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Visitors to Montpellier have many options for getting around, which include cars, taxis, trams, and busses, but perhaps the best way to see the city is to walk.
Montpellier is a relatively small city (check out this tourist map for a visual idea), and many people choose to walk when commuting within the city center area. People say that walking is the only way to really see what the city has to offer. But if needing to travel to areas out of reach by foot, other forms of transportation are available.
Renting a car allows the most freedom and flexibility in exploration, as there is no dependency on routes and timetables. The public transportation network of buses and trains goes many places, but not everywhere. Check out this Montpellier Rental Cars link for information about pricing and availability from a few major companies.
Taxis are available in the city, but are not often caught on the side of the road. The way to obtain transportation from a taxi is to call one of these Taxi Companies in the City ahead of time and arrange for a pickup. Most hotels, restaurants and bars will be happy to call a cab for their customers.
Buses and the recently built Tramway are both operated within the city by the TAM (public transportation network of Montpellier). Routes, fares, and timetables are available on the above link.
Said to be the biggest tramway network in France and perhaps Europe - this is a terrific way to see around the town. 4 lines at the moment and using it saves the hassle of parking. Park at one of the out of town tram stations - it is just 4.5€ and you get a return ticket for each passenger.
Also - at some stations you can pick up a bike using your credit card. Clever bikes have prop shafts - so no chain to come off or dirty your clothes. You can travel around the centre - to Lattes and the archaelogical museum (good) to the Mare Nostrum (Aquarium) excellent. It is a fine way to visit and lovely city.
The region has an excellent bus network for longer trips from Montpellier, with a flat fare of just €1,60 or the visitor can buy a ten ride card for only 10 Euros. The website for maps and timetables is http://www.herault-transport.fr/horai...
There is a railway along the coast with local service to nearby towns - see http://www.ter-sncf.com/Regions/Langu... for downloadable timetables or look up point to point times at www.voyages-sncf.com
Seat reservations are neither required nor available on local TER trains, just buy your tickets on the day. If the trip requires a TGV or Intercités train, reservation is needed but can be done on the day if the train is not already fully booked.