Paris is a major rail destination, with services arriving from Spain, the UK, Belgium, Germany, and - of course - plenty of domestic cities. A common stop-over point for long-distance journeys across the European continent, Paris has numerous stations, with each one serving different routes. It also has an efficient Metro, which knits the stations together, usually making transfers fairly easy.
Those coming from northern locations such as Amsterdam, Brussels, or London will arrive at the Gare du Nord, around one mile north of the city center. Trains from the south of France will generally arrive at the Gare de Lyon, the busiest station in France. Many trains from Italy or eastern France arrive at Bercy. Services from Spain and the southwest usually terminate at the Gare d'Austerlitz, while those from the west tend to stop at Montparnasse.
Most domestic services into Paris will be operated by SNCF, which runs high-speed trains from Marseille, Lyon, and other major French cities. InOui also offers some services, which tend to be marginally slower. Trains from London to Paris are provided by Eurostar, while Thalys offers trains from Brussels and Amsterdam, and DB runs trains from German cities.
Rail travel offers a range of benefits when heading to Paris. For starters, the TGV services used by SNCF are extremely fast and tend to compare favorably with flight times. Stations are usually centrally located, and those in Paris all have Metro connections, so there's no need to travel to out-of-town locations to catch a train, which makes them even more convenient. Many people prefer the experience of rail travel and seeing the French countryside unfold before them.
Travelers heading to Paris should purchase a Paris Visite Travel Pass as soon as they arrive. This card provides unlimited access to the city's public transport network and the wider Ile-de-France region, so it's handy for reaching Versailles or Disneyland Paris, as well as central attractions. It's also a great way to explore under-appreciated Parisian locations. From the winding roads of Montmartre to photogenic locations like the Palais Royal or Saint-Chappelle, France's capital has endless delights to share.