French connections - Travel to Provence and Côte d'Azur in South-East France

A guide outlining the travel options available to Provence and the Côte d'Azur in south-east France

Travel connections to Provence and Côte d'Azur in south-east France

This region of Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur is long established as a British property seeker's favourite, and the routes there are well trodden paths. As you would expect, there are lots of options and plenty of companies vying for your custom, however you choose to make the journey.

Ferries to south-east France

The ferry is no longer a quick method of transport, as the area is too far for easy travel from the ports. But it does, of course, afford the possibility of taking a car which can be very useful. The nearest ferry ports are Bilbao and Santander, just over the border into Spain, though some still like making the long journey from the north of France.

Ferry companies

The ferry companies serving the north of France and Spain are:

P&O Ferries: Portsmouth - Bilbao / Dover - Calais
Brittany Ferries: Plymouth - Santander, Roscoff / Poole - Cherbourg / Portsmouth - Cherbourg, Caen, St Malo
Speed Ferries (Sea Cat): Dover - Boulogne
Norfolk Line: Dover - Dunkerque
LD Lines: Portsmouth, Newhaven - Le Havre
Transmarche: Newhaven - Dieppe

Flights to Provence in south-east France

The airlines serving Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur are:

Air France
British Airways
Aer Lingus

The airports used are:


French rail travel - Eurostar and TGV trains

Many people enjoy rail travel, and these days reaching their favoured French destinations by rail has been made possible by the Eurostar service and extended TGV lines throughout France. The Eurostar train will take you to Paris, Lille, Disneyland Paris or Calais from London or Kent. The excellent rail network in France can then transport you to your destination.

Trains to Provence and Côte d'Azur in south-east France

The TGV goes to Marseille. Rail links are good throughout the region, though it is always best to consult local services for details which can vary from season to season.

French road travel - Eurotunnel car train

A great many people choose to drive to their French destination, making use of the cross channel car ferries or the channel tunnel car train service. The Eurotunnel car train leaves from Folkestone and arrives at Calais after a remarkably quick journey spent in the comfort of your own car. This can be an important consideration for those carrying live animals as you can remain with them at all times. (Be warned, though, if you have an LPG car you cannot take it on the Eurotunnel train.)

Road travel to Provence and Côte d'Azur

To arrive in this region by road, take the A6 from Paris, following the A8 to Nice. Should you be coming from Spain, follow the A64, the A61 and the A9.

The French motorway system

The French motorway system consists of both toll roads (auto routes) and corresponding non toll roads (Routes Nationales). Both are excellent and almost always much less crowded than British roads. You will find, however, that the auto routes are significantly faster than the Routes Nationales.

You may also find the following article interesting: French Connections.

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