France is a popular destination for many, offering bustling cosmopolitan cities, lush countryside and gorgeous coastlines. People from near and far gather to enjoy its historical sites and world renowned culinary offerings. But as we all begin to consider the environmental impact of our travel habits, it’s important to consider the eco-friendliness of our visits to France.
Here are three tips for travelling sustainably, to help you plan a French escape that is as kind to the planet as possible.
Travel by train or coach
Air travel has allowed us to reach far-flung destinations all over the world, but it’s a major source of greenhouse gas emissions that are contributing to climate change. Even short journeys in a plane produce huge amounts of carbon dioxide per person, compared to equivalent journeys via coach or train. So if you are lucky enough to be able to reach France by train or bus, you’ll be travelling far more sustainably.
Naturally, if you’re visiting from overseas, flying may be the only practical option – but you can still consider your travel to and from the airports, and how you’ll get around once you arrive in France. Petrol cars produce higher rates of emissions per person than trains and buses, so use public transport as much as possible instead of hiring your own car or taking taxis everywhere.
Eat locally-grown produce
Aside from the joys of indulging in the fresh delicacies of France, remember that eating local produce is also a great way to dine more sustainably. Whilst this country is well known for its delicious local cuisine, it still imports high quantities of fruit and vegetables.
Imported food negatively impacts the environment in a number of ways, from increased emissions to an increased rate of food waste due to damage and bruising. Plus, the packaging used generates plastic waste that is harmful to the environment.
It’s vital that we all do our part to reduce our consumption of imported produce and improve our sustainability, so enjoy shopping for your food at the vibrant farmer’s markets in France for the best seasonal produce.
Look for environmental certifications
There are several environmental certifications in France that acknowledge and celebrate sustainability. Flocon Vert recognises alpine destinations that are committed to protecting local environments and communities, whilst Clef Verte is a label for sustainable accommodation and restaurants.
You can even use Blue Flag beaches and coastal resorts to ensure you’re enjoying the sands which are clean, safe, and committed to sustainable tourism development. By using these labels to guide you, you can easily travel through this stunning country whilst supporting the businesses devoted to sustainability.
Be a responsible traveller in France
A French retreat is one of the best ways to unwind, but it’s important to consider the impact of your visit. By choosing your travel methods, accommodation and consumption carefully, you can enjoy a responsible and sustainable visit to France. Try also a SwellWomen Surf, Yoga & Culinary Delight Retreat in France where you’ll get to support local businesses, local chefs and restaurants.