The best way to discover a city is from above. The Flèche Saint Michel (St Michael's arrow), is an icon in the Bordeaux landscape and also one of the few high spots of this city. Go there to get a real grasp of this beautiful city. As you can see, the tower of the basilica is separate from the main body of the building. This is also the case with the Bordeaux Cathedral. So why is this? Bordeaux lies on rather shaky ground and two buildings one on top of the other would most likely sink into the ground and disappear.
Go inside the Flèche, not through the basilica itself but from the bottom of the tower (open from 10 am). Whilst you are waiting for the tower to open, enjoy the market buzzing at the foot of the tower almost every day and admire the French flair in displaying fruit and vegetables; on some days, you can purchase clothes and bric a brac in the flea market. From the top of the Flèche you can see the Pont de Pierre, the Marché des Capucins, the Pont Chaban Delmas, the Porte Cailhau, etc.
In the tower's basement until ten years ago you could see exhumed bodies which had been recovered following the expropriation of an old cemetery in Bordeaux. You can view a video of this rather unusual place in the basement.
Place Meynard, 33800 Bordeaux