Located in the heart of the 10th arrondissement, a ten-minute walk from the Gare de l’Est, the Gare du Nord is Europe’s most important railway station and the third largest in the world in terms of traffic flow, with over 220 million visitors per year.
Most incoming trains depart from northern France, but the station also serves important international destinations such as London via Eurostar or Belgium and the Netherlands via Thalys. The Gare du Nord was inaugurated on 14 June 1846 with the opening of the Paris-Amiens-Lille line. Today we admire its modern neoclassical style and its majestic façade adorned with twenty-three statues by famous sculptors, one for each city that was served by trains at the time.
The Gare du Nord is located in the Saint-Vincent-de-Paul district, a decidedly un-touristy and very popular area. Like many areas around urban stations, it is permeated by a multi-ethnic and colourful atmosphere, characterised by the presence of numerous inexpensive Indian restaurants, which are mainly concentrated along the rue du Faubourg St. Denis, which flanks the station.
The station consists of four main areas: the Eurostar Terminal, on which around 6.6 million passengers board every year, the Quai Transversal the beating heart of the station offering a varied Parisian and international catering service, the -1 and – 2 levels, where hundreds of thousands of passengers pass every day on the numerous metro and RER lines.
The Gare du Nord station is a crucial point in the connections between Paris airports and the centre of the French capital. It is therefore a nerve centre from which most arriving tourists will pass.
Those landing at Charles de Gaulle Airport are likely to arrive at the Gare du Nord: in fact, the station is the first stop on the RER B that connects the airport to the city centre.
You should allow about 20 minutes for the journey.
If you arrive at Orly Airport, you will definitely take the Orlyval light metro to Antony station, and from there continue with the RER B to Gare du Nord.
The Gare du Nord is the terminus of one of Europe’s most important trains, the Eurostar, which connects France to Britain, passing through the English Channel and disembarking directly in London.
Eurostar trains follow the procedures and formalities of an international air link: tourists must follow precise boarding operations very similar to those at airports, with passport control, luggage control and arrival at least 30 minutes before the scheduled departure time.
The station is connected to the Paris metro: lines 2, 4, 5 and 7 stop at level -2.
The Gare du Nord is also connected by numerous bus lines: 26, 30, 31, 35, 38, 39, 42, 43, 46, 48, 54, 56, 65, 350. Please note that the number 26 goes to St. Lazare, the number 65 to the Gare de Lyon and the number 43 to the Gare de l’Est.
The Disneyland Paris Express shuttle to Disneyland Paris also stops here, the quickest and most convenient way to reach the park.
Sleeping near the Gare du Nord is a good solution for those who need to stay close to important urban and international transport hubs.
There are also hotels around the station with much cheaper rates than in other areas. Those who do not have a large budget can consider this option, considering the strategic location and the presence of numerous restaurants.
City Card allow you to save on public transport and / or on the entrances to the main tourist attractions.