We are planning a trip to this area to see where my mothers ancestors came from but are having trouble finding local buses or options. We looked into renting a car but all most all are only manual transmission, to get an automatic is twice the price and has to be picked up in Paris. Any suggestions? thx Wendy
Bus routes in the Moselle departement around Metz are at http://www.cg57.fr/lestransports/. "Plan du reseau" is the network map and "horaires" is timetables.
Hi, I did something like this over ten years ago from Metz but going out to a certain village to see the battlefield museum and sites west of Metz. At the Metz train station ask where you can catch the buses going to the outlying villages. There is a bus depot at the station. Don't be surprised if a particular bus only runs only a few times a day. Depending on how many villages you're going to in that region, you would be much better off renting a car. Paying extra for an automatic is usually the case. What about renting the car from Strasbourg? Might that help?
In this area, you'd be better off with a car, IMO, and I generally prefer to travel by train. Why would you have to rent the car in Paris? Surely you can rent one in Metz. Yes, automatic transmissions are more expensive, but it might be worth it in terms of ease of getting around and time saved.
Yes, I didn't try when I went to Metz, but rural bus services in France can be very sparse, and timed to get schoolchildren and/or elderly shoppers from the village to the bigger town and back again.