Getting to Provence
Where is Vaison-La-Romaine?
What airport is the closest to Vaison-la-Romaine?
Vaison-la-Romaine is an ancient Roman village of 5,600 inhabitants situated 47 kilometers northeast of Avignon.
The closest major airports are at Marseille, Lyon and Nice. Marseille is approximately an hour and a half drive from Vaison, Lyon approximately 2 1/2 hours by car, and Nice airport 2 3/4 hours (without traffic).
There are small airports also at Avignon (fifty minutes) and Nîmes (1 1/4 hours) both nearby cities, with direct links to Brussels, London (not the major airports), Liverpool and Southampton (England).
Montpellier airport (1 1/2 hours) flies to London Gatwick daily.
There are direct connections by TGV (France’s super-fast bullet train) from Nice (3 hours), Marseille (35 minutes) and Lyon (50 minutes) to the Avignon TGV station. From Lyon the connection is direct from the airport. At the other two cities you must take a slower train (TER), taxi or bus from the airport to the train station.
What train station is closest to Vaison-la-Romaine?
There are a number daily fast trains (TGV) from the PARIS-GARE DE LYON station to AVIGNON. The trip takes less than three hours. All major rental car agencies can be found at the train station. For best rates, it is advisable to reserve your car from the U.S. securing a fixed rate in advance.
Avignon is about 1 hour away from Vaison. Please note that the Avignon-Centre station is in the center of Avignon, whereas the Avignon-TGV station is 6 km from the town center.
Because rental car facilities are extensive and convenient at the new TGV station, when reserving, Avignon-TGV is preferable to Avignon-Centre. You may also want to consider arriving in Orange, which is closer to Vaison but has few car rental facilities.
Do I need a car in Provence?
You will need transportation, so a car is highly recommended for your convenience while you are in Provence. Note that Chanteduc is a steep two-mile hike above Vaison-la-Romaine. If you do not have your own car, you can arrange with a local taxi service to transport you from your hotel to Chanteduc each day. (We have found in the past that students staying at the same hotel quickly group together to organize their shuttle service.) If you are arriving at Avignon train station, taxis there can take you directly to Vaison-la-Romaine, or you can arrange for transportation with Clerand Taxis, the friendly and reliable Vaison company that we use (up to 7 passengers per vehicle): Tel +33 4 90 36 00 04, Fax +33 4 90 36 32 01. They can also deal with English email firstname.lastname@example.org. The trip from Avignon will take about an hour. The fare is about 120 euros one way. Uber drivers are also available in Avignon, but not Vaison.
Will transportation be included during the program?
How do I find train schedules and make train reservations from Paris or Nice?
Transportation is provided for any organized excursion.
Many students fly into either Paris or Nice and take the TGV to Avignon. The TGV trip to Avignon is approximately 3 hours from Nice and 2 hours 40 minutes direct from Paris Gare du Lyon. The train is a very pleasant way to see a lovely stretch of the French countryside. We recommend that you book first class TGV tickets as the accommodations are more spacious and the price difference is not great.
TGV tickets can be purchased approximately 90 days before the departure date. If you order in time, RailEurope will deliver your tickets to any U.S. address. We strongly recommend a direct connection with no changes. And if you'll be returning to Paris or other departure
point, be sure you book round trip – aller/retour in French, return in British English. Pay attention also to departure and arrival terminals -- Paris-CDG (Charles de Gaulle) for the airport terminal, Paris Gare de Lyon for Paris, and Avignon TGV for Avignon.
For detailed driving instructions in English see Michelin UK.