About-France.com

Routes to the south of France

Route guide & hotels for the A26 motorway via Reims 

Route guide showing hotels just off the motorway 


Places to stay on the motorway to Italy, Switzerland and south east France

This guide is selective. There are hotels accessible from virtually any motorway exit, but some of these can be a fair distance away and hard to find. And some of them are noisy and not as good as they make out.
This map  shows only hotels that are easy to find, even without a Satnav, recommended by travellers, and mostly very close to the motorway.
► Book online: About-France.com is partnered with major discount hotel reservation sites Booking.com and Hotels.com, and also directly with Accor Hotels  (Ibis, Etap, All Seasons, etc). The links from the map will take you to one of these sites, for reliable online booking at the best discounted rates available.
Well sited motorway hotels can quickly fill up, and advanced booking is is highly recommended. Advanced Internet booking also means plenty of discounted offers that are not available to travellers who just show up at the door.

Unless you particularly like driving in heavy traffic and want to see the Paris ring road, which can be a daunting experience for much of the day, and even worse on French holiday weekends, the route south via Reims is strongly recommended. 

ROUTE GUIDE

    Leave Calais on the  A26  E15  autoroute / motorway following signs for Reims.
Carry on past Arras and Laon, always following A 26 Reims. Do not take the A1 in the direction of Paris, whatever your TomTom or Satnav  tells you. Continue straght on following the  A26  E17 .
A few kilometres after the the toll station at the northern approach to Reims, the A26 joins the A4 Motorway. There is a cluster of hotels just off the A4 motorway at exit 22, Reims Tinqueux,  immediately after the motorway intersection. Otherwise, keep following the direction Chalon en Champagne and Strasbourg. Follow the autoroute A4 almost as far as Chalons en Champagne, where the motorways divide: take the right-hand lane to rejoin the  A26  E17 following signs for Troyes and Chaumont.
If heading for Strasbourg or Germany, remain on A4 motorway after Châlons. Click here for A4 hotels  
 At Sommesous, after Châlons, there is a pleasant small service area with restaurant and snack bar, which is not usually too busy. If you visit this service area, take care when leaving. Unlike most French motorway service areas, there is no separation between northbound and southbound traffic, and it is therefore possible to rejoin the motorway in either direction; make sure that you remember to follow Troyes if going south, Reims if going north.
    At Troyes, the  A26  E17 meets the A5 motorway. From here keep following Chaumont Dijon and Lyon. At Chaumont, the A5 turns into the  A31 E21 , which you now follow as far as Dijon.
     At Dijon you will meet an intersection with the  A39  motorway. At this point you have two options. Either continue down the A31 > A6  in the direction of Chalons-sur-Saône and Lyon, or else turn off onto the   A39   following Dole and Besançon. Either route will take you to Lyon.
Option 1   The  A31  route is a bit shorter but far busier. There is an Ibis Styles (*** with pool) on the southbound motorway service area at Macon - St. Albain, just north of Macon. If you choose the A31, just keep straight on as far as Lyon, where, if heading further south, you will be directed round the full length of the orbital motorway. Traffic gets very dense after Châlons sur Saone, where the A31 joins the A6 from Paris, France's main north-south motorway. At Lyon, follow signs for Marseille or Grenoble or Geneva, depending on your destination.

Option 2     The  A39  route is much quieter and easier driving (not many trucks / HGVs), but a little longer. If your destination is Switzerland or Italy, the A39 route via Dole is strongly advised. For the south of France, follow the A39 motorway to its end at Bourg-en-Bresse, where it joins the A40. Twenty minutes before Bourg, there is an Ibis budget hotel (**) actually on the "Poulet de Bresse" service area, which is a fairly quiet service area in the middle of the country. The hotel is well back from the motorway.
  After Bourg keep following Lyon or Geneva/ Milan depending on your ultimate destination. On approaching Lyon, follow directions for Grenoble or Marseille, depending on your destination.
  To skirt round Lyon, follow signs for St Exupéry airport, then keep following Valence & Marseille, or Grenoble, depending on your destination. If following Marseille, take great care when you join the A 43 Grenoble-Lyon motorway, just after the airport. Traffic bound for the south must take the next exit off this busy eight-lane (2 x 4) motorway, after just five kilometres. The exit is not the easiest of motorway intersections, so keep the signs for Marseille firmly in view, as you do a 270° exit onto the A 46 Lyon outer ring-road.
   From then on just follow "Marseille". This will quickly lead to the A7 Rhone valley motorway; at Orange, traffic bound for Languedoc and Spain branches off onto the A9 motorway. There is an Ibis hotel (**) at the Montpellier-Fabrègues service area just southwest of Montpellier.    
Not the route you wanted?
 Click here for western routes via Orleans or Rouen

► Click any coloured marker on the map and a bubble will show up with hotel details and secure online booking at the best Internet rates

Only hotels that are very easy to find

   

Recommended routes through France to Switzerland:

Traffic heading for central Switzerland has a choice of routes after Dole. One possibility is to go via  A 36  motorway to Besançon,  leave A36 at exit 3, then follow Lausanne or Neuchâtel . Another route is to leave the A39 at the exit for Poligny and then follow ordinary roads across the Jura mountains and into Switzerland.
For eastern Switzerland (Basel, Zurich), follow A36 to Mulhouse, then follow Basel.

Bookmark this page.....
Bookmark and Share

Map Key: (clickable markers)
Upscale classic independent hotels with character
Four-star and quality three star hotels - chains such as Mercure or Novotel
Budget and economy hotels - 2 or 3 stars chains such as Ibis or Campanile
Independent budget hotels
Hotel clusters: more than one hotel of different categories

  Cette page en français:
itinéraire nord-midi par A26

►► Site guide
About-France.com home
Full site index
About-France.com site search
►► Principal chapters on About-France.com :
Guide to the regions of France
Beyond Paris, a guide to the French regions and their tourist attractions.
Guide to Paris
Make the most of your trip to Paris; Information on attractions, Paris hotels, transport,  and lots more. 
Accommodation in France
The different options, including hotels, holiday gites, b&b, hostels and more
Tourism in France
The main tourist attractions and places to visit in France - historic monuments, art galleries, seasides, and more
Planning a trip to France 
Information on things to do before starting your trip to France.
Driving in France 
Tips and useful information on driving in and through France - motorways, tolls, where to stay.... 
Maps of France
Cities, towns, departments, regions, climate, wine areas and other themes.
The French way of life 
A mine of information about life and living in France, including working in France, living in France, food and eating, education, shopping.
A-Z dictionary of France
Encyclopedic dictionary of modern France - key figures, institutions, acronyms, culture, icons, etc.


Accommodation in France
Gites and holiday cottages direct from the owners
Bed and breakfast in France
Rural campsites in France
Independent hotels in France