There are plenty of beautiful destinations you can access in France by train, the most popular being Paris, the City of Lights. However, France has so much to offer besides touring its capital city.
Other French cities can be accessed by train since the country’s rail system is one of the most affordable and efficient in the world.
Additionally, if you travel with the Eurail Pass for France, you can have unlimited train rides across the country for a given amount of days, depending on the pass you get. You can learn more about the pass here, or read my full experience with the pass here.
And now, onto the cities! The following cities are among the most popular options for those interested in visiting France by train.
Teeming with life and culture, Bordeaux is a destination to enjoy with all your senses. The city is lined with fine galleries, museums, and charming architecture, such as Place de la Bourse.
Bordeaux city is also well-known across the globe for its wine. And since you are in the city where world-famous wine is made, you get to enjoy it at a much lower price.
It takes two and a quarter hours to reach Bordeaux from Paris. You can book your train ride early to get discounts as well as the best seats on the train.
Another recommendation, since you’re heading out of the touristy center of Paris, it’s always good to learn basic french to better navigate the city and make the most out of your travel experience.
Located in South West France, Biarritz is a coastal haven worth checking out. The seafood alone is enough to make you consider hopping on a train to reach this destination.
Once you arrive here by train, spend your day relaxing at the beach, soaking up the sun or have some fun on the water, surfing or jet skiing.
The train ride from Paris takes four hours on a fast train and six hours on a regular train. The journey time may vary, but the overall ride is a pleasant experience showing France’s many different views.
Known as the “garden of France”, Loire Valley is a perfect getaway to relax. The main attraction here is the 1000-mile-long Loire River that has carved its way into the landscape with no interference from humans.
The surrounding land is highly fertile, giving rise to some of the best produce in France. The atmosphere created by the breathtaking landscape is calming and therapeutic, and there are also over 300 castles for tourists in the valley. Some of the most beautiful castles to visit in Loire Valley include:
- Château de Chenonceau
- Château de Chambord
- Château de Cheverny
- Château de Chaumont
The train ride from Paris to Loire Valley takes about one hour and 15 minutes. It is highly recommended to book well in advance to get the cheapest tickets.
Located in the South of France, Avignon is another famous destination due to its lavender fields, which have become a staple background for selfie-takers and family photos.
It also houses beautiful architecture that dates back to the 14th century and is home to the great Papal Palace.
Another of Avignon’s top attractions is the magnificent city cathedral, sitting directly next to the Papal Palace. The Cathedral is easy to spot due to its tower-top golden statue of Mary poking above the city’s rooftops.
Avignon also hosts dozens of cultural festivals that draw people from all across Europe and even from across the globe. The festivals present various cultures and extensive, and collections of art from various international artists.
The train ride from Paris to Avignon is three hours and twenty minutes long.
The above are just a few destinations in France. There is so much to see and do in this country. You are bound to find suitable activities for you and your loved ones with a bit of experimentation and exploring.
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