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France Itinerary

Discover the best of French life with this spectacular France itinerary. Start your trip in beautiful Paris and let the train carry you down to the sunny Mediterranean, while cruising through hillside vineyards and endless lavender fields.

Reserve a seat on France's TGV high-speed train for fast and comfortable journeys between major cities. Or take it easy and explore the French countryside with RET regional trains, one charming village at a time. When traveling with a Eurail Pass, you simply can't miss out on la belle France.

Itinerary in short

Cities visited in this trip:

 

Click here or on the map to view this route in our Trip Planner.

For this itinerary we recommend:

  • Eurail pass: France
  • Travel days: 7 days within 1 month

 

Most of the high-speed trains in France, like the TGV and some InterCités, require reservations. These reservations are not included in your Eurail Pass. Make sure to book your seats in advance, there are limited seats available for Eurail Pass holders. It's also possible to avoid reservations all together, simply by taking regional trains

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Paris, France

Paris is known as the city of love, and what a lovely place it is! Take a stroll underneath the famous Eiffel Tower and have a glass of wine on the banks of the Seine river. You can do some fancy shopping on the Champs Élysées by day and visit the magnificent Paris Opera by night.

The city is a haven for culture vultures, who could spend days exploring the wonderful collection of the Louvre museum. Make sure to visit the art district of Montmartre, where famous painters like Picasso, Dalí, and Van Gogh used to work. Here you'll also find the pristine white Sacré-Coeur Basilica, the second most famous church in Paris, after the hunchback's hideout - the Notre Dame.

tip-image Go for a drink in the charming Quartier Latin, Paris' student district.
View of Montmartre, Paris

From Paris to Versailles

Travel time:

0h12m

Transfer:

0

  • Paris, France

    Gare Montparnasse

  • 0h 12m
  • Versailles, France

    Versailles-Chantiers

Versailles, France

For splendor with a capital S, visit the magnificent Palace of Versailles. A symbol of flamboyance, it was the royal palace for two centuries right up to the French Revolution. Take a stroll around the Versailles Gardens to follow in the footsteps of Louis XIV, the infamous Sun King.

Inside the palace, you’ll find extravagance in every room. Don’t miss out on the Royal Apartments and the fabulous Mirror Hall (Galerie des Glaces). Visit the Hall of the Battles (Galerie des Batailles) to see France’s military history in paintings and in sculptures.

The palace of Versailles

From Paris to Mont St. Michel

Travel time:

3h6m

Transfer:

1

Reservation needed:

  • Paris, France

    Gare Montparnasse

  • 2h 19m

    Reservation required

  • Rennes, France

    Gare de Rennes

  • 0h 47m
  • Mont St. Michel, France

    Mont St. Michel

Mont Saint-Michel, France

An hour out of Rennes, just off the coast of Normandy, you'll find the tiny island of Mont Saint-Michel. It is dominated by the monastery from which it draws its name and was an important place of pilgrimage in medieval times. These days, Mont Saint-Michel is one of the major tourist attractions in France.

For centuries, you could only reach the island when the tide was low, but these days a bridge connects the town to the mainland. Take a regional train from Rennes to get to Mont Saint-Michel.

tip-image Watch the tide rise around Mont Saint-Michel and be amazed by the speed of it.
Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy

From Mont St. Michel to Bordeaux

Travel time:

6h5m

Transfer:

2

  • Mont St. Michel, France

    Mont St. Michel

  • 0h 47m
  • Rennes, France

    Gare de Rennes

  • 1h 15m
  • Nantes, France

    Gare de Nantes

  • 4h 3m
  • Bordeaux, France

    Gare de Bordeaux-St. Jean

Bordeaux, France

The port city of Bordeaux is France’s uncontested wine capital. You’ll find many luscious vineyards and charming chateaux in the region, which have been producing wine since Roman times. If you're interested in a wine tour, by foot or by bike, beautiful Bordeaux is the perfect place for it!

The city itself is rich in architectural highlights from all periods. Climb to the top of the bell tower next to Bordeaux Cathedral (Cathédrale Saint-André) for a stunning view of the city. In the Musee des Beaux-Arts de Bordeaux you can find a large collection of masterpieces by famous European painters.

tip-image Visit the Marché des Capucins on a Saturday morning for some fresh oysters and white wine.
Vineyards in the Bordeaux region

From Bordeaux to Carcassonne

Travel time:

2h58m

Transfer:

0

Reservation needed:

  • Bordeaux, France

    Gare de Bordeaux-St. Jean

  • 2h 58m

    Reservation required

  • Carcassonne, France

    Gare de Carcassonne

Carcassonne, France

On your way to the sunny Mediterranean, hop off the train in Carcassonne for a sight you'll never forget. The town's medieval citadel will make you believe you’ve stepped out of a time machine.

Take a walk through history and visit the Chateau Comtal and the gothic Basilica of Saint-Nazaire. Stand in front of the impressive Narbonne Gate where the centuries look down upon you.

The medieval fortress of Carcassonne

The medieval fortress of Carcassonne

From Carcassonne to Nice

Travel time:

5h48m

Transfer:

1

Reservation needed:

2x

  • Carcassonne, France

    Gare de Carcassonne

  • 3h 11m

    Reservation required

  • Marseille, France

    Gare de Marseille-Saint-Charles

  • 2h 37m

    Reservation required

  • Nice, France

    Nice-Ville

Nice, France

The city of Nice is located on the Mediterranean coast near the Italian border. It’s one of the most popular tourist cities in France, second only to Paris. Enjoy the gentle sea breeze on the Promenade des Anglais and work on your tan on Nice’s beautiful beaches.

Only twenty minutes away from Nice you’ll find the tiny city-state of Monaco. Take a daytrip there to see the yachts in the marina and the Lamborghinis in the streets. If you’re feeling lucky, you can place a bet at the famous Monte Carlo casino.

tip-image Visit one of Nice’s museums to see the city and its beautiful surroundings captured in paintings.

The city of Nice on the French Riviera

The city of Nice on the French Riviera

From Nice to Lyon

Travel time:

3h58m

Transfer:

1

Reservation needed:

2x

  • Nice, France

    Nice-Ville

  • 2h 53m

    Reservation required

  • Avignon, France

    Gare d’Avignon Centre

  • 1h 5m

    Reservation required

  • Lyon, France

    Lyon Part-Dieu

Lyon, France

If you’re making your way back to Paris, the city of Lyon is the perfect stopover. For centuries now, Lyon has been known as the gastronomical capital of France. Go to a bouchon, a typical Lyonnais restaurant, to taste authentic local cuisine and have a glass of Beaujolais wine.

In Lyon's bustling center, you’ll find plenty of interesting sights. Have a look inside the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière and observe the city from the top of Fourviere hill. If you’re looking for some peace and quiet, visit the Parc de la Tete d’Or, one of the most beautiful parks in France.

tip-image History lovers should check out the Roman ruins near the Basilica, as well as the Gallo-Roman museum.
View of Lyon from Fourviere hill

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Experience France with the Eurail France Pass!
 

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