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Traveling from Amsterdam to France in late May

My sister and I (both active late 60's) will be spending 6 days in France in late May/early June. We will have just completed a week in Amsterdam. I would love to discover Normandy and spend a couple of days there and spend a few days in Paris. How is the best way to do that? Take the train to Paris and venture out from there? Or take a bus to Lille and rent a car and drive around Normandy, then drop the car in Bayeux and make my way via train to Paris? Thanks for your suggestions.

Posted by
3 posts

Yes. I do enjoy driving. I just wondered if anyone had a better option or tip I should be aware of. Thanks.

Posted by
6670 posts

There's train service from Amsterdam to Lille, changing at Brussels, takes about 3 hours. The drive kerouac2 suggests would be fun and scenic, but would take 4-5 hours with no stops (Lille-Bayeux). So that's a whole day and a tiring one. Six days isn't much time for Paris and Normandy.

The Thalys train from Amsterdam to Paris takes about 3.5 hours, then you can take another train to Bayeux, a good base for Normandy, about 2.5 hours. You'll have to change stations in Paris (Gare du Nord to Gare St-Lazare), maybe half an hour in a taxi. Or spend your Paris days before heading to Normandy. Depending on your interests you could take a D-Day tour from Bayeux or rent a car (maybe easier from Caen (before Bayeux on the same train line). If you're flying out of CDG, you could take the car back there and avoid returning to Paris -- but preferably not on the day of the flight in case of any delays.

As kerouac2 said, "better" is your own call. I like driving in France and would enjoy the trip he suggests, but I've been to Paris and Normandy before.

Posted by
3 posts

Thanks. I have been to Paris before - not that once is ever enough! Given the timing of our visit (first week of June), I would really want to see and learn about Normandy.