Friday, January 1, 2016

Madrid to Marseille by AVE S100

Today, on the first day of 2016, I will take high speed train from Madrid to Marseille. This service is one of four service provided by SNCF-Renfe in cooperation, the other three are from Barcelona to Paris, Toulouse and Lyon.
 I'm Madrid with its narrow streets, here is Calle Fuencarral
 Puerta del Sol square and the metro station vodafone Sol. Vodafone has sponsored the name of the station for three years until 1st of June 2016, before that it was named "Sol Station Galaxy Note" sponsored by Samsung for one month. Vodafone paid 3€m for this privilege. A good way to make money during the crisis.
 Puerta del Sol is the main square in Madrid, and it is the centre (km 0) of radial network of Spanish roads.
 There is a cinema nearby
 Visiting Museo del Ferrocarril de Madrid, located in an old Delicias station (closed 1969). The station was built 1880 by Gustave Eiffel.
 A steam locomotive manufactured by La Maquinista Terrestre y Marítima company in 1956 in Barcelona
 The museum is one of Europe's largest railway museums
 Inside Panoramic Talgo II train from 1950

 In the front: Renfe series 597 diesel train manufactured 1966 and operated until mid 1980's.
 Madrid Atocha old building front view.
"Refugees Welcome" banner on Madrid City Hall
 Calle Gran Via
 Puerta del Sol
 Paseo del Castellana
 Torres KIO at Plaza del Castilla. The towers were the first inclined skyscrapers in the world. They were completed 1996 and are the headquarters for Bankia and Realia, the bank and real estate group.
 There is some time before departure and I can view some trains at Atocha station. Here is Renfe series 104, branded under the name Renfe Avant for middle distance high speed trains (travel times below 1h 30min). The train belongs to the Pendolino family trains manufactured 2003 by Alstom (previously Fiat Ferroviaria). Spanish Pendolino has a top speed of 250km/h and is a non-tilting version.
 This service is for Madrid-Toledo and the trip takes 30min. While AVE is dedicated to long distance high speeds, Avant is for shorter trips, hence Avant has less classes and just a cafe on board.
 Pendolino trains can be found in many countries, in first place Italy (ETR 460/470/480), Spain (Class 104), Finland (VR Class Sm3), Russia (VR Class Sm6 also called Allegro), Portugal (Alfa Pendular), Slovenia (SZ series 310), Czech republic (CD Class 680).
 Inside 2nd class coach of Spanish Pendolino Class 104. The new Pendolino train is also used in Spain (Class 114), but I was unable to view it at this time, but I had a chance to view it on my Switzerland/Italy trip (ETR 610).
 For the new AVE high speed trains, a new Puerta de Atocha station opened 1992 next to the old one. It has 15 platforms and the tracks are only supporting the standard European gauge.
 Renfe Classes S102, S100 and S103
 Renfe Class S130
 Waiting for the departure
 The train for Marseille is ready for departure. For this service Class S100 is used. This train is a derivation from TGV Atlantique.
 Manufactured by Alstom in 1992.

 Preferente class
 Power sockets at each seat.
 Renfe Civia commuter train.
 Guadalajara-Yebes station

 Next stop is Zaragoza. Railway for bypass Zaragoza is down below.

 The railway for Mediterranean Corridor (currently under construction) near Tarragona.
 Camp de Tarragona station

 Below the railway Martorell to Taraggona
 Arriving to Barcelona, an S103 train is parked next to the container terminal
 After 3h journey arriving to Barcelona Sants. The train here makes a 15 min stop.

 The new Sagrera station has been paused in its construction.

 Pyrenees mountains
 Last stop in Spain - Figueres Vilafant

 The train has a cafe-bar

 French station of Perpignan
 Avignon TGV
 Aix-en-Provence TGV
Final stop is Marseille Saint-Charles

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