Where to travel low-carbon from France for a sustainable vacation

Inspiration for European trips without increasing your carbon footprint

And now, where do we go?

From now on, your travels and vacations will be synonymous with respect for the planet and a reduction in your carbon footprint. After all, you don’t want all those efforts you make on a daily basis to be wiped out by a few days’ vacation. And potentially impact drastically your carbon footprint.

Bravo for this decision! But now you’re probably wondering: Where to go to discover other cultures while staying true to your values? Low-carbon travel from France?

To answer this question, here are a few ideas for destinations accessible from France by low-emission transport. They are fully in line with a sustainable, low-carbon travel approach.

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City breaks in European cities that champion sustainable development

If you’re short on time, why not opt for a city break in a European city that is committed to sustainable development in its policies and projects?

We help you discover two capital cities that are particularly committed to the environment. Two easy-to-organize low-carbon city breaks from France.

Amsterdam, the Green Venice

Canal in Amsterdam

Photo Credit: Getty

Amsterdam, ranked 10th in the latest world ranking of sustainable cities (The Arcadis Index), stands out for its commitment to the planet.

With its canals, its image as the “city of bicycles” and its transport network, Amsterdam is recognized as a city with one of the most sustainable infrastructures in the world.

Nearly 40% of journeys in the city are made by bike and 30% on foot. A large proportion of public transport is also electric….so you can easily avoid cars!

Amsterdam also boasts an abundance of green spaces, effective and major initiatives to reduce CO2 emissions, increasing use of renewable energies and measures to combat global warming.

Bicycle in Amsterdam - Canal

Photo Credit: Nelly Antoniadou

Planning a weekend in Amsterdam means immersing yourself in a soothing atmosphere, but you’ll probably have to avoid a few places that can suffer from overcrowding. An authentic experience of the city will require a little preparation, but will guarantee that you get the most out of your escapade in the Dutch capital.

And from France, Amsterdam is only 3h30 by train from Paris… (SNCF Connect)

London, a committed capital

London, the British capital, may come as a surprise in that it ranks among the world’s most sustainable cities (6th worldwide, ahead of Paris), because of its position on the “planet” criterion. This position is due in part to the quality of its transport network and strong initiatives to reduce the number of cars in the city center and develop more pedestrian-friendly spaces. In twenty years, the city has changed enormously. If you haven’t been there in a while, you’ll notice a big difference!

London still has a long way to go when it comes to reducing emissions. But the city is pursuing an ambitious policy on the fight against global warming.

The city also boasts one of the largest areas of green space of any capital city, with its many parks (Hyde Park, Regent’s Park, St James’ Park, Kensington Gardens….). And you won’t want to miss the many eco-responsible shops and restaurants around town.

Millenium Bridge in London

Photo Credit: Grant Ritchie

So why not plan a trip to London this weekend by Eurostar? (but don’t forget your passport….).

A nature getaway for a few days on a low-carbon travel from France

If you’ve got more than just a weekend to spare, why not target a destination in the great outdoors, where you can enjoy beautiful landscapes and marvel at Mother Nature’s fascinating spectacle?

Just a few hours by train from France, two natural gems await you.

Switzerland, for a breath of fresh air

Trainline in Swiss, discovery by train at low impact

Photo Credit: Getty

Do you have many friends who go on vacation to Switzerland? Probably not, but you should ask yourself why. Switzerland is a postcard in itself for lovers of nature and wide open spaces. Its majestic mountains, vast green spaces and forests, and air quality among the best in the world, make it a true paradise for nature lovers.

And a major advantage when it comes to low-carbon travel? Switzerland’s rail network is dense and reliable. More than 11,000 trains run on the network every day, making it easy to get to many places…also, Switzerland boasts some of the most beautiful train lines in the world, where you can admire magnificent scenery along the way.

Mountains in Switzerland, low carbon trip near France

Photo Credit: Joshua Kettle

For a first discovery, why not visit Zürich? Or take the legendary Bernina Express line, either on the dedicated line or on the regional trains which allow you to enjoy the beauty of the route just as much (Albula line between Thusis and St Moritz and the Bernina line between St Moritz and Tirano) ?

Zurich can be reached in an average of 5 hours by train from Paris or Lyon (TGV Lyria), so perhaps this is a destination worth considering?

Scotland and its Highlands: Adventure in a wild land

Train in Scotland, low impact journey through Scotland

Photo Credit: Connor Mollison

Scotland is a captivating region that combines wilderness and heritage, capable of delighting lovers of wide open spaces and historical and cultural discoveries.

Thanks to its network of trains and buses, many sites are easily accessible by low-emission transport. And Scotland is also a paradise for walkers and cyclists: a trip combining culture and outdoor activities will be an obvious option for a responsible and sustainable trip.

You can easily discover Glasgow, Edinburgh, Fort William, the Loch Ness region or pretend you’re Harry Potter as you travel along the West Highland Line with its spectacular scenery, passing the Glenfinnan viaduct and the Ben Nevis region.

Some places less accessible by public transport will probably require careful planning. But for your first time in Scotland why not design your itinerary around the connections and places that are easily accessible?

An itinerant loop for slow & low-carbon discovery

Do you have a week to spare? Why not take the opportunity to visit the magnificent Flemish region of Belgium on a low-carbon touring loop from France.

A “Flemish Jewels” travel loop

Central Market square in Brussels

Photo Credit: Virginia Marinova

A one-week itinerary starting in Paris, where you can visit Brussels, Antwerp, Ghent and/or Bruges, depending on which cities pique your curiosity the most….or even Leuven and Mechelen, to get away from the region’s emblematic but no less charming cities. They all have their own specificities and interests, whether it’s history, architecture, art or gastronomy.

The region is one of the most active in sustainable tourism in Belgium, with strong, concrete objectives in terms of reducing emissions and energy consumption, as well as developing the labeling of tourist accommodation.

Less than 2 hours from Paris, Flanders is the ideal place to try out an itinerant trip, where your route becomes your journey. So let’s enjoy and soak up the culture and history of an emblematic region of our Belgian neighbor.

Vendor in the street in Ghent

Crédit Photo : Kyle Arcilla

Are you tempted? You’ll soon be able to find this itinerant loop among our low-carbon travels, designed to enable you to discover other cultures without spoiling the planet.

Contact us to find out more and discover our concept in detail!