Le train du vin - London to Bordeaux direct

Saw this reported in yesterday’s Sud Ouest and also in the Times, and thought it might be of interest to those of us who live in this part of the country.

Seems plans are being prepared again to enable passengers to travel from London to Bordeaux by train in 5 hours, although potentially only by 2026.


Shame it is 3 years away, now that I hardly drive anywhere, and would certainly not do so again back to England, I would be interested in that.

Back in the 90s when this was still a holiday home and I had to go back for work Fran stayed on here to water newly planted trees and then took the train from Angouleme to Waterloo via Lilles. Trouble free and I arranged to be in London with a full length lorry and trailer (not an artic) and amazingly found a parking spot on the road just outside the station. There was some work going on which meant that one lane was closed off but, as no-one was actually working there they let me in. I closed the curtains and went to bed with the alarm set for arrival time. :rofl:


Apart from this new service, I’ve been reading about an increase in sleeper train services throughout Europe as an alternative to flying. Very appealing.


I think the environmental benefit is what appeals to me most about this story. Flying may be quicker but 5 hours from Bordeaux to London is certainly acceptable. Just hope the price isn’t exorbitant.


Factor in the not having to sit bored in a departure lounge for what feels like eternity and it’s quite attractive


You can already do train to waistline….Eurostar runs direct services from Lyon to London during the season. 5h to London as have to do customs in Lille, or 4.45h to Lyon as hoes straight through.

So UK based gastronomes can have a treat and pile on a few pounds.

I just wish there was a better service to Munich without having to go to Paris.
At the moment I have to go to Chalon sur Saone and then take a train with one change.

I remember after I had had to leave my car in Lyon for repairs after a breakdown the insurance provided me with a hire car back to Perigueux and offered me a rail ticket to go back when it was ready. I too had to go via Paris or even backwards to Bordeaux and I asked them if I could have a hire car again and pay the difference. After discussing it for 2 minutes with a supervisor the lady on the line said that I could have the car and nothing more to pay. :grinning: That was in the days when they were a helpful company, and agency. :roll_eyes:

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Don’t know if it’ll help or not, but there are moves to improve service between European countries

Europe's high speed rail network is about to get bigger, faster and cheaper, under new EU plans | Euronews.

Not yet.

Very interesting but those examples mentioned are not particularly long distances and I can’t help harking back many decades when the Orient Express used to run from London to Istanbul, didn’t it?

No Channel Tunnel of course but the train, minus the engine I think, rolled complete onto a specialised ferry at Folkestone. In fact it has always been Fran’s one ambition to ride that train because, when I was away driving to Italy in the 80s, she would sit in the bay window of our top floor flat watching the train roll slowly down the hill over the level crossing 100 metres away. She could see the passengers sitting comfortably inside, sometimes eating and drinking at their dinner tables… :joy:

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My Mum always wanted to go on it too. If my lottery numbers come up then I’m going to buy her a ticket on the new service when/if it relaunches.

I’ve an idea it only goes as far as Venice these days, and not from England either, but I could be wrong

No, I think you’re right. I believe it’s now owned by the Accor group, which is French, so it will go to/from Paris in future. I’m sure I read somewhere that although currently it only goes as far as Italy, they were hoping to eventually go so far as Istanbul.

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You still need a lottery win, just a bit smaller. This is the mini orient express that runs along Spanish northern coast. I’ve never been on it, but have passed and been passed by it several times walking from Oviedo to Santiago. Looked absolutely lovely.


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When I came back from Brazil in 1979 I was a passenger on one of the Blue Star Line cargo boats. They only carried nine passengers and my cabin looked like the interior of the luxury train - all brass and wood. Just beautiful. :slight_smile:


Having spent a lot of time in the USSR in the 80’s and Russia in the 90s , I’d love to do the trans siberian from Moscow to Vladivostok. The current situation really needs to be resolved first though …


That was my plan back in about 1970 when I came home for a ‘holiday’ from Sydney, but I was keen to persuade friends and family to come back to Oz with me, there were no immigration issues in those days. But nobody was interested and I met and married a divorced lady with 3 children and the disappearance of their father prevented us from taking the £10 scheme back again. Which is why I am here now and not there. :roll_eyes:

@SuePJ I would have loved to do that, passenger on a freighter (supernumerary) but these days it doesn’t exist for people over a certain age, with no doctors on board it is an insurance issue I think.

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These days it a poor old callcentre agent with no discretion …. “Computer says no”.

I like train journeys too. back in the nineties we did the Blue train Jo’burg to Cape town and then a couple of years later the Ghan from Adelaide to Alice Springs. We were in Dawin last year and should have done Ghan from there to Alice but I left it too late to book :roll_eyes: The Lyon to London run sounds good. I hope the kerfuffle described below is sorted out ASAP