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Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

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Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

I will be in Paris three nights then wish to venture down to the riviera. Should we take a train or plane? I looked at train prices on Eurail and they were soooo expensive! Is there a cheaper rail system that is safe? If so what is the website and how do I book? (online or in person when we get there?)

I found flights on AirFrance for only $14! so this is much cheaper, but is it a hassle to go to ORLY in the morning?

Also should we stay in NICE or CANNES? Once there, how do we get from Nice to Cannes, to Monaco, and vice versa? Train? Bus? Please Advise I cannpot find this info ANYWHERE!!!


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1. Re: Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

It is not at all a hassle to get to Orly, it is real close to the city, you could take public transportation (RER B and ORLYVAL) or a taxi and be there relatively quickly.

I have flown and taken the train, and I think flying is the way to go. It's often cheaper and usually quicker. (there is airport wait time, etc., though). The train system web site is http://www.sncf.com

Once there, I think it would be a great idea for you to rent a car to go to the various villages and cities in the area. Nice is very large, Cannes is smaller and much more "posh". I'd do research into both and decide which suits your style the best.

There's so much to see down there outside of those two cities, and the only way you can do it is with a car. Otherwise, the train runs from Nice to Cannes and to Monoco.

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2. Re: Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

Thank You Les! I have been to that website you mention, but I am not sure WHICH rail system to choose? What is the difference between them? And will they let me book online and print my passes? Is this necessary or will ther be enough seats available that we can just book when we get there (In MAY). Which train can we take to get between Nice and Cannes? Any tour busses recommended? We dont want to drive. MERCI

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3. Re: Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

You can take the TGV train from Paris to Nice, involving no changes. (some departures do involve changes, but you can choose one of the times that does not). The price will be perhaps a little high b/c this is a fast-train. You cannot book tickets online further out than 90 days, but you can play around enough with the system to learn what types of prices might be available. You will depart from Gare de Lyon in Paris, and arrive at the station in the center of Nice.

Here is a good website describing the means of transport between towns along the Cote d'Azur:


It includes a map of the bus routes between Cannes/Nice/Monaco and other locations:


- -focus on Line 200 and 100, also 100Express

Here is the website for Nice, where you can find escorted tours:


Here are a list of 'excursion' tours from Nice to Cannes or Monaco (or others):


Nova Scotia
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4. Re: Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

Relax. The public transportation system from Nice, going both directions is very easy to use and runs almost continuously. You can take buses or trains and there is no need to have any reservations. You simply show up at the bus or train station and purchase a ticket. Schedules are available on the internet for both the trains and bus lines, but truthfully there is no need to do this in advance. We've traveled a great deal and this region is perhaps the easiest we've ever encountered re public transport. You'll be fine. You will need to reserve your flight/train from Paris (We fly but its up to you).

Los Angeles
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5. Re: Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

We flew from Paris to Nice from CDG and it wasn't bad, so Orly will not be that bad. I remember flying into Orly from London and it seemed closer to me than CDG.

We flew because it was much cheaper and time constraints and took AirFrance which was lovely - just for an hour flight they'll give you a ham and cheese sandwich and a small bottle of wine.

$14 is killer - book it! I think we paid $40.

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6. Re: Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

Thanks so much for your indepth info!!!

Ottawa, Canada
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7. Re: Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

Flying may or may not be cheaper and or quicker.

First you have to get to Orly or CDG... time and money.

You also need to be at the airport probably 2 hours

in advance and go through security.

When you arrive at your destination you then have the

time and expense to travel in from the airport...

On the other hand, if you leave from downtown Paris

at the Gare de Lyon you have minimal time lost there.

Plus you only need to be there 20 minutes ahead of your

departure time, not a couple of hours.

In 5 and a half hours you alight in downtown Nice.

You are likely closer to your hotel than if you were

at the airport and you won't have to wait for checked baggage either.

We took the TGV from Paris to Nice and it couldn't

have been more convenient.

There is only 1 train system in France... use the sncf.com site. Don't use eural or raileurope... use the search box above to find instructions by morganb on using the French SNCF site... it is the least expensive.

If I was to recommend one over the other I'd say Nice over Cannes. It's bigger, more to see, more to do, bigger hotel selection.

As noted by someone else, buses and trains along the Riviera are frequent and cheap. You won't need a car until you decide to explore more inland.


Montreal, QC
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for Nice
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8. Re: Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

Fly, definitely fly. Yes you have to be there 2 hours in advance but the filght is 1.5 hr. Getting your bags is kinda fast and a cab to downtown Nuce is 15 minutes or so (25 euro). Get the local bus no 98 at 4 euro and keep your ticket, it will be good for the rest of the day.

Depending on when you plan on going you may have to reserve the hotelin Nice in advance,. If you are there for a few days only i suggest you stick to Nice and maybe wander around by train to Monaco or menton or bus no 82 to Eze-Village or bus no 81 to Villefranche-sur-Mer.

Visit us on the Nice forum when you will have made up your mind on when you are going.

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9. Re: Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

For SOME reason, I cannot use the sncf site to view rates! I click on the English thumbnail on the bottom input my info (may 19 paris to Nice) and then it keeps taking me back to the home page but in French. anybody able to access this? I would like to know how much the tickets are for train. How do I get to the train station from the Ballard stop on the metro (which is where my hotel it). How would I have to get to Orly ? Just trying to compare prices here...

Thanks for all the help!

Sydney, Australia
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10. Re: Train or plane to go Paris-Nice/Cannes?

Try using www.voyages-sncf.com