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Discover France’s Music World

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France is home to more than just sublime cheese and fairy tale castles. It has, for years, been the home of some of the most famous albums and musicians in the world. Find out where you can travel to be in the heart of musical history. When we think of iconic studios, our minds usually go to Sun Studio in Memphis, where the greats like Elvis and Johnny Cash recorded their iconic songs, or Abbey Road in London, made famous by The Beatles. But, what about in France? Rolling Stones’ Exile on Main St, recorded in Villefranche-sur-Mer 11 hours, 11-minutes from Calais Villefranche-sur-Mer is a beautiful Riviera fishing village, and the home of one of the greatest albums ever made This has been widely regarded as not only one of the Rolling Stones’ best albums, but one of the greatest albums ever recorded. The band created the album in three studios: Olympic Studios in London, Sunset Sound Recorders in Los Angeles, and Nellcôte in Keith Richard’s rented mansion in Villefranche-sur-Mer, France. Situated next to Nice on the French Riviera, Villefranche-sur-Mer is a fishing village, with multi-coloured houses stacked up against the crystal blue sea. Take time to get lost in its intricately small streets, climbing the staircases to catch a glimpse of the sparkling sea. Its musical history notwithstanding, the town has existed since the 14th Century. So, it’s perfect for anyone wanting embrace by French history, all while achieving a tan under the golden Riviera sun. Château d'Hérouville 3 hours, 19-minutes from Calais Château d'Hérouville in quiet village Hérouville is an iconic home of musical history A place where all music fans need to visit, Château d'Hérouville is where some of the last century’s definitive albums and singles were recorded. Known as the ‘Honky Château’, from this 17th Century mansion, David Bowie’s Pin Ups and Low, Iggy Pop’s The Idiot, Elton John’s Goodbye Yellow Brick Road and Bee Gee’s iconic singles ‘How Deep Is Your Love’ and ‘Stayin’ Alive’ from their seminal album Saturday Night Fever were recorded here. It’s not just great music that reverberated off the walls here. It was painted by Vincent van Gogh, who’s buried in the area, so when you visit, make sure you make a trip to his grave. Despite the fact that some of the greatest musicians who ever lived roamed its halls, in 1985 the headphones were hung up, the decks stopped spinning and the château’s ghosts could finally rest. The spirits that had watched these musicians from the corners certainly didn’t want them to rest though; Brian Eno was reportedly woken every morning by a mysterious entity shaking his shoulder. Even though it’s no longer the great recording studio it once was, music fans should still visit the area. It’s not a particularly touristy area of France, so it’s ideal if you want to be immersed in French culture. Visit nearby historic towns, such as L'Isle-Adam, or La Roche-Guyon with its famous hill-top castle. Avignon, Birthplace of Olivier Messiaen and Festival d’Avignon 8 hours, 47-minutes from Calais Festival d’Avignon is the perfect trip for anyone who loves arts, culture and theatre! The French composer Olivier Messiaen, known for his love of birdsong and intricate scores, couldn’t have been born in a more apt place. Avignon is also home to the Festival d’Avignon, which is a celebration of theatre, art and all things creative. It takes up most of July, and is ideal for anyone with a love of the arts. So, Wild Horses won’t get you to France, but Eurotunnel will! It only takes 35 minutes from Folkestone to Calais, so grab your guitar and Shine A (Head) Light towards France!

How to Keep Your Dog Cool When Travelling in the Summer

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Most of us long for the warm sunny days of summer, but the same can’t necessarily be said for our four-legged friends. While they may enjoy joining in on the fun with camping trips, and days at the beach, dogs, cats and other pets often struggle to keep cool in the heat. We’ve put together this guide of handy tips to help you to keep your pets happy and safe as temperatures rise. Never leave your dog in a car unsupervised, especially in warm weather Never Leave Your Pets in a Hot Car This ought to go without saying, really. We’ve all seen the campaigns, and we all know that hot cars can kill. But we still often underestimate just how hot a car can get, even on a seemingly mild day. According to PETA, on a 78F (25C) day, the temperature inside a parked car can rise to between 100F (38C) and 120F (49C) in a matter of minutes; and on a 90F (32C) day, the temperature can reach as high as 160F (71C) in less than 10 minutes. If you can’t stay with your pets to supervise them, try to take them with you and find a shady place to secure them outside if you need to run into a non-pet-friendly shop. It’s also a good idea to have the air conditioning on whilst you’re driving, as well, to help them stay cool. It may look cute to see a dog sticking their head out the window, but it’s actually a breach of the Highway Code, and not safe for you, your pet, or your fellow road users. Avoid the Midday Sun Just like us, pets don’t do well in the full heat of the day, so it’s best to avoid walking your dog between the hours of 11am and 3pm. Just imagine walking around on hot pavements with bare feet to get an idea of how your pup feels! To check the temperature of the ground, rest the back of your hand on the pavement for a couple of seconds – this should give you a good indicator of what it’ll be like for your dog or cat to walk around on it. It’s really important to keep your pets well-hydrated during the summer months Keep Hydrated  Dogs don’t sweat like we do. Their much less effective method is to pant, which forces air over their tongue in an effort to cool their blood. This makes it even more important to have a supply of cool water with you at all times, as it will help to cool them down as well as keep them hydrated. Ideally, if you have access to a hosepipe or water for your pooch to paddle or swim in, all the better! This will be appreciated by all dogs, big and small alike, but particularly for our more hirsute canine friends. Maybe you could treat them to a summer haircut, as well. Know the Signs of Heatstroke  Heatstroke in dogs is really serious, which makes knowing the symptoms to look out for all the more important. Is your dog panting and/or drooling excessively? Do they appear lethargic, confused, drowsy, or uncoordinated? Are they collapsed or vomiting? If you notice these symptoms in your dog, take them straight into the shade and start to cool them down gradually. Don’t let them get too cold too quickly, though, as you can send them into shock, which is just as dangerous as heatstroke. If you can, douse them in cool (not cold) water, or apply cool, damp towels to their body. If you have a fan to hand, put them in front of that, as well. And most importantly, make sure they have a supply of cool water to drink, but in small amounts at a time. If you happen to notice these symptoms in a dog trapped inside a car, the best thing to do is to call 999, and request the police come to your aid. It does actually constitute criminal damage if you break a car window to let a dog out, so this should only be done if you don’t have another choice. If that happens to be the case, make sure you take photos and videos as evidence of the condition of the dog, as well as seek out any witnesses. Once your dog’s breathing has returned to normal, and they seem to be in a more stable condition, take them straight to a vet as a matter of urgency. Follow our hot-weather tips for a happy holiday for you and your dog Other Tips for Travelling with your Dog  Try not to feed them for an hour or two before you travel, just in case they get motion sickness. Take them for a long walk before you set off to help tire them out. Schedule in regular pit stops for walkies and bathroom breaks along your driving route. Make sure your pets are properly restrained during your trip, with a crate, harness, or guard. If they’re not, and you find yourself in an accident, you may invalidate your car insurance and end up liable for a hefty bill! Pack an emergency break-down kit for your dog, including their favourite food and toys, just in case you end up stranded for a couple of hours. Our final tip is to make sure that all their microchip, vaccinations and pet passport are up to date well in advance of your trip. We look forward to welcoming you and your furry friends aboard on your next holiday road trip with Eurotunnel!

Summer in France with Your Pet

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If your heart is breaking at the thought of leaving your beloved pet behind when you head off on holiday, then don’t panic. Taking your pet on holiday to France is easier than ever, especially when you follow our tips. Taking Your Dog on Eurotunnel Travelling with your pet on Eurotunnel is easier than ever. We even have a pet playground where they can stretch their legs and go to the loo before the 35-minute journey to Calais. Your pet will need their passport to travel with us, just like you! It’s really easy to arrange one for them, check out our blog post for all the tips you need. Tips for Taking Pets in the Car Your pet should be as comfortable in the car as possible. A grumpy pet travelling in a strange, new country is not ideal for anyone. Bring toys that won’t get them too excited, non-spill water bowls, plenty of snacks and a cosy bed and blanket. Pet Friendly Accommodation in France Now it’s illegal to not allow pets in holiday rentals, there’s lots of choice. Great news if you’re planning to stay in a holiday rental in France, the French supreme court declared it illegal for holiday home owners to not allow pets. So, if you’re bringing your furry friend, you’ll still have plenty of choices for a beautiful holiday home. Pet owners definitely don’t want this law overturned, so make sure that you are a responsible pet owner whilst staying there; after all, it is someone else’s property. What Should You Look for in Pet Friendly Accommodation? Even though the holiday home is required by law to allow pets, that doesn’t necessarily mean that pets are welcome. Before signing on the dotted line, make sure you talk to the owner about their stance on pets, and anything you need to be aware of, such as if the garden is near a main road. Don’t forget to talk to them about your pet; how much space they ideally need, how many pets will be with you, and if they have any physical requirements. That way, you’ll be sure that your pet will have the best holiday possible. Most Pet Friendly Places to Visit You won’t spend your holiday in France cooped up in your holiday rental, you’ll be out exploring! Before you head off on holiday, do some research on the best places in France to bring a pet, so you know exactly where to go and don’t have to waste time researching once you’re there. Thankfully, as France is a very pet-friendly country, most restaurants and cafés allow dogs, with many offering water bowls for our four-legged friends to stay hydrated. Pet Friendly Parks in France Vallée de l'Eure, Uzès 2 hours, 45-minutes from Calais One of the most important aspects of picking the perfect park for your dog to run around in is how safe it is. In a strange country, you don’t want your pooch running off. Vallée de l'Eure in Uzès is a valley set far away from the main road, with plenty of forest space for your dogs to run around in, and grassy paths to sniff. The valley is set by a river, which is great if your dog is a confident swimmer, but if you’re a little wary, it’s best to keep them on the lead when near the water. Pet Friendly Cities in France Mougins 10 hours, 30-minutes from Calais This medieval town is surrounded by wooded areas, a doggy dream! When exploring a new city in hot weather, make sure you keep an eye on your dog’s paws on the pavement. They can be burnt if the ground is too hot. Stick to shaded areas, and don’t go out at the hottest time of the day (12pm-3pm). Make sure you always have water for your dog to keep them refreshed and hydrated, and for dipping their paws in to cool them down. If there are grassy areas they can walk on, then stick to them as much as possible. The Medieval town of Mougins, a 15-minute drive from Cannes, is an ideal place for dogs (and their owners). It sits in the middle of beautiful forests made up of gorgeous trees, like Pine, Olive and Cyprus. The town is a great place for grabbing a bite to eat, as well as experiencing some new culture in their art galleries. Grab the lead, the pet passport and all the treats you can carry and set off for your French adventure! When it’s only 35 minutes from Folkestone to Calais, Eurotunnel is the perfect holiday transport.  

Unmissable Music Festivals in France & Belgium

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Don’t miss out on some of the best music festivals happening across the continent this summer. With Europe bringing in an eclectic mix of festivals in any genre, there’s an added bonus of discovering a new country on the way too! Summer marks the start of festival season for music fans worldwide, but with so many to choose from it can be hard to decide which ones to attend. The choices on offer in Europe however are definitely not to be overlooked. With typically warmer weather and cheaper tickets than the UK, driving to a music festival abroad can also double-up as a holiday! When travelling to Europe with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle, there’s also no baggage limit. So loading up your car with your tent and other festival essentials is the perfect way to discover new music. See some of our top music festival picks in France and Belgium! Tomorrowland Boom, Belgium Under 2 hours, 30-minutes from Calais Immersive yourself in Belgium’s biggest Dance festival. Credit : Tomorrowland Tomorrowland is the world’s biggest dance festival and it’s no surprise why when you see it’s visually impressive stage designs. Every year has a theme that transforms the festival into an immersive experience like no other! This experience also extends to the festival camping ground too, appropriately named ‘Dreamville’! With a wide range of accommodation, this ‘city’ complete with a supermarket, a jewellery store and even a real hairdressers is the perfect place to recharge between acts. The festival takes place in late July at recreation area De Schorre, in Boom, which is easily accessible from the E19 and A12 motorways. When you are travelling on the highway, follow the signs “Festival Boom”. Once you get closer to the festival, follow the signs to “P Festival”. La Route du Rock Saint Malo, France Under 5 hours, 30-minutes from Calais Listen to the biggest alternative acts against the beautiful Brittany coast. Credit : La Route Du Rock If some of the biggest names in alternative, indie and rock music performing by the beautiful Brittany coast suits your tastes, then La Route du Rock is the festival for you. The four day festival takes place in or around the seaside town of Saint Malo in August, with big names playing the main stage inside the ruins of an old French castle. La Route du Rock is also less crowded with an attendance of 25,000 festival goers. However this doesn’t mean the acts are compromised as the festival regularly pulls in the biggest names in the industry. La Route du Rock offers ticket holders free parking on site. If you’re not in a rush there’s plenty of sights and towns to visit on the way to Saint Malo when getting there by car. So creating the perfect road trip playlist is a must! PukkelPop Kempische Steenweg, Belgium Under 3 hours from Calais Discover a wide variety of genres at PukkelPop and try to locate its secret rooms! Credit : PukklePop PukkelPop has been held at various locations in Belgium for over 30 years, before settling on a woodland site near to Hasselt. Returning every year in August, Pukkelpop offers a wide variety of artists from different genres. From rock, pop to dance music, the acts perform over eight different stages. Everything is not what it seems either, as there are ‘secret rooms’ across the site that are waiting to be discovered and explored. Festival goers can reach Pukkelpop via the E313 or E314 motorway. Which music festival will you drive to? With Eurotunnel Le Shuttle it only takes 35 minutes from Folkestone to Calais, the quickest way to cross the channel to discover more music!

Bump to Baby Travels with Eurotunnel

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Going on holiday with your little ones can be daunting. But when you travel with Eurotunnel, you can be reassured that the journey will be easy, with the added extra of seeing the stunning sights of Europe!  The lovely Alex Gladwin, from Bump to Baby, travelled with us to France, Belgium and the Netherlands with her husband Adam, and adorable boys Ethan and Logan. It was their first big road trip as a family, and Alex’s first time in France! They really embraced the culture of these countries, visiting aquariums, castles and fairy tale wonderlands. Alex’s Tips for Keeping Children Entertained on a Road Trip Even though travelling to France on Eurotunnel only takes 35 minutes from Folkestone, children still need some distractions in the car. Alex had some great ideas for making sure Ethan and Logan wouldn’t get bored, buying new toys they haven’t played with before, and creating games for them to join in which made the car journey fly by. Boulogne-sur-Mer A great place to learn and have fun, Nausicaa is a must-see! Only half an hour from Calais, Boulogne-sur-Mer is the perfect place for little ones to stretch their legs once you arrive in France. Ethan and Logan discovered their inner marine biologists when they visited Nausicaa, one of the biggest aquariums in Europe. As it’s close to the beach, they were able to have a good play. After a busy day, they settled down in their hotel, with a well-deserved takeaway pizza. Lille Stopping off at Citadel Park, Ethan and Logan were able to use up all their energy An hour and twenty minute drive from Boulogne-sur-Mer, the family visited Lille, an ideal spot for families, as there’s so much to do here. Make sure you stop by Citadel Park, where your little ones can run around to their heart’s content. A great way to release all that built-up energy from the car ride. Like the Gladwin family, visit Lille Cathedral (Basilica of Notre Dame de la Treille), where children (and adults) can discover some of the fascinating history of Lille. Plus, the cathedral’s imposing modern structure makes the ideal backdrop for your family photos.  All that exploring got our intrepid travellers peckish, so they definitely needed a filling breakfast. Le Pain Quotidien is a gorgeous, cosy café ideal for avocado on toast and a coffee to set you up for the day. Watch Part 1 of Alex's trip here: Ghent The views from the top of Gravensteen Castle are reason enough to visit! Driving through Europe means it’s even easier to hop from country to country, so the family were able to nip across the border from France to Ghent in Belgium and take in the beautiful historic sights there. They managed to get a perfect bird’s eye view of the town from the top of Gravensteen Castle, as well as meeting a knight! There are many ways to see the city, but one of the best is via a canal tour, where you can discover the city in a unique way.   Efteling To conclude their trip, the Gladwin family experienced the magic of Efteling, the largest theme park in the Netherlands. Alex recommends taking a couple of days to see the whole park, as it’s so large. Efteling is based on magical fairy tales, and you can stop by one of the park’s shows to become fully immersed in the magical world. There are rides suitable for every member of the family, so everyone gets a taste of the adventure!   Watch Part 2 of Alex's trip here: Think your family deserves a road trip adventure? It’s even easier to discover Europe with Eurotunnel

Les golfs d’Hardelot

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With its 2 classic golf courses, Hardelot has one of the most beautiful golf settings in Europe. Just 2 kilometres apart, each with their own clubhouse, bar, restaurant and pro shop. Set within wonderful wooded surroundings, the Pines and the Dunes each retain their own character and identity.

Forest View Campsite

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In the beautiful, undiscovered Perche Region of Lower Normandy, just a 3.5 hour leisurely drive from Calais, lies Forest View: a small, rural Campsite and Chambre d’Hote with just 25 pitches, with views over the tranquil 1.5 acre Lake, or amongst the cider apple trees in the Orchard where you can watch the sunset across the fields; plus 3 cool and quiet Chambre d’Hote rooms. It’s the perfect Campsite and B&B, for your overnights en route to the South or West of France, a short break or a long holiday…Indeed, once you’ve experienced Forest View, there’s little need to drive any further.

The Best Road Trips in France

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Your holiday in France doesn’t begin when you get to your accommodation. In fact, the second your car hits the tarmac at our Calais terminal, the adventure starts! Driving through France means you can take in the amazing views, stop off at the small towns off the beaten track, and uncover French history at the many historic battlegrounds, castles and artefacts.  Route Napoléon Start your road trip at the mountainous Grenoble, one of the most beautiful parts of France. Time: 9 hours  Distance: 300km  Stop Off: Grasse, Dignes and Sisteron  Weather: Sunny First on our list is one of the most famous routes in France. If you want to feel like you’re in a car advert, twisting and turning through a mountainous landscape, then Route Napoleon is for you. The route is, unsurprisingly, named after Napoleon Bonaparte, and is the route he took in 1815 on his return from exile in Elba. Along the drive, keep an eye out for the statues of the golden French Imperial Eagle, which marks the route. If you drive from north to south, you will begin in Grenoble, venturing down to La Mure, Sisteron, and finally ending in Antibes. As well as its historic context, it is also a fantastic way to see the natural landscape change, from rocky mountains to the iconic sun-drenched views of the French Riviera. As the drive is so long, and rich in picture-perfect spots, it makes sense to break it up over a few days. This way, not only can you experience the route at a more relaxed, leisurely pace but you can spend time visiting the towns that make up the journey. French Riviera: Nice to Fréjus Before beginning your road trip in Nice, stop by the port and spot the colourful boats! Time: One hour Distance 65km Stop Off: Cannes, Monaco, Antibes Weather: Sunny The South of France is famous as one of the favourite destinations for jet-setters, film stars and royalty to spend their summers. With the Mediterranean Sea lapping the perfect beaches, and the beautiful towns and cities that make up the area, it’s not surprising! To experience the Riviera, a sun-drenched road trip taking in the area’s most glamorous locations is the best way to do it. Start the journey in Nice, where you can spot the rich-and-famous’ superyachts lounging in the sapphire sea, and visit Musée Matisse to see the great artist’s finest work. Then, there’s the historic town of Antibes, where you can either wander around the pretty streets, or lounge on the beaches. Once you’re ready to discover more, head to Cannes. Famous for the film festival, this is where the world’s most beautiful people flock. Don’t forget you can also head into Monaco, the true home of glitz and glamour, when driving this route. Spend a few days here, taking in the culture and luxurious beaches. On this route, avoid the highways, and instead drive along the D559, where you are spoilt with views from the cliffs and coves. Col de Turini The infamous Col de Turini can be a bit nerve-wracking, but has amazing views! Time: 47-minutes to drive the road Stop Off: Instead of stopping, just take in the great views! Weather: Usually clear Finally, the most famous road on our guide. The infamous Col de Turini. Known for its 34 hairpin bends, sheer drops (some up to 30km long) and world class views, drivers flock from far and wide to experience the road, despite it being known as one of the most temperamental in the world. Much of the road is 30km per hour, as there are a lot of blind spots after the aforementioned tight turns. But don’t be disappointed that you can’t speed your way round. The views that act as a backdrop to the road are so spectacular, you’ll be grateful of the more leisurely pace. It’s not just drivers who hit the Col de Turini’s tarmac. The road has been featured in the Tour de France several times. You thought some of the turns were hair-raising in a car, imagine being on a bike! Because its safety is dependent on the weather, meticulously plan your journey in advance and keep an eye on the changes to the forecast. Avoid driving during heavy rain or high winds. Which road will you hit first? Start your journey on the right pedal and set off with Eurotunnel. It only takes 35 minutes from Folkestone to Calais, so what are you waiting for?

A Car Lovers Dream in Monaco

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Monaco, the home of extravagance, gambling and cars! When you visit this principality, you will definitely be able to spot a supercar or two, or three! For any car lover, Monaco is a must-visit. But, just where do you park up and experience the amazing cars? Supercar Spotting at Casino de Monte Carlo  11 hour drive from Calais Casino de Monte Carlo is a hotbed of glamorous cars! © Flickr user: Andy Miccone Once the summer months settle in, so do the supercars. One of the best places to spot the Ferraris and Lamborghinis is Casino de Monte Carlo. At night, more often than not, you will see a line-up of beautiful cars outside the famous casino’s steps that could rival Top Gear! If you’re planning on taking a trip into the casino, remember it’s an excuse to dress up, with jackets recommended after 8pm. Top tip: If your children are supercar fans, why not make a fun game for them? Make a list of their favourite cars, and tick off each one you come across. Exhibition of HSH The Prince of Monaco’s Vintage Car Collection 11 hour drive from Calais Take a step back in time when you walk through Prince Ranier’s extensive car collection. The handsome Prince Rainier of Monaco was quite the eligible bachelor, until he was taken off the market when he married film star Grace Kelly. They became one of the most famous couples in the world, thanks to their glamorous looks, and enviable lifestyle. As well as his marriage to Princess Grace, he was also known as an avid car lover. His car collection started during the 1950s, and continued right through his life. In fact, it grew to become so vast, that his already large garages became completely full, and no more cars could fit in! In 1993, he decided to relieve some space, and open his one of a kind collection to the public. For a small entrance fee, you visit the museum to marvel at these classic cars. From Rolls Royce to F1 sports cars, it’s like a sweet shop for car fans, big and small! Adults: €6.50 Children (8-14): €3 Walk Circuit de Monaco  11 hour drive from Calais The Circuit de Monaco is not only one of the hardest tracks to drive, but also one of the most beautiful. Just as it’s famous for its Hollywood royals, luxurious casino, designer shops, and heavenly beaches, Monaco is also well known for the Grand Prix. Every summer, thousands of people flood the streets to see the world’s most famous racing drivers compete for one of the most esteemed sporting titles in the world. Unlike the UK’s famous Silverstone, the Monaco Grand Prix doesn’t take place on a prebuilt track. Instead, it’s laid out on the streets of Monte Carlo. If you can’t make the Grand Prix, you can walk this 2.94-mile track, and imagine the roar of the crowd (and the cars). The track snakes through Monaco, past the historic buildings and looks down on to the sparkling turquoise sea below. Famously, it includes a tunnel, only one of two F1 tracks in the world to do so, the other being in Abu Dhabi. The track involves a lot of twists and turns, meaning that only the most skilled drivers excel here. If you come to see the Monaco Grand Prix, don’t expect to witness overtaking, as there are far too many bends for that. The racing driver Nelson Piquet said the course was like ‘riding a bicycle around your living room’. In fact, some of the corners are so tight that F1 cars are specifically designed to negotiate them, including the infamous Fairmont Hairpin. Start your journey to Monaco with ease. It only takes 35 minutes from Folkestone to Calais when you travel with Eurotunnel. Sun, fast cars and beaches are nearer than you think!

Le Métropole

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The main selling point of this hotel is without doubt its location. Come and relax in this charming hotel situated a 5-minute walk from the old town in the heart of Boulogne-sur-Mer. Just a quick 35 minutes’ drive down the coast from the Eurotunnel Le shuttle terminal. This 25-bedroom hotel, where you will be welcomed into a warm family environment 24 hours a day, provides a perfect base for your stay in the city. When you arrive at Le Métropole, you can park in the hotel car park, if you wish, and begin your Boulogne-sur-Mer adventure on foot. Great days lie ahead In the mornings, make the most of an excellent buffet-style breakfast to set you up for a lovely day on the coast. In Boulogne-sur-Mer you have everything you need to make your stay a success. If you are in the city on a Wednesday or Saturday morning, make the most of the market and its many stalls dedicated to local products, just a few minutes’ walk from the hotel. Once you have finished your adventure, you can relax in the hotels flower garden after your busy day.

Le Pain Quotidien Opéra Lille

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At Le Pain Quotidien, everything comes together to make your breakfast, brunch, lunch or evening with friends something special. Situated in the heart of the city centre, not far from the pedestrian area, Le Pain Quotidien provides the ideal environment to share something special with friends or family. It’s the perfect place to enjoy breakfast or to allow yourself a relaxing lunch break in a cosy and friendly atmosphere. At Le Pain Quotidien you can share a table, spend a moment practising your French with the person next to you, meet friends or even build new friendships in an increasingly fast-paced world. Relax and enjoy a healthy and delicious meal in a place where the music blends into the melody of the conversation and the smell of freshly cooked food stirs the imagination.  

Unusual Ways to Camp in France

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Camping doesn’t have to involve an old Glastonbury-battered tent, thin sleeping bags and howling winds. It can be a great way to embrace the great outdoors, and have a holiday like you never have before. There are plenty of exciting and unique places to camp in France, from old-fashioned wooden caravans, to treehouses, to giant snails. So, load up the car, grab the camping stove and don’t forget the guitar for acoustic singalongs. Here are the most unusual places to camp in France! Giant Snail! Dienné - 6-hour drive from Calais The limits are endless when you camp! Don’t fancy a tent? Well then, a snail will be your next best option. Credit: Glampinghub.com If you’re heading off on a camping trip, but don’t fancy having to spend hours pitching your tent (which sometimes requires the patience of a saint) that’s totally understandable! Going for a different sleeping option opens a whole range of choices, but did you ever think one of those choices could be a giant snail? Your snail sleeps six, and is equipped with a fully-functioning kitchen, double beds, a shower and living area. A little bit of unconventional luxury, is just what you want for an outdoor holiday! Located within an environmental amusement park, you can come out of your shell each morning to beautiful surroundings, filled with great activities like archery, mini-golf, horse carriage rides and fishing. But do make sure you take part in the activities in the eco-amusement park, which shouldn’t be missed. This is definitely a camping site for the quirkier traveller, who wants an experience like no other! Star Gazing Tree House Côte d'Azur - 11-hour drive from Calais These cute tree houses are designed for star-gazing purposes! Maybe you could see how many constellations you know? Credit: glampinghub.com  One of the great advantages of camping is sleeping under the stars, so staying in a tree house designed specifically for star gazing is ideal. This two-person romantic tree house is designed with a skylight above the bed, so you won’t need to go out in the cold to see the lit-up sky. It’s nestled in the grounds of a country estate, which feels like it is something straight out of a novel. Spend the afternoon sitting by the lake, wander through the vineyards, or cycle to the Hyères beach, only 20 minutes away. There’s also horseback riding, golf, fishing, and tennis if you want an active holiday! Transparent Pods Urrugne- 10-hour drive from Calais Camping doesn’t get much better than in an eco-friendly glamorous, transparent dome! Credit: glistencamping.com If you want to be able to see the outside world while you sleep, but are still tied to the idea of having accommodation, then these pods are for you. They’re stylish (hanging chairs, anybody?), cosy, and come equipped with luxury essentials- like a gas cooker, king size bed and decking. The shape of the dome means air can circulate around, it’s weather resistant, and the solar fan will keep it cool under the South of France sun. This is the ideal way to camp if you’re looking for eco-friendly, but with a glamping twist. Top image credit: glistencamping.com You don’t need to spend your holiday in a glamorous hotel to have an unforgettable trip. When it’s only 35 minutes from Folkestone to Calais, you can be sleeping under the stars in no time.

The Best French Forests for Camping

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Those whose idea of a dream holiday is loading up the car with camping gear, and pitching up in some remote area, are more than likely big fans of nature. Which is why for a truly special camping trip, there’s nothing better than finding that one beautiful woodland spot. We’ve created this guide on the best forests in France to set up camp this summer. Forest View 3 hour, 49-minute drive from Calais   Can you imagine the tranquillity of this beautiful lake, on a late afternoon? Credit: Forest View For fishing fans, this is the ideal camping site. Amidst beautiful forest scenery sits Forest View’s large lake, filled with pike, roach and more! You must return the fish to the water after you’ve caught it, but for a peaceful few hours in the forest, this fishing and camp site is a must-visit. For those who don’t have a love of fishing, this is still a wonderful place to visit. The forest itself takes up a large part of the Parc Naturel Régional du Perche, a natural park that was created in 1998. For a really exciting experience, you could see the park on a horse-drawn carriage. The horse specifically being a Percheron, that came from this very region. Forest Escapes 4 hour drive from Calais   Forest Escapes is a stunning location, full of activities. Credit: CoolCamping.com Nestled in the grounds of Château de la Baudonnière in Brittany, are two beautiful treehouses, completing the quaint woodland village feel of this campsite. Named after the famous tree climbing creatures, Les Singes (Monkeys) and Les Ecureuils (Squirrels), they are great options for those who want to be sleeping close to the stars. The location is just as beautiful, full of lush green leaves, and fun activities for all the family. Adults can set off and enjoy clay pigeon shooting, while the children get to take part in their own activities, while making new friends. And all the family will enjoy bread making, climbing, archery and wild swimming. Don’t forget to sample their homemade cider in The Lodge, the main meeting point where all the campers can get together at dinnertime. If you want to venture out of the campsite, then the nearby Mont Saint Michel is a memorable day out. This abbey is one of France’s most famous tourist-spots, and it’s not hard to see why. Take a guided walking tour to discover the history behind this iconic abbey. Le Grand Champ 7 hour, 53-minute drive from Calais   Camping here at Le Grand Champ, you could be transformed into the French version of Heidi! Credit: CoolCamping.com  When you open the doors of your tent, there’s nothing better than being greeted by a magnificent view. And what is more magnificent than the Mont Blanc, which awaits you at Le Grand Champ! The campsite is vast, accommodating up to 100 pitches, but still giving you plenty of space to relax in the mountain valley. Just like you would expect from an alpine camp, you are surrounded by lush forests, with snow-topped mountains making up the view for as far as the eye can see. Here you can breathe in the fresh mountain air of the alps before setting off on a day of adventures; hiking, climbing, rafting, skiing and snowboarding are all possible. But there are lots more exciting activities you can take part in. The legendary mountain landscape is the perfect backdrop to abseiling, paintballing and horse trekking. The camp site isn’t far from the town of Chamonix, which is full of cafes and restaurants. The town can get very busy though, which if you’re after a truly tranquil experience might be a bit off putting. Instead, you could visit Les Houches, which has a supermarket for all your necessities, but is made up of hamlets with real alpine charm. If you’re a walker, this is where the Tour du Mont-Blanc begins, and those who have a love of history can visit the castle ruins. Camping Checklist When you’ve chosen your perfect camping spot, look through your checklist to make sure you’ll have everything you need with you - after all, there’s no supermarket in the Great Outdoors! The Basics Tent Torches and spare batteries Electrical hook up Adapters Bin bags Rope Portable loo Windbreak Dinner Time Re-usable crockery and utensils Bucket for washing Matches Campfire friendly wood Pots and pans Tin foil, napkins, sponges and tea towels Bedtime Sleeping bags, roll mats and pillows (bring camp beds and mattresses too, if you want a bit more luxury) Ear plugs and sleep mask Winter pyjamas, jumpers and sleep socks With so many beautiful forests making up the French landscape, you can be sure that you’ll find the perfect camping spot. Where will you head to next? Travelling to France for the camping trip of a lifetime is easier with Eurotunnel. As it’s only 35 minutes from Folkestone to Calais, the French campsites are closer than you think!

Walibi

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Walibi has been elected in 2016 by professionals as “best theme park and most sensational park in Belgium”. Walibi Belgium is an amusement park with several sensational attractions! Calamity Mine, Radja River, the staggering Werewolf and for those who know no fear there are attractions like Vampire and Dalton Terror. Walibi Belgium is the place to be!  

Bellewaerde

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Spend a day at Bellewaerde with the entire family and enjoy the fun, adventure and spectacular discoveries. The fun family attractions make everyone jump up and down with excitement. You will get to know hundreds of animals close by, all this in an overwhelming natural setting. Ready for a day you will never forget? Welcome to Bellewaerde!

The Museum of the Great War

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The Museum of the Great War was opened in 1992, at the very heart of the Somme Battlefields in Péronne. The contemporary museum, designed by architect Henri-Edouard Ciriani, was incorporated into Péronne’s 13th century castle, an emblem of the town of Péronne, besieged many times throughout history.  At the heart of the Somme Battlefields, the Museum of the Great War presents the full magnitude of the First World War.

Aa Saint Omer Golf in France

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Voted golf club of the year in 2016 amongst 700 other golf clubs in France, the Aa Saint Omer is a beautiful parkland that will have you coming back year after year. Just 30 minutes from Calais.

Bagatelle

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Situated between Berck and Le Touquet in a 26-hectare park with more than 40 amazing attractions, Bagatelle offers hours of fun with friends and family in a relaxed environment.  

Hôtel du Moulin aux Draps

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Hotel Moulin aux Draps is a charming, modern, hotel tucked away in the peaceful countryside of the Pas-de-Calais, near the town of Desvres in Northern France. The perfect place for a quiet weekend away and an ideal location from which to explore the secrets of this fascinating region. Only forty minutes from Eurotunnel Le Shuttle Calais Terminal and within striking distance of the Opal Coast, Boulogne, Lille, World War historical sites, fascinating museums, fantastic restaurants and golf courses with beautiful countryside you can explore by foot or bicycle. In our restaurant you will find fine food and heavenly views. On summer evenings, watch the sun go down. In winter, the ceramic fire adds a homely glow. The menu changes each day and traditional French dishes are a plenty. Only the finest locally sourced produce is used.

Le Mans Guide

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Live the greatest race in the world ...and much more! Every year some 250,000 spectators descend on this "City of Art and History" in north-western France for the annual Le Mans 24 Hours Race , the most famous endurance race in the world. This year will be no exception with 56 cars competing in the legendary 'twice around the clock' race on the 16th and 17th of June 2018. As always you can be sure of an exciting race and a close finish. Ferrrari, BMW, Porsche, Corvette, Lotus, Aston Martin ... will all be there battling for the first place. Le Mans 24 Hours offers a full weekend of events proving that at Le Mans "every second is a new emotion". At Le Mans 24 Hours lasts a whole week! History Le Mans has hosted a 24-hour race since 1923, stopping only briefly for The Great Depression and the Second World War. The race was set up by the Automobile Club de l'Ouest (ACO) to test both car and driver for endurance and reactions. This has led to car manufacturers being forced to innovate in order to allow better aerodynamics, fuel efficiency and braking and Le Mans regularly features new designs from some of the biggest names in racing (known as Le Mans Prototypes, or LMPs). Although the 13.6km track, named the Circuit de la Sarthe, has seen many tweaks over the years (most notably the inclusion of chicanes on the straight to stop drivers going too fast) the basic layout has remained the same. Some sections use public roads which can be driven on in the days leading up to the race before being closed off, giving you a unique opportunity to get an insight into the experience of the competitors (except at a slower and safer speed of course). The events Every year fans get the chance to meet their heroes with the Drivers' Autograph Session, and those lucky enough to get their hands on a General Enclosure, Grandstand, or VIP weekend ticket will get a chance to explore behind the scenes with guided pit walks, offering a unique first-hand experience of the track. One of the most popular non-race events traditionally occurs on the Friday, when the competitors take part in the Drivers' Parade through the centre of Le Mans. The carnival-style event not only gives spectators the opportunity to get up close to both classic cars and drivers, but also to enjoy a huge street party. Each year is more colourful and livelier than the previous; expect music, dancing and the odd cheeky display of bravado from some of the best drivers in the world today. If you're feeling the need for speed then the high velocity events begin mid-week, with free practice sessions and qualifying practice sessions warming up the tyre rubber. These are normally followed by more qualifying practice sessions in the following days. As the main race approaches on the Saturday there are a number of support races which make for an equally impressive spectacle. In the morning, the Le Mans Legend takes place, a unique event reserved for cars that have previously competed in Le Mans. Each year a different era is picked from the past and drivers range from amateurs to former champions, such as Sterling Moss. Of course, after all this excitement it's easy to forget that you have 24 hours of one of the greatest races on the planet to cap it all off. You can watch all the action first hand or on one of the eleven giant screens scattered around the race area, grandstand and village, so you don't have to miss one nail-biting minute.   Accommodation and tickets The ACO opens several campsites around the circuit for the event. Most are only a short walk from the track and are connected to the village by a small train. You will need to get a special camping ticket, normally one per vehicle required, and the best campsites sell out fast, so be sure to book as early as possible. Tickets can be bought directly from the ACO at the official Le Mans race website. To see the race you will need at least an Enceinte General ticket (general admission), but separate tickets are needed for the grandstands. For more tips and advice see our guide to camping in France. Other sights The city of Le Mans itself should not be overlooked, with its stunning architecture and amazingly-preserved old town. An ancient settlement, the remains of a Roman wall and amphitheatre can be seen in town and the cobbled streets may seem familiar as the setting for Gérard Depardieu's film adaptation of Cyrano de Bergerac. Paris is just a 2 hour drive away, so if you want to take a break from the racing festivities and do something a little different why not check out our guide to shopping in Paris? Whether you're a huge racing fan or just interested in experiencing one of the most incredible and exciting events on the sports calendar then be sure not to miss the "24 Hours of Le Mans" event. Circuit des 24 Heures 72019 LE MANS CEDEX 2 Phone : 02 43 40 24 24 Fax : 02 43 40 24 15 Information and tickets at: www.24h-lemans.com Book your journey

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