Situated within walking distance of the centre of Aachen, this municipal campsite is well worth considering. It's not a place for a whole holiday, but Aachen is a good place to visit for a day or two, and this would make a good base for that. Very close to the Dutch/Belgian/French borders, we broke our journey from Dunkerque to Cologne here - well, we wanted to have lunch in Bruges. So after a day spent looking around, the next day we just had an hour's drive and could spend most of the day in Cologne. In case you didn't know - Aachen is where Charlemagne was crowned Holy Roman Emperor on Christmas Day AD 800 - how can you resist?
The campsite takes caravans and motorhomes, mostly on what is called eco-paving, with a separate grassy field for tents. The eco-paving pitches are not large, more like a spacious car park, but you're not exactly crammed in either, and when were there everyone was quiet and friendly. There is clean water freely available, as you would expect, and electric hook-ups, and places to get rid of grey water and toilet waste. The facilities are basic (just a small toilet block) but clean and adequate, and the site is nicely situated, surrounded by park and community gardens, well worth a pleasant evening stroll.
There is only a small shed as reception, with a few leaflets about the area, and the site is unstaffed. Someone comes round each day to collect the (very moderate) fees - currently 15 Euros per night for a motorhome or caravan, and if the person doesn't arrive for some reason you are asked just to leave the money in the honesty box. You can't book in advance, but when I contacted the site via e-mail they assured me that this wouldn't be a problem, and it wasn't. There are 46 places, and you aren't supposed to stay more than three nights (I'd say it wasn't really that sort of campsite anyway), but it might be possible if you contact them in advance.
I recommend checking them out on the web http://www.aachen-camping.de/index-gb.html not least so that you can get good directions, it's a little bit hidden away in a residential area.
The centre of Aachen, with its magnificent Cathedral, and Treasury, and some good shops is maybe twenty minutes' walk away, but you can get a bus from just five minutes up the road.
Well, this year we fancied going somewhere different for a short break post-exams. Id been to Germany a few times but the other half had never been and really wanted to go. A few checks to a few certain low-price airlines and we booked some cheap as chips flights to Berlin. The only problem was, finding somewhere to stay in or near Berlin for our low budget was basically impossible. This is where the idea of camping came in.
The only time i had ever been camping before was at Reading festival, so i wasn't wildly in love with the idea. However, we found the tentstation website and quickly fell in love with the "urban camping" theme.
The campsite is located about a 5 min walk from Hauptbahnhof (Central Station) and around 20 mins walk from the Reichstag. If you fly into Berlin Schonefeld, you can get straight off the plane then take a short walk to the U-Bahn, get yourself a A,B,C zone travelcard (around 5.50eu) and go straight through to Hauptbahnhof in around 30 mins. I cant speak for Templehof or Tegel Airports but as Schonefeld is the furthest away from central Berlin it shouldnt be a problem.
Anyway! - The campsite really makes you feel like you are in the woods just a stones through from central Berlin. To save money on flight extras, we took only hand-luggage and rented a tent for 4euros a night. You can also rent mats for 1 eu. a night, but they lovely staff let us borrow these for free :)
The charm of the campsite is that is it based on an old GDR swimming pool. The main swimming pool is open for sunbathing or cooking (obviously, the water has gone!) and they have a smaller pool filled with sand for volleyball.
Another charm with the campsite being based where it is, is certainly the fantastic facilities. two sets of flushing toilets for men and women, showers which have hot water 24 hours, sinks for cleaning plates and full locker facilities.
The old viewing stage for the pool has been turned into a bar. Good prices and open late, different things are on in the bar on different nights. The first night we were there it was a full viewing of the Mighty Boosh! (in English) then they did DJ sets. excellent entertainment and great company.
Food wise you really need to fend for yourselves. The campsite do offer breakfast for a few euros but its only toast or pretzels really. There are 2 supermarkets at the Hauptbahnhof for supplies (and cheappppp beer!!) Also, there are loads of restaurants in the station from chinese to McDonalds to Dunkin Donuts. May i recommend the chinese place on the second level at the Reichstag exit? - im a veggie and they did an amazing range of tofu meals with noodles for around 5euros. yummmm.
Another tip for food is to have a BBQ! BBQ's are included at the campsite or get a disposable from the supermarket and have a cook in. lovely and great fun. We had a radio so we put some tunes on and all round us were people cooking and having a good time <3
This really is a campsite with a twist. My other half says i am spoiled for campsites for life because of how fun and bohemian this one was. The staff are fantastic and most are almost fluent in english and i dont think you will get accommodation this cheap and nice so close to central Berlin whilst feeling like your in the countryside. If you want something really different, you can rent an authentic GDR campervan or a pool hut :)
Really, cannot speak highly enough. Clean, fun and unusual. Loved it.
(includes tentspot, carparking and hot shower)
11 Euro - per person/night
8 Euro - Children from 10 to 17
5 Euro - Children from 5 to 9
0 Euro - Children up to 5
4 Euro - Tent for 3 person per night
1 Euro - Camping mat per night
TIP - book online in advance, or check out the pictures and stuff on their website
We got up to so much in Berlin - I will be sure to give some hints and tips of the best places to go really soon :)
Before we booked this campsite we asked if we could be placed with other tents. The owner assured us that they had a special area for tents only. However, when we arrived we found that we were surrounded by caravans. When I queried this, the owner said that if we weren't happy we could pitch our tent on the hill where there was no electricity and only tents. He also pointed out that the children wouldn't be able to ride their bikes up there.
We found that this was a very small campsite with few amenities to keep the children occupied for a long holiday. The swimming pool (which is very good) is a 10 minute walk down a steep hill and is expensive although you can get a 2 or 3 week family pass for 35 or 45 euros respectively. The tennis courts are privately run (again not part of the campsite) so they're not possible to book. The location is right on the edge of the Blackforest so you need to drive 30 minutes to get anywhere and the traffic getting through Freiburg can be a problem. It is very close to Europa Park, probably the only reason why you would want to stay here for a few days, no longer. Herbolzeim village is not very interesting and there aren't many places to eat.
We found the pitches small, very little space to relax in. Also found that the pitches had very little shade which meant that you couldn't spend time in your tent on hot days. The food in bar/restaurant was overpriced, slow to arrive and not very tasty. There was very little atmosphere and no where to sit and relax and have a beer. The playground was old and uninspiring for our children aged 9, 7 and 5 - although he did keep the site clean and tidy.
All of this would have been fine had the owner been helpful. However, from the moment we queried our pitch we found him to be quite aggressive. When we asked for an electric cable his first reaction was that he didn't have one before he changed his mind and produced one - very odd. He has strict rules about times that there should be noise which is good but normally a quiet word will remind anyone that is still making noise after the curfew.
Our experience was bad and we would not recommend anyone to stay in this campsite. Better off staying at Sandbanks in Tittisee or paying a bit more and staying at Kirchstarten
Campingplatz Herbolzheim is a small camp site in Germany which we have used on several occasions when touring the Black Forest. It is privately owned and very well looked after. Situated close to the autobahn but yet in an area of beauty with lakes and green luscious hills you can relax and wind down or use the road network to travel further afield.
The camp site is situated in the town of Herbolzheim which is in the district of Emmendingen, in Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It is 26km north of Freiburg next to the River Elz.
How to get there
By Ferry from Calais, Zeebrugge or Hook of Holland.
Airport options for this area of Germany are; Strasbourg, Zurich, Geneva and Salsburg
Herbolzheim Station is 3 kilometres away
From here you can travel to Freiburg or Basle
For local directions if driving:
Take the A5, exit 58 Herbolzheim, just before the village turn right towards the swimming pool. Camp site is clearly signposted.
This is a family run campsite, Not too large but very relaxed. Toilet and washing facilities are of a high standard and very clean. The pitches are terraced with a back drop of shrubs and trees giving shade in the high season as this part of Germany does indeed get very hot. The village is a short walk away where there is a post office and several shops.
Camping Carnet accepted
Credit cards accepted: Eurocard-Mastercard, Visa card
No vehicles may enter during lunch break 13.00-15.00
Small extra tent permitted
I dog allowed in high season and more than one dog allowed low season. All dogs must be on a lead.
Here you can purchase stamps, phonecards and postcards. Information leaflets and brochures of the area are at hand. Fax, telephone and reasonably priced Wi Fi service is available.
Languages spoken: English, German and French
The restaurant and bar are open from 16/03/ to 05/010
Snacks and a three course meal can be ordered here. Decor in the restaurant is somewhat rustic and has a relaxing feel. Staff are very friendly. Not a lot of choice for vegetarians. Mostly meat, potatoes and sausage type meals. Althought they did do a very good Hawaiian Toast. Which basically is a toastie with Ham, cheese and pineapple. Delicious!. Beer and wine in this area is reasonably priced and tasty.
Hot and cold showers - (payment extra for hot showers)
Seperate wash cubicles
Baby bath and changing facilities
Standard toliets - some with no seats -Toilet paper provided
Chemical Toilet Disposal Point
Standard sinks for washing clothes
Washing machines 3 euros per load
Driers - 3 euros per load
Toilet paper provided
Although the toilet block and wash cabins are not hi tech they are very clean.
There is a small shop but choice of groceries is limited. Gas bottles can be exchanged. The shop is open from 19/03 - 03/10
However there is a good selection of shops and supermarkets in Herbolzheim.
This is a terraced site which has some shady and non shady pitches. Ground cover is grass. There is also a seperate sunbathing area.
Small Children's playground
Outdoor sports area
Table tennis table x 2
Bicycles are available for rental
Unfortunately the camp site doesn't have it's own swimming pool but next to the camp is a swimming complex which can be used by campers.
The outdoor swimming pool is heated and the size is 1000m2. It is open from 15/05 until 15/09
Toddlers' pool (ages 1-3) ,The size is 500 m2. This opens for the same period of time.
Also a water slide is available for all the family to enjoy.
Other facilities and bits of infor re: campsite
Electrical hook-ups possible to maximum 16 amps
Advance booking recommended for high season
Motor home pitches
Footpaths and roads are lit
Secure patrolled grounds
Barbecues permitted (charcoal-gas-electricity)
Attractions ans Sightseeing
We use this site usually when we are travelling through to the Vosges mountains and Switzerland. It is situated in an area of great beauty. It is very close to Freiburg which is an interesting town and the Black Forest is close by. Other sights to see :
From Herbolzheim take the 'Badische Weinstrasse' and follow the route through pretty villages. It is well sign posted. On your way you can stop to sample the fruity wines of the Alsace which are produced in this area.
This museum is the largest of it's type in Europe. It gives you an interesting insight into the history of tobacco.
This is the largest theme park in southern Germany. There is a great selection of rollercoasters and rides for all the family. If you love gardens then there are lots of landscaped gardens to walk around. Plenty of food establishments if you want to try out some German Fast Food.
Children under 11 go free.
Berg Wild Park Steinwasen
This wildlife park is a good day out for all the family. There is a flight simulator, Ice World and a 800m toboggan route. If you likewalking on bridges there is a 218 metre rope bridge. Not for me!
Chateau du Haut-Koenigsbourg
This chateau can be seen from a distance as it stands at an altitude of 700 metres. It was built in the 12th Century and restored at the beginning of the 20th century.
Under 18yrs free.
Open until 18:00 in June, July and August.
Information sheets are printed in various languages which is very useful if you can't speak German.
These are just a handful of attractions but there are many more places to visit as this is an area rich in history as well as beauty.
Near by towns which are worth a visit are:
Freiburg: 30 km
Mulhouse: 80 km
Strasbourg: 62 km
You are looking from around 21 euros to 27 euros per night all inclusive on average covering all sorts of camping. I am unable to give you a breakdown as I don't have a price list and can't find one on the Net.
This is a family site and more suitable for families with small children as teenagers may get a little restless as there isn't a lot of nightlife entertainment. It is a very relaxing and peaceful site, clean, well maintained and the owner is a friendly guy. We only ever stay overnight or for a couple of nights as any more I think most people would find it boring.
The site is accesible for other parts of Southern Germany, Black Forest, Baden-Baden, Strasbourg, Freiburg The Vosges and Switzerland.
I thouroughly recommend the site for an overnight stop or short relaxing break.