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Further question re Day Trip Paris to Reims

Further question re Day Trip Paris to Reims

Jun 28th, 2007, 02:10 PM
  #1  
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Further question re Day Trip Paris to Reims

We were going to do a day tour to Reims with a tour company but a previous poster has been advised by Fodorites that it is quite doable on your own.
Could I ask a couple of questions please?

Can you just buy your TGV ticket on the day. How much is the return train ticket to Reims. And how would we get from Reims to Moet & Chandon?

Many thanks.
stormbird is offline  
Jun 28th, 2007, 02:31 PM
  #2  
 
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yes, I imagine you could just buy a return TGV ticket from Reims with no problem at the station. It costs 28 euro second class. I don't think Moet is in Reims, though, it's in Epernay as far as I know and the TGV doesn't go there.

A regular train goes to Epernay and it's pretty small so you could easily walk to Moet from the station. I think Mumm is the closest to the station in Reims, not sure, as I didn't go there. You could walk or take a taxi to a champagne cave in Reims, depending on how far you are willing to walk. I think the closest one is over a mile.

Christina is offline  
Jun 28th, 2007, 02:36 PM
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I took SNCF (not TGV) train to Reims, bought ticket day of my trip. I guess you have the choice of the slow/fast train.
Michel_Paris is offline  
Jun 29th, 2007, 05:35 AM
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good news, I just checked the distance and Mumm is only 1 km from the train station, so that's not bad at all. They have a map on their website www.mumm.com

Reims tourism website lists all the champage houses there, I think Mumm, Taittinger and Piper-Heidsieck are the majors. This website seems to be missing a lot, but does have the names of the champagne houses and their links
http://www.reims-tourisme.com

Christina is offline  
Jun 29th, 2007, 06:26 AM
  #5  
ira
 
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Hi S,

Train schedules, prices, etc are at www.voyages-sncf.com

ira is offline  
Jun 29th, 2007, 07:27 AM
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If your goal is just to do Champagne tours Epernay is the place - i understand the houses there are more prestigious than those in Reims (many companies have one in both) and the town is small and very manageable.

Reims has more other sights such as the world-famous cathedral but Epernay is a sweet ordinary regional French town as well. Easy trains to Epernay as well and all the houses are clustered together i think a short stroll from the station.
PalenQ is offline  
Jun 29th, 2007, 02:24 PM
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I agree with Palenq there is more to Reims that champagne. The catherdal is steeped in History and well worth a visit. I went a few years ago we also did the Mumm Champagne Tour. We throughly enjoyed it. We were not too sure where is was so we got a Cab from hotel in the center. It was about 7 or 8 Euros in the taxi to get us there.
crazychick is offline  
Jun 29th, 2007, 04:53 PM
  #8  
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Hi everyone,
Thanks for the replies. It seems it's only about 20euro return train fare on the TGV (Thanks for that Ira!)

I don't think we just want to do champagne and would be most interested in the cathedral at Reims but I understand you can hire a self guided audio tour.

I think we will train up to Reims and also catch the train over to Epernay (about 10 euro return) and back to Reims for the trip back to paris.

A guided tour seems to cost upwards of 100 euros (with no lunch). I think doing it on our own would be much more cost effective. Does it seem reasonable to you to go to Reims and Epernay in one day?

I really appreciate all the assistance folks!
stormbird is offline  
Jun 29th, 2007, 06:19 PM
  #9  
 
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We visited Reims on a Sunday day trip last June - actually we didn't actually get on the train until noonish- and it was very workable. Get there early for your ticket, though - at least last year the ticket sales lobby of the train station (is it Gare du Nord?) was inoperative, and the signs coming out of the Metro totally confusing. We wound up wandering around for a very long time until we realized we had to go outside the front of the station to a temporary space outside - the lines were long and by the time we had out tickets we had missed our train and had to wait for the next (these arent TGV though). Hope this situation is ended, but be aware that you may face complications and plan accordingly.

Reims is really a cool town - I was sorry our actual visit was rushed - rushing to the tourist center for info, then rushing to Mumm, etc. Its an attractive, prosperous town - the major street heading into the center is full of cafes, pastry shops and promenading locals, the cathedral is truly wonderful, impressive and bright with both excellent stained glass and some clear glass so you can see the gothic form inside very well - the old town behind very interesting, with quite a lot of half-timbered but also art noveau houses. Atmosphere very diff from Paris, which has little in the way of old buildings.

Since we were late Mumm was the best choice and it turned out to be excellent - when you enter, the price is based on what tasting you choose for the end - my daughter noticed that a couple of the tastings - I think the 2 varieties and one of 3 - actually represented 5 different types, so we agreed to do one of each and share. The tastings at the end were fun and really illuminating about the actually quality and style differences between the different types of champagne made , and they wound up pouring us a 6th wine too so we even went out in the sun a little tiddly. I thought the people who just gulped a single glass and left missed out on a convivial, educational, delicious part of the experience(I suspect the actual cellar tours are about the same at all the houses - this was an impressively huge establishment.

Another really great thing - directly across the street from Mumm is a chapel decorated entirely by Leonard Foujita, a Japanese modern artist (d. 1966, was a contemporary in Paris of Modigliani, Picasso Leger et al). When we got there, the keeper had locked up and was leaving, but he took pity on us, reopened and we had a full tour. Really fascinating and original stained glass fresco and sculpture decoration, a rewarding visit.
jjkbrook is offline  
Jun 29th, 2007, 06:56 PM
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I was just in Reims a few days ago and it is totally doable on your own. I would highly reccommend TGV high speed train, it now only takes 45 minutes and is a very comfortable trip (but it is approx. 20 euros per person each way). We toured Pommery and Mumm and I would recommend them both. I am not at all a fan of Taittinger - they threw a wrench into our whole day by assuring me that I did not need to make a reservation but could just show up during business hours and take a tour. Wrong. When we showed up we were told we were out of luck. Then, of course, virtually all the other houses were booked up with reservations. Mumm was extremely nice and accommodated us at the last minute and gave a great tour. You can wait to book the TGV tickets if you want, but I booked online and printed them out in advance and it was really easy. Whatever you do with the train, I would definitely reserve the Champagne tours you want to do well in advance.

To get around in Reims you can take cabs or they have a decent but system. The tourist office near the cathedral is very helpful and can explain how to get where you need to go and give other info, I'd highly reccommend a visit to their office.
audreyleigh99 is offline  
Jun 29th, 2007, 10:53 PM
  #11  
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Once again, thanks very much for the valuable info.

Do you think we'd have to book a champagne tour in November Audrey?

Thanks Stormer.
stormbird is offline  
Jun 30th, 2007, 04:58 AM
  #12  
 
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I don't think you can pay a ticket for 20 euro on the TGV for that route except perhaps one-way and in advance as a PREM (you can get PREMs one-way even cheaper, but those are advance purchase fares and nonrefundable and nonexchangeable regarding the time). I'm not looking at the schedule now, but I did when I posted the 28 euro fare, and I'm pretty sure that was the cheapest fare for any reasonable time where you would be returning to Paris (late afternoon), and for buying it last minute, which would be a regular fare. They do have some fares more around 20 euro that are not PREMs, but they are not the TGV, but the regular trains and involve a change in Epernay. They used to have regular trains that did not have changes between Reims and Paris, but it appears they don't anymore with the TGV going through there.

I realized there may be some confusion in the use of your word "return fare" as you say return fare TO Reims. I thought you meant from Reims, and were using that term to mean one-way. But I believe the British use that term to mean a roundtrip ticket (although the French do not, so on SNCF, you will see either one way or "aller-retour" for roundtrip). In any case, the fare is not real high.
Christina is offline  
Jun 30th, 2007, 07:18 AM
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Does anyone know what the prices are for a visit to the Champagne Caves?
maia_was_here is offline  
Jun 30th, 2007, 07:38 AM
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I think there are some restrictions on buying fares for the TGV immediately before departure. As others have suggested, the best option may be to book and pay for the tickets onlne (www.sncf.com) and select the option of obtaining the tickets from a machine at the train station (borne libre service), where you'll have to insert the credit card you used for payment and provide the reference number.

We really enjoyed our visit to Reims last year and wish we had more time to look around. We visited Pieper-Heidsieck), whose tour is rather glitzy but has very good champagne. It's worth it to pay for the more expensive tasting (3 champagnes, including one vintage champagne) and you get to do the tasting in an environment modelled on a nightclub. We booked our visit a few days in advance.

If you have time to do more than one champagne tour, I'd recommend choosing a house that offers less glitz and more educational value than Pieper-Heidsieck. (We learned more from the other tastings we did in Epernay and at small champagne houses en route.)

Note that, on a day trip, it can be tricky to coordinate visits with other sightseeing activities because of opening hours. When we were in Reims, on a summer Sunday, we went for the champagne tour first (a start time of around 9:30 am, which meant that we were drinking champagne around 10:15), then headed over quickly to the Surrender Museum (which was scheduled to close around 11:45 for lunch) and then afterward to the Cathedral (which wasn't open in the morning because of Sunday services).
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