Tailormade tour Ile de Ré by train holiday France

7 nights/8 days

Ile de Ré • Saint-Martin-de-Ré • La Rochelle

This holiday by train to the Ile de Ré includes seven nights on this picturesque island off the Atlantic coast, renowned for its bright sunlight, swathes of natural, sandy beaches, pretty villages, fishing ports and weathered buildings. You travel by Eurostar to Paris and then change to a TGV service to La Rochelle where you collect your hire-car (or we can arrange a car transfer instead of the use of hire-car if you prefer). Explore this charming island, enjoy the beaches, and venture back on to the mainland for day excursions.
Holiday price guide

Available year-round subject to the opening period of the hotel, from £2,110 per person.

Luxury single-centre rail holiday to the Ile de Re with or without hire-car

Highlights

Ile de Ré • Saint-Martin-de-Ré • La Rochelle • Atlantic coast • Visit Baleines lighthouse • Beaches • Rochefort

Day by day

Your luxury rail holiday to the Ile de Ré starts with a mid-morning departure on Eurostar from London St Pancras to Paris, where you change stations to take the high-speed TGV train to La Rochelle on the Atlantic coast of France. We recommend you leave London just before 10.30 hrs in order to reach La Rochelle just after 18.00 hrs. You collect your hire-car from the station, and it is a 35-minute drive to your hotel in Saint-Martin-de-Ré on the Ile de Ré where you spend 7 nights.

You have six full days at leisure to explore the Ile de Ré. There are many interesting places to visit within a short distance of the hotel, by car, on foot and by bike, as well as places of interest further afield. Your hotel is situated on the edge of the port in Saint-Martin-de-Ré, a UNESCO world heritage site and a pretty, fortified town and Vauban citadel. This charming town is a maze of narrow, cobbled streets with a pleasant harbour lined with shops and restaurants. It is worth hiring a bike or taking a leisurely stroll to explore other harbour villages and golden beaches such as Plage de la Cible and Le Bois Plage. Visit the Ernest Cognacq Museum to discover the history of the island: art collections, archaeological findings and historical documents describe island life over the years.  Another interesting sight is the Phare des Baleines lighthouse, about 30 minutes from your hotel by car. The vantage point of the lighthouse enjoys panoramic views of the island of Ré at a height of 60 metres. There are 257 steps to climb which lead to the top. There are two museums in the north of the island which are worth visiting to discover the region’s fauna and flora. There is the eco-museum of the salt marsh and the Maison du Fier set in a former salt warehouse. La Rochelle is around a 30-minute drive away and offers an attractive old town and historic port and harbour with numerous interesting public buildings to see, such as the Town Hall and 15th Century houses.  Perhaps have dinner one evening here at one of the many fish and seafood restaurants. Visit La Rochelle towers, three towers which are remains of mediaeval maritime fortifications. There are also museums here including the Bunker, home of U-Boat officers during World War II and the New World Museum, which explores colonial history. Further afield, about a 50-minute drive from Ile de Ré is the town of Rochefort. The historic centre is home of the Royal Rope Factory dating from the 17th century.  Places to visit include the Navy Museum with models of 18th and 19th Century ships and an International Sea Centre. Within your seven day stay here on the Ile de Ré, there is ample choice between rest, relaxation, visits to beaches, sailing and water sports, cycling and walking, visiting museums, local arts and crafts and markets and exploring a little further afield.

Enjoy a final, leisurely breakfast at your hotel before you check-out. Return your hire-car to La Rochelle station before taking the TGV back to Paris, with a change of stations, and then the Eurostar from Paris to London. There is a service that leaves La Rochelle just before 11.30 hrs and you arrive in London just after 17.30 hrs, making it a very comfortable day’s journey.

Holiday price guide Prices from £2,110 per person based on two people sharing a deluxe double or twin room and including standard class rail travel. Supplement for standard premier/first class about £190 per person.

Holiday Code FRBR15

Luxury single-centre rail holiday to the Ile de Re with or without hire-car

Holiday price guide Prices from £2,110 per person based on two people sharing a deluxe double or twin room and including standard class rail travel. Supplement for standard premier/first class about £190 per person.

Holiday Code FRBR15

Our prices include ● Standard class Eurostar and second-class TGV from London to La Rochelle return (standard premier/first class can be booked at a supplement)
● 7 nights’ bed and breakfast in a deluxe room at Hotel de Toiras, Saint-Martin-de-Ré
● Hire of a group B car for 7 days or car transfer instead of hire-car
● 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 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.
La Rochelle station to Saint-Martin-de-Ré: 35 minutes by car

Luxury single-centre rail holiday to the Ile de Re with or without hire-car

Highlights of Bordeaux

Visit vineyards and chateaux, for tasting and buying. Visit the oyster beds. Experience the Cognac distilleries, and the Romanesque architecture. Bordeaux is the historical centre for wine however you may also visit the villages of the wine region such as St Emilion.

Climate in the Bordeaux Region

Average air temperatures 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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