Paris and Suburbs Steam Railway Holiday
New for 2019 is an exciting trip to northern France staying in the iconic capital. Let us show you the classic sights in inimitable Inside Track style. Add to the omelette three steam railways, trams and a floodlit Seine cruise and we have the perfect French dish! We say this holiday is new, but that’s not strictly true, more rejuvenated perhaps. The last time we did it the exchange rate was 10.4 French Francs to the Pound!
We’ll meet up at St Pancras International and take a lunchtime Eurostar to Paris. After a short stroll to Gare de l’Est we’ll check in and time is allowed to brush up, take an early meal and get to know the environs. Then, we’ll hit the metro for the first time and finish up with a floodlit cruise on the River Seine – a magnificent rolling vista.
We’ve a lovely day in store away from the city and we start by metro and RER with a journey to Fontainbleau. Time is allowed to explore the stately rooms in the famous Chateau here which was inhabited by every sovereign ruler of France between the 12th and 19th centuries. Then, we take a drive through the forest for an afternoon of steam at the CDF Tacot des Lacs. Five kilometres of country railway in the forest and even crossing a river on a slightly rickety bridge!
In the morning we’re going by tram and metro into the suburbs for steam at le Parc de Chanteraines. Then a scenic (ish) RER journey delivers us to Malesherbes where we meet up with our coach and transfer to Pithiviers. This ex sugar beet line has been running as a tourist railway since 1966. With our coach at our disposal we should be able to get some good pics as well as ride the line and visit their museum. RER takes us back into the city when we are ready.
Today is our discover Paris day. No sitting in the traffic for us. We take to the Metro popping up at appropriate point to take in the sights. Notre Dame, Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, Champs Elysees etc, etc. Should get a river bus in as well and the only funicular railway in northern France takes us to Sacre Couer. This is innovative sightseeing indeed – a busy day on your feet for sure but you’ll see the lot!
You can either take it easy this morning, do your own thing, or join in with an accompanied, and very pleasant, track-bed stroll. About midday we collect our luggage from the hotel and walk to Gare d’Nord to catch a Eurostar to London arriving mid afternoon.
The Holiday Inn – Paris Gare de l’Est
Directly opposite the station and with a subway entrance on the pavement outside this hotel could not be better positioned for our particular brand of city touring. Modern, airy rooms, free wifi, tea/coffee making facilities and a pillow! – what more could you want. You could just stay in and live on room service but there are loads of restaurants immediately available for your culinary delights.