Caravanning in Europe
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Caravanning and motorhoming offers a freedom like no other type of holiday. You can choose where you’d like to visit and off you go! And that’s not limited to the UK - you can take your leisure vehicle across the channel to Europe to explore whichever countries you fancy as long as you don’t mind the drive!
There are so many places to choose from and a range of routes you could take, you’ll be spoilt for choice! Before you make the final decision on where to go, consider how much time you’ll have to spend there, how far you’d be willing to drive to get there and whether you have one or multiple destinations in mind.
When planning to take your caravan abroad, there are a number of important things to keep in mind. Here are some key points to consider:
Documentation and legal requirements
Ensure that you have all the necessary documentation for both your vehicle and yourself. This may include a valid driver's license, passport, proof of ownership, and insurance documents. Research the specific requirements of the countries you plan to visit, such as international driving permits or additional vehicle-specific documents, and double check that you’re covered to drive abroad.
Make sure your caravan is in good working condition and well-maintained before embarking on a trip abroad. Check the tires, brakes, lights, and any other essential components. Do the same with your car - you’re relying on it to tow your home on wheels across the continent so ensure it’s clean, well looked after and up to date with its servicing. It is also a good idea to familiarise yourself with any specific regulations regarding the weight, dimensions, or technical requirements for caravans in the countries you'll be visiting.
Consider obtaining travel insurance that covers you, your belongings and your caravan during your trip abroad. This can provide financial protection in case of accidents, theft, damage or other unforeseen circumstances.
Route planning and navigation
Plan your route in advance, considering factors such as road conditions, tolls and fuel stations. If you’ll need to stop overnight en route, consider booking the campsite before you travel so your time is optimised. Ensure your navigation systems are updated with maps of the countries you'll be visiting and that you have a reliable GPS or smartphone app to assist you during your travels.
Camping and parking facilities
Research campgrounds and parking areas that are suitable for caravans in the countries you plan to visit. Make reservations in advance if necessary, especially during peak travel seasons. Take note of any specific regulations or restrictions at the campsites, such as size limitations or required amenities.
Travel restrictions and regulations
Stay informed about any travel restrictions, border control measures, or quarantine requirements that may be in place for the countries you’re visiting. This information can change, so check government travel advisories regularly or consult with relevant authorities for the latest updates.
Currency and payment
Ensure you have the appropriate currency for the countries you'll be travelling through. Research the availability of ATMs, credit card acceptance, and exchange services to manage your finances effectively during your trip.
Language and communication
Familiarise yourself with basic phrases or common terms in the languages spoken in the countries you'll be visiting. Consider carrying a phrasebook or using translation apps to facilitate communication.
Safety and security
Take precautions to secure your caravan and belongings. Invest in quality locks and security devices. Be vigilant while parking or camping in unfamiliar areas, and follow local safety guidelines to minimise the risk of theft or other incidents.
Emergency and breakdown assistance
Save emergency contact numbers for breakdown assistance services in the countries you'll be visiting in your phone for your peace of mind should the worst happen. You could also consider joining an international breakdown assistance program for added reassurance.
5 great European destinations
France is a favored destination for caravanners from the UK due to its proximity and diverse landscapes. From the stunning French Riviera to the picturesque Loire Valley and the breathtaking Alps, France offers a wealth of scenic routes and well-equipped campsites suitable for caravans.
With its beautiful coastlines, sunny weather and vibrant culture, Spain attracts many UK caravanners. The Costa del Sol, Costa Brava and Costa Blanca regions are particularly popular, offering stunning beaches, charming towns and excellent camping facilities.
Italy's rich history, exquisite cuisine and breathtaking landscapes make it a fantastic destination for caravanning. From exploring Tuscany's rolling hills and vineyards to visiting the stunning Amalfi Coast or the enchanting lakes region, Italy provides a wealth of unforgettable experiences.
Known for its well-maintained roads and extensive network of campsites, Germany is an ideal destination for caravanning. The Black Forest, Bavarian Alps, and the Romantic Road are just a few of the picturesque routes to explore. Germany also offers excellent facilities and services for caravanners.
The Netherlands is renowned for its flat landscapes, charming windmills and extensive cycling routes. It's an excellent destination for a caravan trip, with well-marked routes, well-equipped campsites and a welcoming atmosphere. Explore the countryside, visit historic towns and enjoy the Dutch hospitality!
How will you get there?
A number of ferry companies offer crossings from England to various parts of Europe. Some the routes offered include:
Dover - Calais / Dunkirk
Portsmouth - Le Harve / Caen / Cherbourg
Portsmouth - Bilbao / Santander
Plymouth - Roscoff / St Malo
Plymouth - Santander
Newhaven - Dieppe
Harwich - Hook of Holland
Got all you need?
Make sure you’ve got all you need for your European trip - pop into our accessory shop or visit our new online shop to check out our wide range of items available. From homeware to e-bikes, parts to awnings, we have it all!
If you’d like some advice on taking your caravan or motorhome abroad, give us a call on 01962 714 844 for a chat or pop in and see us at our Colden Common showroom!
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