|Dates:||24 Jun 2017 - 11 Dec 2017|
|Duration:||5 months, 2 weeks|
Tony, Sian, Aaron and Tom's European adventure in Squeaky. #Motorhoming, Motorroaming, #Roadschooling, #Fishingeurope
Walking with Dinosaurs 3D at the imax.
Spiney at the Science Museum
A bit of Blue Planet in the motorhome.
View of Port Ginesta as we start heading south for Christmas in the Costa Del Sol
A pint and and fizzy drink as we admire La Sagrada Familia
KFC Catalan Stylee
View From the van. Just arrived in Barcelona next stop Camp Nau. Sun set over the Med.
Strange things you see along the way.
5th December. Just left Kev, Lynn and Jakey in Mequinenza on route to Barcelona to see FC Barcelona play Sporting Lisbon tonight in the champions league. Fuel and gas stop. 23491 total miles 261 miles since last top up but engine left running to charge engine quite a few times 73.04L €1.199 per L €87.57 16.24 mpg Gas: 30.25L €0.707 per L 30.25L €21.39
Bye, bye Mequinenza 😢. We have spent the most wonderful two and a half weeks with Kev, Lynn and Jake. Four sad Pikes. I wonder which river or lake we will meet by next.
A cold evening stop at the park. Brrrr.
View of Mequinenza Castle and a glimpse of the river and we descend back into the Ebro Vally
iPhone camera won't quite pick it up but a view of the snow capped maintains.
29th-1st Dec Mequinenza Dam. 4 carp for Kev and Lynn and a carp (28.13 lb) and a Roach (1.2lb). No cat fish and Agee dropped runs on the carp rods for me. Much fun had, foraging, cooking, eating, drinking, watching the vultures and generally enjoying each other's company. Off to a campsite for some hot water, power and wifi. Ow an of course some more fishing
Cycle ride and Foraging with Lynn along the banks of the Ebro. Rose Hips, Almonds and Small Black Olives. Could have collected more Almonds but the deserted Farm turned out not to be so deserted lol lovely old Spanish couple (and four huge loud dogs) stopped play.
No Carp or Cat Fish last night so after a morning of taking water temperatures by the men folk it's moving time again.
Vultures viewed through the skylight.
Carp No 1 for Sian. 37lb 12oz river Ebro Carp. Well over my previous PB Koi of around 14lb caught with Tony and Andy on the Medway. Exact location has been withheld. I could tell you but I'd have to kill you!!! (There are a world of wild camping spots along the river for those travelling this way). I had just woken up and was drinking my morning coffee. Tony struck it but I took over after finding my shoes and falling out of the door still in my PJs. Fish was charging towards me and I was convinced I'd lost it. Kev was shouting at me to wind it in and put some pressure on it as Tony was doing up my boot laces. How right he was. As we got it towards the bank he began to put up a scrap. Kev went out in the boat with the net to net it for me. When we got it in the sling the hook just fell out!!!
LPG 27.21 € 38.49L .707 per L
Where I landed my first big cat fish all those years ago :-D
Beautiful Spanish sky as we get closer to the Ebro. ETA 1h26m. The promise of sausage and mash a la Lynn awaits :-D
16th November just passed Barcelona on route to meet Kev and Lynn on the Ebro 23230 total miles 289 miles since last top up €76.39 1.184 per L (that's more like it) €76.39 20.36 mpg
Country No 16: Spain.
Heading for the mountains
Motorhome service point at the garage. Got to love France
Free parking/Wild camping : France. Arrived around midnight after after a mega 10 hour drive. Woke up to find brilliant sunshine, a lake and a stunning view of the snow capped Pyrenees. Back in shirts and sanders (without socks). What's not to like. Next stop water and then off to Spain.
Wednesday 15th November. East of Toulouse on route to Narbonne to spend the night before heading for Spain tomorrow. 22941 total miles 308 miles since last top up 64.67L 1.434 € per L (motorway prices) €92.74 21.65 mpg
Kids very excited. Just passed a spaceship.
Hitting the toll road. Loads of Gendarme one complete with a massive shot gun/Riffle. Passed loads about 100 KM back. Some blocking the slip road and then a load in convoy. Not sure if a very important person was getting an escort or they were waiting to intercept a very bad person. Craziness.
Mc Donald's again :-D with the real Ronald Mc Donald
Wednesday 15th November. After loosing a day trying to find a garage to fit a new clutch we are back on the road. With the wonders of social media and the helpfulness of Dwy and our follow motorhomers (especially Chris Jones who took time to offer advice on line and speak to us on the phone) we are back on the road hoping it is the DMF. Also thanks to a day of translations by phone, phone calls and email to different garages by Dwy we also have at least one reasonably priced option incase the worst comes to the worst and we need to be recovered. 22633 total miles. 342 miles since last top up 75.59L €1.249 €94.41 20.57 mpg (may not be totally accurate as did not fill to click at last top up).
Another lovely French Aire. 14th-15th November.
Aire number : Back in France. Blasted through the night last night and arrived just outside Tours around 3.30am. Kids were amazing and we made great time on empty non-Toll roads. Woke up to a beautiful Autumnal sunny morning
Just passed the Tabac where we stopped when we first arrived in France at the start of our adventure.
22291 100€ 71.79 1.393
Back in France. Kev and Lyn we're coming to get you (and the Cat Fish). Just a thousand or so miles and The Pair 'O' Knees to tackle first.
Heading for the ferry as the train has square wheels.
21198 77.22 91.81 118.9
Just seen the White Cliffs!!!
Crazy buildings you spot from the van.
Paris by motorway.
Friday 27th October. Just left Aire on. Chablis Vine yard (free Aire but left with 4 bottles of Chablis). 20848 total 275 61.00 L €74.36 1.219 € per L 20.49 (heavy right foot motorway miles)
Eating up the motorway miles. Now I rush hour traffic through Lyons. Nice views though.
Thursday 26th October. France on route to Lyons. 20573 58.60 L 1.209 € per L €70.85 Unable to work out mpg as did not fill up last time.
Free Parking/Wild camp : Viviers France. With a view on the Rhône out of the front window and Viviers out of the side window. No services but a great little overnight stop.
Arch De The
Wednesday 25th October. Left Pisa this morning, drove round the Monaco F1 track (twice) now on the motorway just outside Cannes on route to Marseille. Lowest the tank has ever been. 20332 Total 391 miles since last top up 72.25 L 1.384 € per L €100 Unable to work mpg out as did not fill tank
Pole Position: Monaco🏁🏁🏁🏁🏎🏎🏎🚐🚐🚐
Back in France
Campsite. Italy: Torre Pendente Pisa. Lovely friendly site. More then we'd have like to pay (€27 for two adults with power, after some attempted negotiations they knocked off €1) but 15 minute walk to the Piazza and good facilities including a swimming pool, large clean shower and toilet block, shop and restaurant, this is a great campsite for visiting Pisa. Typically after months of not meeting any English speaking children, the day the kids hop a plane home with mum and dad we end up on a campsite with quite a few English speaking kids. I guess it is half term week and we're getting closer to the UK.
A child free evening. Dinner in Pisa. That's what you call a beer.
Italy: Piazza Del Duomo. Pisa Baptistery, Cathedral and bell tower (the famous leaning tower of Pisa).
Tuesday 24th October. Italy on route to the Uk. Just left Mum, Dad and the boys at the Airport. They should be airborne right about now. 19941 total miles 330 miles since last top up €1.378 per L €99.44 72.11 Litres 20.17 mpg
Ow I do like to be beside the sea side. An English looking Promenade in Italy.
Rome: Hard Rock Cafe
Wow. The Coliseum.
Beer with my big mac :-D
View of Vesuvius from Mum and Dads balcony.
17th October. First fuel stop in Italy. On route to Pompei to meet Mum and Dad 19621 Total 352 miles since last top up. 73.58 L 1.359 per L €100 21.75 mpg
Lots of excited shouting in the back "look, look?". "What?" we said, turning down Franky goes to Hollywood 'relax' blasting out of the speakers "GRASS real GRASS" lol
Camper stop : Italy
Torento: most polluted city in Italy. Ummm won't be staying round here then.
Bye bye beautiful Greece. See you again soon.
A Lockheed Starfighter. Also known as the widow maker.
Camper Stop :Greece. 13th-14th October At toasty 26 degrees 😎. Spotted this on the sat nav as we were heading for the E65 towards Patras from the Corinth Canal. Original plan was to just pay the €10 to fill up and empty and then head for some free camping on the beach, but it was getting late and so nice we decided to stay. Great little camper stop by ancient Corinth and an easy pop off the motor way. €10 a night and it had better facilities than many of the campsites we have stayed on. I will add more photos to the FB page. 10 minute walk into ancient Corinth and 5 minutes up to Aphrodite's waters.
Corinth Canal submersible bridge. Stopped to have a look and the submersible bridge. Arrived just at the right time to see it in action. Today has been a day of seeing cool things.
Wild Camp. : Greece.
Goats!!!! thousands of um!!!
19208 miles total in rout to Epedirus
The Parthenon and Acropolis
Athens: Acropolis Museum
Athens: Temple of Artemis
Athens: Gates to the Temple of Zues
Athens: Replica and site of the original Olympic Stadium.
Athens: War Museum
Athens: Greek Parliament
Athens: A mooch round the side streets.
Athens: First glimpse of the Acropolis
Back to the main land.
Ferry 1: Greece mainland to Euboea Island. One of the best things about travelling full time or for an extended period of time. If you end up parked for the night near a ferry to an Island you though you might fancy visiting (we had been told to visit the Island by one of our Greek friends before leaving and had planed to drive across further south) you can just change your plans and jump on. 1st ferry of the trip. Yesterday was a ferry day as we also booked our crossing the Italy.
A meal by the port. Ferry looks fun. Think we'll get on that tomorrow. Love the freedom of the road.
Wildcamp/free parking 7: Greece. 2nd-3rd October. Heading off the Motorway to Athens to find a campsite (no clean undies) Tony had spotted or a couple of park4night spots we had seen. Campsite was closed and after and interesting drive along the coast to the park4night spot we fancied we were beaten back by football match traffic blocking the road lol. Headed to the next little town in search of a spot and found the ferry port. Tony spotted the fisher man/woman and a parking place was picked ;-) Free parking on the road at the end of the strip just before the patk4night spot. Easy reach of restaurants. A little bit noisy as on the side of the road and dogs barking in the night (find this everywhere though) but fine for the night and view of the sea and the ferry.
Made it past the cliff and the narrow, rough terrain only to find Football match traffic blocks road. 😂😂😂 ow well time for a little live football interlude. ⚽️⚽️⚽️
Umm not sure about this one!!! 😮
Quick stop just off the motorway to book ferry to Italy, make some plans for meeting mum and dad and find a place to sleep. Ferry to Italy booked for 15th October Patras-Brindisi. Probably paid over the odds as booking so late and didn't really search for cheaper options but just wanted to get it booked. A sixteen and a half hour crossing does not really appeal to me but all part of the adventure I guess. Two, adults, two children, a motorhome, breakfast and an outside private cabin for four: £375. Campsite we had seen near here is classed so now off the check out the two park4night spots near here before heading for Athens tomorrow.
The correct use of the inside lane in Greek cities. For double parking 😂. The best bit no one cares. No one is hooting, no one is shouting. If you need a frappe and the spaces outside the best Café are full you just make use of the inside lane. Simples 😍.
Military ships moored in the bay.
Wildcamp 6: Greece 1st-2nd October. After heading inland to visit the amazing tombs at Vergina and Monasteries nestled or perched on top of the rocks at Meteora it looked like the sun might be making a return and we had a hankering for the sea. After a bit of research on google maps, park4night and a look at ourture.co.uk a favourite for finding places to stop with easy links directly from their google map legend (that I have ready to turn on and off in google maps) to info on everywhere they have stated. We also regularly refer to http://ourbumble.com
Campsite 33: Meteora Greece.
More cloud photos
Up in the clouds
Ryoal Tomb of Phillip ll: Museum and three tombs. Artefacts found in the tombs displayed in the underground museum alongside the excavated remains of three tombs. One thought to be that of Phillip II. Expensive compared to other Archaeological sites we have been to in Greece but well worth the €24 entry for two adults. Kids free. Lots of excellent information in both Greek and English and explanatory film in Greek with English subtitles. Fantastic.
Campsite 32: Greece Halkidiki Kassandra. 19th-29th September. Camping Kriopigi. After reading the google reviews and contacting the campsite a couple of weeks ago to be told it would cost €50 a night if they were still open we arrived with some trepidation. This was the only campsite I was able to find on Kassandra and we planned staying here around Megan, Terry and Oli coming to visit. They were checked into Hotel Alkion just up the Rd. What a pleasant surprise we had. Campsite was open and the location was stunning. As it was the end of the season there was only a handful of people still here. Originally told us €22 plus €4 for power (no charge for the kids). In the end we stayed 10 nights at €22 a night including power and by the end of the first week it was just us and the security guard. The toilets and showers were pretty grotty with only squatting toilets but with access to Meg and Terry's hotel up the road (with a bath!!!!!) and our own toilet and shower on board squeaky and fresh water on our pitch it was great. A wonderful week.
At last a Stifado. Tony is happy at last :-D
Last night selfie :-D
Day at the beach
Day at the pool
In search of the perfect beach.
Wildcamp. : 19th-20th September
Wild Camping 4: Greece, Halkidiki. 14th-16th September. Long sandy (coarse sand) beach in a bay with rocks for snorkelling and fishing from and views of Mount Athos. Other motorhomes wild camping here and at the other end of the bay (also a couple of tents). Bins for rubbish. Approaching from the North sat nav takes you under the main coast Rd. This bridge is too low for large motorhomes. Instead drive past towards the small harbour. Turn left of coast Rd to small harbour and immediately left. This is a sharp left turn that doubles back in it's self. Also accessible via the marina. We stopped here and bought fresh squid for the BBQ.
The "we're not going up there" road
Wild Camping 4: Greece. 13th-14th September Challenging access road (I remember uttering the words we're not going up there as one point!! Luckily we didn't have too lol) but secluded large beach with plenty of space to park and wonderful view of Mount Athos.
Tony fighting off the local wildlife. Track to wild camping and beach.
Mount Athos: Closer and clearer. Now to find a place to sleep.
First glimpse of Mount Athos in the distance shrouded in clouds.
Services just off the motor way with Motorhome service point. Water, Grey water disposal and toilet disposal. Same hose for toilet and fresh water so we just disinfected the tap and changed hose for our own. Also great food in the services. We just settled for frappe and baklava. Happy days now for sound more free camping in the beach. Hoping for a view of mount Athos tonight.
Wildcamping 3: Greece. 12-13th September. Wonderful time spent swimming, den building, road schooling, bodyboarding, fishing and generally enjoying quality time as a family.
Torso of Pan's statue. The god of mountains, forests and livestock.
Campsite 30: Greece. 9th-11th September. kryoneri Camping. Clean, tidy, friendly and 500m from a lovely beach with sea that goes out for around 100m at bellow waist hight. Perfect for the kids (and us).
Heading home after a hard day at the beach.
Who'd have thought it??? Burning Greek coffee gets rid of wasps.
Tony's has finally found a fruiting Olive Tree. We have arrived :-D
Country Number 13: Greece woohoo :-D
Fuel stop complete with demolition derby race to watch as we prepped the van for Greece. Fuel, LPG and Air.
9th September. Bulgaria close to Greek boarder and just left Camping Alexandivo and the lovely Mat and Sky. 18025 total miles 163 since last top 34.19 litres 1.93 BGN per Litre 65.98 BGN 21.06 mpg
Also filled up LPG tanks 33.7 litres 0.91 BGN per litre. 30.67 BGN (circa £15 to fill 2 x 11kg tanks)
Total spend: 96.66 BGN £45.39
Campsite 30: Bulgaria. 6th-9th September. Campsite Alexandrovo.
Things you see along the way. On route to the shops. In the lovely Mat's car he's leant us.
One the not so nice things we've seen along the way. Piles of rubbish burning below a block of flats :-(
In route to the Shipka pass.
2790 km from London
Roman Ruins: Nicopolis ad Istram
On route to Roman ruins. Last nights storm damage, but the squeakster made it past :-D
Campsite 28: Bulgaria. Trinity Rocks Farm Campsite. 30th August-6th September. Wonderful climbers campsite and lodge. It's happened again!!! Arrived for a night and left a week later. Fantastic people and location. The Farm is right on the banks of the river. No fish caught as we only had corn, meat and bread and you couldn't get past the abundance of little fish but fun had trying. Aaron and Tom fell in love with 5A a ginger kitten who seemed to find his way into the van at every opportunity. Campers kitchen and communal area complete with full size sofas!! Full size sofas???!!! I didn't realise I'd missed one so much. This campsite had everything we wanted from a campsite. Possibly a little rough round the edges for some people's tastes but ticked all the boxes for us. Communal area had an almost youth hotel feel to it and enabled a home cooked curry (thanks dad your pea and potato curry recipe did it again) one evening that fed 7 adults with diner the next night for us. Curry with like minded folk followed by an almighty storm with accompanying light and sound show. There are also rooms to rent, a tree house you can sleep in (with power) or just watch videos on your kindle if your into that kind of thing ;-) dogs, cats, chickens, a donkey, a turkey and a very grumpy Goose called Gandalf. With trippy art adorning many of the external walls and the addition of climbing walls and features both inside and out and the old curiosity shop (The Bulgaria pickers they call themselves) this place is a must if you are travelling through Bulgaria. What an amazing time. Thanks Cliff, Jason and AJ we had a blast. http://www.trinityrocksfarm.com/
There is also an abundance of history and natural wonder just on the doorstep. With roman ruins, more water falls than you can shake a stick at, climbing and skiing (in the winter) opportunities, monasteries, medieval ruins, stunning views and monuments to mark the many historical changes that have taken place here, including the arrival and departure of communism. Wow what a place.
The Big Cave: Sanctuary of the Nymphs
The Madara Raider or Madara Horseman (Bulgarian: Мадарски конник, Madarski konnik) is an early medieval large rock relief carved on the Madara Plateau east of Shumen in northeastern Bulgaria, near the village of Madara. The monument is dated in the very late 7th, or more likely very early 8th century, during the reign of Bulgar Khan Tervel. In 1979 it became enlisted on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Remains of a Pagan Sanctuary and Christian Church that was built in it's place.
Mining cable cars.
More crazy geographic phenomenons. The Stone Forest.
Tony is Rocky
Campsite 27 Bulgaria: Laguna Camping. Really friendly staff but this place is very run down and outrageously expensive for Bulgaria. At 50 Lev a night we would not stay again. But after Aaron falling head first off a rock we decided being near a town for the evening was for the best.
Wild Camp 2: Bulgarian Black Sea. Left the party beach and drove back to the wild camping we had found as we entered Bulgaria from Romania. Well this was a bit of an adventure to say the least. Tony had sussed out what he thought would be the best access track and area to camp. There is literally a mile or so of wildcamping here on the cliff top but only one area next to a beach. We parked next to a German family. Dad and 4 of his 8 kids. Found out he had been coming here every year for 50 years. We arrived in beautiful sunshine and Tony and the boys checked out the fishing potential from the rocks (at last Tony had found a place he could wet a line with what he was sure would produce a tasty catch) and had a swim and a snorkel. I watched from the van setting up camp and getting the salad part of dinner ready. We watched the sun set as we sat out for a yummy BBQ before settling down with our books (and FB) as we dreamed of a day spent swimming, snorkelling, sun bathing and a bit of reading. Well we weren't expecting that!!! Woke in the night to the sound of seriously heavy winds. A quick and frantic run around outside on Tony's part putting away the table, chairs and rubber rings for fear of them blowing out to sea and we buttoned down the hatches. I I honestly thought we would wake up to find the German guys oldest kids tent blown away. This hadn't happened but the rain had joined the wind and our new neighbours were packing up and making their escape (probably should have realised this might be a cue for us to head off too). We decided to settle in for a day of storm watching from the safety of the van. The kids were gutted, fishing had been foremost in their minds as they drifted off to sleep the night before. By the afternoon the rain was calming down and we ventured out into the rocks (a reasonably safe distance from the crashing waves, video and photos taken). We decide to to retreat to an even safer distance and Aaron thought he would get a better view from the top of a giant rock. In full mountain goat fashion he was on top in a flash. Sadly the dismount did not go so well and and ended in him falling head first towards the razor sharp coral like rock (his foot stuck as he was turning around and he lost his grip and balance). Luckily there was a large hole in the rocks (an empty water worn rock pool) just where his head came down. Few that was scary. Unfortunately although he avoided serious injury he had some pretty impressive bruises and small but painful slices in his hands from the rocks.
After a warm shower back at the van and Tony concerned that he may have hit his head (Aaron was adamant he hadn't) we decided to head for the hill in the form of the only campsite we had seen back in Varna (therefore close to a medical centre just incase he did show signs of concussion later in the day).
This is when the fun really began. We packed up and headed for the track back to the road. The dry dusty track across the fields that was no longer dry and dusty!!!!! But in fact wet, slippery and up hill ( it did rain quite a lot).
After a failed first attempt Tony and a much recovered Aaron (now in full personification of Artemis Foal "just give me a minute I can work this out" he told me at one point) stomped up off the track to investigate. After investigating all available tracks in the different directions they decided the only feasible option was to attempt the original track but this time minus the passengers and in reverse. So the boys and I decamped from the van and Tony and The Squeakster went for it. I poised with camera in hand, Aaron shouting words of encouragement and Tom hoping it wasn't going to work (he was hoping we'd be stuck for the night with iPhone promise of a beautiful day ahead and back to the fishing plan he had been so looking forward to). After some tense slipping and sliding and much to Toms disappoint Tony and The Squeakster came good and we were free :-D off back to Varna and the promise of a beach side campsite tonight and a Stone Forest and cliff side carvings tomorrow.
Approaching the coast again
Things you see along the way. On route back to wild camping spots near Romanian boarder. Had enough of the beach bar discos fighting pumping techno.
Wildcamp 1: Bulgarian Black Sea. 26th - 28th August. Came here following co-ordinates text to us for a free party but arrived too late to make the trip through the woods to the party in the motorhome. So found this spot just off the main road down to the sea (no late night tracks through woodlands on unmade roads involved). So parked on the beach a little further away and enjoyed the music from afar. And the odd staggering party goer who wanders past.
26th August. Bulgaria. On route to free dance party on a beach (maybe). 17480 total miles 342 since last top up 69.07 litres 1.94 134.00 22.51 mpg
2-3 KM of wild camping spots right on the coast.
Bulgarian Vignette purchased. About £7.50 for 7 days. No cards excepted at the boarder or the first garage but there was a mini supper market and cash point about 300 Ms up the road so we got some cash and bought essentials (beer, wine and snacks) and popped back to get one from the first garage.
Country Number 12: Bulgaria. Romania you have been amazing.
Campsite 26: Romania. 24th-26th August. Last campsite in Romania. Stayed here for two nights as wifi was excellent and lovely pool. Water, power and chemical toilet deposal. No where for drive over grey water. Last reminder of the friendliness of the Romanian people. PAfter a lift to the cash point and not being able to withdraw enough money and much searching for small change they let us off 12Lea.
We've reached the Black Sea
Campsite 25: Romania. Looks lovely. Quite basic but at only 50 lea with power local kids for the boys to play with and a view of the lake all seemed good. That was until the middle of the night when extreme wild dog barking had kept me awake into the early hours and the smell of sewerage began to waft in through the windows of the van!!! I did eventually fall asleep and when Tony woke the smell was still strong (stronger by the lake). We made a hasty retreat without even a cup of coffee. We think that they probably pumped raw sewerage into the lake over night.
Family jigsaw time. Map of Europe jigsaw picked up for £1.80 from Lidl.
Tom wanted another look at the Volcanoes and both boys were keen to catch the high CP Pokémon that seem to hide out here.
Campsite 24: Romania. Muddy Land camping. 22nd-23rd August. 25 Lea (£5) Up in the hills 15 minute walk up to the mud Volcanos. Stars last night were so clear with the Milky Way arching over the van like a starry rainbow. Sampled the local Palinka and homemade wine and took an evening (watched the sun set over hills as we climbed) and morning stole up the hill to the Volcanoes. Road up to here isn't great but worth it to see this geographical wonder. Campsite had power, water, a bar/shop and wifi but only squatting toilets and no showers (that we could find). The poverty here is more apparent as you drive through a shanty village to reach the location with women, men and young children trying to sell bags of what look like buckthorn berries that they have collected from the abundant bushes. I wonder what they would be selling at other times of the year.
Beautiful changing landscape that is Romania
Giant Water Mellon 8p!!!!
Total miles 17139
Campsite 23: Romania. Camping Valea Trotusului. Fabulous little campsite. Drove here after the rear skylight started leaking while staying at Doua Lumi. This was our second choice as not on route but main motorhome garage in Bucharest was booked up until September 15th. How glad we were. It has taken us about 4 hours out of our way (not easy to find a motorhome garage in Romania!!) but the service was fantastic, the campsite was lovely (stunning views, lots of birds, very clean, modern showers, lovely little bar and wifi zone), the hospitality and friendliness of the owners has again blown us away and we have seen a different and again beautiful part of Romania. Would highly recommend. Also if you have been holding off on getting something done to your motorhome and happen to be heading this way or find yourself needing a repair while you are here we can not recommend highly enough. Excellent workmanship and only £100 for 4 hours work and materials!!! Incredible. www.camperland.ro 0740157895 also close to Salina Saltmine (about 20 minute drive) and lake and there is a swimming pool in walking distance of the campsite. We didn't go as it was very expensive for Romania but it looked lovely.
Squeaky getting some love after his/her wash yesterday
Skylight all fixed now was a wash. 4 hours work and materials. €112.
Crossing the river we have been following and we think our next campsite sits next to.
Romanian flags by a church and memorial
A break by a river and another beautiful Church to look at.
Show me Crane
Campsite 22: Romania. Vampire Camping Bran. After the wonderful welcome and experience of Doua Lumi nothing was going to compare. We came here to see Bran Castle the supposed home of Dracula but a bit of a search on Wikipedia and you soon realise that it was neither the planned home of the great count by Bram Stoker nor did Vlad live here. The campsite was again owned by a Dutch couple but they were not Hans and Wilma. A good campsite with stunning mountain views. We arrived after our epic day of driving (well Tony's epic day of driving as I continue to be be co-pilot) up and down the Transfagarasan. As we walked back to Squeaky after the customary checking in process Tony spotted the familiar Dutch Orange T-Shirt of Joost waking towards us and the lovely Christine and Flory. Wow the campsite just got a whole lot better. Spent a wonderful couple of evenings together and have definitely made a great new friendship.
Romanian Mausoleum: A tribute to Romanian soldiers of the Arges area who died in the Great War 1916-1918 Wold War 1.
Ponies in the road. Not a country road a major highway junction!!! Only in Romania.
Romanian roads !!!!!
Just left the the Transfagarasan now off to find Dracula
Just a herd of goats crossing the road.
Into the tunnel as we start the decent. Didn't quite catch the height at the peak. Can we claim 2000km I wonder?
Nearly at the top. Wow.
Fuel stop before the transfigarasan 16804 miles total
Here we go.
Evening ride home from the restaurant. Romanian farmer style.
Heading into the hills in search of a campsite with a pool. Last one the pool was shut.
Random red building.
Lay by next to a river and a bridge. It must be time for lunch. With the asbestos pipes and rusting construction we left Tony to investigate the river on his own though.
Campsite 19: Romania. What a difference a day makes. From the best to the worst. €36 for a horrible run down, poorly maintained plot of land next to a busy main road and train track. Ow well one out of 19 isn't a bad success rate and we did know what to expect based on google reviews but after Park4night spot let us down and changing time zones meant it was getting too dark to find a suitable alternative we didn't have a lot of choice. Ow well with all the high barbed wire fences I guess at least we knew we were safe!!! If you are visiting Romania don't try this one folks.
Random plane on top of a silo just after carfor shop
Electric busses, crazy drivers and stressed Tony. Time to get out of dodge
Country Number 11: Romania, back in the EU and back on line.
Lay by next to s triburay of the Danube. Time for a fag break and to make a quick snack. Lovely fresh Sunbread roles from Camping Zasavica.
Crossing the Danube
River side beach
Campsite 18: Serbia fantastic find. Camping Zasavica. Pulled into here around 10.30 pm last night after an epic 8 hour drive. Had planned to spend one last night in Croatia but after the planned over night stop was horrible we decided (possibly fool hardily!!) to push on into Serbia. After a quick search at the boarder crossing while we still had internet I found Camping Zasavica and we put it in the sat nav. Although it is so well sign posted from the motorway we would have found it anyway. What a find. Site is perfectly set up for motor homes, toilets and showers are immaculate and the owner Jovan is a wonderful welcome into Serbia (Serbian boarder policeman was equally as welcoming). Fresh bread delivered to the door in the morning and even let us pay in pound notes as we had no cash.
Country number 10 Serbia. 1st non-EU country on the tour. Had planned to head over tomorrow but stop over spot was horrible so headed in. Friendliest boarder crossing yet. So friendly we couldn't even buy insurance as none would sell it to us. Told by three different people including the pass post official, police man and then the guy selling it that it was too expensive just head on in. Now in principle this sounds great. The reality however is a very stressed Tony driving in fear for Squeakys life.
Campsite 17 Croatia: Great little motor home campsite. Last night with the gang. BBQ, τσίπουρο (Tsipouro), washing, giggles and jumpers!!! Ow and cat called Child who liked exploring the campers tents.
A trip to the lake. Last morning with our mates. Bit of an impromptu splash for Tom
Sveti Rok Croatia
Fuel stop. Croatia on route to Romania. Via a final night (hopefully by a river) with our bestie travel buddies. In convoy to Slovenian boarder. 15952 Total Miles 338 since last top up 76.83 Litres 8,67 kuna per litre 666.03 kn £80.70 20 mpg
Campsite 16: Croatia. 5th-7th of August. Camping in the Pine Trees under the mountain. Hot sun, cold sea, cold beer and great company.
A day at the beach with our besties :-D
We have met the Papazides
Sveti Rock: 5681m long tunnel trough the mountain. On route to Split. Very busy
5th July Senj Croatia. On route to meet the Papazidis 15614 Total miles 339 since last top up 79.99 Litres 8,52 kuna per litre 681,51 kn £82.86 19.27 mpg gulp!!! Air Con and mountains
Sun set on the beach. Not a bad view for the night. campsite 15 Croatia. 4th-5th August.
The sea at last: First glimpse of the sea since we left England. Adriatic.
Evidence of the not so distant past. Makes you realise how lucky we are not to have experienced war in our lifetime.
Splitvice Lakes: stunning but exhausting. 5 mile hike down and back up the sides of the gorge in 36+ degrees. Breathtaking beauty though.
Campsite 14: Karona Camping on the edge Splitvic National park. 3rd-4th August. A bit pricey at around £40 all in but a really good campsite and you are playing for the location. Kids did some den building while we cooked and after the mossies and flys in Hungary it was nice to be able to sit outside without getting eaten alive. The kids had great fun on their bikes and we sat up late into the evening with them chatting about the world. Including nuclear fusion and deadly insects.
Country Number 9 Croatia: Even had to go through passport control.
Thermal Spa Tamasi: Great day out, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, sun bathing pool, water slide, amazing Hungarian food, cold beer and indoor and outdoor thermal baths. Great fun and relaxation had by all. Best of all no driving as Sharon from Tranquil Pines delivered and collected us.
Composite 13: Hungarian Country Camping, Tranquil Pines. 31st July - 3rd August. Most welcoming hosts who went out of their way to look after us all. Garage repair arranged prior to arrival, cold beer and swimming pool to keep grown ups and kids happy, service wash (thanks Sharon) and a lift to and from the thermal spa. Coupled with great company from Andrew and Sharon and our fellow campers and all for only €13.50 a night all in.
30th July: On route from Budapest and Hungarian Grand Prix to Tranquil Pines Camping Hungary 15275 total miles 376 since last top up 77.73 Litres 349 Forints per litre 27128 Ft £79.55 21.99 mpg
Iparművészeti Múzeum (Museum of Applied Arts) Budapest
Issues with the air suspension still. Right airbag loosing 3 bar of pressure over night. Nothing obvious found. All connections checked and tightened and back on the rd.
Campsite 12: Hungaroring, Hungary. Round 11 Formula One 2017. Racetrack Kamping 2. Crazy weekend. Pumping sound systems (in one direction German Techno, the other direction Euro pop and the other direction Rock. Boys did ask to sleep in their ear defenders last night), racing fans, beer, vodka, great company and naked men in fishnet body suits (did manage to avoid the boys seeing this one!!). Next stop Tranquil Pines Hungary before off to Croatia.
Campsite 11: Hungary on route to Hungarian Grand Prix. Really friendly and right on the banks of the river but pretty grotty. So much so I opted against showering the boys and I !!!! 26th-27th July.
Country number 8: Hungary
Campsite 10 Slovakia. We have stumbled on a little slice of Hippy Dutch Heaven in the Slovakian hills. 25th-26th July.
Highest point reached: 998m. Winter Ski resort but luckily no snow today.
Campsite 9. Slovakia: 24th-25th July
Country number 7: Slovakia
Handing back the viaTOLL. One very grumpy lady but it's all done.
View of the Babia Gora National Park (highest peak 1750m) as we stopped for a quick snack. 707m
24th July: Just north of Krakow on route to Slovakia 14899 total miles 343 miles since last fuel stop 74,791 dm3 (L) Price per L 4,44 Zloty 332,07 Zloty £70.35 20.85 mpg (we've been up and down a few big hills).
Beautiful Krakow. After getting a bus into town from the motorhome shop we took an electric car ride of the old town and Jewish quarter
Arrived at Elcamp motorhome showroom, garage and Stellplatz (30 Zloty 24h) at around 9.30 after deciding to stay an extra night at the campsite for Tony to recover from the Polish hospitality. After some confusion checking in with Gliderite address and VAT number needed we left Squeaky in their capable hands and headed into the city of Krakow. Just picked her up and we are back on the road with air-assisted suspension back in action and Slovakia bound.
Campsite 8 Poland: 20th - 24th July. Crazy weekend making fabulous Polish friends and where Tony discovered Polish breakfast (lunch, dinner and tea!!!!!). After leaving the two sites we had as possible locations( first was a bit tight on space and the owner looking like a Captain off deadliest catch was in a full on row with a lady and refused to speak to us. second was lovely, right by the lake, lovely Polish owners but no space due to it having been taken over by English Gypsies who didn't speak to us and didn't look keen on us joining them) we found ourselves in the middle of a Polish Caravan and Motorhome Rally (Slaski Klub Motorowy). Wonderful Polish hospitality, lots, fantastic memories and many knew friends.
We finally found beautiful Poland
Salt Mines Krakow
Camping Smok Krakow: 17th-20th July. Headed to Krakow to visit the city, the salt mines and to fix the suspension. Reviews of the campsite didn't look too hot but other than the price 141z a night we had a wonderful time here. Met a really chilled out Swedish Couple travelling in one of Ed's cousins and an English couple who waved us off with an A4 sheet of information about sites and places to visit complete with ACSI site numbers. Off to find a lake to swim in as it's hot, hot, hot. Back to Krakow on Monday for suspension fitting.
Birkenau: I visited on the 15th and Tony on the 16th July 2017. We must never forget.
Auschwitz: I visited in the 15th and Tony on the 16th. We must never forget.
Campsite 6 Poland. 14th- : Centrum Dialogue Auschwitz. Lovely little campsite as part of the Auschwitz centre for dialogue.
Wroclaw Poland: Total miles 14556
Just filled up with
Getting our viaTOLL box. After lots of internet searching, trying to find advice from motorhome groups we have finally tracked down how to acquire our viaTOLL box. If you find yourself in Poland and require said box here is what you need to do. You may want to find a location to buy your box prior to arriving and make this your first stop. This is for all vehicles over 3.5T. Follow the link below and search for a location close to where you intend to enter Poland.
Full instructions with photos and screenshots coming to our blog page soon (well when we get around to sorting one out).
Campsite 5 Poland 14th- July 2017: Centrum Dialogue Auschwitz. Lovely little campsite as part of the Auschwitz centre for dialogue.
Country Number 6: Poland
Campsite 4 Germany. 9th-11th July. Popped in for a night on our way to Poland but decided to stay for two. Fab campsite by a lake.
Campsite 3 Germany. Booked in for one night but stayed for three. First night here we met two guys on BMW endurance bikes doing a similar route to us down to Romania. Tonight we were invited to a campsite BBQ and Fire. Amazing tour of Colditz Castle yesterday.
Overnight stop on the way to Colditz. Stellplatz €5
3rd-4th July Mohne Reservoir
Fuel Stop 3rd July: Germany on route from Nurburgring to Mohne Dam 13808 367 miles since last fuel Stop 74.05L Price per L €1.079 €79.90 MPG:22.53
Race Track Number 3 (Brands Hatch started the tour and Magny-Cours on stage one). Touring Europe via racetracks :-D
Campsite 2 Germany. Dad's Birthday: 29th-3rd June Wonderful few days celebrating Dad's 70th. Camped directly on the Banks of Rhine looking at Loreley Rock with Mum and Dad over looking us from their hotel room. Fabulous company, food, fun, boat trips, cable cars, history, bike riding, stunning scenery and a few saw heads. Happy days :-D
Aire/Stellplatz 3: First German Aire (Stellplatz). Banks of the Mosel Rive the night before Dad's 70th. 28th-29th June 2017. Arrived late after 'Park 4 the night'suggested site was wrong. No motor homes allowed to park in car park suggested.
Country number 4: Germany
Aire/Stellplatz number 2: After visiting three Aires last night in search of water finally found this lovely Stop in Luxembourg. Complete with live music, impressive thunder and lightening, BMX track, two parks and a Pokestop. Ow and it's free, well water was a euro for 20 mins but can't complain about that :-D next stop Germany 27/06/17-28/06/17
Country number 3 Luxembourg
27June: Belgium near Bouillon Castle 13441 miles total 379 miles since last fuel stop 78.08L Price per L €1.264 €98.60 22.07 mpg
Aire/Stelplatz 1. Fist Belgium Aire. By a river of course :-D 26/06/17-27/06/17
Country number 3: Just entered Belgium
Campsite 1: First night in France part two. ACSI site. Lovely feel and great facilities including a Pokestop and indoor and outdoor pool (one for the kids). Perfect as only 15 minutes from the Shuttle. http://www.camping-la-bien-assise.com/
Back in Fance
Heading under the water :-D le Shuttle
|Dates:||24 Jun 2017 - 11 Dec 2017|
|Duration:||5 months, 2 weeks|
Tony, Sian, Aaron and Tom's European adventure in Squeaky. #Motorhoming, Motorroaming, #Roadschooling, #Fishingeurope