For those who love a bit of waterside relaxation on their trips, the route from Lyon to Geneva by train ticks all the boxes. Enjoy dining along the Saône in the shadow of the Cathédrale Saint-Jean-Baptiste and taking in the rich history of France’s third-largest city before heading to Geneva.
A little under 2 hours by train makes it easy to combine the best of both cities in a single day, so you won't have to waste a moment of adventure. Fifteen services a day led by a fleet of SNCF and TGV Lyria trains will get you there totally stress-free. And if you travel in First Class, you can enjoy excellent comfort and amenities, including power sockets at your seat, plenty of legroom and space for luggage and a food carriage providing hot meals and drinks.
Explore the train route from Lyon to Geneva for yourself: check out train times, ticket prices and FAQs below.
TER (Transport Express Régional) trains are the regional service from SNCF that allow you to make trips to nearby towns and villages located within the same region. With 20 regions in France, TER trains are ideal for travelling to destinations not covered by high-speed services, although ticket prices vary between each region. TER trains have dedicated spaces for bicycles and allow animals on board. Not all TER trains include a First Class carriage.
SNCF is the national train operator of France. It operates all domestic trains and routes across France, as well as international services to Spain and Germany. There are three different types of domestic trains that operate under the SNCF banner – TGV (high-speed, full-service trains that connect the major cities in France), Intercités (usually a more frequent stopping service, but with all the amenities), and TER (regional train services with basic onboard facilities).
TGV Lyria links France to Switzerland and can travel at a maximum speed of 200 mph (320 km/h). Resulting from the collaboration between SNCF and SBB, TGV Lyria has three comfort classes on all trains. Standard (equivalent to the Second Class TGV, with comfortable seats), Standard 1ère (with more legroom and access to the SNCF show Grand Voyageur at the Gare de Lyon in Paris) and Business 1ère (available all week except Saturday, on some lines only).
Most of the train companies across Europe release their tickets around three to six months in advance, many of which can be cheaper the earlier you book. If you know the dates you want to travel, you may be able to find some cheaper train tickets from Lyon to Geneva by booking early.§
Many of the train services in Europe are also popular commuter services, lots of train companies increase ticket prices during “peak hours” (generally between 06:00 – 10:00 and 15:00 – 19:00 on weekdays). If you can, consider travelling outside of peak hours to find lower priced tickets.
On some of the busier routes, you might also have the option to take a slower or connecting train. It may take a little longer than some high-speed or direct services, but if you have a little extra time on your hands, you might find a cheaper fare. Plus, you'll have more time to enjoy the view of the countryside!
For specific information about how to get your hands on cheap tickets, check out our European train tickets hub.
The average journey time by train between Lyon and Geneva is 3 hours and 9 minutes, with around 14 trains per day. The journey time may be longer on weekends and holidays, so use our Journey Planner on this page to search for a specific travel date.
The fastest journey time by train from Lyon to Geneva is 1 hour and 57 minutes.
Train ticket prices from Lyon to Geneva can start from as little as €15 when you book in advance. The cost of tickets can vary depending on the time of day, route and class you book and are usually more expensive if you book on the day.
Yes, it is possible to travel from Lyon to Geneva without having to change trains. There are 11 direct trains from Lyon to Geneva each day. Though there may be fewer direct services available depending on your exact departure date.
The first train from Lyon to Geneva leaves at 06:38. Times and services may vary during weekends and holidays.
The last train from Lyon to Geneva leaves at 21:47. Trains that depart in the early morning hours or very late evening may be sleeper services, time and services may also vary during weekends and holidays.
Trains travelling from Lyon to Geneva cover a distance of around 70 miles (112 km) during the journey.