Getting to Fontainebleau

Here are a few tips and resources to help with you with your trip planning. 

By Car (from Paris)
Duration: 60 minutes; more with traffic
Fuel Cost: €7.00 - €12.00

For exact directions from central Paris, please consult an online map service or your GPS device. The most direct route is to take the A6 autoroute southbound (direction Évry/Lyon) for about 50-60 kilometers and take the exit near Cély with signposts indicating the eastbound direction towards N37/N7/Fontainebleau. The exit near Cély is also in the vicinity of Barbizon and puts you on the D637 departmental road about 20-25 minutes away from downtown Fontainebleau.

By Train (from Paris)
Duration: 40 minutes
Ticket Cost: €7.00 - €10.00 

Take the Ligne R pink line (Direction: Montargis) which leaves from Gare de Lyon, the major train station located in the southeast corner of Paris. Try to take one of the “express” trains (they are not called that) which stop only in Melun and Bois-le-Roi before reaching Fontainebleau-Avon. Otherwise you will be on a train which stops at many other stops before Melun and you may have to switch trains there and the whole trip will take 20 minutes more or longer.

Screen at Gare de Lyon train station Diagram of Ligne R train route

Ligne R, Direction Montargis

Trains tend to run every 30 or 60 minutes during regular hours on both weekdays and weekends. Try to take an “express” train (they are not called that) which stops only in Melun and Bois le Roi before reaching the Fontainebleau-Avon station. Otherwise you will be on a train which stops at many stops and you may also have to switch trains in Melun. The 35-40 minute express ride will turn into a 50 minute ride or longer.

View Routes and Schedules

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Taking the Bus From The Train Station To Downtown And The Chateau

There is a pretty good bus system in the Fontainebleau region, though route branches to some villages (such as Samois and Barbizon) are on a very limited schedule. If you are staying in downtown Fontainebleau, then more than likely you will be taking a bus to your hotel. 

If you want to learn more about the bus network, take a look at this map of Fontainebleau bus lines and the TransDev website. The cost of a bus is 2 euros per trip per person if no other discounts apply (youth, elderly, etc.). You can also buy a carnet (“car-nay”) of ten tickets at the train station or a tabac; the price drops to 1.40 euros per trip when you buy a carnet.

Walking From The Train Station To Downtown Through The Chateau Park 

You can walk downtown from the gare, and it's a very pleasant walk for the last two-thirds of the walk. There’s a tourist trail which takes you through the chateau park and towards the chateau and the heart of downtown Fontainebleau. Look for a signpost near the front exit of the train station area. It's not in front of the station house but rather near where you walk up the stairs and are in an open area to the left of the station house.

Does Lyft or Uber operate in Fontainebleau?

No. Currently there are no ridesharing services operating in Fontainebleau, but keep checking with those services.

Is there taxi service in Fontainebleau?

Yes, taxis are readily available in Fontainebleau, especially at the train station, downtown, the palace, INSEAD, and near the larger hotels. There's a taxi stand at the rear of the bus station, and a sign post listing a few telephone numbers of taxi companies in case no cabs are there waiting. 

Tour Times and Meeting Up

Usually we meet at the train station or in downtown Fontainebleau. We can also provide custom pick-ups and door-to-door transportation.

1. When do the tours start and end?

For the standard three hour tours, we recommend that you either start the tour after breakfast or lunch unless you prefer to include a meal with the itinerary. Therefore, 9:00am and 1:00pm are both good start times. It's understood that we may need to be flexible with the start time, especially if you are travelling on the same day of the tour. Please note that there may be an additional charge if you're more than 45 minutes late due missing a train, getting lost or other causes. 

Full day tours always start in the morning. 

Sunset tours are timed to start so that we catch the sunset at a good time and place. 

2. Where do we meet?

Usually we meet at the train station or in downtown Fontainebleau but we can also provide door-to-door transportation. We can meet you at your hotel, a regional village, or at a location of your choosing. Please note that some restrictions may apply for custom pick ups, and a fuel surcharge may be applied for some locations. 

3. Can you pick us up from a train station? If so, which ones?

Yes, we can certainly pick you up from the Fontainebleau-Avon train station, and we may be able to pick you up from Bois le Roi, Chartrettes, Fontaine le Port, Hericy or Vulaines-sur-Seine. If you are reserving the tour of Vaux-le-Vicomte, we can also pick you up in Melun since it is near to the castle. 

 4. Can you pick us up from our hotel, friend's home, or AirBnb?

Yes, if the place you are staying is located in or near Fontainebleau. If you're in a neighbouring village such as Avon, Samois, or Bois le Roi, there's no extra charge. If you're located further out, for example in Barbizon, please inquire about arranging a special pick up.

5. Can you drop us off at a different place than the one where you picked us up?

Yes, normally that is not a problem but it depends the locations and where they are relative to the start and end of the tour. You may need to purchase an Extra Time add-on if there's a significant addition of drive time. 

6. Can you pick us up from the airport or take us there?

Sorry but we don't offer this service. There are taxis stationed outside of each airport if you want door-to-door service. However, it is fairly expensive to take a taxi from either airport to Fontainebleau.

Prices, Payments, and Policies

Tours typically require a 30 percent deposit which can be paid by bank transfer, PayPal or credit card. The remainder of payment is due at least 48 hours before the start of the tour for advanced bookings. Bookings made within 48 hours can be paid by cash or credit card.

1. How much do the tours cost?

For pricing, please take a look at the individual tour pages or the price table on the home page. For the special tours and the customised tours, please inquire directly so that we can provide an estimate.

2. What's included In the price?

The standard tours include the guide's service, pick up and drop off, transportation, parking fees, road tolls, water bottles, light snacks, a bottle of wine, wine service, and hot tea or coffee. Please note that included items may be subject to change. 

3. What's not included in the price?

For the standard tours, no entrance fees are included. However, paid visits to museums and other attractions are not typically part of the standard tours unless you wish to add one to the itinerary. We've made a few suggestions in the tour descriptions for add-ons which you may find of interest.

For the special tours, the entrance fee to the monuments are included in the price of a tour. In the case of Provins, other attractions are possible for an additional fee. As well, there are sometimes special attractions or events at the Palais de Fontainebleau and Vaux-le-Vicomte which may require an additional fee if you wish to include them in the itinerary.

You can also purchase add-ons such as extra time, special food and beverages, meals at restaurants, a sunset tour option, and more. If you have any special requests, please let us know so that we can accommodate you. 

4. Which forms of payment do you accept?

Tours typically require a 30 percent deposit which can be paid by bank transfer, PayPal or credit card. The remainder of payment is due at least 48 hours before the start of the tour for advanced bookings. Bookings made within 48 hours can be paid by cash, credit card.

5. Can I change the tour date or time?

Please let us know in advance if you wish to change the tour date or time. Generally speaking, it's not an issue and we will find a new date which is agreeable to everyone. However, please note if you've reserved a tour in advance, any changes made within 48 hours of the start time may be subject to an additional fee if the changes present a cost burden to us. If you're late more than 45 minutes for your tour, you will be charged for each hour you're late.

6. What about cancellations and refunds?

You can receive a full refund of your deposit if you cancel your trip within 2 weeks of the start date. If you've paid both your deposit and the remaining amount but then miss your tour, then we'll try and reschedule your tour for another date. If this is not possible, we will keep the deposit and it will be up to our discretion whether we return the remainder of payment. It will depend on your circumstances, the reason for the no-show, and the level of communication leading up to the cancellation. 

Special Considerations: Kids, Dogs, and so on

Common questions regarding special considerations. 

1. Infants, Toddlers and Young Children

Children are welcome to come on the tour. If you require a special car seat or other safety equipment, please inquire first whether we have the appropriate equipment. Tours can also be modified to be more suitable for children. 

2. People With Disabilities

Most of our tours include a fair amount of walking, whether in a forest, village or monument. Tours can be modified to reduce the amount of walking, especially uphill walking, for people who have mobility issues. However, please note that tour vehicles are not specially equipped for handicapped persons and are not big enough to transport non-folding wheelchairs.

3. Bringing Dogs On The Tour

Dogs are welcome to join the tour, with some restrictions. Your pet should be small or medium sized since the tour vehicle may not be spacious enough to hold large dogs. Clients will be responsible for their pets and should bring a leash, food and anything else required for their pet. Please note that dogs are not allowed inside monuments and museums. Pets are often allowed inside shops, restaurants, and galleries but it depends on the policy of the individual business owner. 

4. Touring With Non-English Speakers

The tours are designed for anglophones (English speakers) and therefore you the client may have to translate for other people on the tour who don't speak English. Most chateaus and other monuments have written information and audio guides in other languages for those who need supplemental guides. Tours can still be enjoyable for people who can't understand everything said by the guide, since a lot of the enjoyment will be visual and experiential. 

Other Questions

If you don't see answers to your other questions here, please contact us.

1. How can I reach you by telephone?

In order to avoid spam calls and other unwanted solicitations, we don't list our phone number on the website. If you'd like to speak on the phone, please contact us via email and we'll either call you or give you our number for you to contact us.

2. How far in advance can I book a tour?

We generally take reservations for dates within 3 months from today's date, but we can also make reservations further in advance if you need to confirm a date for your other travel arrangements.

3. Can you be hired for customised tours?

We provides you with a full user management functions that results in faster development, faster revenue, user and the ability to serve your users engaging efficiently.

4. Do You Have Any Recommendations On Where To Stay? (Hotels, Gites, B&B's)

If you book a tour with us, we can offer our best advice on where to stay and what to do in the area. Please inquire directly with us, thank you.

5. Do you offer bicycle tours of Fontainebleau, the forest, or villages?

We don't currently offer bicycle tours or rent bike equipment.

6. Do you offer rock climbing or bouldering tours in Fontainebleau forest?

We don't currently offer climbing tours or rent climbing equipment.

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Freewheeling Tours is a personalised tour service based in Fontainebleau, France. We offer guided visits in English of the Fontainebleau forest, surrounding villages and special monuments. 

Have Questions?

Please view our FAQ for answers to common questions. Feel free to contact us directly if you have any other further questions.

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