Above pic: Nancy Station under a beautiful sunset
As a train fan we're always looking forward to hopping on a train, whether it be a commute, or something much longer, like a hop across the channel on the Eurostar and onto the north-east/east region of France.
If you've been following our instagram page, you'll have seen that we posted some pics of our journey and asked a few questions along the way. The shots were candid i.e. of the roof at St Pancras and an exit (depart) sigh, in the facade at Gare du Nord (congrats to instagrammer Fw.Kelly who somehow got that one). Boarding our train on Sunday morning meant that it was not too busy a journey, but the Eurostar was packed.
It was a speedy and uneventful sprint into the 50-odd km tunnel and then onto Paris. A quick 10-minute left-right walk then got us to Gare d'Lest, for about a 90-min trip to Nancy by TGV. Relatively flat and not that inspiring countryside flashed past on what looked like to relatively new line.
Nancy is a large-ish station with connecting services to Metz, Stasbourg and Luxembourg for example. We took the 30-min service to Metz a day or so after our arrival. Well, 30 minutes on the way there as we took the stopper on the way back which took an extra 20-min and was air-conditioned by opening the windows. Still this enabled us to see more of the sights, such as they were. The views of forested hill-tops and rivers were much appreciated and there were quite a few industries along the line with plenty of trackage and what looked like a coaling facility for coal trains (Mrs OfftheTracks was less impressed with the latter).
Nancy is worth a visit for the Place Stansislas - a UNESCO world heritage site. It is stunning and construction began in 1752.(more on this in a planned in-depth article in Off the Tracks (autumn issue). With easy connection from the UK and other points across mainline Europe we'd say go there!
Oh, there's also a model train shop just across from the station called Nancy Train... yep, we did go there too...
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