Lifestyle & Culture

Top 5 Remote European Locations to Reconnect with Nature and Explore the Outdoors

With warmer temperatures and the summer months upon us, many travellers are on the hunt for secluded, more meditative holidays. From bird watching in the Algarve’s Ria Formosa Natural Park to exploring lesser-known hiking regions, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts – the world’s largest hotel franchising company based on number of properties – offers guests a range of destinations to switch off and immerse in local nature. Here are five break ideas to reconnect with nature, many of which can easily be reached by train or car from London.

For Horse Riders – Wyndham Halcyon Resort La Souterraine, France

Located in the unspoilt region of Limousin often referred to as “the land of a thousand lakes”, Wyndham Halcyon Resort La Souterraine is a luxury 19th-century country mansion in a fairy tale-like setting. With a seasonal Arboretum, 220 acres of immaculate grounds overlooking a beautiful lake, guests barely have to venture outside of the hotel’s grounds to feel connected to nature.

Guests can wake up with a game of tennis, before heading out to explore the stunning surroundings on the numerous nearby horse-riding trails. Bicycles can also be rented from the hotel for those who would like to explore the forested area on two wheels.

Room rates from £115 per night.

Via train: 7h 5m from London St Pancras International via Eurostar to Paris and TGV to Gare de La Souterraine. 13-minute taxi journey to the hotel.

Via car: approximately 9 hours via the Channel Tunnel.

For Forest Bathing– Dolce by Wyndham La Hulpe Brussels, Belgium

Tucked away in the heart of the Sonian Forest, Dolce by Wyndham La Hulpe Brussels is surrounded by nature with many of its rooms featuring forest views. Encompassing 5,000 acres of pristine woodland dominated by beech and oak trees, this UNESCO World Heritage forest offers endless outdoor activities including exploring its vast network of clearly marked trails by foot, bike or horseback. Teeming with wildlife, there are over 400 different plant species to discover within the forest, as well as 39 species of mammals.

Room rates from £86 per night.

Via train: 2 hours from London St Pancras International to Bruxelles-Midi with Eurostar, 30 minute taxi journey from Bruxelles-Midi or 1h via 81 light rail and bus to the hotel.

Via car: approximately 5 hours from London via the Channel Tunnel.

For the Mountain Hiker or Cross-Country Skier– Dolce by Wyndham Bad Nauheim, Germany  

Situated amongst 495 acres of parkland and gardens in the charming foothills of The Taunus Nature Park, Dolce by Wyndham Bad Nauheim offers a peaceful setting to unwind with many of its 159 rooms featuring commanding views of lush greenery. Located North West of Frankfurt, this mountainous area is known for its diverse landscapes, medieval castles and large network of hiking trails. During the winter months visitors can partake in sledging and cross-country skiing on smaller slopes around the Großer Feldberg Mountain.

Photographer: Corey Stovin

Room rates from £80 per night.

Via train: 7 hours from London St Pancras International via Eurostar and Deutsche Bahn train with changes in Bruxelles-Midi and Frankfurt, the hotel is a 15-minute walk from Bad Nauheim train station.

Via car: approximately 8 hours via the Channel Tunnel.

For Bird Lovers– Wyndham Grand Algarve, Portugal

Nestled in the beautiful Ria Formosa Natural Park, Wyndham Grand Algarve is the perfect base for nature lovers. One of Europe’s most important wetland areas, the Ria Formosa Natural Park is a maze of canals, islands and marshes, covering an area of about 18,000 hectares. The autumn and winter months are the best time of year for bird watching with many species using it as a resting place on their migrations between Europe and Africa.

Wyndham Grand Algarve offers everything guests could possibly need to relax and recharge after a day of nature spotting in the Ria Formosa Natural Park.  

Room rates from £75 per night.

Via train: under 24 hours from London St Pancras International via Eurostar to Paris, TGV to Barcelona, AVE high-speed rail to Seville, 785 or 1794 bus from Plaza de Armas to Faro.

Via car: approximately 24 hours via the Channel Tunnel.

For the Swimmers and Fishing Enthusiasts– Ramada Resort by Wyndham Kranjska Gora, Slovenia

Located at the foot of The Julian Alps, Ramada Resort by Wyndham Kranjska Gora offers panoramic mountain views. The cable car for Kranjska Gora mountain is just a 4-minute walk from the hotel, offering endless scenic hiking trails to suit all abilities and 20km of ski slopes during the winter months. Jasna Lake is also only a 20-minute walk from the hotel, a stunning alpine lake set against the dramatic backdrop of The Julian Alps. Here, guests can find their inner peace whilst walking around the lake’s beautiful trails, try open water swimming or spend the day fishing.

Ramada Resort by Wyndham Kranjska Gora offers a relaxing stay surrounded by Slovenia’s breath-taking scenery, with 118 comfortable rooms each with their own private terrace.

Room rates from £115 per night with breakfast included.

Via train: 17h 28m from London St Pancras International via Eurostar to Paris, TGV to Stuttgart, Deutsche Bahn train to Villach, Deutsche Bahn train to Jessenice and 30-minute bus journey from Jessenice to Kransja Gora.

Via car: approximately 15 hours via the Channel Tunnel.