Sheer Bliss

I mentioned in an earlier post that traveling by TGV {train a grande vitesse} in France was sheer bliss ~ fast, efficient, comfortable and affording incredible views of the pastoral French countryside BUT navigating train travel in France can be complicated. A little experience, a little luck and a lot of husband, landed us on the right platform {la voie}, on the right train, headed in the right direction, on the right car {la voiture} and actually in the seat {la siege} that we booked. I know this all sounds elementary to those of you who travel a great deal, but trust me! My best piece of travel advice is to make sure that you venture outside of Paris via TGV and more importantly, talk to someone who travels regularly in France about the TGV's before you leave home. I am not sure your travel agent will be much help in this regard. The trains stop for just three minutes at each destination, and you will need to be standing on the platform at the right place to board your car and find your seat. One of the smartest things that we did was to leave two of our bags with our hotel in Paris and consolidate in just one suitcase for our little journey South. That brings me to my final TGV best advice ~ travel light! There is very little room for baggage on the trains. We brought along a delicious lunch from Paul's. In just under three hours we were back in Paris at Gare de Lyon.

I should also mention that we took the TGV from London to Paris, a 2 hour and fifteen minute round trip. It was not at all what I expected. Great views of the English countryside and, honestly, I have no idea when we went under the 'chunnel'. And, that's a good thing!

The Channel Tunnel known colloquially as the Chunnel is a 31.4 mile undersea rail tunnel linking Folkestone, Kent near Dover in the United Kingdom with Coquelles, Pas-de-Calais near Calais in northern France beneath the English Channel at the Strait of Dover. At its lowest point it is 75 miles deep. The Channel Tunnel has the longest undersea portion of any tunnel in the world.
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