Replies: 5 - Last Post: Aug 31, 2012 6:45 AM Last Post By: anillos_de_satu...
Aug 31, 2012 12:23 AM
Road trip?!Its my second time going to Europe the first time I used the euro rail and it worked good but this time I want to try something different sooo I'm thinking a road trip around Europe?! I did this in a camper an around Australia a few months ago and would love to do it in Europe. I am hoping to join up with someone who is interested in doing the same. I arrive in Athens mid Sept and would like to do western Europe ( Italy Spain France Holland Germany Switzerland ) if this sounds good or you have any ideas how I can get this started I'd greatly appreciate it!
Aug 31, 2012 1:27 AM
1Greece, Italy, Spain, France, Netherlands (Holland is the name of the president of France in the moment), Germany and Switzerland - gives you less than 13 days in each country including the time of travel. The 'camper' you will take where, have you find out the distances, did you know the price of fuel in Europe and/or fees for motorways and parkings?
Aug 31, 2012 2:06 AM
2Things to think about:-
1) Fuel is roughly 50% more expensive than you're used to in Canada.
2) Various motorways have tolls. Others require stickers. Refer to http://www.viamichelin.com which not only calculates the route, but also fuel burn + toll costs.
3) Assuming you're proposing 3 months here (cos that's all you can have under Schengen rules if you don't hold a EU passport), the end of this will be Christmas. Three issues here: 1) Potentially bad weather - if it snows in Northern Europe it can screw things up catastrophically 2) Day light - you're looking at max 8 hrs 3) Flying home at Xmas is bastard expensive.
4) A lot of campsites shut up shop from October onwards due to lack of demand. Not for nothing do us Europeans not go camping in the winter.
5) Campsites are rarely anywhere near cities. You have a problem of how to get from the campsite into the cities (and back again).
6) Seriously, it can get flipping cold towards Christmas.
7) Campervans in Europe are not like the Aussie version. Try googling monster and check out theirs. Note that they're not that cheap.
Personally, I'd either reschedule to start your trip late May, or else do some more Eurail (not Eurorail, there's no such thing) :)
Aug 31, 2012 2:07 AM
3I forgot; lots of cities and even some towns have emission or congestion zones. You need to research these and how much it'll cost to enter them. Parking in lots of European cities can be a serious problem, Italy in particular.
Aug 31, 2012 6:01 AM
4There are occasional road-trip queries on this forum. A road-trip with camper van concept that works in Canada or Australia has less chance of success in West Europe (covering countries you mention). At minimum, the logistics work different, partly because of the less wide open spaces and greater population density in Europe.
The main planning problem comes from tryng to combine a road-trip idea with a grand-tour 'visiting the main cities' idea. This is what you have to be clear about when making your plans -- what it is that you want to be doing. Is it an explore the open road idea? Or is it a visit the cities idea where the van is the transport from A to B while "saving" on accom? The difficulties with this idea have been described in detail above.
Europeans do use camper-vans to take holidays, but these are primarily of the summer-holiday variety, so the facilities (campgrounds etc) and so on are more for this group. They want to take camping holidays but also want bring-along accommodation that is better than a tent. They use the vehicle to get somewhere then park and stay put .. maybe having brought along bikes for day trips.
Aug 31, 2012 6:45 AM
5would like to do western Europe ( Italy Spain France Holland Germany Switzerland )
That's very vague. What places do you want to visit at each country? What do you want to make/visit in those places? How long will be your trip?...
Netherlands (Holland is the name of the president of France in the moment)
Perhaps the OP really meant Holland and not the Netherlands?
BTW, the surname of the French president is Hollande; not Holland.
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