• Richard Hammond

Green Traveller's SprInterRail Sporting Adventure across Europe

Updated: Feb 18

That's it! We're back from our 'SprinterRail' sporting adventure with RailEurope.

11 Days and 1,991 miles... by train!

We've cycled La Loire à Velo, Nantes, sailed a dingy on Lake Bourget, Aix Les Bains (France), went horse-riding in the hills above Lake Garda (Italy), and swam in a natural lake and hiked to the waterfalls in the mountains around Interlaken (Switzerland).

We filmed the trip, provided daily updates on facebook and twitter (hashtag #SprInterRail) and updated a rolling blog with images of each sporting activity and where we eat, drink and sleep on the 'mobilytrip' app. To see the entire trip (all 45 places across 1,991 miles by train), click on the mobilytrip screen grab below.

>> Watch the video of our trip:

The Route

During the trip, I compiled the following green travel guides:

Green Travel Guide to Nantes Green Travel Guide to Aix Les Bains Green Travel Guide to Lake Garda Green Travel Guide to Interlaken

Richard Hammond looking out from behind the Geissbach waterfall. Photo Greentraveller
Richard Hammond looking out from behind the Geissbach waterfall.

Timeline:

Monday 30 April: Back home! Took train from Interlaken back to London St Pancras via Basel and Paris. Sunday 29 April: Hiking around Interlaken. Saturday 28 April: Train from Lake Garda to Interlaken, Switzerland Friday 27 April: Horse-riding overlooking Lake Garda, Italy. Thursday 26 April: An hour's run alongside the lake at Aix les Bains then train from Aix les Bains to Lake Garda Wednesday 25 April: Dingy sailing on Lac Bourget followed by a spa at Aix Les Bains Thermal Spa Tuesday 24 April: Train from Bourg St Maurice to Aix Les Bains (via Chambery) Monday 23 April and Tuesday 24 April: Gave a presentation on sustainable tourism at the Association of British Tour Operators to France annual conference at Les Arcs Sunday 22 April: Train from Nantes to Bourg St Maurice and then up to Les Arcs Saturday 21 April, pm: Cycled out from Nantes along the long-distance cycle path, La Loire à Velo Saturday 21 April, am: Kayaked along Nantes waterways. Friday 20 April, pm: Arrived Nantes and headed over to the Villa Hamster to try out the famous Hamster Wheel. Friday 20 April, am: Departed London St Pancras on Eurostar to Nantes. Friday 20 April: The adventure begins!


Photos left to right:

Standing on the bridge by the raging torrent of Geissbach Falls, Switzerland.

Horse riding in the hills overlooking Lake Garda, Italy.

Morning swim in the salt water swimming pool at hotel Lefay, Lake Garda. Dingy sailing on Lac Bourget, Aix Les Bains Canoeing along the waterways of Nantes. Cycling out of Nantes along La Loire à Velo.

--------- Thursday 20 April: How time flies! This time last year I was packing my passport and iPhone and heading off on our Great InterRail Adventure, a whirlwind tour of five European cities in eight days that took me through Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland and France. The adventure included canoeing along the 13th-century waterways of Utrecht, shopping in Antwerp’s famous fashion district, visiting the chocolate museum and magnificent Dom Cathedral in Cologne, taking the train through the Swiss Alps to Basel and cycling around Valence, the gateway to Provence.

As I travelled between each destination by train, I blogged, tweeted, updated Greentraveller's Facebook page (using an iPhone) and wrote green travel guides to each city, describing some of the most exciting places to eat and drink along the way.

Using the InterRail ticket was a fast, efficient and comfortable way to travel between these great cities. So now I'm heading off again. This time the trip is taking on an even more adventurous element: I'm taking part in a range of outdoor sporting activities as I travel by train between the mountains and lakes of central Europe. You can find out where I go and which activities I try, by following the trip on Facebook, Twitter (hashtag #SprInterail) on our Mobilytrip journey record and also on RailEurope's blog.