Train Travel

France in Two Weeks – 5 Ways to Spend 2 Weeks in France by Train

12/04/2021

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France in 2 Weeks – Where to Go?

So you’ve got a trip planned for 2 weeks in France. Now what? Trying to decide how to visit France in two weeks isn’t an easy task. After all, there are so many beautiful places to see that it’s impossible to cover everything in two weeks in France.

That being said, you can have a fantastic trip to France and travel back home with the feeling you had a great taste of France.

But where to go? We’ve broken down five ways to spend 2 weeks in France by train, visiting different geographical areas and French regions with no rush. Starting from Paris or Nice, and traveling only by train, choose that France by train itinerary that tempts you most!

READ MORE – How to Plan a Trip to France

Train Station in France

Touring France by Train – Itinerary and Tips

All these Frech itineraries are by train, with direct train connections most of the time. French trains are a fun and easy way to visit the country, you can read more in our quick guide to France by train.

Make sure you book the train tickets between the main stops online, well in advance: TGV train connections between the main cities sold out fast! For your convenience, we’ve added links to our favorite trusty providers so you can book the train tickets directly from this post.

Most of the itineraries described below start from Paris. You can travel to Paris by train from many European cities in Germany, the UK, Catalonia, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Italy. If you are traveling to France from overseas, use this link to book your flight tickets to Paris.

And don’t leave home without travel insurance. SafetyWing, our trusted travel insurance policy for long and short trips, covers COVID-19 for new policies purchased, and since April 2021, unplanned quarantine is covered, too. Click here for more info and pricing.

2 Weeks in France Option 1: Paris – Avignon Marseille – Nice

Avignon - France

This 2-week France itinerary explores the French capital and some of the best places in Provence and the French Riviera in Southern France.

Stop 1 | Paris (4 days)

Paris is a city that really needs no introduction. During your time in the French capital, you will want to visit some of the city’s main sights perhaps with a couple of leisure strolls around the most picturesque areas ,and a day trip to Versailles. If you need some inspiration, this 4-day Paris itinerary will be helpful.

For your stay in Paris, book at the Handsome Hotel by Elegancia. Located just 800 meters from the Louvre, this hotel offers its guests great facilities and always gets the best reviews.

Paris highlights:

For your day trip to Versailles, check out this Versailles guide, with all the information and our best tips to visit the Versailles Palace, Gardens, and more.

Stop 2 | Avignon (3 days)

Avignon’s main station is Avignon TGV, and it is well connected to Paris by TGV trains. Count on it taking 2 hrs 45 min from Paris Gare de Lyon train station.

Click here to book your train tickets to Avignon

After your time in Paris, board on one of the first trains to Avignon for a different taste of France. Located in the South Bank of the Rhône River, Avignon was for a brief moment in time the center of the catholic world, as the popes left Rome and came to live in this city. The Papal Palace, built in Gothic style, is a Unesco World Heritage Site and a must-see of Avignon.

In Avignon, Hotel Central has a great location near the train station, and it comes with a pleasant front garden and an on-site bar. For something really special, check out Hotel Cloitre Saint Louis Avignon. This hotel is set in a 16th-century building, featuring arches and vaulted ceilings, and it has a beautiful garden and an outdoor swimming pool.

Enjoy one day in Avignon. Here everything is within walking distance and you can easily explore the city while strolling through its small cobblestone lanes. Be sure to visit the Papal Palace and walk through the Pont d’Avignon (the famous bridge) or at least admire it from afar.

Use the second day in Avignon to explore the Luberon. During the lavender season in Provence, take this top-rated lavender tour that includes the 12th-century Senaque Abbey and its surrounding lavender fields plus the oh-so-pretty village of Roussillon

Out of this period, we recommend this Best of Provence tour that takes you to the Roman aqueduct of Pont du Gard and some of the most beautiful villages of Provence.

Stop 3 | Marseille (3 days)

Marseille’s main station is Marseille St Charles, and it is well connected to Avignon by TGV trains. Count on it taking 35 min from Avignon TGV train station.

Click here to book your train tickets to Marseille

Marseille is a vibrant port city with a strong character and some beautiful places to visit. For your trip to Marseille, follow this Marseille 2-day itinerary or create your own itinerary from this list of best things to do in Marseille.

Marseille highlights

For your stay in Marseille, Hotel la Résidence du Vieux Port is a great choice, with the perfect location on the banks of the Old Port and the best view of Marseille.

For your third day in the city, we recommend a day trip to the amazing Calanques de Marseille – Cassis. You can visit some of the Calanques on a day hike or on a catamaran cruise with lunch.

Stop 4 | Nice (4 days)

Nice’s main station is Nice Ville, and it is well connected to Marseille by TGV trains. Count on it taking 2 hrs 45 min from Marseille St Charles train station.

Click here to book your train tickets to Nice

Nice is the capital of the French Riviera, the glitzy and perfect grand finale for the last days of your holidays in France. Here, you will find beautiful baroque architecture, a picturesque Old Port, some of the best beaches on the French Riviera, and the famous Promenade des Anglais!

Nice highlights

  • La Colline du Château
  • The Old Port
  • Promenade des Anglais
  • Cimiez Monastery
  • Matisse Museum
  • Chagall Museum

For your stay in Nice book at the Hotel La Pérouse Nice Baie des Anges. This 4-star hotel is nestled into the Colline du Château, and it comes with a great view over the Baie des Anges.

We recommend spending at least two days in Nice. Use the rest of your time in the city to visit other places on day trips from Nice. We especially like Eze Village, but the city-state of Monaco is also a good option.

Two Weeks in France Option 2: Paris – Colmar –Strasbourg – Nancy

Stanislas Square - Nancy

This France by train itinerary 2 weeks explores Paris and some of the most beautiful places in the Grand Est region (Alsace and Lorraine).

Stop 1 | Paris (4 days)

If this is your first time in Paris, you can use this itinerary for 3 days in Paris which dedicates two days to explore the Seine’s right bank and one day on the left bank. For the last day, choose one of these day trips from Paris.

For your stay in Paris, book at the Handsome Hotel by Elegancia. Located just 800 meters from the Louvre, this hotel offers its guests great facilities and always gets the best reviews.

Stop 2 | Colmar (4 days)

Colmar train station is connected to Paris by TGV trains or German ICE trains. There are 2-3 direct connections daily, while the rest of the connections imply a change of trains in Strasbourg. Count on it taking 2 hrs 50 min from Paris Gare de l’Est train station.

Click here to book your train tickets to Colmar

This France itinerary 2 weeks continues in Colmar, one of the most picturesque cities in the Alsace region. Colmar’s Old Town has a beautiful ensemble of half-timbered houses, quaint canals, and many interesting sites. Colmar is also a must of the Alsace Wine Route and an excellent base to explore some of the most beautiful Alsace villages on day trips.

For your stay in Colmar, book at the Hotel Le Colombier, a charming property located in the district of Little Venice, with spacious and stylish rooms, a bar, and a garden.

Colmar highlights:

Spend the first day in Colmar exploring the city use this list of best things to do in Colmar to create your own itinerary. On day 2, take a day tour to visit other Alsace attractions. We like this Alsace Villages Tour and Wine Tasting, which visits pretty villages, the medieval Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg, and it comes with some wine tastings at a typical wine bar.

Stop 3 | Strasbourg (3 days)

Strasbourg is connected to Colmar by regional trains (TER) and TGV trains. The Swiss Railways also cover this connection. Count on it taking 33 min from Colmar to Strasbourg.

Click here to book your train tickets to Strasbourg

Strasbourg is the capital of the Grand Est region, and the Alsace region. It is an interesting and lively city worth visiting during your two weeks in France. Strasbourg is world-known for the Strasbourg Christmas Market, the oldest in France! The Old Town boasts some beautiful architecture and one of the best Gothic cathedrals in France.

Strasbourg highlights:

  • Notre Dame Cathedral
  • The Petite-France, a picturesque district
  • The covered bridges and the barrage Vauban
  • Strasbourg river cruise
  • History Museum
  • The European neighborhood

In Strasbourg, book two nights at the Hotel Cathédrale, located just opposite Notre Dame de Strasbourgwith incredible and spectacular views over the cathedral. Check out this Strasbourg in 2 days itinerary for your stay in the city, or choose some activities from this list of best things to do in Strasbourg.

Stop 4 | Nancy (3 days)

Nancy is connected to Strasbourg by regional trains (TER) trains. Count on it taking 1 hr 30 min from Strasbourg to Nancy.

Click here to book your train tickets to Nancy

Nancy is one of the most dynamic cities in the Grand Est region. Thanks to a rich past, the former capital of the Duchy of Lorraine boasts today a sumptuous architectural heritage and can rightfully be considered one of the most beautiful cities in Europe.

For a long time, Nancy was considered the European capital of Art Nouveau. The 18th-century Stanislas Square, built in classic and rococo style, is one of the most beautiful squares in Europe, if not the most beautiful one!

Nancy highlights

  • Place Stanislas
  • Parc de la Pepinière
  • Old Town
  • Musée des Beaux-Arts
  • The Ducal Palace
  • Villa Majorelle
  • Notre Dame de l’Annonciation Cathedral

For your stay in Nancy, book at Hotel de Guise Nancy Vieille Ville. Set in a historic building in the Old Town, the hotel offers comfortable rooms and beautiful interiors and decorations.

2 Weeks in France Option 3: Paris – Rouen – Bayeux – Mont St. Michel

This beautiful France itinerary 14 days through Normandy starts in Paris and visits vibrant cities, historical sites, and the wonder of Western France.

Stop 1 | Paris (5 days)

Start your France train itinerary in Paris, the City of Light. For your stay in the French capital, use the Paris 5-day itinerary which covers the city’s main highlights and a couple of sites nearby.

For your stay in Paris, book at the Handsome Hotel by Elegancia. Located just 800 meters from the Louvre, this hotel offers its guests great facilities and always gets the best reviews.

Stop 2 | Rouen (3 days)

Rouen’s main train station is Rouen Rive Droite. It is well connected to Paris by regional trains (TER). Count on it taking 2 hrs from Paris Saint Lazare train station.

Click here to book your train tickets to Rouen

Rouen is one of the main cities in Normandy, and it boasts the best-preserved medieval center in all of France, with beautiful architecture and picturesque cobbled streets. Nicknamed ‘the City of 100 Bell Towers,’ which dominate the city’s skyline, Rouen is also famous for being the place where Jeanne d’Arc was burned alive.

Rouen highlights

  • Musée des Beaux-Arts
  • Musée le Seq des Tournelles
  • Historial Jeanne d’Arc – her trial site turned into a museum
  • Tour Jeanne d’Arc
  • Eglise Sainte Jeanne d’Arc de Rouen
  • Old Market Square
  • Notre Dame de Rouen Cathedral
  • Picnic lunch in the Jardin des Plantes

For your stay in Rouen, book at the Best Western Plus Hotel Litteraire Gustave Flaubert, inspired by the French poet born in Rouen. The hotel has a central location in the Old Town and a beautiful terrace from where you can admire Rouen’s famous skyline.

Spend two days strolling around this beautiful city and visiting its main highlights. For your third day in Rouen, take a day trip to Giverny to see Monet’s gardens. You can travel by train to Vernon (40 min) and then jump on a bus to Giverny (10 min, five buses a day).

Stop 3 | Bayeux (3 days)

Bayeux is well connected to Rouen Rive Droite train station by regional trains (TER). All the options include a change of trains in Caen. Count on it taking 2 hrs 40 min from Rouen to Bayeux.

Click here to book your train tickets to Bayeux

The lovely city of Bayeux may not be large, but it boasts plenty of worthwhile sights. Bayeux’s attractive center is dominated by the imposing Cathedral de Notre Dame, built in Gothic style and consecrated with the presence of William the Conqueror. However, a bigger drawcard is the Bayeux Tapestry, a 70 meter-long embroidery that depicts the Battle of Hastings, when William the Conqueror invaded England in 1066.

For your night in Bayeux, we recommend Clos de Bellefontaine B&B, a beautiful 19th-century private mansion set in a beautiful 2,000m2 park, with private parking on-site. Clos de Bellefontaine is located 200m from the Bayeux Tapestry.

Bayeux highlights

  • Bayeux Cathedral
  • The Bayeux Tapestry
  • 19h-century Botanical Gardens (labelled Historical Site of France)
  • Bayeux Market

Bayeux is also an excellent base to explore the D-day Landing sites of Normandy. This American D-Day Sites in Normandy Tour is a very informative and in-depth tour of the main battle points, and it always gets excellent reviews.

Stop 4 | Mont Saint-Michel (2 days)

The train journey Bayeux to Mont Saint-Michel is easy to plan. Count on it taking 3 hrs 45 min by regional train (TER) with a change of trains in Pontorson. From Le Mont St-Michel train station, it’s a 7 min walk (570 m) to the abbey.

Click here to book your train tickets to Mont St.Michel

This two-week France itinerary ends with a visit to Mont Saint-Michel. This stunning island abbey is also known as the Wonder of Western Europe.

Located at the border with Brittany, Mont Saint-Michel was for centuries one of Europe’s major pilgrimage destinations, and today, 2.5 million tourists from around the world flock here every year. In the bay of the Mont Saint-Michel, you will also see Europe’s highest tides!

You can visit Mont St-Michel alone book your ticket with priority entrance. From the abbey, you can also hike to Tombelaine Island (don’t do this without a LOCAL guide who knows the tides).

For a more relaxed trip, spend one night on-site in one of the hotels in Mont Saint Michel. Wander around the medieval streets when the crowds are gone and watch the waters rise to inundate the entrance to the island. The hotel Le Mouton Blanc is one of the best hotels in Mont St-Michel, nestled at the foot of the famous abbey. Le Mouton Blanc dates back to the 14th century, and it is perfect if you want to really soak in the island’s past.

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Two Weeks in France Option 4: Nice – Cannes – Marseille – Toulouse

Toulouse - France

This 2 weeks in France by train itinerary starts in Nice, and it explores some of the most beautiful places in Southern France, with the possibility of many lovely day trips.

Stop 1 | Nice (4 days)

You can reach Nice by train from Paris and many other French cities. Nice Airport (NCE) is the third busiest international airport in France, and it covers many international destinations in Europe, Africa, Asia, Middle-East, and America via regular or seasonal flights – Check out how to travel from Nice Airport to the city.

Click here to book your flight tickets to Nice

Nice is one of the best places to visit in the French Riviera, a must of any trip to Southern France. Spend two days in Nice and use the rest of our time visiting other places on day trips. We especially like Eze Village, but the city-state of Monaco is also a good option.

For your stay in Nice book at the Hotel La Pérouse Nice Baie des Anges. This 4-star hotel is nestled into the Colline du Château, and it comes with a great view over the Baie des Anges. Summers in Nice are hot, and you will be happy to book one of the Nice hotels with a pool.

For more information about Nice, jump to the France train itinerary Option 1.

Stop 2 | Cannes (3 days)

Cannes’ train station is well connected to Nice by regional trains (TER). Count on it taking 30 to 40 min from Nice Ville train station.

Click here to book your train tickets to Cannes

Cannes is one of the most glamorous places on the French Riviera, world-famous for its cinema festival. However, Cannes has retained its authentic Provencal charms and offers visitors much more than walking the legendary carpet and social events.

Cannes highlights

  • Le Suquet neighborhood
  • La Croisette promenade
  • Notre Dame d’Espérance Church
  • Old Port
  • Chic shopping at Rue d’Antibes
  • Cannes’ sandy beaches

For your stay in Cannes, the Hotel Pruly is an excellent option. This 3-star hotel recently renovated is located a 5-minute walk from the beach, and it has charming rooms, a lush garden, and a terrace with sun loungers.

Use the first two days in Cannes for visiting the city and relaxing on a sandy beach. On the third day, you can opt for a catamaran cruise with lunch or explore Sainte-Marguerite the biggest of the Lérins Islands on a day trip. Located off the city of Cannes, Sainte-Marguerite is the easiest Lérins island to reach by ferry, and it has some lovely beaches far from the Cannes crowds Book your ferry tickets to Sainte-Marguerite

Stop 3 | Marseille (3 days)

Marseille’s main station is Marseille St Charles, and it is well connected to Cannes by TGV and regional trains. Count on it taking 2 hrs 10 min from Cannes train station.

Click here to book your train tickets to Marseille

The capital of the Provence-Alpes-Côte-d’Azur, Marseille is an exciting and lively city great for cultural curious visitors and nature lovers.

For the list of things to do in Marseille, jump to the France train itinerary Option 1. For your stay in Marseille, Hotel la Résidence du Vieux Port is a great choice, with the perfect location on the banks of the Old Port and the best view of Marseille.

Stop 4 | Toulouse (3 days)

Toulouse’s main station is Toulouse Matabiau, and it is well connected to Marseille by Intercitées trains. Count on it taking 3 hrs 50 min from Marseille Saint-Charles train station.

Click here to book your train tickets to Toulouse

Toulouse is the capital of the Occitanie region in Southern France. Nicknamed ‘the Pink City’ because of the color of the stone used for its buildings, Toulouse is a lively city with pretty little squares, elegant private mansions, interesting museums, and beautiful parks.

Toulouse highlights

Toulouse is easy to visit in two days. Use the third day to visit the medieval Cité de Carcassonne. The train journey to Carcassonne takes only 1 hour, and you will love the citadel and the history of Cathars and the crusaders behind it.

For your stay in Toulouse, the Ibis Styles Toulouse Capitole has an unbeatable location on the city’s main square, and it offers an excellent breakfast in a pleasant open space.

2 Weeks in France Option 5: Paris – La Rochelle – Bordeaux – Biarritz

Biarritz - Basque Country

This France itinerary 2 weeks starts from Paris, and it explores some of the most beautiful cities in Western France. It combines sightseeing with relaxing days by the beach.

Stop 1 | Paris (3 days)

For your three days in the French capital, you can use this Paris 3-day itinerary or create your own itinerary from this Paris bucket list. You can also use this itinerary for Paris in one day plus two of these day trips from Paris by train.

For your stay in Paris, book at the Handsome Hotel by Elegancia. Located just 800 meters from the Louvre, this hotel offers its guests great facilities and always gets the best reviews.

Stop 2 | La Rochelle (3 days)

La Rochelle’s main station is La Rochelle Ville, and it is well connected to Paris by TGV trains. Most of the train connections are direct while others imply a change of trains in Poitiers. Depending on the train chosen, count on it taking 3 to 4 hrs from Paris Montparnasse train station.

Click here to book your train tickets to La Rochelle

La Rochelle is a historic seaport in the Bay of Biscay along the sandy west coast of France. It is the perfect little city for a relaxing break by the ocean and a great base to explore the area.

For your stay at La Rochelle, we recommend Hotel Les Brises. Located on the seafront, just 1.9 km from the Old Port, Hotel Les Brises offers lovely rooms with sea views.

This seaport town’s main feature and attraction is the Old Port, which is central to nightlife and restaurants. La Rochelle is also rich in culture, architecture, and gastronomy.

La Rochelle highlights

After some busy days in Paris, you may want to take your time to visit La Rochelle and its surrounding area. Use one or two days for visiting the city. For the rest of the days, head to Châtelaillon-Plage (15km south) for a beach day, or cross the bridge to Ile de Re for a lovely day in one of the best French islands.

Stop 3 | Bordeaux (4 days)

Bordeaux’s main station is Bordeaux St-Jean, and it is well connected to La Rochelle by regional trains (TER) or Intercités trains. Count on it taking 2 hrs 40 min from La Rochelle Ville train station.

Click here to book your train tickets to Bordeaux

Bordeaux is the capital of the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region. Home to some of the world’s best wines, sites like the Cité du Vin are ideal to start your wine explorations. Bordeaux is also known for its beautiful collection of 17th-century private mansions, excellent restaurants and pastry shops, and the world’s largest reflecting pool.

Bordeaux highlights

For your stay in Bordeaux, we recommend the Yndo Hotel, set in a 19th-century private mansion in the heart of Bordeaux; this chic hotel features individually decorated rooms, a fragrance garden, and a sun terrace.

Bordeaux is also a great base to explore the wine country or the Atlantic Ocean on day trips. Spend two days visiting Saint Émilion, world-known for its wines, the Bay of Arcachon, or the Dune du Pilat.

Stop 4 | Biarritz (4 days)

Biarritz’s train station is well connected to Bordeaux by regional trains (TER). Count on it taking 2 hrs from Bordeaux Saint-Jean train station.

Click here to book your train tickets to Biarritz

This 2 week France itinerary ends in Biarritz, a splendid seaside resort nestled in the Bay of Biscay on the Atlantic coast. You will most likely fall in love with Biarritz, a lively city with magnificent vestiges of the past, exceptional cultural sites, and rich natural heritage.

For your stay in Biarritz, book at Hotel Windsor Grande Plage. Located in an ancient private mansion facing the Grande Plage beach, the hotel is ideally situated close to the main attractions.

Biarritz highlights

  • Les Halles (local market)
  • Grande Plage with Sainte Eugénie Church and the Basta Rock
  • Biarritz’s lighthouse
  • Le Rocher de la Vierge
  • Views from the Atalaya Plateau
  • Port Vieux

Visit Biarritz in one or two days and spend the rest of your time visiting other places in the Basque Country. The lovely town of Saint-Jean-de-Luz and the city of Bayonne are easy to reach by train from Biarritz.

So there you have it, our selection of best French itineraries for 2 weeks in France by train. Which itinerary tempts you most for visiting France in 2 weeks?

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