Train Bleu restaurant sign

The Train Bleu restaurant at Paris Gare de Lyon, ideal for lunch between a Eurostar from London and a TGV to Nice, Milan, Zurich or Barcelona.  Book a table online at

See panorama photo

Lunch in Paris at the Gare de Lyon?

Journeys from London to the South of France, Switzerland, Italy or Spain often mean a morning Eurostar to Paris connecting with an afternoon TGV from Paris Gare de Lyon.  Consider booking an earlier Eurostar & having lunch at the celebrated Train Bleu restaurant, on the main concourse in Hall 1 at the Gare de Lyon. 

Originally the Gare de Lyon's grand buffet opened in 1900, it's decorated in a sumptuous art nouveau style, see  Diners have included Salvador Dali, Coco Chanel and Brigitte Bardot...

3-course 'PLM' menu costs around €74, the Traveller's Menu (served in 45 minutes) €55, the food is excellent, surroundings spectacular, an experience in itself.  Book a table at, but you'll often find one free on the day.

Luggage no problem.  The restaurant lets you take your luggage in and will show you where to tuck it out of the way near your table, they are used to travellers with luggage!  If you can't manage the steps from the concourse there's a lift accessed from the forecourt at the foot of the clock tower, marked with the Train Bleu logo and 'PMR'.

Catching an overnight train from Paris Austerlitz?  Have dinner at the Train Bleu then stroll over the Seine to the Gare d'Austerlitz for an overnight train to the South of France or Spanish border.

Use the Big Ben Bar as a VIP departure lounge.  A leather armchair in the Train Bleu's peaceful Big Ben Bar section is much better than a cafe table on the concourse.  Not the cheapest coffee or beer, but the bar offers comfort, tranquillity & bags of character.

The Man in Seat 61 says:  "This place is special, and beautifully, authentically French.  I ordered a Rum Baba for dessert, expecting the feeble confection served in British restaurants.  A bottle of fiendish Martinique rum materialised on my table.  The waiter reappeared, carrying a generous sausage-shaped sponge roll.  Whipping out a long knife, he slashed the Mark of Zorro into the sponge and flamboyantly emptied half the bottle over the top.  One deliciously dangerous Rum Baba later, I staggered across the concourse onto my train to Nice."

That ceiling...

Ceiling at the Train Bleu restaurant

The ceiling and walls are decorated with paintings of the cities served by the PLM - the Chemin de Fer Paris-Lyon-Mediterranée.  You'll spot the company's initials PLM in various places.  Larger photo See panorama photo.

A meal at the Train Bleu

Train Bleu restaurant exterior, Paris Gare de Lyon Hall 1   Train Bleu restaurant main hall

Entrance to the Train Bleu, up the steps from the main Hall 1 concourse at the Gare de Lyon.  There's a lift to the right & round the side.


Dining room at Versailles?  No, the Train Bleu restaurant for lunch before taking the train to the South of France, Italy, Switzerland or Spain.

Painting of Marseille   Typical starter course from set menu

Beats a burger a Luton airport, any day.


A typical starter from the set lunch menu.

Main course from set menu   The rum-soaked rum baba

A main course from the set menu.


Rum baba.  Watch out for that Martinique rum!

The Big Ben barYour VIP waiting lounge

If you can't stretch to a meal or if the restaurant isn't open, at least have a coffee, a beer and perhaps some tapas in the Big Ben Bar.  Walk into the main entrance and turn left for the bar area.  Make sure you gaze at that ceiling first!  It's not the cheapest coffee or beer in the world, but consider it as the Gare de Lyon's VIP departure lounge, a great & atmospheric place to wait for your train.  These photos show the bar area after its summer 2014 refurbishment, below left shows the bar's main corridor, below right one of the areas off the main corridor, namely the Moroccan room which is my personal favourite.

Big Ben bar - main corridor   Big Ben bar - side room lounge

Passageway tables.


The Moroccan room.

Tapas and an Affligem beer at the Big Ben Bar

Or at the Gare du Nord, try the Brasserie Terminus Nord

If you'd like a decent meal near the Gare du Nord rather than the Gare de Lyon, try the typically French Brasserie Terminus Nord (, just across the road from  the front of the Gare du Nord.  It's good quality French cuisine in classic Parisian brasserie surroundings, and so handy for Eurostar.  Main dishes cost around €20-€24.  Seafood is their speciality, including oysters.

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