in cities bet on toutourism, a friendly reception policy

Where to go on vacation with your dog without struggling to find a rental or an activity? Thirty towns in France have won the “toutourisme label”, a welcoming town for our dear friends. Four are in the Hauts-de-France, even by the sea.

The calculation is simple, pets represent many markets for tourism professionals. There are more than 7.5 million dogs in France and more than 80% of dog owners no longer want to “leave” without their dogs.

Eight out of ten French people love dogs (CSA institute study) as the 30 million Friends Foundation reminds us. So why are dogs banned on all beaches and vacation spots as usually happens. Fighting against the waves of post-summer vacation leave also means a change in fashion: the ban on pets across the beach, renting, walking, restaurants from another season. We need to “open up” minds and empower owners.

“Tourism” is that spirit, and the idea is not new. The label has been around since 2007. It’s just expanding and in Hauts-de-France, the idea is growing. Good news for preparing for the upcoming long weekend or your summer vacation.

Fort-Mahon on the Somme even makes it a supposed communication strategy. “We want to end the bans. It’s more positive to say look at everything you can here with your pet, than it is forbidden, explained Céline Leclerq, director of the Fort-Mahon tourist office.

For four years, the coastal town of Picardy has embarked on a policy of welcoming owners and dogs with great care and respect for each other. “The tour was only positive“, continued Céline Leclerq, director of the tourist office. We will soon be launching a study to count things, but it is clear that there are people we have retained thanks to this targeted reception. They came back here for these facilities with their animal.

Toutourisme is an idea born from the town of Troyes on the Aube in 2007. The concept of the label is summarized to improve the reception of families with one or more dogs in the territory (welcome pack, advice, accommodation list or activities offered, etc.). Today about thirty French towns have adopted it, including four in Hauts-de-France: Berck-sur-Mer, Fort-Mahon, Le Crotoy and Saint-Quentin.

In a marked town, the reception at the tourist office is always done in a friendly ritual: small or large Médor has his bowl of water and his masters with him in a good mood.

First of all, you will be given, for example, a list of restaurants that will accept your partner at your table. “This often happens on the terrace, but it is important to sit inside the house on bad weather days. We were lucky in Fort-Mahon for almost everyone restorers playing the game.

Tips for trails and walks are also shared. And if there are many applications like this below to learn how to explore the surroundings with your dog, to be able to discuss it in “reality” with a tourist office contact, that’s great too.

A first stop in Saint-Valery-sur-Somme for an activity. We then visited Le Crotoy, before returning to Berck in Pas-de-Calais, where we slept at the hotel. The next day, we ended our trip to Fort-Mahon on the Somme under your advice“, confirmed an Instagram user by responding to the marked tourist office.

Great beaches, great weather and super dog friendly towns. So many dogs everywhere. I understand why

A Crotoy Instagram user

If you’re the happy owner of a four-legged friend, the most complicated part of organizing your holidays is accommodation. Find where to sleep where to receive the dog: this is the black spot. And the “bigger and taller” they are, the harder it is. Usually over 20kg, the animal is not welcome. However, the favorite French dogs, the Australian Shepherd or the Labrador, for example, are over sized.

It is important for people to be able to travel with their pet. Young or old, everyone now considers the dog as a full member of the family. We need to be able to accommodate them. It’s up to them to be responsible, set rules, take for example the basket.

Nicolas Frisé, owner of a gîte in Le Crotoy

But again, it’s all about understanding mutual and the dialogues held by tourist offices marked “toutourisme” are gradually changing perceptions. The problem is when tenants don’t understand that the animal should never sleep on the bed or roll over on the couch. It is inevitable to get dirty and leave the hair anywhere that may disturb the traveler depending on who he or she may be allergic to. No matter how clean, there is gyuy left, explains Nicolas Frisé, owner of a gîte in Le Crotoy. She remembers a bitter taunt from a sensitive customer who was ungrateful for finding the animal’s hair on the couch.

So teachers need to be more accountable. “Usually the owner is the problem, not the dogs“, sighed Michel Verchien of Saint-Quentin. At his residence, he accepted”almost all“As long as we are honest with him as to who comes and under what circumstances.

Aside from long walks on dune trails where dogs are welcomed on a leash, there’s plenty to do with the doggie by your side. “If there are nests of certain species and they should not be disturbed, we warns the people who met us in the office. Dog friends are animal friends. They understand very well that certain areas need to be avoided and follow instructions. They even rejoiced that they had been given power“, Said Céline Leclerq of Fort-Mahon.

I went and admired the stamps in Berck-sur-Mer. Many of us look at them from a distance and so on more dogs. But there was space and everyone was able to hold their animal so it wouldn’t cross like crazy. Very nice stay and nice outing“, says Pauline from the blog Travel with your dog. The next day, she dared to try a whole different activity, sand yachting.

But when contacted, sand yachting school teachers were hesitant about the idea of ​​accepting a dog into their sessions. He may react badly, fall or be hit by a machine caught in the wind. “It makes more sense to avoid or have a unique relationship with an animal that is accustomed, attached to and experiencing strong sensations.

Several times a year, special “garbage collection” operations are also organized: owners and dogs gather for a useful, fun and promising long walk.

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