As a continuing feature we will be highlighting a selected route from our guidebook ‘Europe by Rail’ written by Nicky Gardner & Susanne Kries, every week. Below is an extract from the book. To find out more, the guidebook can be purchased through our website for £15.99.
This week we are looking at: Route No. 2: “Burgundy and the Rhône Valley” which begins in Paris, running through Dijon and Lyon before arriving in Marseille.
As you move south along the PLM line, the scenery on this route becomes ever more compelling, and the journey culminates in a magnificent ride south through the Rhône Valley to the Mediterranean. You can easily complete this journey in a single day. It requires just a single change of train at Lyon Part Dieu station. The trains upon which this journey relies are TER services: these are regional trains where there’s no need to pre-book and there are no supplements for holders of rail passes.
Marseille is an earthy Mediterranean city and hectically vibrant, with a great music scene and superb fish-based cuisine. The busiest port in France, it’s a melting pot of French and North African cultures. Marseille’s grubby, rough-and-ready character appeals to some, while others will want to move on swiftly – though watch this space, because big regeneration schemes are changing the city, especially in the northern dock areas. There’s a good métro and bus system, and three tram lines.