France’s national railway company, SNCF, offers convenient and comfortable access to top destinations across the country. If you’re looking to tour France beyond the City of Light, consider taking the train from Paris to any one of the following destinations.
Train from Paris to Lyon
The high-speed train from Paris to Lyon covers the distance of 430 km (260 mi) in about two hours, leaving you plenty of time to explore the city’s colorful neighborhoods, packed with architectural marvels that include narrow passageways built in the 4th century. The city remains France’s culinary capital, while its two scenic rivers offer ample opportunities for water sports and romantic river cruises.
For more sightseeing ideas, check out this Lyon itinerary.
Train from Paris to Strasbourg
Hop on a morning train for Strasbourg, and a little over two hours later you’ll find yourself exploring the first city center classified in its entirety as a World Heritage Site. Ideal for sightseeing on foot or by bicycle, Strasbourg seems made for self-guided tours. Look for traditional restaurants serving Alsatian white wine alongside local fish dishes, and point your camera at the attractive streets of Petite France, a photogenic neighborhood of old buildings and half-timbered houses.
Discover more attractions by browsing this Strasbourg itinerary.
Train from Paris to Marseille
Traveling by TGV train takes you from Paris to Marseille in a little over three hours. Book your journey for early morning to have enough time for Marseille’s lively markets, historical neighborhoods, and outstanding restaurant scene. Stay for a few days to discover the city’s historical harbor area and nearby national park, home to giant cliffs dramatically plunging into the sea.
If you need more activities to fill your time in the old port city, take a look at this Marseille itinerary.
Train from Paris to Avignon
Board a train for Avignon to escape the capital’s overcrowded streets and attractions for a while, and discover the old-world charm of an ancient town surrounded by medieval ramparts. Famous for its summertime theater festival, Avignon offers diverse shopping at its many boutique stores and covered markets. Explore along the city’s 110 km (68 mi) of bike paths through the convenient bike-sharing program.
Read through this Avignon itinerary, and then add some of those places to see to your own sightseeing schedule.
Train from Paris to Bordeaux
It takes less than four hours on one of SNCF’s fast trains to travel between Paris and Bordeaux, considered by many the wine capital of the entire world. Bordeaux’s history of wine production dates back to the 1st century, when Romans brought grapevines to this picturesque region in southwestern France. Tour renowned vineyards and raise your glass to the world’s second-largest wine-producing area, responsible for delivering over 800 million bottles every year.
See what else you can do here by browsing this detailed Bordeaux itinerary.
The Fast Track to Exploring France
Ideal for visitors with limited budgets or limited time, SNCF’s trains provide a convenient mode of transportation for a holiday in France. For something equally comfortable and reliable, consider traveling by OUIBUS, a network of four-star buses connecting Paris with cities across France and the rest of Europe.