The basic equipment for a holiday with a camping van starts at home with the right planning and preparation. Newcomers are likely to take trips to get to know the new camping van lifestyle – and its requirements. The times when the camper is in the barn are unfortunate. There may even be costs involved. Why not also use the caravan at the weekend on the caravan site? You can find out what you need for this here.
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Plan a caravan site
There is no patent that applies to every camper. After all, camping thrives on exactly this individuality. However, comparable solutions are emerging for practically all campers. In the planning, questions to be considered are, for example, sun protection and outdoor seating, how the awning is set up, and much more. Before solving set-up problems, first, find the perfect pitch for the camper van and explore the terrain around the camper van and awning. Since the floor surface is permanently loaded, the ground must be firm. Even after long periods of rain! Many therefore lay out concrete slabs. It is up to you whether to cover the entire surface or just a few spots under the wheels and supports.
Anyone who has decided to stay in one place for a longer period of time can significantly extend the life of their investment with a protective canopy. There are essentially three variants:
- Protective roof for the camping van – the cost-effective way to protect the van. The tent is free and can be removed at any time.
- Protective roof for camping van and awning – here both residential units are covered. In summer it is cooler due to the insulating layer of air in the tent and in winter there is no snow on the tent skin.
- Protective roof for the camping van with a fixed tent – the luxury version. Here you can choose the version with or without a sluice. The lockable airlock connects campers and tents. When you travel, pull the van out from under the canopy and the tent stays put. However, this only works if the protective roof rests on its own posts.
The right floor in the awning
If you plan to come to a certain camping spot more often, you can also think about optimizing the floor in front of the camper van.
For example, if you want to stay in one place with your camper van for a long time, then you can think about laying plates or mats there.
For example, you are protected from wet ground in heavy rain. There are also practical floor panels that you can quickly lay. These floor panels then offer a good base that protects you from moisture or dust.
Seasonal camping or travel
The variant presented above also works if you mine every now and then. For winter storage, the floor panels are quickly collected and the tent carpet is rolled up. For the holiday trip, you can even consider securing everything against rain with tarpaulins and leaving it on the caravan site until you return. You might even take the tent carpet with you: it does a good job on the green meadow or on the sand.
Furnish the awning comfortably
It all depends on what options and wishes you have. It also always depends on how much space you have in your van to transport the equipment.
If you have a lot of space or have a large camping van, you can of course set up a large camping kitchen or barbeque station in the awning.
But if you only plan to stay in one place for a few days, you can of course set up a small camping kitchen or a grill in the awning.
It is also very important that you take comfortable camping furniture with you. A table that offers enough space for everyone is very important. Comfortable chairs are also very important.
Camping table and chairs
You need at least as many seats as there are people regularly on the pitch. For meals together or a cozy get-together, the table is still missing.
Make sure that all camping furniture is suitable for outdoor use. It’s much drier inside than outside, but the high humidity affects furniture that is otherwise in the house. You can use this camping furniture both inside and outside, but experience has shown that after a while it becomes too tedious for many to carry the furniture back and forth all the time. Another set of camping furniture is purchased.
Furnish outdoor area
What sounds like excess makes sense. Nobody breaks off their holiday just because it rains, but nobody wants to sit outside when it rains. Then it is more comfortable and spacious in the awning than in the camping van. If the weather is nice, however, it would be unfortunate to spend the day in a tent. It also gets hot there. It is much more comfortable to sit under a pavilion on the pitch and perhaps have a chat with the neighbors on the other side of the windbreak.
Speaking of pavilions: Here you will also find various designs for temporary use or permanent construction. If the pavilion spends the winter outside, pull off the roof and thus extend the service life to the maximum. You can also work under the permanently erected pavilion with concrete or floor slabs, less often with a tent carpet.
All the little stuff
Equipment, children’s bicycles, and water toys take up a lot of space. Make sure that you always have everything well organized. It can quickly happen that you forget smaller equipment.
You can also take boxes with you in which you organize and store everything. So there is less chance that you will forget things or that the children’s toys will disappear.
There is more to the perfect caravan site…
Planning the van pitch touches on more issues than the camper van and awning orientation and setup. On pitches with a water connection, lay the line up to the camper van or into the awning.
The most important thing is that you set up the camping pitch as comfortably as possible. But you shouldn’t take too much equipment with you if you only want to stay in one place for a few days.
When you get home, make a list of the things you really want to take with you. Try to leave unnecessary things at home.
Download Our Roof Top Tent Overview (PDF)
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