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Information about TGV train companies going to, and operating in France and Europe – the web magazine for visitors to France.

TGV rail travel in France and Europe

TGV (Trains a Grande Vitesse) rail travel in France and Europe

More about – book a TGV in France.

The TGV celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2006. Originating in France the concept is now widely in effect in many other European countries. Travelling by TGV in France is quick and easy as the lines are dedicated and specially built for speed. You can now start your journey in the United Kingdom with Eurostar.

The Eurostar stations in France from where you can take a TGV to other destinations are; Calais (Frethun), Lille, Paris, Bourg St Maurice and Avignon. Onward journeys from Brussels can also be booked on the TGV via Eurostar or Rail Europe. Other TGV stations

There are three main rail companies in France; SNCF is the national train service, TER SNCF is the regional French rail system, and TGV is the fast train network. In Paris, there is the Transilien service, operated by SNCF.

A number of companies handle TGV services in France and Europe. More

Voyages-SNCF is the United Kingdom subsidiary of SNCF French Railways, and are the United Kingdom's leading supplier of rail travel into France and Europe, whether a short break in Paris, a fortnight in Venice, a month backpacking across Europe or a Snow Train journey right into the heart of the French Alps (not running from 2009/2010). You can book direct with the TGC companies web sites, but Rail Europe is also the official site for most of the European rail companies.

Eurostar is a TGV train operating out of the United Kingdom They run a ski train from St Pancras and Ashford to the French Alpes. The weekly direct train service to Aimé la Plagne, Bourg-St-Maurice and Moutiers normally runs from mid December to mid April every year. More

To find the cheapest prices, we suggest you use this link from SNCF, the French rail website. Although it only allows you to check prices from some French stations, it gives a useful indication which days are the cheapest to travel on.

A very good site which explains in useful detail everything a rail traveller in Europe needs to know is

superbreak – From Superbreak, Eurostar short breaks. Great value Eurostar Breaks are the ideal way to explore some of the best European city break destinations including Paris, Disneyland Paris, Lille, Brussels, Bruges, Ghent, Antwerp and Ostend.


When buying Rail passes, bear in mind that many charge a supplement for high speed services.

Eurodomino passes are flexible passes allowing unlimited travel in the relevant country for between three and eight days in a one month period. High speed trains are normally included in the price, but do not include seat reservations.

More about travel passes in France

French TGV trains

eurostar to FranceEurostar. Travel from London to Paris, Brussels, Lille and most major cities in France. Tel: 08705 186 186.

TGV France – TGV French Railways. With the TGV (train à grande vitesse) once you get to Lille, you can travel onto many other towns and cities in France and Europe.

Belgian TGV train – Thalys

Thalys – The Thalys train (high speed) travels to Belgium, The Netherlands and Luxembourg, between Brussels, Paris, Cologne and Amsterdam. Travel from Paris to Amsterdam in just 4 hours 15 minutes.

Other trains companies in Belgium

Rail Europe – the approved agent for European TGV train fares

Rail Europe – Rail Europe. The United Kingdom subsidiary of SNCF). For rail travel in France including Eurostar and the TGV.

TIP; Buy a France Railpass

or a France Youthpass

giving you the option of travel on any three to nine days within a one month period. You can stop where you like, it is valid on all trains on the national network including TGV's. Voyages-SNCF.

Other European TGV companies

Eurostar. United Kingdom, France and Belgium. Services include; Eurostar, Eurostar Ski Train, Eurostar Direct Avignon. London and Ashford to Calais Fréthun, Lille, Brussels and Paris.

TGV. France. Extensive network in France. Generally originating from Paris.

TGV Est European. Links 20 city centre stations in the North East of France, and a dozen cross border destinations (Luxembourg, Germany, Switzerland).

TGV Lyria. France to Switzerland.

TGV Lyria – TGV Lyria. You can now book through Eurostar for direct journeys to Swiss destinations.

France to Switzerland. Paris Gare de l'Est to Basel via Strasbourg, Comar, and Mulhouse, and on to Zurich. Paris Gare de Lyon to Geneva via Macon, Bourge en Bresse, Bellegarde. Paris Gare de Lyon to Lausanne via Dijon, Dole, Mouchard, Frasne and Vallorbe, and (2) to Bern, via Dijon, Frasne, Pontarlier and Neuchatel. France to Italy.

TGV Lyria – Thello Night train. This service use to be called Artesia (ended December 2011). This service provides day and night connections between Italy and France.

Elipsos AVE (Spain). From Madrid to Cordoba and Seville.

Elipsos – Elipsos.

Thalys. Linking 17 major cities in France, Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands. Brussels to Paris and Antwerp, to Cologne, to Amsterdam.

InterCityExpress – ICE. Between Germany, Austria, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Belgium and France. Voyages-SNCF

European Rail Companies

French TGV stations

London St Pancras and Ashford to Calais Frethun, Lille, Roissy CDG, Paris.

Gare du Nord – TGV Thalys trains to Belgium, the Netherlands, and Cologne, TGV trains to Northern France (and RER trains to Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport). TGV Nord – Haute-Picardie (Amiens), Arras, Calais, Lille. TGV Est – Lorraine (near Metz), Meuse, Reims.

Gare de l'Est – TGV trains to Alsace, Strasbourg, Luxembourg, Germany (Frankfurt, Karlsruhe, Stuttgart, Munich), and Switzerland (Basel, Zurich). TGV Interconnexion Est – Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport, Marne la Vallée.

Gare de Lyon – TGV trains to Southeastern France (Lyon, Provence, French Alps), Italy, and Switzerland (Geneva, Lausanne, and Bern). TGV Rhône-Alpes – Lyon Airport St Exupéry, Belfort – Montbéliard, Besancon. TGV Sud-Est – Le Creusot, Lyon, Macon-Loché.

Gare de Montparnasse – TGV trains to Southwestern France. TGV Atlantique – Massy, Tours, Vendôme.

From Valence. TGV Méditerranée – Aix en Provence, Avignon, Valence.

Aix en Provence (Marseilles), Angers, Angoulême, Arras, Avignon, Belfort, Besancon, Brest, Calais, Dijon, Haute-Picardie (Amiens), La Rochelle, Le Creusot, Lille, Lorraine, Lyon, Macon-Loché, Marne la Vallée, Massy, Meuse, Montpellier, Nancy, Nantes, Nice, Nîmes, Paris, Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport, Perpignan, Reims, Rennes, Strasbourg, Toulon, Toulouse-Matabiau, Tours, Valence and Vendôme.

Transfers between Gare du Nord and Gare de l'Est are easiest on foot. Gare de Lyon (adjacent to Gare de Bercy) and Gare d'Austerlitz are also close to each other but on different banks of the Seine. Transfers between other stations are best done by metro, RER trains, or bus.

More about the TGV and to book a fare

Ski Trains

The Snowtrain usually runs every year during the ski season. However it will not be running in 2010/11 – more information about ski trains and the Eurostar skitrain (still running).

Tariffs and fares

These tickets offer a 25% discount – Enfant Plus (If you are with a child under 12), 12 – 25 (for young people between 12 – 26), Senior (60 years plus), à deux (return journeys for 2 – 9 people travelling together), Séjour (return 200km, must include a Saturday night), J8 (if you reserve from 2 months to 8 days before), J30 (if you reserve from 2 months to 30 days before).

Maps for train routes

For TGV routes, try the Institut Géographique National map 912 "La France en Train".

Useful Outside links

Protect my holiday – Protect my Holiday. This company offers insolvency cover.

SNCF French railways. The website is run by Rail Europe, the official United Kingdom agent.

Trains times – departures and arrivals from French stations.

Rail Europe.

Seat 61 – a personal site with useful information.

say no to 0870 – Say NO to 0870.

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