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Puerta de la Moneda Burdeos

Porte de la Monnaie: a historic treasure of Bordeaux

Would you like to see one of Bordeaux’s most emblematic monuments? If so, don’t miss a visit to Bordeaux’s Porte de la Monnaie, one of the six gates that formed part of the city’s ancient ramparts.

In the following lines, we tell you everything you need to know about this impressive triumphal arch, which has witnessed the history of Bordeaux since the 18th century. Join us on this journey through time and discover the secrets of this majestic gate, one of the architectural treasures you can admire on our free tour of Bordeaux.

What is the Porte de la Monnaie de Bordeaux?

The Bordeaux Mint Gate, or Porte de la Monnaie in French, is one of the six Bordeaux gates that once enclosed the medieval city. It is located on the left bank of the River Garonne, near the Bordeaux Stone Bridge.

History of the Porte de la Monnaie

This gate was built between 1751 and 1755, on the orders of Intendant Tourny, to commemorate the visit of King Louis XV to the city. It is a triumphal arch in neoclassical style, named after the fact that it housed the Mint, where the region’s coins were minted.

Throughout Bordeaux’s history, this gate has witnessed some great moments. During the Hundred Years’ War, it served as a strategic defence point to protect the city from enemy attacks. It also played a fundamental role in the control of river trade, as it was located next to the port of the Moon of Bordeaux, a commercial enclave of great importance at the time.

Architecture and style of the Porte de la Monnaie

The Puerta de la Moneda stands out for its imposing Gothic architecture, characteristic of the 15th century. It is composed of two cylindrical towers joined by a pointed arch, under which is the passageway that allowed access to the city. The towers are crowned with conical roofs and adorned with elegant windows and balconies.

One of the curiosities of Bordeaux is that the Porte de la Monnaie is the only one of the six medieval gates to have retained its original appearance.

Unlike others such as the Porte d’Aquitaine or the Porte de la Grande Campagne Bordeaux, which have undergone modifications over the centuries, the Porte de la Monnaie has stood the test of time while maintaining its Gothic essence intact.

Legends and anecdotes of the Porte de la Monnaie

Various legends and anecdotes are woven around this emblematic monument and form part of Bordeaux folklore. One of the best known is that during the French Revolution, the Porte de la Monnaie served as a refuge for aristocrats persecuted by the revolutionaries. It is said that some managed to escape through secret passages that connected the gate to other areas of the city.

Another curious story related to the Puerta de la Moneda is that of the ghost of the guard. According to legend, the spirit of a former guard who died at his post still haunts the towers, watching over the security of the city. Some residents claim to have heard his footsteps and the jingling of his keys on nights when the moon is full.

What can you see near the Porte de la Monnaie?

The Porte de la Monnaie de Bordeaux is not the only attraction you can find in this part of the city. If you dare to explore the surrounding area, you can discover other places in the old town of Bordeaux, such as:

  • The Bordeaux Stone Bridge: this is the oldest bridge in the city, linking the two banks of the Garonne River. It was built between 1819 and 1822, by order of Napoleon Bonaparte, and has 17 stone arches. From the bridge, you can enjoy a spectacular view of the Porte de la Monnaie and the city.
  • The National Customs Museum: the only museum in France dedicated to the history of customs and taxes. It is housed in the former Hotel des Fermes, an 18th century building that housed the administration of the kingdom’s finances. The museum exhibits a collection of objects, documents and works of art related to customs activity, from the Middle Ages to the present day.
  • The Capuchins Market: the largest and most popular market in Bordeaux, it is located a few minutes walk from the Porte de la Monnaie. Here you will find a wide variety of local products, such as fruits, vegetables, cheeses, wines, meats, fish and seafood. You can also sample the typical gastronomy of the region, such as oysters, foie gras, duck breast and cannelloni.

Visiting Bordeaux’s Porte de la Monnaie

If you are planning a trip to Bordeaux, a visit to the Porte de la Monnaie is a must. This impressive monument is located in the heart of the old town, just a few steps away from other emblematic monuments of Bordeaux such as:

To appreciate the beauty of the Porte de la Monnaie in all its splendour, we recommend you visit it at sunset, when the last rays of sunlight tinge its centuries-old stones with gold. From there, you can enjoy magnificent views of the Garonne River and the imposing Stone Bridge.

Don’t forget to immortalise the moment with a photograph next to this iconic monument. The Porte de la Monnaie is one of the most Instagrammable places in Bordeaux and a must-see souvenir of your visit to the city.

In short, Bordeaux’s Porte de la Monnaie is much more than just a door. It is a symbol of Bordeaux’s history, architecture and legends. A heritage treasure that deserves to be discovered and admired by all those who visit this charming French city. Do you dare to cross its threshold and immerse yourself in its fascinating past? We look forward to seeing you on our next free tour of Bordeaux to discover it together!

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