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For railfans: London-Paris train to the past

1997 Golden Arrow special                 Photo: Oxyman / Wikimedia


For railfans, and for nostalgic travelers in general, this fall brings an opportunity to relive the days of the boat trains and ferry from London to Paris...and with steam locomotives as well.


The October 9 excursion will recreate the Golden Arrow service that connected the two capitals from 1926 to 1972, starting with the boat train to Dover, then the ferry to Calais, and the French Fleche d'Or train the rest of the way to Paris. It's being run by the Railway Touring Company, which specializes in historic rail trips. Both trains will use vintage coaches from the 1930s to 1950s and restored locomotives.


The Golden Arrow service originated as a first-class sleeper service; regular first-class and standard were added later. By the time it ended in 1972, air travel had eaten into the demand for rail service. Last laugh for rail, though: once Eurostar service through the Channel tunnel began in 1994 the tide flowed the other way.


The excursion includes the London-to-Paris roundtrip and two nights hotel in Paris. For more detail on the excursion from the Telegraph (UK), click HERE. For more on tickets and availability, click HERE.



The best part of every trip is realizing that it has upset your expectations

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