Train routes and times

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Apr 29th, 2001, 08:24 PM
  #1
Scott
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Train routes and times

I know this has to be a frequently asked question, but I would like some information on specific train times and routes.

1. Is there a direct route from Paris to Pamplona? If not, what is the fastest route by train? And the travel times for both of these options?

2. What's the best/fastest route from Valladolid to Nice, and how long is the train ride?

3. Nice to Rome?

4. Venice to Munich?

I'm sorry if I am being difficult in any way, but I have absolutely no concept of how long these travel times are...I have never been to Europe before...
 
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Apr 29th, 2001, 08:36 PM
  #2
Tony
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Go to http://www.reiseaukunft.bahn.de/bin/...rotocol=http:&
and with a few clicks you can check out all your options for yourself.
If any of your towns don't have a railway station, you may need a map to track down the nearest one.
 
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Apr 29th, 2001, 08:38 PM
  #3
Bob Brown
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Scott, let me suggest that you go to the French National Railway
System web site and look up the answers for yourself. The place to go is
www.sncf.com. SNCF is the acronym for the national railway system in France.
If you will look to the right side of the screen, there is a little symbol of the Union Jack. Click on that and the English version will be shown. You will need to ask for English more than once, unless that little quirk has been fixed since the last time I used the French system.
Your questions are of such a detailed nature that the chances are small that any of us has all of that information in our heads. And, finding the answers requires a non trivial time investment.

The Venice to Munich question will probably be best answered by consulting the German Rail Web Site. You will find it at
http://bahn.hafas.de/bin/detect.exe/bin/query.exe/e

This will be in English.
 
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Apr 29th, 2001, 08:44 PM
  #4
Tony
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Some of your itineraries sounded a little off beat, so out of curiosity I checked your first one. Paris to Pamplona is 20 hours with 2/3 changes, so you will obviously need to plan a strategic break of journey somewhere interesting such as Barcelona.
 
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Apr 29th, 2001, 08:59 PM
  #5
nospam
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I'd recommend a Thomas Cook rail guide so that you can look at actual maps with train routes, intermixt with schedules.
 
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Apr 29th, 2001, 09:05 PM
  #6
jahoulih
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One addendum to the advice that Tony and Bob have given: The French and German sites don't tend to show all the routes within Spain, so you'll also want to look at the Spanish site,

http://www.renfe.es

It's not as good as the other sites, however, in that it doesn't do connections--you have to figure them out yourself. For your Paris to Pamplona trip, you may be able to do a little better than what Tony found: You can leave Paris at 7:43 p.m. and get to Vitoria at 4:12 a.m., and then (Monday through Saturday, beginning May 28) get a Spanish regional train at 7:50 a.m., arriving in Pamplona at 8:59 a.m.
 
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Apr 29th, 2001, 09:20 PM
  #7
Bob Brown
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Tony: I think you looked at the German site. I looked at the French one out of curiosity also because of the seemingly odd set of destinations posed by Scott.
According to the SNCF site, TGV 8543 leaves Gare Montparnasse at 15:55 and arrives in Irun at 21:26.
At 22:40 another train leaves for Pamplona, arriving about 1 AM.

It is a nutty schedule, but the best the SNCF had to offer.

There may be another way to do it, but this one is at least not a 19 hour marathon. Just a 9 hour middle of the night variety of one.
 
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Apr 29th, 2001, 09:30 PM
  #8
jahoulih
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Well, there's another interesting fact: The Spanish site doesn't show any direct connections between Paris and Irun. The train Bob mentioned doesn't show up, even though it comes into Spain, presumably because it's a French train. I'm beginning to think nospam has the right idea.
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 06:54 AM
  #9
Bob Brown
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Two points here. 1. I did originate the idea of the TGV to Irun; the SNCF web site did. 2. What assurances do we have that the Cook book is any more accurate than the web sites we have consulted?

The German one did not mention the schedule via Irun either, but that alone does not invalidate the information from SNCF. I have never been to that part of Europe, so I don't
know how accurate train postings are.
If the SNCF board is passing out wrong information, we are in for some crazy train trips.
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 07:37 AM
  #10
jahoulih
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I didn't mean to suggest that the schedule via Irun was wrong or invalid. On the contrary: My only point was that none of the websites seems to have complete information. The route via Irun doesn't show up on the Spanish site, because it involves a French train; the route via Vitoria doesn't show up on the French site, because it involves a Spanish regional train; neither route shows up on the German site. I have no reason to think any of the sites is handing out inaccurate information, but none of them gives a complete picture. I'm not sure, but I think the Cook book might be better for this purpose than any one of the websites.

Poor Scott may decide to take a plane after reading all this!
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 08:11 AM
  #11
Bob Brown
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I reread my posting and I think I phrased my statements badly. The Rex virus has hit me too. So no need to think I am out of focus or anything. Interesting how emotions stimulated by one issue can influence emotions when dealing with unrelated issues.


For Scott. Welcome to Fodors. If Ben Haines was around these days he would in his on own well-informed way say "Welcome to Europe."

(For those of you who read this and have not benefitted from Ben's erudite and well written postings, he is the unchallenged rail guru of this board. He has ridden more European trains than I have seen.)
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 08:22 AM
  #12
Paulo
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The best way to travel by train from Paris to Pamplona must be undoubtely through Irun.

The RENFES site shows (schedules valid between April 17th and June 9th - after which some changes may be in effect) the following direct trains:

a) daily, train 530, departure at 10:10am, arrival at 12:18pm
b) Fridays, train 950, departure at 7:47pm, arrival at 10:09pm
c) daily except Saturdays, train 930, departure at 10:40pm, arrival at 0:55am

Both, the French and German rail sites are consistent regarding the Paris-Irun options.

So, on top of Bob's option (which doesn't seem to work on Saturdays at least according to RENFE) you could take a night train from Paris Austerlitz at 11:14pm, arriving in Irun at 7:34am. In case you're travelling on a Friday, you may take either the direct TGV departing Paris Montparnasse at 11:25am, arriving in Irun at 4:55pm, or the 12:45pm TGV, chaging in Hendaye and getting to Irun at 6:46pm.

Paulo
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 08:42 AM
  #13
Paulo
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Continuing ...

If none of the limited options outlined above satisfies, I'd try something else.

There are frequent trains from Irun to Madrid. They all stop in Altsasu which I'd bet (am not sure) is where the trains to Barcelona branch off. Altsasu is not that far from Pamplona. Only about 50km. I'd bet you wouldn't have any problems finding a bus service between the two cities. Even if you had to catch a taxi it wouldn't be the end of the world.

From Irun to Altsasu RENFE gives the following options (up to June 9th)

train Irun Altsasu
06000 08:15am 09:46am daily except Saturdays, Intercity train
00283 08:45am 10:16am daily
00250 09:15am 10:42am Saturdays only Talgo
00413 01:15pm 02:47pm daily
06002 03:17pm 04:52pm daily, Regional Express
00200 03:45pm 05:07pm daily except Saturdays, Talgo
11202 03:45pm 0:5:07pm only Saturdays, Intercity
06004 07:42pm 09:19pm daily, Regional Express
00204 10:15pm 11:58pm daily

Paulo
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 09:32 AM
  #14
Paulo
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Your options from Valladolid to Nice don't seem very bright You may either:

a) take the 0205 Costa Vasca sleeper leaving at 1:42am, arriving in Hendaye at 7:35am; depart on 4142 train on 8:35am to Toulouse (arriving at 12:41pm) and change to 4623 train (departing at 1:29pm, arriving in Nice at 7:38pm)

b) take the 0203 Intercity leaving Valladolid at 12:25pm, arriving Hendaye at 4:50pm; change to the 4678 sleeper leaving at 5:40pm, arriving in Nice at 7:45am.

The option through Paris shown in the German site doesn't show in the RENFE site, so I'd be suspicious ...

Paulo
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 09:55 AM
  #15
jahoulih
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Paulo, by "the option through Paris" do you mean EN 407 leaving Valladolid at 21:20, arriving Paris Austerlitz 8:27, then TGV 845 from Gare de Lyon at 11:12, arriving in Nice at 17:43? The first train shows up for me on RENFE--it's the Tren Hotel "Francisco de Goya," originating in Madrid, so I think it's a real option. But it's probably quite a bit more expensive than either of the routes you suggest.
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 01:18 PM
  #16
Scott
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Thank you all for your suggestions!

I don't know if this has any bearing on these suggestions, but should I have mentioned that I will have a Eurail pass?
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 02:12 PM
  #17
jahoulih
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Hi, Scott -

The only difference it makes that you'll have a Eurail pass (and, I assume, don't want to spend much money on top of that) is that you'll want to avoid the fancy Spanish night trains like the one I just mentioned in my previous post. They tend to charge big supplements on top of the pass. On other night trains (including some in Spain, like--I think--the Costa Vasca that Paulo mentioned), you'll just have to pay a supplement of about $20 for a couchette and a reservation (or even less if you don't want a couchette and just want to sit in a seat all night; though some night trains--Nice to Rome, for instance--don't have this option, and only have couchettes and sleepers). You'll also have to pay a few dollars for a reservation on TGV trains in France.

You'll find that Nice to Rome and Venice to Munich are simpler and quicker than the legs of your journey that Paulo detailed. There are direct overnight routes in both cases (Nice to Rome: leave 20:35, arrive 6:48; Venice to Munich: Leave 22:17, arrive 6:33), and also lots of options during the day (e.g., Nice to Ventimiglia 8:04 to 8:48, Ventimiglia to Rome 9:15 to 16:57; Venice to Munich direct 13:30 to 20:30).

By the way, I concur with Bob Brown's comments re Ben Haines; but Bob, Paulo, and Tony have also given much wonderful advice on train travel and other matters.
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 02:36 PM
  #18
Bob Brown
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I enjoy travel, particularly by train in the day time when I can see what goes by without having to concentrate on driving. It is a shame that passenger train service in the USA is virtually non existent except for the Washington DC to New York.

Every time someone asks a question about trains and timetables, I like to do a little looking around at schedules. I always learn something, and usually the ideas of other posters give back to me more than I gave.
If, collectively, we can combine and help someone have a good trip, then we have done our volunteer jobs.
I have heard the saying that you get out of something what you put into it. I think I get a little more back from Travel Talk than what I put into it.
I think this exchange, which started when we were trying to help Scott, shows how this board can be very effective. We all gave the best information we could find within our knowledge and time constraints. There was no saying that the other one was a dumb xyz. No one was insulting or criticizing. Just a good exchange of what we knew and what we could find out.
And, Scott, in case you read this and wonder why I am saying this, please bear in mind that we have had some very acrimonious exchanges lately. This one shows how the board could and should work.
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 04:06 PM
  #19
Rex
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Apparently, some of my anonymous and pseudonymous posts have upset some people (I've made hundreds of them - - often under the name, [email protected]). So little by little, I'll unmask some of them, if and when they appear in the top 50. Sometimes, there was no reason for me to have posted anonymously other than to mask what time of day I was on the computer. Neonatology has quite a round-the-clock nature, and sometimes I am sitting at a computer while I am on call, or waiting for something to happen.

This one was mine, just last night.

===========================

Author: nospam ([email protected])
Date: 4/29/2001, 11:59 pm ET

Message: I'd recommend a Thomas Cook rail guide so that you can look at actual maps with train routes,
intermixt with schedules.

==========================

Best wishes,

Rex
 
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Apr 30th, 2001, 05:50 PM
  #20
Paulo
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Yes, Jahoulih, I now see that it's indeed there. I didn't find it, because I was looking for trains from Valladolid to either Burgos or Vitoria/Gasteiz (shown as intermediate stations in the German site). What didn't occur to me was that possibly one isn't allowed on the EN 407 from Valladolid, say, to Burgos. Also, I hadn't noticed that some cities outside Spain are also listed as options (actually on my video it's very hard to read those tiny city names

One other point I noticed was that, according to the German site, French trains run into Irun, but not out from it. On the other hand, Spanish trains run into Hendaye, but not out from it! It's as if the French (Spanish) train cross the border into Spain (France) with passengers but return empty ...

Paulo
 
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