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View Full Version : Train or plane from Paris to Barcelona?


gem lady
April 21st, 2012, 02:07 PM
Hi everyone,
We have just booked a round trip med cruise R/T from Barcelona for 2013. We would like to go to Paris for several days beforehand. What is the best way to get from Paris to Barcelona? Hubby wants to take a train...says we will see more of the countryside of France and Spain. Will this be a giant pita with luggage etc? Anyone done this before? Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks!

WS80
April 21st, 2012, 02:45 PM
There's no high speed train connection between Paris and Barcelona. So you should take a train to Monpellier (southern France) where you can take the high speed TGV to Paris. I'd recommend going by plane...

dabear
April 21st, 2012, 02:52 PM
I don't know the time for the train trip, but factor in the train stations are in the center of towns and the airports near Paris and BCN are a distance from town center+ security at the airports probably take more time. While I prefer planes for longer distances, I find he trains in Europe to be wonderful & on time.

Adammara
April 21st, 2012, 02:53 PM
Google 'Seat 61', a load of information of how to travel by train!

Richard

Denny01
April 21st, 2012, 03:06 PM
We were going to Paris for a few days before our Barcelona TA this Nov, but decided to do the Venice-Barcelona cruise and make it a B2B. While looking at Paris stay, we checked the train to Barcelona. One leaves late afternoon and gets into Barcelona early AM. We were looking at a sleeper.

It all looked quite good. No hotel one night and travel mainly at night. I believe that's the cheapest and most efficient way. Don't change trains, nice sleeper, cheaper than flying. Can't beat it.

Den

Phxazzcruisers
April 21st, 2012, 03:17 PM
If you want to see country the night train will not work for you. While i agree flying is a pain, it is the easiest and will let you spend more time in the City

Denny01
April 21st, 2012, 04:55 PM
If you want to see country the night train will not work for you. While i agree flying is a pain, it is the easiest and will let you spend more time in the City

Agree, but you wont see much countryside in an airplane either. And although the train is mainly at night, it is the same time as when you'd be sleeping in a hotel, and gets you into Barcelona nice and early (0730), so you can go explore the Ramblas and the port area near the ship before you go aboard.

Paris-Barcelona are over 500miles/830km apart.

If you fly, you either spend the night before the cruise in Paris or Barcelona. You could take the chance and spend the last night in Paris giving you a little more time in Paris, then flight the morning of departure to Barcelona, but thats just like all the stories we hear about people flying into the departure city the day of the cruise, and the stress/hassle that causes. Or you fly into Barcelona the day before, taking all the time to get to the Paris airport, fly to Barcelona, taxi/subway to another Hotel and then whatever time left to enjoy Barcelona. But there is the hassle of another hotel move.

Our plan was to train into Barcelona, departing early evening, reach there at 0730, after sleeping on the train which covers the cost of the transporatation to Barcelona And a hotel, then enjoy the town a bit before heading to the ship.

Enjoy either way, but think about which option cuts down on stress and hassle, and if you think you can sleep on a train (we sleep like a rock last time), and so on.

Den

Taxguy77
April 21st, 2012, 05:14 PM
I like trains, and only wish we had the train service here they do in Europe.
My vote is for train.

Phxazzcruisers
April 21st, 2012, 06:44 PM
It is all a personal preference. We have tried, and even thoug the sleepers are nice! We do not get a good nights sleep in a train

Beach Nut
April 21st, 2012, 08:45 PM
Google 'Seat 61', a load of information of how to travel by train!

Richard

Thank you for the great new travel site. :)

lsmommy
April 21st, 2012, 09:29 PM
I would fly. I flew Easy Jet last summer Paris to Barcelona and it was really reasonable price wise and had more time to spend in both Paris and Barcelona. I thought about taking the train, but I was glad to have the extra time exploring these 2 beautiful cities instead of seeing the country side from a train.

lovemylab
April 21st, 2012, 09:39 PM
I would fly. I flew Easy Jet last summer Paris to Barcelona and it was really reasonable price wise and had more time to spend in both Paris and Barcelona. I thought about taking the train, but I was glad to have the extra time exploring these 2 beautiful cities instead of seeing the country side from a train.

This is precisely why we're flying from Paris to Barcelona as well before our cruise in October. We're also flying with Easy Jet and got a great price :)

Cruise Junky
April 21st, 2012, 10:18 PM
easy Jet, no question

pris993
April 22nd, 2012, 01:29 AM
We have flown on Air France -- looked into taking the train, decided to fly.

chefcaw
April 22nd, 2012, 02:14 AM
We flew to Paris before our transatlantic cruise from Barcelona last fall. We flew from Orly airport in Paris to Barcelona. The flight was about 50 minutes. We took the RER from the centre of Paris to Orly and then a quick flight to Barcelona. Fly instead of the train. You have to change trains in the south of France to connect to the train for Barcelona. The train was also about 10 hours. Spend the extra time enjoying Barcelona

Chris

hillsprint
April 22nd, 2012, 02:56 AM
One word of caution, the Carry-On bag size on European airlines is smaller than I've seen in the US

sddsddean
April 22nd, 2012, 05:30 AM
We used the overnight Elipsos train both ways in 2008. If you are going to do it, go Grande Classe. You get an evening meal and breakfast included. The 'cabin' was a bit cramped and we had to put one of our bags in the shower (so no shower in the morning!). Here are a few photos to show the size. My wife is sitting on the bottom bunk and the top bunk is folded into the wall behind her.

http://img3015.photobox.co.uk/3328164148f60f9e0c73b73aff4ccd897f6b4dd5cdfb7796c0 0c4a395011c9604de6ef92.jpg (http://photos.orange.co.uk/my/photo/full?photo_id=1476966208)

http://img3015.photobox.co.uk/882108769c857af0012d3339e294ecf27b454908f726c7a919 beade74eb38f4397bcf1e9.jpg (http://photos.orange.co.uk/my/photo/full?photo_id=1476966210)

(Bathroom is behind the door on the right)

http://img3015.photobox.co.uk/054388407d567c1af5179284049e865dfe8c2f66b45fcc58fd e4123566a8ae988582b5b6.jpg (http://photos.orange.co.uk/my/photo/full?photo_id=1476966214)

(Managed to get 2 bags onto the overhead storage shelf)

http://img3015.photobox.co.uk/09585072cdc5a1ce6018b59883446569c6742b3ca7713ccc7f d0040be2ff059536524e8c.jpg (http://photos.orange.co.uk/my/photo/full?photo_id=1476966220)

Bathroom (the toilet is to the right out of sight)

I think we left Paris about 6pm and arrived in Bcn at 8am. It wasn't too bad a trip and the main reason we did it rather than an cheap flight was the luggage allowance, as on the train you can more or less take what you like.

Simon

sjaak
April 22nd, 2012, 05:54 AM
If you go to www.tgv-europe.com (http://www.tgv-europe.com) you can find all information on the trainschedules. I did a quick search and found this 2 possibilities.

Leave at 7:15AM from Paris Gare Lyon and arrive at 12:41PM at Figueres Vilafant. This journey takes 5 hr 26min. Travel by TGV (high speed train).
TRANSFER: 22 min. Leave at 1:03PM from Figueres Vilafant, arrive at 2:46PM at Barcelona Sants, total 1 hr 43min, by (normal) train. Prices start from $124.

Or leave at 11:58AM from Charles de Gaulles Airport Paris by TGV and arrive at 3:32PM at Nimes, total 3 hr 34min. Leave at 5:09PM from Nimes, arrive 7:40PM at Figueres Vilafant, total 2 hr 31min by TGV. TRANSFER: 16 min, leave at 7:56PM from Figueres Vilafant, arrive at 9:45PM at Barcelona Sants, total 1 hr 49 min by train. Prices start from $221.

Just check out the site and look for more possibilities.

Keep in mind that if you travel by TGV, you will travel lots of miles where you will have no view since the traintrack is often hidden between 2 soundwalls (don't know if you have those in the USA?).

Denny01
April 22nd, 2012, 09:02 AM
And if you go to the eurorails site you'll find the overnight train that does not require you to change trains:

http://www.eurorailways.com/products/night_trains/paris_to_barcelona.htm

Not sure why others keep looking at the tgv site which requires a changeover.

This run, again, is at night, gives you all day in Paris, gets you to Barcelona at 0830 (I was off an hr) and is basically a hotel room while you travel with a Gran Class sleeper at $298.

Enjoy. Lots of neat options.

Den

Dale
April 22nd, 2012, 09:58 AM
We flew to Paris before our transatlantic cruise from Barcelona last fall. We flew from Orly airport in Paris to Barcelona. The flight was about 50 minutes. We took the RER from the centre of Paris to Orly and then a quick flight to Barcelona. Fly instead of the train. You have to change trains in the south of France to connect to the train for Barcelona. The train was also about 10 hours. Spend the extra time enjoying Barcelona

Chris

We have traveled from Paris to Barcelona by train and by plane. The plane wins for us. Our experience with the train was as you described, spend the extra time in Barcelona.

gem lady
April 22nd, 2012, 10:21 AM
Thanks everyone!

CruisingGatorGirl
April 22nd, 2012, 12:07 PM
We leave in ONE MONTH (!!!!) for our 13 day round trip Barcelona cruise, followed by a week in Paris. We decided to fly to save time. I would prefer train so we can see the countryside but it just takes too long, too much luggage etc. for this trip we decided to fly :(

joandian
April 22nd, 2012, 12:55 PM
We fly BCN to Paris on Air France and didn't have to worry about the luggage issue. I ended up booking a return fare and just didn't use the return part and it was hugely cheaper to do that then book a one way. Our return portion was an very early morning flight that cost 10 Euro.

Hawaiidan
April 22nd, 2012, 05:30 PM
Go to the eurail site and get a saver pass, first class, where 2 persons can travel for the price of one. You can select it for 3 or more days and up to 5 countries. While in Paris you can take the train to all sorts of places.
CGD is a nightmare of tubes and tunnels...the trains are great, very easy changes. luggage. we traveled last year with 2 29" sampsonite wheelies.... they are a dream to manage. no carts ever needed.

Train Train Train..... TGV is fantastic...