Why your next ski holiday should be a road trip

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There’s nothing quite like a road trip to the French Alps. It’s the epitome of freedom - being able to hop into a car with a pair of skis and drive off into the sunset (or sunrise) in search of the good times. We teamed up with Saunders Says to show our customers just how hassle-free and convenient a skiing holiday in France is when travelling by car. We hosted his fun-filled road trip to the French ski resort of Val Thorens, and in his first video he shows just how quick and easy the process of using Eurotunnel Le Shuttle is. Travelling with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle helps skiers to make the most of the French Alps As well as all the fun that Saunders Says’ had, here are some more reasons why everyone’s next ski holiday should be a road trip: Driving down the cost Driving across France with friends and family is a lot of fun, but as with any holiday, an important consideration is the cost. Each Eurotunnel Le Shuttle ticket is per car, meaning that when every seat is taken, the cost per-head can work out to be cheaper when compared to individual airline tickets. More room for luggage Everyone’s favourite perk when choosing to drive is the advantage of being able to take more luggage. Taking a car allows skiers to pack in more than the amount aircraft baggage allowance permits, which is perfect for those who don’t fancy travelling lightly. Another luggage perk is that drivers also avoid the airline fees that come with taking additional luggage like skis and poles. Ultimately, how much luggage is brought depends on the size of the vehicle and the party, but with a roof box or a roof rack, passengers can afford to keep their leg room. Carrying skis by car is a lot easier than taking them on a bus Perfect for children Driving to a ski resort is beneficial for families. The ability to stop frequently at service stations and laybys to let children stretch their legs comes in handy, and the constant change of scenery can help to keep them occupied, too. The family car is also more of a familiar environment than an aeroplane, meaning they might find it easier to nod off. Travelling by car is ideal for families Four legged friends can come too Eurotunnel Le Shuttle is perfect for families with snow-loving dogs because of how easy and stress-free it is to bring them along. Unlike when travelling by plane, dogs can stay with their family in the car and even have the chance to blow off some steam before heading into the tunnel in our pet exercise areas. Also, it’s not just dogs that are permitted on board our service, we even allow cats, ferrets and more pets. Take a look at this useful page to find travel tips and more information on what to expect when using Eurotunnel Le Shuttle with pets. Four legged friends are more than welcome on board our service Extra perks Drivers have the chance to get creative with their chosen route and can stop to enjoy France’s many beautiful towns, cities and natural parks along the way. Also, having a car readily available at the resort allows visitors to seek out nearby places of interest and take their ski gear back and forth from the slopes (some chalets and hotels are a short bus ride away). Lastly, a pro tip: filling a car boot with foreign foods from a French supermarket is a great way to save on the cost of feeding a family! With so many advantages enjoyed by those who drive to their chosen ski resorts, it’s a wonder why anyone hasn’t taken to the road yet. So, book a Eurotunnel Le Shuttle ticket today and start planning a ski road trip. Be sure to book sooner rather than later, in order get the best possible fares.

Mountain adventures with your furry friend

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When leaving pets at home isn’t an option, France can be an accommodating (and dog-friendly!) country. Peak Retreats give their guide to the French Alps with dogs and why it’s the perfect year-round destination. No one wants to leave a member of the family behind when going on holiday, so the fact that lots of the Alpine properties offered by French Alps specialist Peak Retreats accept pets makes them top dog!  Take the opportunity to explore the French Alps in winter or summer and fully immerse yourself in the Alpine experience with your four-legged friend. In the guide below the experts at Peak Retreats have chosen their favourite spots to go to with your pawed pal! Samoëns Where in France: Haute-Savoie Drive from Calais: 871.7km / 8hrs 13m Take full advantage of the stunning scenery in the pretty village of Samoëns, in a beautiful setting at the foot of mount Criou. Not forgetting to mention the traditional French market held every Wednesday all year round, with an abundance of local fresh produce to indulge in! Looking to ski? No problem! With less than an eight minute ride on the Grand Massif Express lift to get to the beginner’s area at Samoëns 1600 and with access to 265km of slopes across the whole Grand Massif ski area, you’ll be able to quench your thirst for fresh powder on the slopes in the morning, and keep your furry friend company in the afternoon! We recommend: The 4* apartments in La Reine des Prés are perfect for dog lovers, with options to sleep up to 10 people, and pets are welcome (one per apartment, supplement payable). The residence has superb facilities including an indoor pool, hot tub, sauna and fitness room. It is ideally situated near the Grand Massif Express and close to the main village square. Find out more. The village is officially classified as a ‘monument historique’. Credit: Peakretreats.co.uk Bourg-Saint-Maurice Where in France: Savoie Drive from Calais: 973.4km / 8hrs 53m If you’re searching for the perfect base for a summer or winter Alpine holiday, then Bourg Saint Maurice is the place to go! Located at the edge of the Vanoise National Park, this large town has everything you need in terms of amenities, shops, bars and restaurants that open all year round. It’s also where the funicular railway to Les Arcs leaves from so you can easily head up into the mountains to ski or hike. There are some great walks nearby. Why not follow the peaceful path along the River Isère between Bourg Saint Maurice and Aime? (Do check with your local tourist information whether dogs are allowed or prohibited in these areas.) We recommend: The luxurious apartments in Le Coeur d’Or will provide you with all of the comfort you need during your stay, with options to sleep up to 8 people. Pets are welcome (one per apartment, supplement payable). Facilities include an indoor pool and spa. The residence is only 800m from the train station and a 10 minute walk from the town centre. Find out more. Bourg-Saint-Maurice is a must for outdoor enthusiasts. Credit: Peakretreats.co.uk Combloux Where in France: Haute-Savoie Drive from Calais: 872.5km / 7hrs 57m The enchanting village of Combloux with its rich heritage and rustic charm is an ideal spot for a visit to the Alps. Medieval features, horse-drawn carriages and stunning views of Mont Blanc characterise this traditional Savoyard village. With plenty of marked paths for walkers and cyclists alike, Combloux is a lovely setting for a stroll! You could even head to Gorges de la Diosaz (30 minutes by car), where you can walk around five waterfalls; dogs are also permitted. In winter, there is plenty of skiing on offer, as the resort is part of the Evasion Mont Blanc ski area. We recommend: The stylish 4* apartments at Les Fermes du Mont Blanc have amazing views, a beautiful sun terrace and indoor pool. They offer everything you need for a comfortable stay, with options to sleep up to 8 people. Pets are welcome (one per apartment, supplement payable). The residence enjoys an ideal location just 300m from the centre of the resort. Find out more. Our Combloux accommodation includes an indoor pool. Credit: Peakretreats.co.uk Saint-Gervais-les-Bains Where in France: Haute-Savoie Drive from Calais: 878.6km / 7hrs 57m Set at the foot of the mighty Mont Blanc, the spa town of St Gervais is perfect for an Alpine break with the whole family (including the dogs)! Great for skiers, the town is part of the diverse Evasion Mont Blanc ski area. St Gervais also offers plenty of après-ski from its Olympic skating rink to the thermal baths. The area also boasts 180km of trails and footpaths for a leisurely wander or alpine hike in both winter and summer.  We recommend: Situated in a peaceful area, the 3* Superior apartments at Les Fermes de St Gervais are a 15 minute (downhill) walk to the resort centre. The largest apartment sleeps up to 8. Facilities include an indoor pool and steam room. Up to two dogs are welcome per apartment (supplement payable). Find out more. Hit the slopes in St Gervais. Credit: Peakretreats.co.uk More Peak Retreats Peak Retreats is an award-winning French Alps specialist featuring traditional villages and resorts that enable its clients to experience the real French Alps. Peak Retreats was the winner of The Times Travel Editor’s Award 2018. Its expert team know its resorts inside out and love finding clients their perfect Alpine holiday destination in both winter and summer too. The company can arrange a host of extras from lift passes, ski equipment and ski school to the delivery of quality frozen meals, from brands like the UK’s COOK, to make self-catering a breeze. All holidays are ABTA bonded. How to book Talk to the Peak Retreats team to plan your trip Call 023 9283 9310 Visit www.peakretreats.co.uk Ready to explore the Alps with your pet? Start planning your epic 'walkies' adventure and book with us in advance to take advantage of the best fares.

Pups on piste: Skiing with Dogs

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Travelling dog bloggers World Wide Walkies give their guide to one of their favourite dog friendly ski resorts in Europe. We gave up on ski flights long before we had dogs. Taking into account getting to the airport, all the fandangling and transfers, door to door driving to the Alps is not actually much different. Not only that, the journey is fun – not a chore. It’s a road trip! Enter Les Quatre Cavapoos (our four dogs); Kai, Rosie, Ruby and Lani. To avoid separation anxiety (us, not them!) we wanted to take them skiing but could find little information on taking small dogs to a cold climate. So here, I will share with you my tips on taking Pups on Piste and also let you into a big secret – Monte Rosa! We happened upon Gressoney by accident. A last-minute ski trip to a quiet and little-known Italian resort... it was love at first sight! Skiing in Monte Rosa Where in Italy: Pennine Alps, Western Alps Drive from Calais: 1,301.4km / 10h 6m Part of the Aosta Valley ski area, Monte Rosa consists of three valleys and their namesake villages; Champoluc, Gressoney and Alagna. There are spectacularly long descents in each of the valleys – and you can ski to a destination. Monte Rosa – not ‘pink mountain’, derived from a patois word for ‘glacier’. Credit: World Wide Walkies Staying in the middle valley, Gressoney, we can get back to the dogs easily from everywhere. Monte Rosa itself is an intermediate resort where there are a few easy blues, although the blacks are more like reds. And being Italy, everything is pisted to perfection daily! For Advanced skiers, Monte Rosa is an off piste paradise. There are Heliskiing opportunities and the Indren lift serves only off-piste itineraries. However, while skiing powder is the eighth wonder of the world, don’t do it without a professional guide. We love Monte Rosa for various reasons. First, it’s Italy, so fine food, excellent wine and wonderful people are guaranteed (but there are also mountain lunches for under €10). Monte Rosa can be busy at the weekends, but mostly it feels like your own personal ski resort. Pups on piste! Credit: World Wide Walkies Of course, the scenery didn’t disappoint – we were surrounded by majestic 4000m Alpine peaks, overshadowed by Monte Rosa and with spectacular views of the Matterhorn. Monte Rosa is also sheltered by Mont Blanc, so bluebird skies are not uncommon. For snow, the resorts are relatively high and have extensive snow-making facilities too. Taking dogs skiining in Monte Rosa Dogs are welcome on gondolas and in many mountain huts. Although, dogs should wear a muzzle on shuttle buses (Navetta) and in cable cars. As for walkies, there are well-marked and pisted skinning tracks, snow-shoe trails and Nordic (Ski de Fond) pistes, which are ideal for pooches. (However, do ask Tourist Information where is safe to walk.) Gressoney St Jean – La Passegiata della Regina (Queens Walk) and the River Lys Path make a lovely circuit. Gabiet Gondola walks on skinning trails to the off piste Orestes Hut and Coumarial, above Fontainemore, is a beautiful area in the Mont Mars Nature Reserve with extensive and relatively safe walking tracks. Winter walkies – the Orestes approach. Credit: World Wide Walkies Top 10 tips to keep chilly canines cosy Of course it’s still important to keep your dogs warm when travelling to the Alps. Here is our swift summary of everything that we needed to know: Cold –Dog Jumpers insulate, keep snow out and wick moisture. Salt & Antifreeze - are toxic. No drinking from roadside puddles and rinse paws before licking! Snow Removal - Soak off snow balled up in the coat with lukewarm water. Only dry doggies should go back outside. Don’t Leave Dogs in Cars - Dogs die in cold cars. Winter Hazards - Snow piled near boundaries presents escape opportunities. Snow sliding off roofs can injure dogs (and people!). Watch out for things like frozen ponds, which may be concealed under snow. Walk in Sunshine - Walk when the day has warmed up. A few shorter walks or play sessions are better than one long walk in freezing temperatures. Stay Indoors - Don’t leave pets outside in cold weather. Indoors, provide a cosy bed, not a cold floor. Make sure that they can’t burn themselves on radiators, heaters or log fires… Hydration – Cold, altitude and central heating are all very dehydrating – and you can’t rehydrate by eating snow. Water should always be available indoors and out walking. Winter Feeding –avoid a pooch with a paunch! Indoors and doing shorter walks, they probably need less food. Paws Trim - nails & fur between the pads to stop slipping and reduce snow and ice build-up between pads. Paw Balm – protects pads from chemicals. We used Musher’s Secret and had no sore or cracked pads. Wash & Dry Paws (and tums) - to remove salt and chemicals. During the Walk –remove ice balls from between pads. Boots – we agonised over boots; we tried them; we gave up! They are not really necessary. Stretching our legs in Lys Valley. Credit: World Wide Walkies For more information, see the Visit Monte Rosa website, or to join us on more of our Continental Driftings with a Caravan and Cavapoos, read our other blog for Eurotunnel about our pawsome adventure from Calais to Slovenia! There’s a whole new pawsome adventure to discover with your pooches! Start your winter walkies planning early and take advantage of the best prices when booking in advance with us. Top image credit: World Wide Walkies

Dog friendly beaches in France

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Bringing your dog with you on your road trip adventure across France, it’s a dream for those of you that are particularly attached to your canine friends. It can be hard separating from the four-legged member of your family on the eve of a holiday, and even when you’re abroad enjoying yourself they can be sorely missed. So why not take your pooch with you? Dog-friendly France There are around 17 dogs to every 100 people in France which is one of the highest ratios in the world. The dog population is estimated to be around 10 million and a study even showed that 40 percent of French dog owners regarded their pets as the most important thing in their lives. Almost every town boasts at least one ‘poodle-parlour’ (salon de toilettage), which is ideal if your dog is in need of a spruce up and you feel like taking a break from the drive. With widespread adoration of dogs across France, it comes as no shock that there are plenty of dog-friendly hotels and resorts, too. But be sure to keep an eye out when booking your accommodation to ensure your dog is welcome. Can you spot Marcel on this beach in Normandy? Credit: Aurélie Four for @lecorgi Dog-friendly beaches One aspect that really sells France as the ultimate doggy destination is its coastline, which is a true haven for all canines. The hundreds of miles of beaches provide plenty of opportunity for sandy paws and soggy coats – utter bliss! Much like the UK, not every beach is dog-friendly and those that are, are often seasonal. But with France’s 267 dog friendly beaches, you’ll still be spoilt for choice. Whether you’re looking for a dog-friendly beach for your destination, or just a few ideal stop-off points along the way, there’s a beach perfect for a game of fetch, whatever the weather. A trip to the beach is a treat for any dog who enjoys the sunshine after a quick dip! If the trip you had in mind was shorter rather than longer, you’ll be glad to know that you needn’t travel far from Calais to find stunning sandy locations for your dog. Here are some towns and areas with dog-friendly beaches you may want to visit along the Western coast of France, once you’ve departed from Calais: Wissant Where in France: Pas-de-Calais, Hauts-de-France Distance from Calais: 20km / 0h 25m Wissant is a small town just 25 minutes’ drive away from Calais with three beaches. The one worth sniffing out is Plage Dune d’Aval, as the local government permits dogs all year round. Visit the Information France site to find out more on this quaint town. Le Touquet Where in France: Pas-de-Calais, Hauts-de-France Distance from Calais: 70km / 0h 55m Just an hour’s drive away from Calais is a town affectionately referred to as ‘Paris-on-Sea’. Le Touquet is known for its stretch of coast and its vintage glamour, once being a playground for the British literary establishment liked PG Wodehouse, Noel Coward and HG Wells. There are two distinct beaches, Plage Nord and Plage des Dunes, both boast soft sand and allow dogs all year round. There are also a number of things to see and do which we’ve covered here. Le Tilleul Where in France: Seine-Maritime, Normandy Distance from Calais: 275.3km / 2h 45m A 2-hour-and-45-minute drive from Calais, Le Tilleul is home to a large stretch of coast. Plage d’Antifer is the go-to beach and is regarded as one of the most beautiful beaches in the Haute-Normandy region. No doubt your dog will enjoy the scenery as much as you, but please remember that dogs must be kept on a leash on this beach. Frequent traveller Miss Bouba at the beach in Le Touquet! Credit: missbouba.and.us/Instagram Vierville-sur-mer Where in France: Calvados department, Normandy Distance from Calais: 394km / 3h 45m Vierville-sur-mer is a village located just 20 miles from Bayeux and is where you’ll find the dog-friendly Omaha Beach, a stunning 2.5km stretch of white sand supervised during the summer months. Walk to the east of the beach to find monuments commemorating the Allied landing on June 6th 1944. Dogs are allowed on a leash here, all year round. Santec Where in France: Brittany Distance from Calais: 600km / 7h As of 2015, all beaches within the Santec region of Brittany are now dog-friendly, so a trip to any of the many beautiful beaches there is a great idea. It’s generally best to pick quieter stretches of coast, and Plouharnel, in the south of Brittany is a safe bet. Leashed dogs are allowed on its beaches all year round, including an untouched stretch of dunes along the Atlantic coast near Penthièvre, the perfect location for a peaceful walk with your best friend. Plage du Ris in Douarnenez is a stunning setting and worthy of a visit when in Brittany. Taking your dog to France with the Eurotunnel Our Taking Your Pet Abroad page has lots of useful info on the legal and mandatory requirements, such as your pet’s passport, up-to-date microchip and vaccinations. The page also features a comical video of Barley, a friendly talking dog looking forward to his upcoming road trip. Our Top Travel Essentials for a Dog-Friendly Holiday page features best practice tips like making sure to stop frequently during the drive any to keep tail-waggers happy. Trunk routes and autoroutes feature frequent rest areas (aires) where you can park up and the efficient highway roads make any journey through France from Calais a breeze, even with pooch passengers. Now that you’ve discovered that there are plenty of dog-friendly beaches to visit in France, it’s time you gathered your family and headed off on your next adventure! Book your tickets with us now to ensure you get the best possible fares. Top image credit: Aurélie Four for @lecorgi

From Calais to Slovenia on a pawsome adventure!

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Where’s the farthest destination you’ve travelled to with your pet? Bloggers behind World Wide Walkies Jackie and Mark and their four Cavapoos have explored as far as Slovenia, all in one caravan and here to inspire your next adventure. When I arrive in Calais, I love the sense of freedom – a whole WORLD within reach. You could drive to Outer Mongolia if you wanted to. Our plan was a little more modest. We Brits love France, yet there is so much on our doorstep. So, with our caravan (that we’ve named Kismet) and Les Quatre Cavapoos, we decided to explore Germany, the Czech Republic, Austria, Slovenia and Croatia before cruising home via Italy. In fewer than 1000 words, I can’t give the low-down on these wonderful countries. However, I have picked out some highlights for you! Rothenburg ob der Tauber Where in Germany: Franconia, Bavaria Drive from Calais: 767.1km / 7h 39m Fairytale city I was promised; fairytale city I got. Rothenburg is truthfully THE most beautiful place I have ever visited. Who needs Disneyland when real places like this exist? My hubby was right when he said; “We have reached the Kingdom of ‘Far Far Away’!” Rothenburg is one of the most beautiful places we’ve travelled to. There are 42 towers on the medieval walls surrounding the town (42 - the answer to Life, the universe and everything!). We walked the walls with the dogs and were treated to beautiful views of the Tauber valley. It was 27°C at 9am but thankfully, the walls and gardens were gloriously shady. If, like Wizzard, you ‘Wish it could be Christmas Every Day’ then Rothenburg is for you. It boasts the largest Christmas Village in Europe, which is open all year round! We had our photo taken with the larger-than-life wooden toy soldier outside the Christmas Village (above). Of course the dogs went down a storm as usual, Germany is very dog friendly and our four-legged friends were allowed on trains, subways and into most restaurants (with some restaurants and shops even bringing your pets some water). The Saxon Swiss National Park Where in Germany: Saxony Drive from Calais: 990.7km/ 10h 32m On the border with and continuing into the Czech Republic, The Saxon Swiss National Park is definitely a destination to get on your bucket list! In Germany (like France) dogs aren't often allowed off lead in National Parks. In the Saxon Swiss, however, the Tourist Information will tell you routes and areas where dogs can run free. The stunning Bastei Bridges towers 194 metres above the Elbe River. There are 1200km of well-marked walking trails on the German side. The ‘Malerweg’, or ‘Painters’ Way’ is a long-distance walking route through the area where certain parts are dog friendly. A Julia Bradbury Walk takes in many of the must-sees, like magnificent castles at Hohnstein (home of puppetry), Königstein Fortress and Bastei Bridge, which is built into the rock – there’s plenty to see in the area! To connect with nature, there are many curious ‘Lord of the Rings’ landscapes; walk in the ‘Lost World’ of Uttewalder Grund, hike the glorious Polenztal Valley or see whether you think that the fabulous sandstone rock formations towering above the River Elbe compare to those in Monument Valley! Colditz Castle Where in Germany: Saxony Drive from Calais: 880.8 km/ 9h 16m We’ve seen the film, played the board game and now – we have sat in the famous prisoner’s courtyard in Colditz Castle. It was amazing to actually visit such an iconic place where the dogs were allowed in the castle and on the guided tour too. It was a lovely, cool walk through the forest from the campsite to the castle; passing through a dilapidated tier garden. Dogs were allowed both in Colditz Castle and on the guided tours. There are 1000 years of history in the walls of Colditz Castle so there is a lot to discover, but the few years of WW2 dominate. My favourite exhibit was a collection of watercolours and excerpts from the diary of William Faithfull Anderson, a prisoner of war in Colditz from 1940-1945. It was a really personal story. I particularly loved his painting of the prisoners relaxing in the courtyard and his description of “a human sundial” chasing patches of sunlight around! The Most Beautiful River in the World Where in Slovenia: Western Slovenia Drive from Calais: 880.8 km/ 9h 16m There are plenty of off-lead walks near our campsite in Slovenia. The moment we entered Slovenia, my jaw dropped. (It only re-clenched again as we descended the many hairpins of the Predel pass!) At 1156m, all we could see from the top of Predel were the bright, white limestone peaks of the Julian Aps soaring into the air over deep chasms of emerald green, far below. The pyramids were once faced with limestone so that they shone out in the landscape; this was more impressive. I took the dogs for an evening walk from Camp Soča (a dog-friendly campsite we stayed in). As I turned the corner from an unassuming little path, I thought I had been transported to paradise. The river Soča wages the hefty claim of being ‘The Most Beautiful River in the World.’ As the track opened out and I was greeted by the deep turquoise waters of the river bordered by golden shallows, edged with pale beaches and pure white stones where the river emerged from a steep gorge with walls like polished alabaster, I was not inclined to disagree! I hope that this has given you some inspiration to explore a little further from home. The Romantic Road (Romantische Straße) and the Castle Road (Burgenstraße) both take in Rothenburg. ‘SLOVEnia’ is the tag line for the Slovenian Tourist Board. If mountains, lakes, caves and castles float your boat, you will truly LOVE it! There’s a world out there for your pet to explore! Feeling inspired? Start your next pawsome adventure with your pet by booking your tickets with us early and taking advantage of the best prices.

Summer in the Alps with your four-legged friend

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Grab life over 50 blogger Emma Hetherington shares her French Alps itinerary, bringing along her Jack Russell Jacob too for a pawsome holiday. With our grown-up kids all working this summer, we decided instead to take our dog Jacob along on our latest holiday to the French Alps. We chose Le Shuttle to get to France as it meant we could stay in the car with the dog during the journey. And what a joy! With a bit of preparation before we set off, and given the French are very dog-friendly, we discovered a great four-legged holiday companion. We were concerned it might be a long drive for our miniature Jack Russell Jacob (680 miles to be exact) from Twickenham to the French Alps. But with a bit of planning for dog-friendly stop-overs along the way it was actually really enjoyable and stress-free for me, my husband John and Jacob too. And the rewards of the stunning scenery when we got to mountains - and the sunny, Alpine outdoors for Jacob to run around in - more than made up for the long journey. Outbound Stopover – Arras Where in France: Pas-de-Calais, Hauts-de-France Drive from Calais: 108.9km / 1h 15m Arras makes a brilliant first stop, which is not far from Calais. No more than a couple of hours from Calais, we stopped overnight in a dog-friendly Ibis hotel right in the centre of this beautiful market town. With its two huge squares, surrounded by narrow, tall, medieval-style houses, there were plenty of streets to explore and outdoor cafes and restaurants to take in the lively summer evening nightlife. Although the original wooden houses in Arras were destroyed during the course of two World Wars, the town has kept to the spirit of the originals in the rebuilding. At the Ibis it did feel strange the first time we walked Jacob through reception, into the lift and up to our hotel room. But this is France. And they love dogs. French Alps destination - Thollen-les-Memises Where in France: Haute-Savoie, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Drive from Calais: 881.4km / 8h 35m There’s no bigger ‘walkies’ destination than the French Alps! This pretty, rustic village ribbons its way up a quiet road above Evian Les Bains in the Haute Savoie. Offering stunning views across Lake Geneva and lots of invigorating walks in the mountains, it was a perfect spot to meet up with the whole family for a week. Staying in a Swiss-style chalet, nestled underneath the towering cliffs of the mountain above, Jacob loved it. He happily travelled in the cable car from the village into the peaks above, exploring Alpine meadows filled with the sound of tinkling cow bells and lots of interesting and very different smells from back home in Twickenham. Doggy days out Evian Les Bains Just down the winding mountain road from Thollon-les-Memises is the famed spa town of Evian. This is a lovely place for a day out with a dog. There are plenty of opportunities to amble around the pretty streets, explore its Art Nouveau spa building, lake-side hotels, cafes and casino. We took the rickety funicular railway up the hill for more views over Lake Geneva to Lausanne. As you’d expect in France, most of the local cafes were very happy to accommodate a dog whenever we stopped for a coffee or a glass of wine. Ancient Yvoire A tiny, walled town on the French shores of Lake Geneva, it is worth a visit if you’re in the area – just be prepared to share the place with a lot of other visitors during the summer! John, myself and Jacob in Ancient Yvoire. Geneva Big cities generally aren’t great when you have a dog in tow. But there is plenty of lovely outdoor scenery to admire in Geneva and of course the lake shore itself to walk around. It took us about an hour to drive across the border to Geneva from Thollen. Jacob enjoyed the views of the Jet D’Eau (the giant fountain in the lake itself) and was very happy to ride-along on the tourist train that took us up into the ancient heart of the city, accompanied by an interesting commentary about the history of the place. Return Stopover – Troyes Where in France: Aube, Grand Est Drive from Calais: 396.4km / 3h 49m On the return journey at the end of our holiday we chose another historic town about three hours drive north from Evian Les Bains to stop over. The Ibis here was bigger and more modern than the one we stayed in Arras – but gave the same warm welcome to the dog. Unlike Arras, Troyes has kept its original medieval buildings. It’s very charming with its wonky, wooden-framed houses, old churches and of course plenty of cafes to watch the world go by. Historic Troyes is also a very dog-friendly destination. It turned out that Jacob is a born traveller. What impressed us most was how he handled lots of different types of transport. It didn’t occur to me to think about this before we set off – but as a nervous dog he doesn’t usually take well to unfamiliar and noisy surroundings. Yet on every mode of transport he tried, from a clunky funicular and hooting steamboat to swaying telecabine and crowded tourist train, he didn’t make a murmur. Could it be that he so appreciated being included on this trip to France that he decided to behave? We’re looking forward to taking him with us again. He’s a great travel companion. If Jacob’s pawsome travels has left you (and your furry friend!) feeling inspired, Remember to book your tickets with us early to take advantage of the best prices.

Kobee the Dog’s Guide to Germany & Austria

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Looking for a new destination to holiday with your dog?  If you haven’t thought about taking your dog to Germany let Kobee the Shih Tzu inspire you with his favourite destinations in Germany and Austria. Although Kobee the Shih Tzu may be small, he loves going on big road trip adventures with his family to Europe. Having travelled with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle a total of seven times, he’s explored countries like Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Germany and Austria. However, it was the latter 2 countries that particularly caught his eye.  If you’re looking to take your pet’s paws further this year, find out more about Kobee’s adventures in Germany and Austria. Nuremberg, Germany Drive from Calais: 814.3 km / 8h 25m Explore the medieval streets of Nuremberg with your pet. One of Kobee’s favourite places to visit is Nuremberg, which usually consists of a stop-off in Luxembourg for one night.  The long journey is worth it though when reaching Nuremberg, being Bavaria’s second largest city it’s both beautiful and dog-friendly.  There are a number of very dog-friendly hotels (Kobee recommends Mövenpick Hotel Nürnberg) and plenty of outdoor seating areas. Thankfully, dogs are allowed inside some of the city’s cafes, restaurants and department stores (supermarkets are an exception), so you don’t have to leave them alone in your accommodation.  Getting around the city is easy too as dogs are also allowed to travel for free on the trams, railways and the city’s U-Bahn (underground rail system). If you’re staying in Nuremberg for a long break, Kobee recommends a day trip from here to Rothenburg ob der Tauber.  A well-preserved walled medieval town – taking your furry friend for a walk along the ramparts is not to be missed!

Keep your Pets Calm around Fireworks

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If you are travelling to France at the same time as any national or local festival, such as New Year’s Eve, Bastille Day in July or Beaujolais Nouveau day, in November, you may get the chance to see some fireworks! This is great news for you, but maybe not so much for your pets. So what can you do to help keep them calm and happy during a firework display? If you suddenly hear a loud noise, it naturally startles you. But, you are also able to quickly realise where the noise is coming from, and be reassured. With a pet, they can’t do that, and during a firework show when it’s bang after bang, they could become really nervous. But not to worry! You don’t have to avoid travelling during festival periods, or feel you have to move to somewhere in the middle of nowhere to avoid any chance of being near a firework display. There are plenty of things you can do to keep your pet calm during the loud bangs. With these tips, your pet won’t be bothered by fireworks at all! It might seem strange, but don’t reassure them When your pet seems nervous or worried, it’s only natural that you would want to reassure and cuddle them. But if you add this love and affection to the continuous loud noises outside, it only reaffirms to your pet that there is a reason to be worried. Instead, do your best to carry on as normal. As well as this, there are plenty of other options for you to try out so your pet can be their normal, happy self during a fireworks display. Staying in is the new going out If you go for evening walks with your pet, it’s best to rearrange these if you know there will be fireworks. Stay indoors with the curtains drawn, all lovely and cosy, while the fireworks rain their brightly coloured sparks over the crowds outside. Turn the TV or radio up loud to help drown out the sounds of the bangs, and set up a little hiding space that they can settle in if they are particularly nervous. If they are crate trained, then this is the perfect place to put them, keep the door open, though, so they can leave if they want. These tips are all designed so your pet feels safe during the loud noises. What about keeping them happy? How to keep your pet happy during fireworks Give a dog a bone A treat (or two!) is the perfect thing to keep them happy when the fireworks are going off. Make sure you give your pet their favourite treat to cheer them up when the fireworks are crackling away outside. For dogs, a tasty and juicy bone will keep them occupied for a while. If it’s delicious enough, they might forget all about the fireworks. Not only will they stay distracted, it will give them positive connotations with the loud noises. Pheromones mean no more moans Before you take the medication route, there are plenty of products out there designed to calm your pet during stressful times. Natural anti-anxiety products with calming pheromones will really help your worried pet. What about before the fireworks? If you know you’re going to be near fireworks, then start training them early. You shouldn’t only become firework-conscious when the display starts. Get your pet used to the loud noises early on, so they aren’t as bothered when they start. Get them used to loud noises Getting your pet used to loud noises early on can be helpful, as long as this suits your dog's temperament. Rescue dogs might not respond well to this sort of training. Start with noises slightly louder than they are used to (like a car door slamming) and increase them until you get to reach the sound level of fireworks. Starting this kind of training really early, when they’re young, can mean that you get your pets used to all sorts of loud noises, like thunder, lawnmowers and motorbikes. Each time your pet hears a loud noise, reward them with a treat, and if they are particularly well-behaved when you make the noise, give them an extra little treat. This sort of training does take quite a while, and a lot of patience. Perseverance is your friend in firework training! Now you know the different ways to look after your pet when there are fireworks going on outside, your travel plans don’t need to be affected. Book your tickets with us and festival fun here you come!

Keep your pet calm in the car

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Planning a holiday with your pet? It's so much easier when you travel with us, but we understand that some pets may need a few creature comforts to make them feel more at ease. Not to worry though, there are lots of easy things you can do to keep your pet comfy and cheerful in the car. Helping your pet with travel sickness Turn that frown upside down! Your pet will love being in the car in no time.   Most pets love travelling, and have no difficulty setting off on new adventures. But, some may experience travel sickness when they start travelling in the car. If that is the case, don't worry! It's easy to cure and prevent, and certainly not a reason to stop going on holiday. There are lots of ways that you can help your pet to feel better, so their journey is as fun and exciting for them as it is for you. These simple steps will make their journey less queasy. Give them something small to eat Only give them something small to eat before setting off, about an hour or so before you drive. A big meal will make it more likely that they will be ill in the back of the car. However, on a long journey they will probably get peckish. Give them some light and healthy snacks, such as carrot sticks, to munch on. If you have a young dog who is teething, a deer antler will give them something to gnaw on, without risking an upset tummy. It's also something fun to do that will keep their mind off the car. Talk to your vet about anti-sickness medication There are anti-sickness medications that your vet can prescribe your pet to help them feel better when they travel. Speak to them before your journey, and they will be able to recommend the best ones. Before the medication starts to work, your pet might still be ill. In which case, it's good to know the signs of travel sickness so you won't be delayed too much.   Signs of travel sickness Your pet may not be able to tell you that they have travel sickness, but their body language will let you know. Your dog will whine, pant and yawn, and seem uneasy or show signs of listlessness and be inactive. If your pet is at real risk of travel sickness, get a passenger to sit in the back with them (if there is room) so they can keep an eye on them, and offer some much-needed love and comfort to your poorly pooch. If your pet vomits in the car Despite these tips, accidents can still happen. Remember to stay positive, if your pet gets in trouble for being ill in the car it may give them negative connotations associated with travelling, making it harder for you to take them to new and exciting places. If you can, pop them on a puppy pad while you're travelling, so the mess is easier to clean up. If they're sick, open a window or stop to let them out to get some fresh air. It's a good idea to keep the window open a crack for the whole drive, as that helps with travel sickness too. Help your pet feel relaxed in the car Fresh air blown through the car will help any pet with an upset tummy. Eventually, your pet will be fine in the car and become a good traveller. While some pets take to driving instantly, others might need a little more convincing and gentle encouragement that driving is the best way to travel. As with helping your pet with travel sickness, there are steps to take before you set off on your long journey to get your pet comfy and happy in the car. Give your pet plenty of exercise The more you get your pet running around before you set off, the more likely they will sleep through. Try to make stops throughout the journey too, so they can run around and get some fresh air. Fresh air is always a great way to help with nerves or an upset tummy. Go on shorter journeys Start with shorter journeys that increase in length, building up to the longer journey. This will help your pet get used to being in the car and reduce their anxiety. Try not to be too ambitious in these early journeys, you also want to build up to things like roundabouts, motorways and very bendy roads. Afraid of motorbikes? If your pet gets scared of motorbikes, or other noisy vehicles, try to get a passenger to use the ‘watch me' command to keep them focused on something else, or give them a treat or a tasty bone to play with. The tips don't stop once you get in the car. There are also a lot of things you can do once your pet is travelling with you.    These tips will soon get you a pet who’s more than happy to be in the car. Keep them cosy Pop them in their dog bed on the seat, to get them comfortable in familiar surroundings. This is also good if you are stopping and starting a lot on the journey, as they won't move around too much. Bring their favourite blankets that smell of home with them, as this will help reduce any anxiety they may have. Get them a pet seatbelt Just like humans, pets need to be secure too! You can purchase a harness that keeps them held in place in the car, but they need replacing as your pet grows. Another option is a seatbelt clip that attaches to their collar. Your pet can move around a bit more (which might not be great if they are fidgety), but they are secure, and you won't need to replace the attachment as often. Keep them distracted You can do this with toys, but don't choose ones that will get them too excited as this could be dangerous. If you're travelling with your dog, use a toy with treats hidden inside. It's something for them to focus on, and as we know, all dogs love treats! Use a calming scent or spray You can get sprays and scents with pheromones in them that will help relax your pet in the car, and keep them calm. Spray this on their bed as well as around the whole car (focusing on the place your pet will be sitting) so they get a strong enough scent. Look at anti-anxiety medications If your pet really doesn't like travelling in the car, despite you trying everything, then your vet will be able to talk to you about anti-anxiety medication that will help your pet to relax. Remember to keep lots of treats and water in the car for your pet, and don't leave them unattended for too long, and never with the window closed. Travelling with us makes going away with your pet easier. If you book your tickets with us early, you are guaranteed to get the best price.

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.  

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