Summer in Provence as Eurostar starts direct services to Avignon on 8 July

29 Jun 2006

--The weekly direct service runs to 9 September 2006--Fares from just £99 return
Eurostar, the high-speed train service that links the UK, France and Belgium, launches its weekly direct service on Saturday 8 July to Avignon in the heart of Provence. This is the fifth successive year Eurostar has operated this popular service which takes just over 6 hours from London and 5 hours from Ashford, in Kent.
It's so easy and relaxing journeying on the direct services. It gives travellers time to plan their itineraries, brush-up on French phrases, watch the lovely scenery whiz past or have a stroll through the train - a much better alternative than lengthy check-ins at airports. Standard class returns are available from just £99 and for those who want pampering with meals, wine and champagne served at seat, then Leisure Select is available from just £249 return.
The Eurostar arrives at Avignon Centre station, which is immediately opposite the historic city walls. This station is distinct from Avignon TGV where the French TGV services operate and is a bus ride away from the city. For those who want to base themselves within the walls, Avignon Centre provides travellers with real ease of access as it is only a short walk to one of the city's attractive hotels.
Visitors to Avignon, which sits on the banks of the River Rhône, can enjoy the stunning 14th Century Palais des Papes - Popes' Palace, Pont d'Avignon - the famous ruined bridge, or, simply wander the medieval streets taking in the splendour of the city's architecture.
There is also the renowned Avignon Festival which runs from 6 July to 27 July. Artists from around the world perform and this year it promises to be even more spectacular as it is celebrating its 60th birthday.
For those who want to explore Provence and its picturesque villages, vineyards, historic sites and wonderful scenery captured by many famous artists including Van Gogh, car hire is available via or the Eurostar Contact Centre on 08705 186 186.
Avignon, and over 60 other French towns and cities, are accessible all year round with Eurostar Connections - combining a Eurostar journey to Paris or Lille and an onward journey by a French TGV service.
Timetable Avignon weekly direct services:
Outbound: Waterloo: 07.09; Ashford: 08.02 - Avignon Centre: 14.12 (local times)
Inbound: Avignon Centre: 16.30 - Ashford: 20.35; Waterloo: 21.30 (local times)
Editors Notes:
Eurostar is the fast train service linking London, Ashford, Paris, Brussels, Lille, Avignon, Calais, Disneyland Resort Paris and the French Alps.
2. In autumn 2007, with the completion of the UK high-speed line to London St Pancras, journey times will be reduced still further. London to Paris will be 2hrs 15mins, London to Brussels will be 1hr 51mins and London to Lille 1hr 20mins.
3. Eurostar has won the title of "World's Leading Rail Service" for the last eight years at the World Travel Awards.
4. Eurostar and Eurotunnel are two entirely different companies with two different management teams. Eurostar is Eurotunnel's largest customer.
5. To book tickets for Eurostar, or to find out more information, go to, call 08705 186 186 or contact your travel agent.
For more information:
Eurostar Press Office, +44 (0) 20 7922 4494,