Paris to Nice by train

How to take the train from Paris to Nice

There are now three options for taking a train from Paris to Nice.

During the day can only take high speed trains, but both the regular TGV InOui services and low-cost, but more basic, Ouigo services share the route.
It's particularly worthwhile to click on the Train Guides below so that you can compare the two train services.
However, if you need to arrive at a specific time you will often have to take one train service or the other.
The Ouigo services can plug gaps between the TGV InOui departures.

There is also now the option of taking an overnight train, which conveys couchette berths and reclining seats, but no sleeping cabins.
However, it gives the opportunity of arriving in Nice just after 09:00

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Routes

Option 1: travelling by a regular TGV service

Travel Information

Note that these trains depart from the Gare De Lyon in Paris.

The trains which are usually scheduled to depart from Paris at:
11:24 (not Saturdays) and (19:18 on Fridays) are the fastest trains TGV InOui services of the day.
They are the only TGV InOui trains, which still take the direct route and do not call in Marseille.

The other departures now call at Marseille-St Charles station; where they will reverse direction.

Final Destination: Nice
All trains also call at: Toulon, St Raphael-Valescure, Cannes and Antibes

Mon-Thurs: 4 or 5 x trains per day
Friday: 6 x trains
Saturday: 5 x trains
Sunday: 4 or 5 x trains

Tickets

Book early and save: Yes

Online bookings usually open: 4 months ahead of the travel date, but bookings can open sooner when SNCF is running a promotion.

When looking for tickets on Oui.SNCF tick the 'direct trains' box; on Trainline tick the 'fastest journeys' box.

The price is dictated by demand per departure, so book ahead and try and be flexible re: your departure and arrival times, as trains leaving earlier or later can be cheaper.

Expect to pay more for this journey between the beginning of June and mid-September, particularly if you will be travelling on a Friday or Saturday - as the most heavily discounted tickets inevitably sell out faster at times of particularly high demand.

However, when you now look up this Paris to Nice journey on Oui.SNCF or Trainline, you will now see that some departures are now operated by the cheaper, but more basic Ouigo trains.

Seats will automatically be assigned when booking tickets for this journey, but rail pass users will need to be pay a reservation fee prior to boarding these TGV trains.

Where to book
Ticket Provider Approximate Cost
SNCF Connect from €55

SNCF Connect Guide

SNCF is the national rail operator in France and not so long ago it recently simplified both the range of tickets and the term and conditions of using them.
Therefore the cheapest tickets also become more flexible too.

Other improvements included a simple integration of travelling with bicycles and rail pass users being able to book reservations for national journeys, without paying booking fees.

And it also recently launched SNCF Connect as replacement for its Oui.SNCF booking service.
You can set up a low price alert( to let you know when the cheapest price is available for a future journey.

Something else to look out for is that simplest way of travelling with tickets is to use the SNCF Connect App, as booked tickets can therefore be stored on your mobile device, which can then be shown to the train conductors as proof of purchase.

SNCF Connect on Google Play

SNCF Connect in the App (Apple) store

SNCF also operates RailEurope, which is in effect a dedicated online booking service for making bookings from outside of Europe.
If you reside outside of Europe you may discover that SNCF Connect rejects phone numbers or card numbers, but RailEurope won't do so.
Though RailEurope will add booking fees when making a purchase

Download the SNCF Connect App from €55
SaveATrain from €55

SaveATrain Guide

Happyrail from €55

Happyrail Guide

Happy Rail is a Netherlands rail ticket agency which sells tickets for both national and international journeys within a range of countries including Belgium France, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland.

HappyRail doesn't charge booking fees in the conventional sense, but if you're not Dutch you can expect to pay additional transaction fees, which will be added to the total cost.
That's because the most common form of online payment used in The Netherlands is 'iDEAL' and HappyRail doesn't charge a transaction fee for 'iDEAL' payments, but only Dutch residents can sign up to 'iDEAL'.
Other forms of payment include Visa debit cards will incur a fee.

RailEurope from €55
Trainline from €55

Trainline Guide

Omio from €55

Omio Guide

Omio is an online ticket agency which offers tickets for rail journeys in France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy and Spain.

The three key advantages of using Omio are

  • it offers prices in multiple currencies
  • it usually offers price comparison with other modes of travel including flights and buses
  • when visiting Europe, you can book journeys in multiple countries in one transaction.

The disadvantage of booking with Omio is that it often adds a booking fee to the final price; therefore when it does so without offering a price advantage, SMTJ doesn't tend to offer Omio as a booking option.

On this journey

Journey Features

Scenic - YesHigh Speed (partial)Coastal views

Good to Know

The low-cost, but more basic, Ouigo trains now provide a direct alternative to these InOui trains for a daytime journey from Paris to Nice.

If you want to take the first or last* train of the day from Paris to Nice, you will need take those Ouigo trains.
*Everyday except when there is an additional InOui departure after 17:00

Between Marseille and Toulon Between Marseille and Toulon
Between St Raphael and Cannes Between St Raphael and Cannes
Between St Raphael and Cannes Between St Raphael and Cannes
Between Cannes and Antibes Between Cannes and Antibes

This is a journey of contrasts, between Paris and the Marseille suburbs, the train will travel on the high speed line.

After Marseille the train will slow down, but this gives more of an opportunity to take in the scenery

If your reserved seat is on the right of the train (when facing the direction of travel) once the train has passed through the Marseille area, there are some fabulous views of the Cote d'Azur.

Particularly between Marseille and Toulon and from St Raphael to Antibes.

All of the images were captured from the right of the train

This is a journey on which it is worth choosing Upper Deck seats and departing from Paris sufficiently early, so that you can really appreciate the final couple of hours of the trip.

Option 2: taking a more basic Ouigo service

Travel Information

Final Destination: Nice

When making a train journey from central Paris to Nice, you now have a choice of travelling by standard TGV InOui trains or by these Ougio trains.

So you can now opt to save money, but have a much more basic on board experience, and travel on a Ouigo.

If you want to take the first or last trains of the day from Paris to Nice, you will need to travel by these Ouigo trains - except on some Fridays when there is also a later InOui departure.

2 x trains per day

Tickets

Book early and save: Yes

Online bookings open: 6 months ahead* of the travel date, usually

*Tickets for the alternative service of TGV InOui trainsare usually made available 4 months ahead, so if you look up this journey more than 4 months ahead on Oui.SNCF, you will only see these Ouigo services; but they are not the only option on this route.

How tickets can be booked and used for a journey by a Ouigo train, differs from booking tickets on a TGV (InOui) service.
What is particularly worth being aware of when booking tickets for journeys by Ouigo train services, is that:

(1) 1st class/Premiere tickets are not available.

(2) Reservations are included when booking, as they are on TGV InOui trains, but you can opt to pay a surcharge to select a specific seat (more info is available on the Ouigo 'Train Guide').

(3) You cannot book or collect tickets for Ouigo trains at stations.

(4) Additional fees apply if you want access to a power socket, or to travel with additional luggage; click the Ouigo 'Train Guide' to access more info on the luggage allowances on Ouigo trains; they're more restrictive than on TGV InOui trains.

Though these factors, and more, are why you can make big savings by opting to travel by these Ouigo trains and not on the standard TGV InOui trains.

Eurail and InterRail Pass Users:

Rail passes cannot be used on Ouigo trains, but if you will be travelling with a 2nd class pass, our guide to using rail passes in France, explains why taking a Ouigo train can be worth considering.

Where to book
Ticket Provider Approximate Cost
SNCF Connect from €19

SNCF Connect Guide

SNCF is the national rail operator in France and not so long ago it recently simplified both the range of tickets and the term and conditions of using them.
Therefore the cheapest tickets also become more flexible too.

Other improvements included a simple integration of travelling with bicycles and rail pass users being able to book reservations for national journeys, without paying booking fees.

And it also recently launched SNCF Connect as replacement for its Oui.SNCF booking service.
You can set up a low price alert( to let you know when the cheapest price is available for a future journey.

Something else to look out for is that simplest way of travelling with tickets is to use the SNCF Connect App, as booked tickets can therefore be stored on your mobile device, which can then be shown to the train conductors as proof of purchase.

SNCF Connect on Google Play

SNCF Connect in the App (Apple) store

SNCF also operates RailEurope, which is in effect a dedicated online booking service for making bookings from outside of Europe.
If you reside outside of Europe you may discover that SNCF Connect rejects phone numbers or card numbers, but RailEurope won't do so.
Though RailEurope will add booking fees when making a purchase

Ouigo from €19
Trainline from €19

Trainline Guide

On this journey

Journey Features

High Speed (partial)Scenic - YesCoastal views

Good to Know

If you do opt to travel from Paris to Nice by these  Ouigo trains, you should aim to be at the Gare De Lyon, 30 mins before the train is due to depart.

And that's because you need to pass through 'reception' before boarding a Ouigo train - staff need to verify that all passengers are abiding by the 'rules' of travelling on a Ouigo train, no additional un-booked luggage, no bikes etc.

These Ouigo trains travel on the same high speed line between Paris and Marseille which the TGVInOui trains take.

This is a journey of contrasts, between Paris and the Marseille suburbs, the train will travel on the high speed line.

After Marseille the train will slow down, but this gives more of an opportunity to take in the scenery

If your reserved seat is on the right of the train (when facing the direction of travel) - once the train has passed through the Marseille area, there are some fabulous views of the Cote d'Azur.
Particularly between Marseille and Toulon and from St Raphael to Antibes

All of the images were captured from the right of the train.
(These Ouigo trains to Antibes don't call at Marseille St Charles station, so they don't reverse direction during the journey.

Option 3; travelling through the night

Travel Information

Note that these overnight trains typically depart from a different station in Paris than the daytime services.

Final Destination: Nice
The train also calls at: Toulon, St Raphael-Valescure, Cannes and Antibes

The train is typically scheduled to depart from the French capital at 21:20 and arrive in Nice around 09:10

1 x train per night

Tickets

Book early and save: Yes

Online bookings usually open: 4 months ahead of the travel date, but bookings can open sooner when SNCF is running a promotion.

The ticket for these overnight trains is fairly uncomplicated, when looking up a departure on Oui SNCF, the prices you will see for each accommodation option is the total cost.

Where to book
Ticket Provider Approximate Cost
SNCF Connect *

SNCF Connect Guide

SNCF is the national rail operator in France and not so long ago it recently simplified both the range of tickets and the term and conditions of using them.
Therefore the cheapest tickets also become more flexible too.

Other improvements included a simple integration of travelling with bicycles and rail pass users being able to book reservations for national journeys, without paying booking fees.

And it also recently launched SNCF Connect as replacement for its Oui.SNCF booking service.
You can set up a low price alert( to let you know when the cheapest price is available for a future journey.

Something else to look out for is that simplest way of travelling with tickets is to use the SNCF Connect App, as booked tickets can therefore be stored on your mobile device, which can then be shown to the train conductors as proof of purchase.

SNCF Connect on Google Play

SNCF Connect in the App (Apple) store

SNCF also operates RailEurope, which is in effect a dedicated online booking service for making bookings from outside of Europe.
If you reside outside of Europe you may discover that SNCF Connect rejects phone numbers or card numbers, but RailEurope won't do so.
Though RailEurope will add booking fees when making a purchase

On this journey

Journey Features

NightScenic - YesCoastal views

Good to Know

Before opting to travel by the Intercités De Nuit train, it can be good idea to take a look at the 'Train Detail' info; don't be put off by the lack of an image.
These trains are atypical of European overnight train services.

Between St Raphael and Cannes Between St Raphael and Cannes
Between St Raphael and Cannes Between St Raphael and Cannes
Between St Raphael and Cannes Between St Raphael and Cannes
Between Antibes and Nice Between Antibes and Nice

As it's the final hour of the journey which contains most of the scenic highlights when travelling by train from Paris to Nice, there are some wonderful coastal views to be enjoyed from the right-hand side of the train.
The best of the views come after departure from Les Arcs and as the train is due to leave there just before 08:00, they can be seen year round.

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