Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Green book review (and giveaway) - Green Earth Guide: Traveling Naturally in France

Today we have a great guide for those who wish to travel to France and want to have fun and enjoy the trip while keeping their footprint as low as possible.

Our book today is:

Green Earth Guide: Traveling Naturally in France

Author: Dorian Yates

Dorian Yates has worked for consumer advocacy organizations as an environmental activist and congressional lobbyist; as an advisor on environmental, health, and social justice issues; and as a consultant on non-toxic products, indoor air quality, and organic farming issues. A researcher and consultant for the books The Green Pages and Ecopreneuring, she lives in Vermont.

Publisher: North Atlantic Books

Published on:
May 2009

What this book is about? (from the publisher's website)
Written by the founder and publisher of The Alternative Health Guides, a web and print guide for Vermont and New Hampshire, Green Earth Guide is a one-stop reference that provides travelers in France with tips to stay green and healthy even when traveling.

Green Earth Guide
contains current, comprehensive listings of health food stores and farmers’ markets, public transit information, alternative health care facilities, green businesses, organic vineyards, renewable energy resources, yoga and spiritual centers, national parks, and other green places of interest. Written in a friendly, accessible style with personal anecdotes, how-to travel tips, and practical information, the book offers an insider’s guide to healthy living on the road. With Green Earth Guide, readers don’t have to sacrifice healthy habits and ecolifestyle choices just because they are in a foreign country.

Green Earth Guide helps travelers have a wonderful, fulfilling vacation while leaving a smaller footprint wherever they venture in France. Included is a 16-page color insert.

What we think about it?
Starting the book, going over some of the helpful words the author translate from English to French, I felt I'm going into a time tunnel back to 1986. Here I was again in my French class in junior high school struggling with the language I loved so much. I'm not sure Madame Rachel, my teacher, would be happy to see me still struggling with my French, but I'm sure she'll be happy to know that I'm still in love with this beautiful language.

You don't have to know French to enjoy this book or to find it useful. All you need to be is "the twenty-first-century traveler with a conscience. You don't even need prior desire to go to France. I assure you that you'll have plenty of that by the time you finish this book.

Unlike other traveling guides, such as the Lonely Planet, this guide is organized mainly by subjects and not places. Still, the search is fairly easy whether you're looking for information on shopping, recreation or accommodation.

The book has couple of significant strengths: firstly, it provides you with a much better understanding about the green side of France, combining cultural, social and historical aspects that together create a big picture you'll find nowhere else. It also shows how ecologically minded traveling is not only for reach travelers and can be done on any budget.

And last but not least, this is a great resource of information. It's very convenient to have all the information on eco-friendly accommodation, farmers markets, organic vineyards and biking under one roof.

If you go to France you might still need another "regular" guide to provide you with information you won't find here, but nevertheless if you care about your own carbon footprint you should have this guide with you. Not only it will make your trip greener, it will make the whole experience more enjoyable.

Bottom line: I was in France only one time and I wish I had this book with me then. I can only say that after reading this book and seeing the beautiful photos in it, I know I must travel there again soon. With this book of course..

Disclosure: We received a copy of this book from the publisher.


We're giving away our review copy of the book, courtesy of the publisher, and of course a tree will be planted for the copy!

How you can win? Please add a comment below and share with us a green experience you had in one of your last trips to another country. Submissions are accepted until Tuesday, November 3, 12PM EST. The winner will be announced the following day.

If you're looking for other interesting green-themed books, you are invited to check out our
green books page on Eco-Libris website's green resources section.

Raz @ Eco-Libris

Eco-Libris: Promoting sustainable reading!


Liz Lewis said...

Sounds like a great book to help someone travel naturally in France.

My last trip was to California Wine country where I tried to stay in green orientated hotels and took a segway tour of some wineries.

Penny McKinlay said...

I was in southern Spain in May. My favourite week was spent in Granada where I rented a small apartment and did my own shopping and meal preparation. I found a small deli that had a range of local, organic foods and local wine. They were great.

I also use public transit wherever I travel - from Spain to France to Nicaragua. I'll admit it was more of an adventure in Nicaragua where bus drivers were hustling for business on the sidewalk near the bus station.