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Eurostar will operate a direct Saturday service from London St Pancras International or Ebbsfleet International to Avignon Centre Station between July 10 and September 4.

Travelling at up to 186mph, the journey takes less than six hours and travellers arrive within a short walk of the heart of the city.

Throughout the year Eurostar operates an indirect service, changing at Lille or Paris onto a TGV high-speed train, arriving at Avignon’s TGV Station on the outskirts of the city.

A shuttle bus operates between the two Avignon stations, running every 20 minutes, taking 10 minutes.

Return tickets to Avignon start at £109 and connecting fares are available from Midlands stations.

From Birmingham, connecting fares start at £123 return. Connecting fares guarantee that travellers will be put on the next available train if there is a late service in either direction.

To buy tickets visit, call 08432 186186 or call in at your local travel agent.

Book early if you are planning to visit between July 7 and 27 when the annual Avignon Festival takes place.

It’s France’s oldest and best-known cultural celebration and there are about 1,000 performances.