Wild camping spots

Nice wild camping spots, aires and overnight parking spaces can be hard to find so Jamie and I thought we'd list some of the best ones we found on our journey. Let us know if this is useful and don't hesitate to contact us if you need help.

Turkey
Free/wild camping is generally accepted in Turkey as long as you don't put your tent up or park your motorhome near residential areas. Camping is very popular in the Western parts of the country. As we adventured East in Kurdish territory near the borders with Iran and Armenia, we did get moved on by some military police one night and spoken to by the police another night. Both times, we communicated via Google Translate! They were nice and just wanted to know if we were ok. The situation may have changed now so check with locals and the foreign office website if it is safe to travel.

Free camping spot: gravel spot next to canyon. Where: off Rd 33-57 near KicakoyGPS: N36°42'36" E33°43'47"When we stayed: Tuesday 7 October 2014. After visiting the wonderful ancient ruins of Uzuncaburç, we drove along this dramatic canyon. As the views were fantastic and the sun was going down, we decided to stop on this spot of gravel right opposite the canyon. It was quiet and safe! Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Turkey In A Motorhome Part Two: Mamure Castle to Cappadocia).




Free camping spot: Pebble beach. Where: 3km West of Finiske off the D400When we stayed: Friday 3 October 2014. The D400 offers some spectacular views onto the Mediterranean. Narrow bends and curves are to be taken with great care! There are not so many places to stop along the coastal road with a campervan so this beautiful pebble beach was a great find. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Turkey In A Motorhome Part Two: Mamure Castle to Cappadocia).


The view from our window!


Romania
Free/wild camping is allowed in most part of Romania unless signposted otherwise. For example there are restrictions along the Danube Delta and the Black Sea coast. Jamie and I spent our time (8-24 July 2014, a bit more than two weeks) in the Western and Central parts of the country. We wild camped seven nights out of 18 in total.

Free camping spot: Transfăgărăsan Road. Where: Off the iconic 7c road. GPS:  N45.592085 - E24.631604. Altitude: 1902m. When we stayed: Tuesday 15 July 2014. This was a strikingly beautiful wild camping spot off one of the most spectacular roads in the world. Parked opposite a spring, we had our own water supply! Wild horses and their babies kept us company for a while. Apart from the occasional cars and hikers, the night was quiet. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: From The Exhilarating Transfagarasan Road To Auschwitz Memorial Site).


A striking view of the Fagaras Mountains and Transfăgărăsan.

Free camping spot: in the Asupeni National Park. Where: Parked on a layby off road DJ763. GPS:  N46.598264 - E22.714709. Altitude: 1267m. When we stayed: Friday 11 July 2014. This was a picturesque free camping spot in Romania. After driving a long way on bumpy roads trying to avoid holes and bad drivers, it was a very peaceful retreat for the night. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Romania: The Crazy Roads, Churches and The Real Dracula).


"Izzy, The Motorhome" in the morning light.

Hungary
There are about 100 campsites registered. Most of the campgrounds are concentrated around Lake Balaton, where Hungarians and their neighbours enjoy cooling in its waters. We stayed in the quieter Eastern parts of the country, away from the bustling crowd. Although "casual/wild camping is prohibited" (c.f. Caravan Europe book by the Caravan Club), we managed to free camp in remote areas in the Eastern parts of the country without any problems. We had read about motorhomers “overnighting in the wild” on online camping forums. We free camped two nights out of seven during our stay (1-7July 2014).

Free camping spot: on the edge of Hortobágyi National Park. Where: Off white road linking Road 33 and 34, near Nagyiván and about 3km to Tiszaörs. When we stayed: Friday 4 July 2014. Parked on a narrow track off a quiet white road in the vast Great Plains and surrounded by hay- and sunflower fields. It was simply, beautiful. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: EasternEurope: The Great Plains of Hungary and Chy-Kara Camping).


Beautiful free camping spot.


Slovakia
Jamie and I didn't know anything about camping rules in Eastern European countries before we went. We found that camping is very popular in Slovakia. We saw more tents and caravans than motorhomes during our time (20-30 June 2014). Similar to Czech Republic, "Casual/wild camping is not permitted in Slovakia; it is prohibited to sleep in a caravan or motorhome outside a campsite." (c.f. Caravan Europe book by the Caravan Club). However, it is definitely tolerated in low season and may be so in July and August too. We free camped two nights out of ten in quiet areas and didn't encounter any problems.

Free camping spot: Liptovská Mara. Where: Off main road going round Slovakia’s biggest reservoir, Liptovská Mara. GPS: N49.128362 - E19.500951 When we stayed: Sunday 22 June 2014. Tucked in on the side of the track going down to one of Slovakia’s beautiful man-made lake, we were hidden from the main road. It was a quiet and nice retreat except for the few tissues strewn around... Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Discovering Eastern Europe – The Last of Czech Republic and Evergreen Slovakia).


The reservoir, Liptovská Mara was further down the track.

France
It probably doesn’t need an introduction, as France’s largest camping country (more than 10,000 campsites) and has thousands of aires; designated free camping areas in villages and towns across the country. Outside of these, free camping can be accepted as long as it is far from built-up areas and in low season. July and August being the biggest months of the year, the “gendarmes” may well be there to move you on then.

1. Free camping spot: alternative aire, La Ferme Cassagne. Where: Ferme-Cassagne, Lieu-Dit Cassagne, 31390 LacaugneWhen we stayed: Monday 12 May 2014. Jamie read about the aire on one of our camping apps. Farmers in the Haute-Garonne opens their farms to locals and tourists. It's a nice way to discover where and how the regional products are made. Although we only stayed for the night, we could have easily stayed longer if it hadn't been for meeting family. We found the farmer's son, Tommy and his dad, Bernard working in the duck shed. Welcoming, Bernard showed us round. We visited the shop in the morning, but didn't buy anything. Water, electricity and toilets were available on site. Details: www.ferme-cassagne.fr / Tel: +33 5 61 87 86 73 and +33 6 21 50 85 43. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Rediscovering France Part Two: Camping in the Auvergne and BirthdayCelebrations in Mulhouse, Alsace).


Panoramic view of the motorhome parking at Farm Lacagnau.

2. Free camping spot: grass and tree-shaded area off the D466. Where: passed Ballon D’Alsace towards Sewen. When we stayed: Wednesday 21 May 2014. It was a nice spot right in the heart of the Alsace. After free camping in aires, it was wonderful to be parked in the “wild”. The road was quiet, only a few cyclists passed by. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Rediscovering France Part Two: Camping in the Auvergne and BirthdayCelebrations in Mulhouse, Alsace).


Tucked next to the trees, it didn't feel like we were near the road as so few vehicles drove passed.

3. Free camping spot: tree-shaded parking space off Rd 52. Where: On “rue des Etangs” opposite fishing pond. When we stayed: Thursday 22 May 2014. The pond was shut hence probably why we were the only one parked. We were far enough from the main road. It was noise-free, peaceful. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Rediscovering France Part Two: Camping in the Auvergne and BirthdayCelebrations in Mulhouse, Alsace).


Behind the fence is the fishing lake and its building.


Northern Spain
Wild camping / off roading / free camping with a motorhome in Spain is not allowed. But, in low season, it seems to be a lot less strict. As long as you're not camping in residential areas, near a farm or next door to a campsite, it seems that free camping is tolerated. We free camped 15 days out of 20 in secluded areas during our stay in Northern Spain (21 April - 10 May 2014) and were never even once moved on by the guardia civil, police or park rangers. If in doubts, ask a local, that's always what we do.

1. Parking spot: concrete car park by the sea. Where: Near Lagoa Louro (Off AC-550 between Louro & Lariño). Part of the "Costa Da Morte". When we stayed: Monday 21 April 2014. Even though it was a car park, it was a beautiful quiet spot by the sea front. It had tennis courts and a sign showed the way to a nature reserve behind Praia Maior for Monte Louro and Lagoa Louro. As we parked there very late (10.30pm), we walked around in the morning. We had no problems at all, the night was very peaceful, just the sound of the waves in the background. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Free Camping On Spain's Rough and Wild Galician Coastline)


This wasn't where the car park was, but not far.

2. Parking spot: by side of small coastal road. Where: Passed Camariñas by Cabo Tosto. (Part of the "Costa Da Morte") When we stayed: Tuesday 22 April 2014. It was a beautiful remote and peaceful place to camp for the night. We followed the rugged Galician coast from Lariño to Muxia and on to Camariñas to finally stop at Cabo Tosto around 5pm. Enough time for a stroll and take pictures of the huge rusty shipwreck stranded on the rocks! Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Free Camping On Spain's Rough and Wild Galician Coastline)


The shipwreck was behind us. We drove a little further on the road.

3. Parking spot: dirt car park. Where: Observation point by Rio Ortega and its Paseo Maritimo (walking trail) to Ortigueira (about 6km)When we stayed: Friday 25 April 2014. We initially wanted to wild camp near Cariño and not go all this way. But we had to find a laundrette urgently for two loads of smelly washing! Hence driving to Ortigueira, the family-run Tintoreria (dry cleaner) Santa Marta helped us. For 19Euros, it was about the same price as a laundrette would have been. We just had to wait until morning. I walked the trail early in the morning (7.30am) to Ortigueira. It's a fantastic flat trail, really worth doing! Jamie came to pick me up later in the van. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Free Camping On Spain's Rough and Wild Galician Coastline)


The walking and river are a few metres in front of the van.

4. Parking spot: small car park by secluded beach. Where: near Porto de BaresWhen we stayed: Saturday 26 April 2014. Probably my favorite wild camping spot in Galicia. It was not only remote with magnificent views onto the small Isla Coelleira in the ría del Boqueiro. But we even had a couple of facilities, water and cold beach showers available (Yes, Jamie used the showers. It was still a little bit too chilly for me!). And we had a small fishing port, Porto De Bares, a few hundred metres away with a bar/restaurant opposite playground and pitch and a small shop. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Free Camping On Spain's Rough and Wild Galician Coastline)


The small fishing port, Porto De Bares can be seen on the left-hand side, in the background.

5. Parking spot: concrete parking space along coastal road. Where: Playa De Los CastrosWhen we stayed: Sunday 27 April 2014. We were parked next to the walkway to the beach and view point. By the time we stopped, it was high tide so we couldn't walk onto the beach and the sea was rough. In the morning though, it was beautiful and the sun was out! There are toilets available on the way down to the beach. Be warned, they were very scruffy whilst we were there! But always useful for "number twos". (The latter are not allowed in our van's toilets). Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Free Camping On Spain's Rough and Wild Galician Coastline)


Doesn't look that pretty from this angle, but it was a nice location.

6. Free camping spot: dirt track by the road side. Where: not far passed Puertas SalinasWhen we stayed: Friday 2 May 2014. We'd driven all day on very scenic routes; AS229, AS230 and AS253, passing through- and stopping off to stretch our legs in picturesque old villages such as Llanuces Pola de Lena. We were already quite high up as we'd passed Puertas Salinas and not far from the Picos de Europa National Park. Our surroundings were beautiful. Bright green fields, pine trees and mountains with patches of snow and cows grazing. We were near a church and an "area recreativa" by two GR walks. There were no facilities (i.e. toilets or water). Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Asturian Cycling Adventures, La Rioja's City Life & The Pyrenees' Abandoned Railway Station)



7. Free camping spot: partly gravelled and grassed area by the side of the road. Where: Off N621 down from the Mirador de Llesba in the Picos De Europa National ParkWhen we stayed: Saturday 3 May 2014. We'd set off early in the morning driving from pretty Acebedo to Soto de Sajambre and then up by the Mirador de Valdeon to finally reach the Mirador de Llesba. We were tired, but could still find some energy to take many pictures of the bear ("Oso") statue and the mountains at the Mirador. No park rangers or guardia civil officers moved us on. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Asturian Cycling Adventures, La Rioja's City Life & The Pyrenees' Abandoned Railway Station)


A very happy Jamie!


Portugal
Wild camping / off roading / free camping with a motorhome is tolerated in car parks and areas around beaches and other parts, otherwise signposted, in most areas of the country except the Algarve. What we experienced, was that, in low season, it seemed to not pose any problems (even in the Algarve) - we were never moved on by the local police and/or given on the spot fine. However, we would still advise to be careful and respectable wherever you choose to park and spend the night.

1. Parking spot: on cliff edge by the sea. Where: Smuggler's Cove, Carvoiera. When we stayed: Tuesday 25 March 2014. Billy from Algarve Dive Experience advised us to park there for the night as it was a beautiful quiet spot around that time of year. A prized swimming. snorkelling and diving spot in high season, we felt privileged to have it all for ourselves without being moved on by the "GNR" (National Republican Guard). It may not have any toilets or facilities, but nothing could beat the wonderful view. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: The Beautiful Portuguese Coastline, Lisbon and Historical Tomar in a Motorhome).

2. Parking spot: parking site on beautiful cape. Where: Cabo Espichel, car park by the sanctuary. When we stayed: Saturday 29 March 2014. A motorhome was already parked in the car park by the sanctuary buildings. It was a beautiful spot by the littoral. Being the weekend, many local tourists had taken the opportunity to visit the beautiful and peaceful building and church. We managed to have a quick look inside the church before the door shut at 4pm. Dinosaur paws walking trails run by the Cape. Unfortunately, we didn't explore as it was getting late and it'd started raining badly. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: The Beautiful Portuguese Coastline, Lisbon and Historical Tomar in a Motorhome).


The car park by the side of the Sanctuary of Cabo Espichel with the lighthouse in the background.

3. Parking spot: concrete car park by the port. Where: Port Belem, Lisbon. When we stayed: Sunday 30 March 2014. We hadn't been certain about parking overnight in Lisbon as Jamie had read negative stories of motorhomers being broken into and pickpocketed. Fortunately, positive comments left on online campervanning forums were the most recent. We weren't disappointed. As we parked, we noticed a few motorhomes parked along the port. We had a nice walk along the port promenade used by many joggers and cyclists.  The ferry station had toilets and we weren't far from the tram station of the same name. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: The Beautiful Portuguese Coastline, Lisbon and Historical Tomar in a Motorhome).


The back of the van can just be seen on the right hand side to give an idea of where we were parked.

4. Free camping spot: small peninsula outcrop. Where: turn just before the old water tower and communal laundry building, PenicheWhen we stayed: Tuesday 1 April 2014. A beautiful and peaceful place right by the littoral. The sandy parking space was at the start of a small and long peninsula with a nice walking trail. The water tower and old communal laundry were a bit walk, but it had toilets and fresh water. It was a windy and rainy night, but we fell asleep without any problems. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: The Beautiful Portuguese Coastline, Lisbon and Historical Tomar in a Motorhome).


Not a bad view!

5. Parking spot: car park of Portugal's highest ski resort. Where: Torre, altitude of 1993m. When we stayed: Sunday 6 April 2014. It was a beautiful spot surrounded by a blanket of snow. We were lucky as even though it was cold, it was sunny and the roads had been gritted so safe to drive (we have all weather-proof tyres, but no chains). As we parked around 7pm, we could see that it had been busy with bank-holiday weekenders enjoying skiing. The big shop/cafeteria complex shuts around 8pm. The ski-lift was open during the day and opened early in the morning the day after. Toilets available in the building. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Inland Portugal: Centuries-Old Fortresses, National Parks and RuralVillages).


We were lucky to not only be in wonderful environment, but get a beautiful night sky.


6. Free camping spot: on grass by the side of a pond. Where: dirt track leading to a big pond by the side of the main road going through Duas Igrejas, Douro National Park. When we stayed: Friday 11 April 2014. A great quiet place we’d managed to spot when cycling along the abandoned railway line between Duas Igrejas and Sendim. It was near a farm, but we had no problems. Price: Free. (Read our blog post: Inland Portugal: Centuries-Old Fortresses, National Parks and RuralVillages).


We were lucky to get a beautiful sunshine.

Morocco & Western Sahara

1. Parking spot: Mèknes. Where: Place Lalla Aouda by the royal golf course. When we stayed: Wednesday 5 February 2014. A safe and secure small mixed-parking space (coaches and a small number of cars were also parked there during our stay) in the heart of Mèknes' historical centre. Parked there you are at walking distance to all the main monuments and the médina. There are no facilities, but very clean toilets can be found in the couple of cafés/restaurants on the square. A free Wifi network from one of the cafés can be picked up sat outside on the benches. Price: we payed 40Dh to the guardian for our overnight stay. (Read our blog post: Volubilis, Mèknes and the Atlas mountains).



2. Wild camping spot: The Moroccan desert! Where: Off Rn13 to Merzouga on dirt track which, a few kilometres up, leads to many hotels and camping in the desert. When we stayed: Saturday 15 February 2014. In the middle of nowhere, in the desert, before the Erg Chebbi dunes, it was beautiful. There were obviously no facilities. Don't go too far up a track or you may well get stuck! In the morning, we were told about a campsite seven kilometres further up the piste and got blocked in the sand. Read the full story: Moroccan Desert Adventures and Old KasbahsPrice: Free.



3. Wild camping spot: The Drâa ValleyWhere: Off the main road, Rn9 down the river bed. We turned right immediately after the concrete bridge and parked a few metres up on the left-hand side. When we stayed: Tuesday 18 February 2014. Far from the main road and hidden behind small trees and bushes, it felt safe. Young boys fishing didn't run after us. We even left the van unattended twice for a short while; First, to walk up the dried river bed going through the palmeraie. The second time, to walk up to an 800/900 year-old ruined kasbah. Read our full story: Moroccan Desert Adventures and Old Kasbahs. No facilities. Price: Free.

The bridge and river are on the left-hand side just behind the palm trees. Electricity cables on the Rn9 can be seen in the background, on the left.

4. Wild camping spot: Anti-Atlas mountains, near TafraouteWhere: Off mountain road 109, passed Igherm. When we stayed: Saturday 22 February 2014. Passed Taliouine, driving towards Tafraoute, we drove through some beautiful landscapes all day. The mountain road 109 was so quiet and in the middle of nowhere that we set camp on the side of it. We fell asleep very quickly and peacefully. Read our full story: Painted Blue Rocks, Hammam and Chez Sabir in Tafraoute and Western Sahara. No facilities. Price: Free.


Parked on the side of the mountain road 109, passed Igherm towards Tafraoute.

5. Wild camping spot:
 Western Sahara, inlandWhere: Off road 101, 98km to Smara. When we stayed: Thursday 27 February 2014. Being stopped by the police three times, didn't stop us to enjoy the scenery; the wild empty landscapes going for miles of the Western Saharan desert. Read our full story: Painted Blue Rocks, Hammam and Chez Sabir in Tafraoute and Western Sahara. No facilities. Price: Free.


Quite beautiful, isn't it?

6. Wild camping spot: Western Sahara, nearer to the coastWhere: Off N5, approx. 30km to Laayoune. When we stayed: Friday 28 February 2014. More police checks entering and leaving Smara. But the views are still very spectacular and these last two wild camping spots are pretty spec! Read our full story: Painted Blue Rocks, Hammam and Chez Sabir in Tafraoute and Western Sahara. No facilities. Price: Free.


Just us for miles!

7. Wild camping spot: Oualidia LagoonWhere: Outside the oyster factory La Princesse des HuîtresWhen we stayed: Sunday 9 March 2014. A beautiful location at the foot of the Lagoon! Warning: it is located down quite a steep dirt road. Read our full story: Morocco's Atlantic Coast - Tarfaya to Assilah via Sidi Ifni, Essaouira, Casablanca and Azemmour. No facilities. Price: Free.




8. Parking spot: CasablancaWhere: Small parking/aire outside the famous Hassan II Mosque. When we stayed: Monday 10 March 2014. After circling around for a bit, we finally managed to take the right turn and stop at this fantastic location. Guardians man it 24/7. Read our full story: Morocco's Atlantic Coast - Tarfaya to Assilah via Sidi Ifni, Essaouira, Casablanca and Azemmour. No facilities. Price: 30dirhams (per night).

A view of the parking site/aire by Hassan II Mosque. Our camper's the one's with bikes at the back.


Italy

1. Motorhome AireMoos. Where: parking site about 1km away from Sesto just before Moos main hotel on the right hand side of the road by the riverWhen we stayed: Wednesday 6 November 2013. A beautiful non-tarmac aire at the foot of the "Tre Cime Parco Naturale" (Three Peaks National Park). It was a 10/15 minutes walk away to Sesto, a small town and ski resort (for food shopping, bank, post office, etc). (I.e. Read our post: The Italian Alps - The Dolomites)




2. Motorhome AireSauris Di Sotto. Where: parking site right next to the De Wolf ham factory on the left hand side. N46.46736  E12.70827. When we stayed: Thursday 7 to Saturday 9 November 2013. A small aire (5 spaces) right in the pretty mountain village of Sauris Di Sotto. It had all the main facilities for free - water, electricity, shower and toilets! The latter were situated just on the left hand side of the factory. A nice elderly man was cleaning them every day when we were there. The village has a couple of bars/restaurant, a small supermarket, etc. (I.e. See our post: The Italian Alps - The Dolomites)

3. Parcheggio comunale (council parking)Vinci. Where: parking site just by the edge of the town. Next to the local football field. When we stayed: Wednesday 13 November 2013. Medium-sized concreted car & motorhome parking. It had water. A couple of cars were parked when we arrived and more arrived later on, I suddenly thought it may be a boys' racers spot or, worst, a dogging spot! Well, it was only the lads waiting for each other to start training and play football! The village is nice, but we were disappointed by its museum (I.e. See our post: The Medieval Villages of Tuscany and Buriano, The Abandoned One).

4. Parcheggio comunaleVolterra. Where: big parking site on Via Di Fontecorrenti. Opposite the medieval gates to Volterra with the Fonti Di Docciola (fountain). N 43.39748   E 10.86193When we stayed: Thursday 14 November 2013. It is a car and motorhome parking site. It had water and was listed to have electricity, but there wasn't any when we stayed there. Our campercontact aire app also mentioned about paying for parking, but a lovely elderly dutch motorhomer parked on the site told us him and his wife had been there a couple of nights and hadn't needed to. The police hadn't been driving around either as mentioned in our French aire app so it was free. It seems that you may only have to pay during the Summer. (I.e. See our post: The Medieval Villages of Tuscany and Buriano, The Abandoned One).



5. Riserva Naturale (Natural Reserve)Lago Di Posta Fibreno. Where: Contrada San VenditoN 41.69656   E 13.69420When we stayed: Monday 18 November 2013. It is a small concreted car and motorhome parking by the main road, opposite the café/restaurant by the lake. It had a big water fountain. It was a lovely spot being right by the lake. The café/restaurant didn't seem to be opened when we were there, but you can easily walk to the small town of Posta Fibreno that you drive through coming in. (I.e. See our post: The Medieval Villages of Tuscany and Buriano, The Abandoned One)




6. Parcheggio comunaleSant' Agata dei Goti. Where: Big car & motorhome parking in the new town. Left hand side turn to the site a few meters before the bridge to the old townWhen we stayed: Tuesday 19 November 2013. It is a huge concreted car, motorhome and coaches parking. It had public toilets, but no water or electricity. It was conveniently located a 5-mins walk away to the picturesque old town of Sant' Agata. (I.e. See our post: The Medieval Villages of Tuscany and Buriano, The Abandoned One)





7. Mixed parkingSperlonga. Where: motorhome and car parking by the sandy beach by the entrance of Sperlonga. When we stayed: Saturday 23 November 2013. It is a medium-sized earthy/sandy tree shaded mixed parking site conveniently located by the long sandy beach. A nice signed path from the parking site leads up to the small & pretty hilltop town of Sperlonga. You can also walk on the beach to the little port and go up this way too. Apart from a few surfers during the day, the site was very quiet as well as the town. It didn't have any facilities, but it didn't matter to us as the site was so beautiful. Parking was free, but I have a feeling that it might not over the Summer.

8. Small mixed parking spotCirceo National Park. Where: small motorhome and car parking spot right opposite the wild and never-ending sandy beach near Sabaudia. When we stayed: Sunday 24 & Monday 25 November 2013. It is such a beautiful spot right in the heart of Circeo National Park. With view onto the sea and a 15-mins walk away to the 1930s Art Deco town of Sabaudia, it is quite a perfect spot.  There's no facilities, but it was so hot on Monday morning that we swam in the sea and washed off the salt using our shower head through the bathroom window.



9. Sosta camper stopBarga, Tuscany. Where: medium-sized motorhome and car parking spot with views onto the mountains. When we stayed: Friday 29 November to Sunday 1 December 2013 (three nights). It is an amazing spot at the foot of the medieval town of Barga with views onto the moutain range of the Apuane Alps. What is also great is that it has all the facilities you need, free of charge: water, electricity and showers & toilets (the blocks are higher up the road on the way back to town)! When we were there, a middle-aged overweight lady seemed to be living permanently on site in her caravan and her dogs. Although one may have à-prioris about her, our stay was perfectly fine and safe. (Read our blog post: Sperlonga, Sabaudia, Pisa and Barga).



Germany

1. Parking spot: Berlin. Where: parked on the end of Oderberger Straße, 10435 Berlin. Mitte area. When we stayed: Tuesday 29 and Wednesday 30 October 2013. As we were joining Jamie's family for two nights (i.e. Berlin & Hamburg in a Nutshell), we wanted to park on Oderberger Straße where they were staying. Luckily we found a big enough space at the very end of the street on the turn onto Schwedter Straße. Before parking Izzy, the motorhome, we carefully checked for signs about motorhomes and overnight parking up and down the road. We slept in without any problems and were very discreet ensuring we weren't seen by people going in and out the van in the morning and evening.


2. Motorhome Aire: Ludwigslust. Where: Friedrich Naumann Allee 29, 19288 Ludwigslust. N53.32637 - E11.49098. When we stayed: Thursday 31 October 2013. The aire was nicely located by the side of Ludwigslust's Castle ("Schloss") and its gardens (i.e. Berlin & Hamburg in a Nutshell). Ludwigslust was a beautiful little town with a main cobbled street and traditional buildings. The main inconvenience was that the aire's water and electricity points listed on our motorhome parking app weren't working - it was only taking specific tokens and it was too late for us to get any. The town was quiet, but it had a few restaurants opened including an Italian place on the main street which we went to.


3. Parking spot: Hamburg. Where: Schnell Straße, 22765 Hamburg. Altona area.
When we stayed: Friday 1 and Saturday 2 November 2013. 
We followed Jamie's family to Hamburg where they were staying with friends (i.e. Berlin & Hamburg in a Nutshell). As in Berlin, we luckily managed to find a big enough parking spot for Izzy on the same street where their friends lived - Schnell Straße. There were restricted parking signs, but were told by our family's friends that it was fine as it hadn't been put into action yet. None of the vehicles parked up and down the street had any tickets displayed in their window either.


4. Motorhome Aire: Bad Salzdetfurth.Where: Solebadstrasse, 31162 Bad Salzdetfurth. N 52.07197 E 10.01813.When we stayed: Sunday 3 November 2013. The aire was a big parking site next to a restaurant and a spa complex. It was conveniently located a short walk away from the small picturesque town of Bad Salzdetfurth. We paid 1 euro for 6 hours of electricity and 1 euro for 5mins of water to fill up the tank and toilet flush. We treated ourselves in the morning/brunch to a nice frühstück (breakfast) - the traditional German breakfast with fresh breads, cheese, ham, egg, jam and butter served with orange juice and hot drinks.

5. Motorhome Aire: Goslar.Where: Bertha von Suttner Strasse, 38640 Goslar. N 51.91003 E 10.41785.When we stayed: Monday 4 November 2013.The aire was basic and small near Goslar's train station, on the edge of the small town. We didn't stay there because of its beautiful Unesco World Heritage old town, but because a campervan shop told us we'd be able to refill our empty gas bottle at the family business: Farhman & Sons on Marketstrasse 35. And we did, for only 10 euros! We were happy and ready to enter Italy (i.e. our blog post: The Italian Alps - The Dolomites).

Scotland

We knew that motorhomers are allowed to park off the beaten track in Scotland unless stated otherwise; when camping in the wild, our rules were to first identify a small white road on the map and then look for a quiet spot hidden away from the road if possible. Even though we went there end of July, beginning of August 2013, we were lucky to find quiet places. For info on wild camping in Scotland, have a read through this simple document set by the Campervan and Motorhome Professional Association (CaMPA): www.campa.org.uk/downloads/Guidlines.pdf

1. Wild camping spot:
Isle of Arran - King's Cave Where: off the A841 between Machrie and Blackwaterfoot. We camped overnight in the King's Cave forest trail's car park end of July. We checked the area first to make sure there were no signs forbidding camping. As the car park was empty and it was already quite late, we thought we'd be fine parking there as long as we'd make sure to respect the environment and leave early before any big waves of tourists.

King's Cave car park. Picture taken from the road.

2. Wild camping spot: Scotland, Argyll & Bute, Eas na Circe. Where: off the A828 after Oban, on white road leading to Druimavuic. Eas na Circe's Forestry Commission car park trail is situated right opposite Loch Creran. The spot was quiet & beautiful being opposite the Loch. It also felt quite sheltered from the road.
Eas Na Circe.


3. Wild camping spot: Isle of Skye, Staffin Bay Where: on the bay's car park in Trotternish. It's a beautiful spot along the sea shore and overlooking the Trotternish ridge however I would advise anybody not to park there if there are strong winds and rain - Jamie and I weren't able to sleep worrying whether we'd get swept away (read our post: Day 14 – Gale Wind and Torrential Rain or The Night When We Thought We’d get Washed Away in the Sea)!
Staffin Bay, Trotternish, Isle of Skye

4. Wild camping spot: Isle of Skye, Elgol/Glasnakile Where: passed Elgol, off white road leading to Glasnakile. As the road's a very small country road which ends in Glasnakile, we parked alongside it. We made sure our campervan was parked completely off the road on a layby. It was still windy, but fortunately the layby was sheltered by a high bank.
Layby on the road to Glasnakile, Isle of Skye.

5. Wild camping spot: Isle of Skye, Kyle of LochalshWhere: Kyle of Lochalsh's car park. This wasn't the nice countryside camping spot, but it was very convenient. The car park's right in the centre of Kyle overlooking Loch Alsh and the Skye Bridge. We couldn't see any signs about overnight parking and we noticed another motorhome had their satellite dish up. The car park has toilets and shower facilities. We actually went swimming in the morning at the local leisure centre and used the facilities there.


6. Wild camping spot: Scotland, Inverness. Where: car park.


7. Wild camping spot: Scotland, KingussieWhere: Kingussie's main car park. Again we made sure to look for any signs about overnight parking before settling in for the night. The car park has toilets and shower facilities for 20p. There are many walking trails starting from the car park. Kingussie is a nice small town with local independent cafes, a great diner, The Happy Haggis and friendly pub, The Tipsy Laird.

Comments