is a part of France that is easy to reach.
want to drive can fly to a choice of destinations in or near Provence;
you want to travel to
Provence by car, remember to allow eight to twelve hours' driving from
on where your destination is. The
alternative solution is to take the Eurostar Provence service, which
will take you at high-speed all the way from London St. Pancras to
Avignon or Marseille, though direct services do not operate year-round.
is relatively well served by airports; the main airports
serving Provence are located in Marseilles and Nice, with smaller
airports at Toulon-Hyères and Avignon.
Nimes airport is just
For visitors arriving in Paris, there are plenty of connecting flights
from Charles de Gaulle and Orly airports - or the option of hiring a
four Provence airports are served by direct flights from a number of
UK and Irish airports.
to / from
Bristol, Edinburgh, Liverpool, London Gatwick,
Luton, Stansted, Newcastle
Manchester, London Stansted
City, London Gatwick, London Heathrow
Gatwick, London Luton, Bristol, Manchester, Glasgow
For flights to other French airports, see UK-France
and Drive to Provence
here to check
ferry prices and book online.
driving to Provence, the easiest way is to take a short
crossing to Calais (using P&O
Ferries, Eurotunnel or others),
the French motorway network via Arras,
Reims, Chaumont, Dijon, Bourg-en-Bresse, and Lyon,
avoiding Paris by passing well to the east. (see right)
Much of the driving will be
on fairly clear motorways with a fraction of the traffic found on major
UK motorways. However, the Lyon area and the Rhone valley to the south
are unavoidable bottlenecks. On Saturdays in July and August, traffic
jams and slowdowns can occur anywhere, and are virtually guaranteed in
the bottleneck areas.
If entering France at Boulogne, the eastern
route is still
If travelling from Cherbourg
a good route is to drive via
Orleans, Clermont Ferrand and St. Etienne, or else from
Clermont Ferrand go south via Le Puy en Velay and Aubenas, to
join the Rhone valley at Montelimar. This avoids all major bottlenecks,
but includes about 180 km on single carriageway roads, through
beautiful countryside and hills.
Click for no-tolls
route to Provence (with map)
|The best route for driving from
the UK to Provence:
- From Calais
follow A 26 motorway to Reims
- At Reims:
join A 4, direction Metz Strasbourg.
- At Chalon
en Champagne, rejoin A 26, direction
- At Troyes,
join A 5, direction Chaumont, Dijon.
- At Chaumont,
join A 31, direction Dijon
- At Dijon,
take A 39, direction Dole, Bourg en Bresse
- At Bourg-en-Bresse,
follow A 40, then A 42, direction Lyon.
Lyon, turn off onto A 432 direction Airport Lyon St
after the airport, join A 43 direction Lyon, Marseille.
just 8 km, turn right (south) onto A 46 Lyon orbital,
just follow signs for Marseille
Click here for route
map showing convenient hotels
Train / Train and drive to Provence
means of travelling by train from London to
Provence is to
service to Avignon or Marseilles. This is a seasonal service only.
On other days, take a Eurostar train from
London, Ebbsfleet or Ashford to Paris or Lille.
Changing to a French TGV at Lille Europe, or at Marne-la-Vallée or at
Lyon is easier than changing at Paris, as travellers do not need to
stations or cross Paris; Eurostars and French TGVs share the same
platforms at Lille Europe station.
However for most of the year there are very few handy
connections, so changing at Paris and crossing from Gare du Nord to
Gare de Lyon is often the easiest and quickest option.
Provence involves taking the Eurotunnel
shuttle, then following the motorway as indicated above
Car hire in
Find best rates on car hire in Provence
Compare rates at airports, train stations and city locations.
Holiday cottages & gites in
Provence gites tend to be quickly booked up for the peak season,
notably between mid July and mid August, so booking early is a wise
here to view
gites and holiday cottages
in the Gitelink directory