There are a number of train types in France ready to transport you both day and night. Most of the French network is operated by SNCF. Use the Eurail train timetable to check times for trains in France.
Regional and intercity trains in France
The main rail network in France is made up of the following regional trains and intercity trains:
On the Eurail timetable regional trains appear as "RE". Reservations are not required for regional trains and most InterCité trains. View a map of InterCité trains that do require a reservation on the SNCF website (in French only).
High-speed trains in France
International high-speed trains in France
These high-speed trains operate to and from France:
Eurostar connects Paris and Lille to London (Great Britain) via the Channel Tunnel, and Lille to Brussels (Belgium).
Thalys links Paris to Amsterdam (Netherlands), Brussels (Belgium), Cologne (Germany).
TGV connects Paris to Luxembourg city (Luxembourg), Lille to Brussels (Belgium), Paris to Turin and Milan (Italy) and Paris to Figueres (Spain).
TGV Lyria links Paris to Geneva and Zurich (Switzerland).
ICE connects Paris to Frankfurt and Munich (Germany).
Renfe-SNCF en Cooperación connects Paris and Marseille to Barcelona and Madrid (Spain).
Domestic high-speed trains in France
French domestic high-speed trains are run by TGV and travel at speeds of 320 km/h (200 mph). TGV trains transport passengers quickly and comfortably to cities across France, including from Paris to popular destinations like Bordeaux, Lyons (Lyon), Marseille and Nice.
TGV trains offer air-conditioning, large luggage racks, power sockets, plus refreshments and often a restaurant car.
On the Eurail timetable TGV trains are simply shown as “TGV”, Thalys as “THA”, ICE as “ICE”, Eurostar as “EST and Talgo du Jour as "TLG". These trains always require a reservation. Eurostar is not included in the Eurail pass, however travelers get a special fare.
Night trains in France
International night trains in France
The Thello night train operates on the following routes:
Eurail passes are not valid on the Thello as it is operated by a private railway company.
Domestic night trains in France
The Intercités de Nuit night trains connect Paris to various destinations in the east, west and south of France, by night.
City Night Line trains appear on the Eurail timetable as "CNL" and Intercités de Nuit as "NZ". The Thello appears as "EN". You're required to book sleeping accommodation in advance.
Train stations of bordering countries
With a Eurail pass valid in France you can travel to the following train stations of countries that border France:
Eurail Passes valid in France are also valid in Monaco, a tiny city-state located on the French Riviera. Its location makes it the perfect stop-over between Nice and the Italian border (20 minutes by train either way). Make sure to visit the marina and the famous Monte Carlo casino!