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The rail trips to France from Arena Rail Holidays offer the chance to experience the breathtaking architecture, sophisticated art and the glorious food of one of the world’s most culturally identifiable countries.

Located south of the UK, France is our first point of contact with central Europe. France’s political and cultural history is as complex as it is impressive. It offers a starkly contrasting mixture of quaint, rural villages and huge cities you could spend a lifetime exploring.

France by rail

The French countryside is colourful and elegant; and the many successful French vineyards are just a single element of France’s beautiful greenery. While the major French cities are a spectacle in themselves, make sure you visit a few of the numerous little villages dotted about between the cities.

Fantastic cities

The highlight of France is no doubt Paris, its capital city. Here you can see iconic landmarks, such as the Eiffel Tower and the Notre-Dame Cathedral. The south of France is the playgroup for the rich and famous with Monte Carlo, home to the renowned grand prix circuit and St Tropez being the hotspots for jet-setters from all over the world. If sightseeing doesn’t take your fancy, you can disappear into one of the hundreds of dainty cafés located throughout the city and sample the local delicacies.

Food and drink

France’s wine is world famous. The French are known for their attention to detail in winemaking, where every flavour or element is heavily calculated, ensuring a complex and nuanced taste, regardless of the grape or vintage. French food is just as sophisticated: the nation’s breads, cheeses, and meats are among the world’s finest, and its restaurants are arguably the most sophisticated in the entire world. The food, wine and fine dining in France make it the ultimate holiday destination for any foodie or oenophile.

Rich cultural history

In France the culture lives and breathes in its cities and is remembered in its museums and art galleries. Priceless works of art are dotted all around the country, from the Louvre in Paris, to the Bayeaux tapestry in Normandy; and on top of all of that, France’s assortment of opera, street performers, dance and music make it one of the most sought-after holiday destinations in the world. France’s cultural offering provides a rich, rewarding experience for visitors, and a rail holiday is a wonderful way to see and do as much as possible in this exciting country.

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  1. Nice

    Nice Carnival Flower Parade & Menton Lemon Festival

    25 Feb 2019 - 1 Mar 2019

    On this colourful rail holiday, join us on the French Riviera for a fiesta of fruit and flowers as we visit two of the region’s most vibrant events. Nice Flower Parade is an integral part of the city’s carnival and only one of its kind in the world. In Menton we see the spectacular Lemon Festival, where the golden fruit parade will be in full swing.

    5 days from £699
    Ref: RENIC0519
  2. Monet's Garden

    Monet’s Garden, Chartres, Versailles & the Loire Valley

    26 Apr 2019 - 18 Oct 2019

    Board Eurostar for the ultimate French experience as you follow in the footsteps of two of the greatest artists of all time, along with the powerful Kings and Queens of France. On this spectacular rail holiday we visit the Loire Valley, Versailles and Monet's Garden! With a trip also to Amboise, the home town of Leonardo da Vinci - you'll feel the joie de vivre on this rail holiday.

    4 days from £499
    Ref: RECHM0419
  3. Red Train of the Pyrenees

    Little Trains of the Pyrenees

    5 May 2019 - 22 Sep 2019

    Based in the pretty town of Roses on the Spanish coast, we spend this rail holiday journeying through both the Spanish and French Pyrenees mountain range. Enjoy four spectacular train journeys, visit the famous Dali Museum in Figueres and relax in Roses as you take in the stunning coastal setting.

    8 days from £899
    Ref: REPYR0819
  4. Calvi

    Highlights of Corsica

    10 May 2019 - 26 Sep 2019

    We spend this rail holiday on the stunning French island of Corsica. Located off the French coast we enjoy ten days aboard little trains that travel across mountains and along the stunning coastlines.

    10 days from £1,599
    Ref: RECOR1019
  5. Lake Annecy

    Lake Annecy & the Mont Blanc Express

    19 May 2019 - 22 Sep 2019

    Lakes and Mountains combine to create a picture perfect rail holiday, on this French break. From the glistening waters of Lake Annecy, to spectacular views from the Mont Blanc Express, there’s plenty to see and do. Enjoy time in the quaint towns of Aix-les-Bains, Geneva, Annecy and a journey to Chamonix on the Mont Blanc Express . We know you’ll love it!

    6 days from £795
    Ref: RELAMB
  6. Monaco

    St Tropez, Nice & Monte Carlo

    21 May 2019 - 3 Sep 2019

    Travel by train to one of the most stylish coastlines in the world on this European rail holiday. Staying in a pretty Mediterranean resort of St Raphael, you can experience the glitz and glamour of the Côte d'Azur, from Nice to Monte Carlo, along with its stunning natural beauty.

    8 days from £995
    Ref: RESTM0819
  7. Carcassonne

    The Beauty of the Languedoc, Carcassonne & Provence

    16 Jun 2019 - 22 Sep 2019

    Often referred to as the 'real' South of France, Languedoc is a destination you're certainly going to want to discover. On this rail holiday we see the very best of France as we travel by train and visit Carcassonne. You'll spend time in Cap d'Agde - located at the foot of an ancient Volcano, visit the famous Pont du Gard and the ‘City of the Popes’ Avignon.

    8 days from £995
    Ref: RELCA0819
  8. Lille

    Bruges & Lille Christmas Markets

    27 Nov 2019 - 30 Nov 2019

    All aboard to France and Belgium on this festive break by rail! Explore some of the very best Christmas markets as we spend time in Bruges, famous for its spectacular canals and medieval centre, and Lille one of France's largest markets with over 800 stalls. Treat yourself to the scenery and enjoy a medley of markets.

    4 days from £395
    Ref: REBRL0419
  9. Strasbourg

    Strasbourg & the Black Forest Christmas Markets

    30 Nov 2019 - 9 Dec 2019

    Board Eurostar for a festive rail journey like no other. On this four day break we visit some of Europe's best Chrsitmas markets, including the world famous Strasbourg markets, and even include a trip into the winter wonderland that is Germany's Black Forest and the markets of Freiburg.

    4 days from £459
    Ref: RESBF0419

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