Newsletter: a word from the editor

Welcome to our first newsletter.

We re-launched the site in January and have been working with some of Europe's most respected tour operators to showcase over 250 holidays that are conveniently reachable by train, from sea kayaking in Scotland to cycling holidays in Provence and diving in Sardinia.

Our team of professional eco travel writers has also reviewed a range of green and gorgeous places to stay, from country hotels in the UK and castles in Ireland to luxury yurt camps in southern Spain and classic 'agriturismo' farmhouses in Tuscany.
Our Rail Journey Planner came in handy during the recent volcanic ash cloud crisis - many thousands of stranded passengers used it during those extraordinary few days. If you haven't seen it, do take a look - it's a simple 'at-a-glance' guide to over 80 train and ferry journeys in Europe.

In this newsletter are a few examples of the types of trips and accommodations we feature on the site. We're learning as we go and welcome feedback about the site, so please do comment on the blog posts or write to me at the email address below.

Richard Hammond (not the bloke on Top Gear)

Holidays reachable by train

Places to stay

Train Journeys

Whether you enjoy walking, cycling or discovering new cultures, we are offering greentraveller readers a 10-15% discount on the following unique holidays: Our team of eco travel writers has handpicked a selection of the most gorgeous and genuinely low-impact places to stay in Europe. Here is a taste of of some of these green gems: Our unique train journey planner is an at-a-glance guide to how to travel to and from Europe by train and ferry. Here are some of the most popular trips:

Walking from the Alps to the Mediterranean - 10% discount

Gregans Castle Hotel, The Burren, Ireland

London to Avignon, Provence

Photo: Avignon Tourisme
This walking holiday runs until late October. It starts in the enchanting mountain town of La Brigue, where you'll discover mixed woodland, gorges, dramatic peaks and even the mysterious 'Valley of Marvels'.
Quote 'greentraveller' and get 10% discount if you book before 31st May.
Gregans is a family run, luxury four-star country house hotel with wonderful views across Galway Bay and the extraordinary Burren limestone landscape. Reviewed by Catherine Mack - Irish Times columnist and author of Ecoescape Ireland. From 10 July-11 September, there's a direct train from London's St Pancras to Avignon in the heart of Provence. The journey takes just under 6 hours and costs from £99 return. Gaze out at the lovely lavender fields as you near the sunny south of France…

Coast to Coast cycle Northern England - 10% discount

Asheston Eco Barns, Pembrokeshire, Wales

London to Ibiza by train and ferry via Paris and Barcelona

A 5-day cycling holiday through quiet country lanes, cycleways and paths of the varied and beautiful landscapes of northern England from the Irish Sea to the North Sea.
Quote 'greentraveller' and get 10% discount if you book before 31st May.
Surrounded by the beautiful Mid-Pembrokeshire countryside, in a wonderfully tranquil and secluded rural location, these comfortable 5-star eco barns have solar hot water systems, log burning stoves and private garden/patios with barbeque facilities. Take the Eurostar to Paris then board the overnight train to Barcelona and enjoy a three-course meal and bottle of Rioja in the splendid dining carriage before bedding down for the night. You arrive in to Barcelona the following morning then it's a short ferry crossing to Ibiza.

Morocco: Casablanca-Marrakesh - 15% discount

Cortijada Los Gazquez Eco Guest House, Andalucia

London to Florence via the sleeper train from Paris

A 2-week holiday that tours the wonders of Morocco - see the snow-capped Atlas Mountains, walk the endless sands of the Sahara, visit the medieval old town of Fes and savour the spice markets of Marrakech.
Quote 'greentraveller' and get 15% discount if you book before 31st May.
Escape for some peace and quiet at this stunning, eco-chic guest house and creative retreat at the site of five former farmhouses (cortijada) high in the mountains of Andalucia in southern Spain Take an afternoon Eurostar to Paris then book a romantic private cabin on the overnight train to the beautiful city of Florence - perfect for exploring the Tuscan countryside. From £135 return.

Top features from our award-winning blog:

How to travel to and from Ireland without flying

The Green Travel List is published in the Guardian

British travellers vote yes to high speed rail

Photo: Irish Ferries
Irish Times columnist Catherine Mack has put together this detailed guide to how to travel overland between Ireland and England, Wales, Scotland and France. She also includes information on bus and rail connections within Ireland. The Guardian newspaper published greentraveller's definitive list of the top green travel and tourism companies, from small hotels to international visitor attractions, in association sustainable charity Forum for the Future. In a survey commissioned by Eurostar, over 84% of those surveyed said that they would definitely or probably choose high speed rail over air when they are next planning a trip to continental Europe.
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The Sunday Times
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