Ligne des Causses & the Vivarais

Arch Bridge &Cathedral Saint-Nazaire at Beziers - © Alex Tihonovs shutterstock
Bridge over the Rhone at Tournon
Vivarais Railway - © Bob Cable
Vivarais Railway - © Bob Cable
Vivarais Railway - © Bob Cable
Garabit Viaduct - © Leonid Andronov shutterstock

Holiday Highlights

  • Ride the Ligne des Causses from Clermont Ferrand to Béziers
  • Steam on the old Vivarais network
  • Free time in Béziers
  • Journey by rail through stunning scenery
  • 7 days from £1,625pp
BOOK NOWTailor this tour for independent travel

Tour Dates:
Tuesday 13 September to Monday 19 September 2022

Journey on the remarkable 'Ligne des Causses', France's longest single track line to the South of France and enjoy steam on the country's famous Vivarais Railway that runs between the Rhône and the Loire rivers.

ITINERARY

Day 1 – London to Lille

Leaving London St. Pancras early afternoon we take the Eurostar to Lille for a 1-night stay. We arrive mid-afternoon and the rest of the afternoon and evening is at leisure to explore this city.

Day 2 – Lille to Clermont Ferrand

Today we continue southwards on a mid-morning TGV to Lyon where we connect with our onward train to Clermont Ferrand arriving late afternoon for a 1-night stay.

Day 3 – Ligne des Causses

Ride the spectacular Ligne des Causses. Starting from Clermont Ferrand we head to the town of Béziers in Southern France, passing en route the Massif Central, gorges, valleys, vineyards, tunnels and viaducts. Highlights include the 'Viaduc de Garabit' built by Gustave Eiffel, which spans the gorge of the river Truyère and is now a national monument, and the descent into the deep valley of the Tarn. There is only one direct train a day on this line that winds its way south at a leisurely pace. We arrive into Béziers in the evening for a 1-night stay.

Day 4 – Beziérs to Tournon

A morning at leisure in Béziers. The St. Nazaire Cathedral lies upon a hill and aside from its own impressive features, offers great views over the surrounding area. We take an early afternoon train to Valence where we will continue our journey to Tournon by coach arriving late afternoon. We have a 3-night stay in Tournon.

Days 5 & 6 – Steam on the Vivarais

Spend 2 full days riding the lines of the old Vivarais network. We plan to offer travel on both the Rhône (Tournon, St. Jean de Muzols to Lamastre) section, and the Loire-side lines operated as the 'Voies Ferrées du Velay'. Past experience suggests there will be options for journeys with steam locomotives (both sections have Mallets), railcars and locotracteurs. The vélorail (cycle railcar) also provides a different perspective of travel along the line and some spectacular scenery.

Day 7 – Homeward Bound

A morning coach to Valence to begin our rail journey back to London via Lille. We arrive into St. Pancras late afternoon.

Tour Route

Tour route map

Selected Hotel

Hotel La Valiz, Lille

Mercure Clermont Ferrand Centre Jaude, Clermont Ferrand

Mercure Béziers, Béziers

Hotel Azalées, Tournon

Please note - hotel can be subject to change

Price Includes

  • All rail travel as stated in standard class
  • Accommodation in good quality hotels on a bed and breakfast basis
  • All coach transfers as stated
  • 2-days on the Vivarais network
  • Services of a tour leader from London and throughout the tour

Price per person

Escorted holiday: £1,625
Single room supplement: £260
Deposit for this holiday: £100

Booking form

Download your tour booking form here.

Download

Why Choose Ffestiniog Travel?

  • UK's first rail tour operator to run an overseas escorted rail holiday in 1974
  • Created for people who love rail holidays and exploring the world’s heritage railways
  • Dedicated rail holiday specialist - great destinations, sightseeing and unparalled railway content
  • Train ticket supplier for worldwide rail operators - we can plan and arrange your rail journey to anywhere
  • Knowledge of the world’s rail routes makes us leading specialists in escorted and Tailor Made rail holidays
  • Over 60% of our existing rail tour travellers return to holiday with us year after year
  • Committed to supporting rail travel and heritage railways around the world
  • Our profits support the continued preservation of the famous Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railways
  • Small, dedicated rail holiday travel team offering an award winning personal service

Logos

Pharos Response AITO Quality Charter