Can anyone advise me how to get from either Provence (Avignon/Arles) or Nice to Chamonix? Tried following the France Guide book. Couldn't find the right rail route on the snfc website
I'm afraid that, unless you have a car, you're stuck spending most of a day getting to Chamonix. Avignon is your best departure point, but the trip still requires two changes on the train. The fastest route is still six hours long, leaving via TGV at 7:21 a.m. By road, it's about 235 miles, so at least four hours by car from Avignon.
I'm planning my itinerary and Rick's magic overnight train from Nice to Chamonix doesn't seem to exist.
Your fastest (and least expensive) route from Nice would be to fly Nice-Geneve on easyJet and take a bus from the Geneve airport to Chamonix.
If you are willing to rent a car the drive can be scenic depending on your route. this option is only go if you have time to enjoy what's along the way
When I was in Nice I took, based on the RS suggestion, the Chemin de Fer railway as far as Entreveux- but doesn't it go on to Chamonix? It is slow, but it might be more scenic, assuming you will be in Nice.
The Chemins de Fer de Provence railway ends at Digne-les-Bains. It does not go to Chamonix.
We took the train from Nice to Chamonix. It took an entire day (beautiful scenery for the most part), and 2 or 3 changes.
I wish I could give you specifics about times and in what cities we changed trains, but I don't remember. (My mementos are still packed from a recent move and I can't check to see if I recorded it there.) I know we had Eurail passes that covered everything (no extra reservations needed) and that we arrived in Chamonix about 5 or 6 p.m.
This trip took place in April 2006.