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Camping Europe in a Motorhome RV: 5 Best Sites!

May 04, 2010

camping Europe roadtrip motorhome RV 5 Best sites Sweden Beach

International family travel at it's best! One of the very best ways to explore Europe is by camping and a motorhome, campingvan or RV is ideal for family travel on a budget. Few Americans seem to be aware of  how cheap and easy this is and what a great way it is to meet Europeans and friends from around the world. Unlike American camping, it is not roughing it, but usually very luxurious despite the very frugal price.

Barcelona camping Europe view Mediterranean sea soultravelers3

Many are like 5 star resorts with every amenity from pools to restaurants to zoos and top of the line exercise rooms with saunas, steam rooms, jacuzzi's and often free wifi. There is not a city or site in Europe that does not have a campground near by and almost all of them also have rental cabins for those who don't have a motorhome, caravan or tent. Our lead photo is our RV in our campsite right on the beach  in beautiful Grisslehamn, Sweden and the view above is from our campsite in Barcelona.Some are as cheap as 8 euros a night and it's possible to camp for free in many places.

I will be doing more posts on camping in Europe and will be making an e-book with all the great places we have discovered and the secrets we have learned along the way about camping in Europe. Many people even spend the winter lux-camping in warm places like Nice, Portugal and Marbella. Yes, you can camp right in Paris, London, Vienna, Rome, Prague, Satorini and more. There are sooo many amazing places that it's very hard to choose the top 5, but here are  5 favorites:

Tuscany

Tuscany Camping Europe Beautiful 5 star Chianti Hills

This was my pick when the UK Guardian asked us as a "travel guru" what we suggested for family travel in 2010. This is an ideal place to base in Chianti hills, perfect for families and every age range. It's easy to get to Florence from here, ride horses, taste wine or discover the countryside from a lux base. The water parks here were big hits and quite addictive fun for the whole family.

Bordeaux

Camping Europe France Bordeaux St Emilion wine country road trip

We loved this charming place in St. Emilion,  the prettiest town in Bordeaux and surrounded by vineyards that are easy to bike even with kids! The ducks, tennis, two pools, playgrounds, lake, tennis & restaurant add to the special enchantment!

Dubrovnik

Camping Europe Dubrovnik Family travel Croatia girl view wall

 It feels like half of Italy moves here in August, but we still loved this huge Dubrovnik resort that included beaches, pools, hotel, kid's clubs and anything you could want. This was Mozart's favorite, perhaps because of the daily free ice-cream parties and our large  campsite.We stayed a month, found it hard to leave and it clears out to few campers in September. Just a fun daytrip from Montenegro too!

Venice

  Family travel Venice camping Europe gondola violin mask soultravelers3


Camping is actually the very best way to see Venice and most Europeans know this. They have beaches, pools, every possible convenience and a lovely boat ride over to St Marco's square.There are a ton of 5 star camping resorts here to choose from.

Barcelona

Family travel camping Barcelona holiday vacation get away pool

We have been to this Barcelona resort campsite 8 times since our world tour began in 2006, often staying a month or more, so you know it is a favorite as it feels like one of our homes now. We even get our groceries delivered there and know many of the Northern Europeans who winter there year after year. It's easy to take the ferry to Italy nearby, is full of luxuries at bargain prices & best croissants in Europe! 

Have you camped in Europe or are you interested? Let me know what you'd like to read about in our ebook!

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Jeanne @soultravelers3

Hard question to answer Suzanne because I don't have all the info like how long, what your budget is, what your needs are, season you are going, where you want to go in Europe, RV or car and tent etc etc.

I also know a LOT more about camping Europe than hotels/hostels etc because we've done more of that...6 years now.

I understand how hard these decisions are. Renting an RV for a short time can be expensive, but one of the best decisions we made was to buy one instead ( long term lease) since it is VERY cheap to store in Europe and gives one a home/vehicle in Europe long term for many years.

IF you plan to return to Europe ( hard to see it all in a short span of time) you might consider that.

With only 3, you only need a small one. ..the smaller the better works best in Europe.

One advantage to the motorhome is always other kids to play with and kids clubs, pools etc in high season. BEST way to meet other Europeans which is one of the joys of travel.

RTW kids often get lonely if one doesn't take that into consideration.

I would follow the weather when there...as rain/cold is not fun to tour in.

Hostels have mostly 20 somethings and are too expensive for us. Hotels are isolating. Campgrounds are best for social ..esp for families and luxury amenities. You also do not have to pack and unpack with each move which takes time.

Park mostly with the RV and use mass transit to tour and slow travel nearby sights..saves on costs and gives you a base.

Good luck and happy planning!

Rachael

Hi, I'm sorry if this sounds like a really silly question. I have never camped before and so don't realyy know. But what do you do about showering? I love the idea of taking your home everywhere with you, however don't you miss the privacy of your own bathroom.

Jeanne @soultravelers3

Hi Rachel, Thanks for the question and I am the kind of person who believes there are no stupid questions, so good you asked as I am sure others perhaps wonder too.

Most of the places we stay at are new and luxury resorts, so the bathrooms are wonderful like you would find in a spa.

In fact they are often part of the spa, with sauna and hot tubs available, many have sky lights and plants etc.

Sometimes one has their own private shower and bathroom building for each campsite.

We actually have our own bathroom in our motorhome and use it. We have a shower in it, but much prefer to take them at the ones in the resorts ( and let them do the cleaning). :)

They are usually kept very clean, well stocked and it is rarely crowded, so I usually have the whole huge bathroom to myself.

They also often have kids bathrooms with everything just kid size for the little ones like this one in France:

http://www.soultravelers3.com/2009/05/biking-st-emilion-bordeaux-vineyards-in-france-wine-country.html

Think luxury resort, not a pup tent out in the wilderness. ;) Camping Europe is charming!!

We

Arun s

We have had a small motor home for seven years now.
Would love more than anything to RV in Europe for a year or more .
Love reading about all the positive experiences people from here have had. Now we want to do it too.
Probably want to rent a Motorhome there. Hopefully it would be more cost effective. Fingers crossed !

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