect to be very laid-back have a chic and elevated ambiance in France.

What to pack for a trip to Bordeaux, France

Bordeaux, France, is a beautiful place to visit year-round, and your travel wardrobe will need to change depending on the time of year you visit. The weather in Southwestern France remains mostly mild throughout the year, with warm summers and cool winters. Prepare for potential rain showers regardless of when you visit by packing a lightweight rain jacket and a few light layers to make you comfortable in various conditions.

The best way to pack for a trip to France is to select your favorite neutral color palette and then add pops of color. Neutrals are the building blocks of every chic French fashion moment. You can choose whichever neutral suits you best — navy, black, beige, camel, white, and gray are all lovely options. Choose high-quality, breathable fabrics like cotton, linen, and silk to keep you cool and comfortable. Leave the synthetic athletic fabrics that tourists often favor at home.

Choose clothes that can be mixed or matched to create various looks. You can create endless combinations with slacks or skirts, lightweight sweaters, and classic white button-down shirts. A little black dress that can be dressed up or down for any occasion is always a good idea. Consider creating a travel capsule wardrobe to make packing for your trip easier. Don't forget to protect yourself from the sun with a timeless sun hat and your favorite sunglasses.