Come and talk to me about camping in Northern Europe...(8 Posts)
So we (dh and I and our 2 sons aged 8 and 10) are in the fortunate position of having the whole summer off and are planning a 4 week trip to the Netherlands, Denmark, northern Germany, southern Sweden and Norway. We will be getting the ferry to and from Netherlands from the UK at the end of July and have 4 weeks before finishing with a week in Center Parcs in Belgium at the end of August (booked ages ago before we knew this extended trip would be possible).
We will mostly be camping, with a few nights in hotels / self catering accommodation. Budget is basically as cheap as reasonably possible, but this is a once in a lifetime trip made possible because of a combination of circumstances that won't be repeated. So we can afford to, and would want to, push the budget for something special.
Has anyone camped in these places and where would you recommend? Any tips?
(cross posted in shorthaul)
I think you might want to plan to visit fewer countries given you have 4 weeks, although it sounds a lot you will cover a lot of miles and time trying to do all those. What unit do you have for camping? If it is a motorhome/trailer/caravan you might find tolls/ferries much more expensive as well to cover the different countries. If you just have a car, then I would really consider using the ferries/bridges, rather than driving the long way around as although they are more expensive you will get to see more (and they're an experience in themselves).
What kind of places to visit/things to do are you keen on?
Netherlands- we have camped in 3 places here, Haarlem, a place near Deventer and near Breda. We found places using this website. We visited Harlem, Amsterdam twice, Enkhuizen outdoor museum, Hoge Veluwe, Deventer but also chilled and mixed with others (mainly Dutch) on the sites. We found visiting attractions tended to be a little more expensive in the Netherlands as they tend to charge for children. Food about the same as here. though it can be tricky using foreign credit cards, and traffic about the same too.
We're camped more extensively in Denmark, campsites are great and very family orientated. School holidays are from June- beginning of August, so can be busy but you should find somewhere. A lot of sites have little cabins to rent, again these will be easier to find for the night from the second week of August onwards.
My highlights of Denmark are
Skagen (a long way, but so worth it and if you're thinking about Norway, you could catch a ferry near by at Hirtshals),
Aarhus/Ebeltoft- again you could catch a fast ferry over to Zeeland for Copenhagen
Aero- but probably only for a daytrip- ferries are expensive unless you'll stay there a week.
Copenhagen- spend a few days here, and visit Roskilde, Helsingor from here. Love love this camp site but book this if you go before the middle of August. A copenhagen card is good value for families as it includes the kids and transport, if you can start the card half way through the day to get extra value from it. Go here!
Bornholm - lovely island in between Sweden and Germany, may be useful as a route out/back.
Sweden- we've camped less so here. When we went we felt we had 2 choices, as we had a week, either go North from Malmo (towards Gothenburg) or east (towards Karlskrona). We did the latter, and came back via Ystad for Bornholm. It was ok but Denmark had more appeal for us.
Hope this helps a bit- do come back with any questions about the above, or any others and I will try and do my best to help.
Last year we went to Varberg in Sweden, stayed at Apelviken campsite. We loved it and would happily go back there. There's a ferry between Denmark and Varberg I think.
This year we're camping in Karlsborg which also looks lovely. There's a big medieval festival not too far away in July. I love a bit of jousting and the kids can't wait to get DH in the stocks.
I've never done it, but that sounds fab! Enjoy! So jealous!!
Texel - an island north of nl - take the train to den helder then jump on the ferry. Absolute bliss.
We've done longish trips in Europe before but not to your places. My advice is to have a decent camping kit. Whenever we've planned some camping some indoors we've hated the hotels etc as they seem so stuffy and boring.
It sounds great!
Thanks very much everyone. We've been away camping for the weekend with very patchy Internet but I'll have a more detailed look when back home later...
Will be camping in a tent. We'd thought about a camper van but it would have been very expensive. We have a pop up so pitching / striking shouldn't be too much of a pain.
It may well be that less countries is more sensible, we certainly don't want to spend all our time driving. Good advice on ferries / bridges to save time too.
Right time to cook breakfast and pack up! Back later....
I've just had a very pleasant evening checking out some of the stuff linked here. Thanks prof for the campsite links and general info. I expect I'll be back with more questions once I've had a chance to chat to dh. As far as what we enjoy doing we're a family with 2 boys aged 8 and 10 and we like a lot of outdoorsy stuff. Sagnlandet (sp??) that you linked to looks right up their Street and we'll be paying a visit to legoland too. Dh and I love walking but boys less keen although happier when we can turn it into a bit of an adventure. We've found a place in Sweden where you can build a raft and take a few days traveling on it downstream camping on the riverside at nights. That kind of thing always goes down well (and we'll be able to modify our kit to fit on the raft if we go for that!)
Poocatcher if it was down to me I'd ignore the hotels in favour of camping too but dh isn't so keen and after just spending a weekend camping where he had very little sleep I'm going to have my work cut out to persuade him!!!
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