Île-de-France - Forests with high heritage value

in Country and Regional Guides > France

Île-de-France is not a region one automatically associates with nature. Nonetheless, the forests of Île-de-France account for around one-quarter of the region’s total surface area.

Private woodlands make up two-thirds of these forest areas. These woods and forests are sometimes exploited for their timber but more often devoted to hunting. A key factor when buying a forest in Île-de-France.

Much sought-after forests

The forests of Île-de-France have similar characteristics to the average French forest. They are deciduous forests with oak and beech as the most common species. Sessile oak dominates. Then comes European oak and chestnut.

The black alder, ash and birch are found in forests in more humid areas. The fast-growing poplar is often found with the robinia. The birch, a pioneer species, can be found on all soil types. Willow prefers the bottom of the valleys. Conifers are rare in the forests of Île-de-France, Scots pine being the most common species of this type.

The extensive State-owned massifs such as Fontainebleau and Rambouillet help define the territory and draw many visitors. The city-dwellers’ need to return to nature is what gives the forests of Île-de-France their appeal.

The acquisition of a forest in Île-de-France may be based on the presence of heavy lumber and the possibilities of exploiting it. It is, however, second-grade lumber. These forest massifs are largely accessible.

The forests of Île-de-France are very fragmented and private owners often occupy very small surface areas (1 hectare per owner). These forests are, however, very highly sought-after, including among hunters after big and medium game. With Paris so close by, the purchase of a forest in Île-de-France is quite an exceptional acquisition.

 Who buys forests in Île-de-France?

Forests in Île-de-France attract buyers who are financially capable of such an investment. They will need to be able to act quickly on a very dynamic market.

 

 

Economic view

Opportunities are rare and the prices totally different to those on the national market. It is, however, perfectly possible to acquire a forest in Île-de-France because some forests change hands quite frequently.

Allow for a budget of €10,000-€20,000/hectare. A forest in Île-de-France is a safe investment with high heritage value, but also delivers on its promise of escape to the great outdoors.

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