Tailormade tour French Basque country by rail holiday France

7 nights/8 days

St Jean de Luz • French Basque country

This holiday takes you by train from London to St Jean de Luz in the French Basque country. We include Eurostar from London to Paris and then a direct TGV service to St Jean de Luz and back. You have seven nights in the seaside resort and charming fishing port of St Jean de Luz, with plenty of time to soak in the scenery of the French Basque country and to explore the coast and places further afield by train.
Holiday price guide

Available year-round subject to the opening period of the hotel, from £1,590 per person.

Luxury rail holiday to St Jean de Luz in the French Basque country

Highlights

St Jean de Luz • French Basque country • Bayonne • Biarritz • Bordeaux

Day by day

Begin your rail holiday by departing on a morning Eurostar from London St Pancras to Paris, before changing station for your high-speed train journey to St Jean de Luz. Enjoy the scenery outside your window as the TGV heads south through Bordeaux. We recommend you leave London at about 10.20 hrs and reach St Jean de Luz just after 20.00 hrs. Your hotel in St Jean de Luz is a short taxi ride from the station. You spend seven nights in St Jean de Luz.

You have six full days at leisure to explore St Jean de Luz and the nearby areas. St Jean de Luz, almost on the Pyrenean border between France and Spain, is renowned for its pretty architecture, sandy beach, gastronomy and light. The coastline here is a mixture of cliffs and sandy beaches, creating interesting scenery, and there are the foothills of the Pyrenees in the distance. This fishing port has a charming town centre, lined with picturesque 17th century shipowners’ houses. Many of the buildings are in the distinctive Basque half-timbered style, often with the beams painted a dark red or green, with matching shutters at the windows. The main shopping street is pedestrianised and called the Rue Gambetta and it’s here that you can buy the Linge Basque, solid, brightly striped fabrics made into napkins, kitchen towels and tablecloths. The Church of Saint Jean Baptiste was the site of the marriage of Louis XIV in 1660. Its interior makes it a unique religious building, split onto three levels, lined by wooden galleries, and adorned with extravagant gold decoration, while in the centre of the main room hangs a model ship, harking back to the nautical history of the town. There is a very popular market, open every day of the week, selling fish, meat, vegetables and local produce, such as sheep’s cheese. Whilst the obvious beach in the town is called the Grande Plage, flanked by a wide promenade and attractive buildings in local style, there are actually four more sandy beaches: Erromardi, Mayarco, Lafitenia and Cenitz, the latter two popular for surfing. St Jean de Luz hosts numerous festivals including a Sardine festival at the end of July and beginning of August, a classical music festival in September and an International Basque Choral Singing Festival at Halloween. Take some time to explore nearby regions by train. To the north is the sophisticated and larger resort of Biarritz, around 15 minutes by train. We recommend walking along the coast to reach Rocher le Vierge where a statue of the Virgin Mary offers panoramic views of the bay. Further inland is the historic town of Bayonne which can be reached in 25 minutes by train. The cathedral city of Bordeaux can be reached in 2 hours 15 minutes by rail, well-known as the historical centre for wine trade in this area, situated on the river Garonne.

Enjoy a final breakfast at your hotel before you check out and take a local taxi to the train station. There is a departure from St Jean de Luz at about 09:43 hrs. With a change of train stations in Paris, you will reach London just after 18:30 hrs.

Holiday price guide Prices from £1,590 per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room and including standard class rail travel. Supplement for travel from 19 June until 31 August £510 per person. Supplement for standard premier/first class about £170 per person.

Holiday Code FRBR10

Luxury rail holiday to St Jean de Luz in the French Basque country

Holiday price guide Prices from £1,590 per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room and including standard class rail travel. Supplement for travel from 19 June until 31 August £510 per person. Supplement for standard premier/first class about £170 per person.

Holiday Code FRBR10

Our prices include ● Standard class Eurostar and second-class TGV from London to St Jean de Luz return (standard premier can be booked at a supplement)
● 7 nights’ bed and breakfast in a classic room at Hotel Parc Victoria, St Jean de Luz
● Concierge service and Expressions Holidays regional helpful hints

Our prices do not include ● Early check-in or late check-out at any hotels (although we can arrange this on request at additional cost)
● Any other services not mentioned above, such as transfers, entrance fees and meals except daily breakfast at each hotel
● Personal holiday insurance. This is essential and cover should be in place from when you book the holiday.
● Local tourist tax, usually between Euros 1 and 3 per person per night, and payable locally to the hotel
● Transfers in Paris

Additional information Dates
This holiday can be arranged throughout the year. Additional nights can be added at any point on this itinerary. Timings can vary depending on the month and day of the week.

Holiday price guide Prices from £1,590 per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room and including standard class rail travel. Supplement for travel from 19 June until 31 August £510 per person. Supplement for standard premier/first class about £170 per person.

Holiday Code FRBR10

Luxury rail holiday to St Jean de Luz in the French Basque country

Highlights of French Basque Country

Sample traditions such as pelota and pimento festivals. Local crafts such as the makhila walking stick, fine linens and Thalassotherapy are also available throughout the region. There are excellent golf courses and sandy beaches. Notice the red and green timbered houses.

Climate of French Basque Country

Average air temperatures by month in centigrade: Jan: 10.0, Feb: 9.4, Mar: 12.2, Apr: 19.5, May: 18.0, Jun: 23.7, Jul: 27.2, Aug: 25.7, Sep: 24.2, Oct: 19.7, Nov: 15.4, Dec: 11.0. Source: Direction de la Meteorologique de France.

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