Your holiday summary

Holiday type Escorted tours
Country France
Travel type Train
Price range From £1025
Travel partner Travel Editions
Duration 7 nights
Need help with your booking?
0330 333 6761

Christmas in the Savoie by rail

Spend a peaceful Christmas surrounded by the wild and wintry rugged landscapes, fragrant evergreen forests and sparkling lakes of the Savoie region. Based in Château des Comtes de Challes, a converted 15th-century fortified house, explore the culturally rich cities such as Annecy, Chambéry and Aix-les-Bains. This tour is based at the atmospheric, family-run three-star Chateau des Comtes de Challes, set in extensive grounds about 6km from Chambéry and offering local cuisine as well as comfortable accommodation.


  • Return standard class Eurostar and TGV trains from St Pancras or Ebbsfleet to Lyon via Lille returning from Chambery via Paris with coach transfer in Paris
  • Seven nights' accommodation on dinner, bed and breakfast basis at the three-star Chateau des Comtes de Challes, based on shared occupancy of twin room
  • Festive Christmas Eve dinner and Christmas Day lunch and dinner
  • Transfers and full coach touring itinerary conducted by tour manager
  • Tour manager throughout

Not included

  • Single room supplement
  • Room upgrades for twin/double occupancy - "Charming room" (nicer decor) or Junior Suite (with sitting area). Upgraded rooms are not available for single occupancy Standard Premier/first class upgrade on Eurostar/TGV. On the Eurostar this constitutes upgraded seating and light meal with complimentary drink with upgraded seating only on the French railway leg
  • Meals other than those stated
  • Items of a personal nature such as drinks, laundry, telephone calls etc
  • Porterage and gratuities

Day one

Travel by Eurostar from St Pancras or Ebbsfleet to Lille and onwards by TGV to Lyon. On arrival, transfer to the village of Challes-les-Eaux (approximately one and a half hours) and the Chateau des Comtes de Challes to check-in for a seven-night stay on dinner, bed and breakfast basis.

Day two

Full day in Chambéry with a guided tour and free afternoon for personal exploration with Christmas Eve dinner at the hotel this evening. Chambéry has guarded the mountain passes that lead to Italy for centuires. Originally just a château built by the Count of Savoie in 1232, the town grew around it and became an important commercial and cultural centre - there is plenty of Italianate architecture from this golden age to admire. Highlights include its much loved Fontaine des Eléphants, Chateau of the Dukes of Savoy dating back to the 14th century and 17th century country house, Le Charmettes, once home to the philosopher Rousseau.

Day three

Day free to relax with festive lunch and dinner at the hotel.

Day four

Full day tour to Abbaye d’Hautecombe and Aix-les-Bains. The tranquil Abbaye d’Hautecombe, located on the shores of Lake Bourget, is a former Cistercian then Benedictine monastery and burial place of the House of Savoy. The spa town of Aix-les-Bains, known since Roman times, is renowned for the healing qualities of its waters. The elegant Belle-Époque buildings, that sprung up in the late 1800s, are best enjoyed at a relaxed pace whilst the Faure Museum houses a collection of Impressionist works and Rodin statues.

Day five

Full day tour to Lyon. Rich from industry that spans back to the 16th century, Lyon is a clean and charming city, particularly known for its gastronomy – it is said that the old town has the largest concentration of restaurants in the world. There are plenty of cultural attractions to visit including a textile museum, a Gallo-Roman Museum and the impressive Basilica Notre Dame. There is much enjoyment to be had wandering the warren of streets in the older quarters of the city, where you’ll find lots of Renaissance buildings and a multitude of restaurants to choose from.

Day six

Full day tour to Grenoble and Chartreuse. Grenoble is a vivacious place nestled amongst the peaks of the Belledonne, Chartreuse and Vercors mountains. Being a university city it is cosmopolitan with a buzzing arts scene whilst at its centre you’ll find a tightly packed maze of modern and medieval buildings. Travelling into the Chartreuse massif you will find a landscape of peaks, valleys, pine forests and pastures. The name is perhaps best known from the Carthusian monastery named from the mountains, as well as the liqueur that was produced by the monks and is still produced in Voiron today.

Day seven

Full day to Annecy and Lake Annecy. One of the most attractive and popular towns in the French Alps, the town of Annecy sits on the banks of the lake of the same name surrounded by alpine scenery. The imposing château on the hill and the Palais de l’Ile provide much historical interest, and you’ll find the canals and narrow passages of the 16th century old town enchanting. One of the largest lakes in France, Lake Annecy is surrounded by mountain scenery and attractive towns and villages.

Day eight

Transfer to Chambéry for return TGV to Paris and onward Eurostar to Ebbsfleet or St Pancras.

NB: Exact order or excursions may vary according to local conditions and tour manager's discretion.

Please note the maximum group size on this tour is 49 passengers.
Chateau des Comtes de Challes

This tour is based at the Chateau des Comtes de Challes, located in the pretty village of Challes-les-Eaux about six km from Chambery. Dating from the 15th century this atmospheric hotel was converted from a fortified house and offers a very high level of comfort and service. Facilities at this family-owned hotel include an elegant restaurant (where dinner is included each evening), bar, grounds, outdoor pool and charming, well-appointed rooms with private bath/shower, TV, telephone and minibar (rooms in the original chateau building are available at a supplement).

This holiday is booked by phone. Click 'book now' to make a reservation request to our travel partner who will call you back to confirm your booking details and take payment. To speak to a representative now please call 0330 333 6761.

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Departure date Nights Price  
23-Dec-2014 7 1025.00 book