French trains are famous around the world. They are known for their cheap rates and incredibly fast speeds. They are also a great way to move around the city. The railway network of France links all small towns to big cities.
Part of the catalog of reasons why trains are people’s favorite is the affordability. Weekend trips by trains are frequent and considered cheaper than booking a cab. Whenever we think about France, the first thing that comes to our minds is Paris, but France is much more than the City of Lights.
The best train trips from Paris are possible in less than 4 hours. The busiest train station in Paris is Gare du Nord. Statistically, more than 214 million passengers travel through this train station per year on average.
The Following Are The Best Places You Can Visit on a Weekend by Train:
- Marseille in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur
- Rouen by River Seine
- Lyon (Auvergne – Rhône Alpes)
- Strasbourg (Grand Est Region)
- Dijon (Burgundy)
- La Rochelle (La Ville Blanche)
- Chartres (Val de Loire)
Marseille in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur
Marseille is the third biggest city in France, located in the Mediterranean sea. In fact, the city is a French Mediterranean gem.
Marseille is best for people looking for sunny gateways. It takes only 3.5 hours to travel from Paris to Marseille by train. This place is a part of French Riviera and a very beautiful place to explore. This city is not boring at all; there are a lot of things to do for free birds and many places to go to. The weather of a city is a plus.
The city has a lot of sights to look forward to seeing, including cathedrals, museums, and old ports. Traveling to Marseille by train is quite easy as it is 776 km apart. It is recommended to book your tickets before reaching the station as it could be crowded around the weekend.
This beautiful French city offers ancient history, cultural diversity, and magnificent seaside. Marseille is quite popular as compared to other cities in France. A lot of tourists pay their visit to Marseille after visiting Paris, and it is most recommended by locals. Whether walking in a quaint street or taking in the unstoppable blissful breeze, visitors are close to the gentle blue waters everywhere in the city.
The city is culturally diverse and colorful with a multiethnic heritage soul. Therefore, travelers will relish the opportunity to experience French culture alongside a vast range of foreign cultures. Its large community of North Africans bears testament to this.
Rouen by River Seine
Located in the North of France, Rouen is a city on the River Seine. Rouen is 112 kilometers away from Paris. 2 hours is the average travel time between Paris and the city. Every 1.40 hours, a train travels from Paris to Rouen.
There is an average of 6 trains a day, leaving Paris for the city. Rouen is a beautiful town rich with architect and history. Despite being a lovely place, this place is tourist-free and very calm.
You would not see many visitors in this town. But you can have a swell time there. Its ticket cost almost 7 to 8 euro. There are a lot of old charming buildings capable of fascinating the tourists. The city is known for its Rouen Cathedral with a butter tower.
Other famous sights include Gros Horloge, Rouen Castle, the Palais de Justice, Church of Saint Ouen, and Gothic Church of St Maclou. The museums of fine Arts and Ceramics are also very popular there. If you are looking to relax in a quiet French city, Rouen offers a great deal.
Lyon is the third-largest city in France and one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. The city is famous for its classic heritage from the Roman era, and it is widely known for its brilliant gastronomy and cuisine. It only takes 2 and a half hours to reach Lyon from Paris.
People visiting Paris do not often visit other parts of the country. But visiting Lyon means getting to explore the impressive Beaujolais vineyards. In December, Lyon is a must-visit because of the Lyons Festival of lights that sets the city alive.
Saturday nights in Lyon can be very lively and exciting. As Lyon is a major academic and business town, it gets cleared out in August but vibrant in other months. So spending a weekend in Lyon could be a good idea. Lyon and Paris are 463 km apart. Fast and comfortable trains move from Paris to Lyon every 2 hours, depending on the train, of course.
Strasbourg and Paris are about 247 miles apart. The city, which is home to the European Parliament, is world-famous for its Gothic Cathedrals. Strasbourg shares a border with Germany (explains the heavy German influence in the city), you can see the black forests of Germany from Strasbourg. You cannot miss tasting white wines there, and getting the taste of Alsatian Gastronomy is a must-do.
It is easy and not exhausting to visit the famous sights of the city in a day. There are a lot of fine art museums, university museums, and museums in the suburb that one can visit. The city is also popular for hiking, so get your gears ready for some exhilarating adventure.
There are a total of 21 hiking routes in Strasbourg. And an island stands comfortably in the center of the city where a lot of tourists go. This island is accompanied by a lot of hotels, palaces, churches, and shops.
The stunning city of Dijon is approximately 203 miles to the southeast of Paris and located at the confluence of the Ouche Suzon rivers. It is a ninety-minute train ride from the capital. The City is in the heart of Burgundy wines.
The main reason you should be visiting Dijon is the city’s exceptional heritage, phenomenal museums, quality of life, excellent cuisines, arts, showstopping hotels, and the wine. Dijon holds an internationally fair every year in autumn. It also serves as an essential railway junction from Paris to Marseille and Lyon. It is effortless and comfortable to travel from Paris to Dijon.
Apart from being a charming city, Dijon has a reputation for being rich in cultural and provision of quality life. The city is famous for classy dining menus and fancy restaurants in France. The Palace of the Dukes of Burgundy is the most popular sight in Dijon. It is an architectural assemblage which is well preserved.
The other very famous sight is the Cathedral of Saint Benignus of Dijon. It is a Roman Catholic church worthy of a visit as you behold the glory of this quaint masterpiece.
La Rochelle (La Ville Blanche)
In southwestern France lies the beautiful coastal city, La Rochelle. The city is most famous for its vibrant fishing industry and trading. Talking about the distance from Paris to La Rochelle via train, it takes 2 hours and 45 minutes. About four trains travel from Paris to La Rochelle every day. The tickets and timetables are very suitable for passengers.
The most popular sight of Dijon is La Rochelle Aquarium, which is a massive port side family aquarium. The Lantern Tower of La Rochelle is also an excellent spot for tourists, fantastic for the admirers of history, architect, and lighthouse.
The other great sight is Port Des Minimes, a sizable marina for pleasure boats. The chain tower of La Rochelle, which is a harbor fortress and monument, from the 17th- century. The other sight to go is Le parc Charruyer that is a huge park. These are all the places that you can visit in a day or two, especially if you are visiting on a weekend. Sundays are never busy in Dijon.
Chartres (Val de Loire)
Chartres is the capital of the Eure-et-Loir in France, located about 90 km southwest of Paris. Cathedrals are mainly the reason for the popularity of this state. The average distance time from Paris is 1 hour and 45 minutes, the quickest is 59 minutes by train.
An average of 36 trains travel from Paris to Chartres every day, approximately a train leaves every 36 minutes. The ticket prices range from 9 euro and 15 euro. Paris is only 55 miles apart from Chartres.
Chartres Cathedral is the most famous sight in Chartres, which was built during the 12th-century. It is a very quiet place on Saturday mornings and Wednesdays. Other than that, it is famous for its cultural attractions, such as the stained glass center.
Best Weekend Trips From Paris by Train – Summary
With the comfort, affordability, and ease of access that the train affords riders, a weekend trip from Paris is something you should look forward to. It also provides travelers the chance to see the beautiful scenic and the panoramic views they might not get from other angles.