Eurocamp offer you over 200 sites in 11 countries.
With sites by the beach, inland, by cities or in the grounds of magnificent chateaux. „
We stayed at Les Peneyrals in a static van and on arrival we were greeted by Carl who was really helpful, showed us where we were staying and made sure we were OK with everything and use of equipment.He called round next day to ensure everything was allright; he was a very helpful young man, nothing too much trouble.
The restaurant was excellent, fair prices, a nice setting and good choices. We ate there several times.
If you wish to have feedback to improve accomodation you need to fit air-con as the vans get very hot and it takes a long time to cool down at night. There is a fan in the living area but this isn't much use in the bedrooms.
But that said the site was ideally placed for us and a great place to be.
The owner was on site and he was always helpful as were his team.
The pitches were a good size and it was always quiet at night so we always slept well.
We would recommend this site and Eurocamp to anyone interested in that region. It is ideally placed to explore the lovely Dordogne area. I would also think that Eurocamp has a good representative in Carl and his fellow rep.Liz, thanks again Eurocamp.
I am writing because my family had one of the worst holidays we have ever been on!! In advance, sorry the long-windedness...I'm pregnant and unhappy haha I have to say I am VERY dissapointed and will never stay with Eurocamp again and will definitely not recommend it to anyone. Firstly when we arrived and were shown to our so called chalet we were surprised that it looked NOTHING like the pictures of when I booked online. Upon returning home I searched the same location again to prove to my husband what I had seen when booking. The pictures were of a proper chalet (a chalet to me is made of wood) not the so called plastic piece of crap we were shown to!! About the "chalet" the bed was square with springs (being almost 6 months pregnant this was VERY uncomfortable!! If we wanted uncomfortable accommodation we would have taken our tent and I could have slept on our blown up mattress. Out of the 3 nights we stayed, 2 mornings the stove didn't work.
About the park. The Park was very old as was everything on it. One of the main reasons we booked to stay there instead of a cottage was because of the pools. It said online that everything was open. Out of the 3 pools only one was open and it was meant to be heated, it was not!! There were no kids clubs happening even though the place was full of kids on Easter Break. The junky ride around bike for the kids were not free. The restaurants had VERY limited hours and the reception was closed in the day for a few hours and then closed at 6. Who are you meant to get information from or who are you meant to speak to if the reception is closed half the time?
Lastly if would have been nice if someone could have informed us of the hours of business in France. Coming from England we are used to being able to go shopping for food pretty much anytime. Being pregnant I need to eat and eat as healthy as possible (this is one of the reasons we chose a chalet instead of camping because we needed access to a stove and a fridge) We arrived on the Saturday and since we were too early to check in we went to pick up a food food items. we did not get anything for meals on the Sunday because we though we would do a bigger shop the following day. No one informed us that EVERYTHING is closed on a Sunday!! We ended up spending all day Sunday driving to 3 different cities trying to find something to do as well as trying to find a food shop. We were unsuccessful so ended up spending a fortune on eating out for lunch and dinner. We were so pissed off we looking into getting our ferry changed to go home. The following day we went to Paris because we couldn't find anything else to do and upon returning at about 7:15pm we went to the all 3 food stores close to the park to find out they were all closed!! So again we had to eat out which was a challenge as the nearest town was pretty much shut down. There were only 3 places open to eat. Again this cost us a lot of extra money!
I have to say this was one of the most stressful holidays I have ever been on! I am nearly 6 months pregnant and this was our last opportunity to go away on holiday. Definitely NOT a good experience!! I thought Eurocamp was it's own place and didn't realise we were staying at a different park with only a small shelter for the Eurocamp staff. This should have been made more clear on the website as well.
Eurocamp at La Garangeoire, France (Vendee) June 2010. Fabulous site. Shame about the tent. No sleep for 7 nights as a result of the noise from mice that had obviously been resident for some time. Minimal investigation demonstrated huge supplies of stored nuts, shells, bedding material and mouse faeces that Eurocamp had not bothered to clean out. Spent several days trying to clean it out myself and convince Eurocamp that the tent needed to be dismantled and properly cleaned. Eventually gave up and just booked a hotel in La Rochelle. The reason I gave any stars at all is that La Garangeoire itself is wonderful. I suspect that accomodation booked directly with and managed by La Garangeoire would be great. Incidentally the Keycamp tent opposite ours was also overrun with mice. That poor family is stuck there for 3 weeks.
I am really excited I have just booked our Summer Holiday and I overruled my Husband and we are going abroad !!
Following various recommendations we decided to look at Euro camp.
I looked at the Website and browsed parks on the left hand side this brings up a map with areas where parks are highlighted you can then click on a area and look at the parks that are on offer. The parks are graded under lively, Toddler Friendly etc.
I found the website easy to navigate and informative I particularly liked the pictures of the parks and accommodation.
I am a little indecisive and as we didn't have a Holiday last year I wanted this to be perfect so I decided I would telephone to book rather than do this on line. I was very pleased with the ease of booking and once I had decided on the park no mean feat I only had to pay a £100 deposit with the balance due 14 days later.
This is the bit I am most impressed by I booked a Holiday in a mobile home with Decking for two weeks in mid June (out of school holidays) and for this including Ferry for two Adults and two Children I paid £600. Accordingly to the Website you can take the Grandparents for free as well ( they were not keen) and also the Children's Clubs are included, Children eat free on the ferry when you buy a meal.
I have also asked for a travel cot and a Decking Gate again this is included at no extra charge. You can also have Bedding rails, High chair, toilet seats at no extra cost which is great as any parent knows these take up lots of room.
At an extra cost you can arrange to have bedding, towels and Beach Towels I think the cost is reasonable £9 for 2 towels for the beach per week. However I prefer my own towels.
You can also order a welcome pack which costs £7 and contains a small bottle of wine and two small bottles of water plus some cleaning products. I got this for free I would not have been tempted to order this.
I cannot wait for my Holiday and this is due partly to the excellent service I received, as mentioned I booked on the phone as I am indecisive and the agent went through probably at least half of the parks in France and I went through 4 regions before settling on the Vendee region. Finally I had booked the Park sorted the ferry times and then to be honest I got cold feet!
I said I wanted to discuss the options with my Husband this was not a problem and Sandy* advised would call me the next evening which she did unfortunately I was not able to talk as I had a upset child again no problem will call you tomorrow , this actually happened again I was impressed particularly as very happily she changed the ferry times looked at a different park and different ferry route.
I then made the Booking and paid a £99.00 deposit with the balance due in 14 Days. I was advised I would receive an email confirmation the next day this was duly received unfortunately there were some errors. I telephoned regarding these they could not have been more apologetic and these were amended straight away and email sent to confirm.
I cannot wait for my Holiday as I expect it to be excellent from the service I have received! I cannot abide poor service and I am rarely incredibly impressed by service received however for helpfulness, product knowledge, and patience and the ease of booking was fabulous.
Cost I feel that often Holidays with Children are very expensive and my experience so far is that Euro Camp has turned this on its head and even during School Holidays the price is still very reasonable.
* Sandy is a made up name*
August 2009 was the third year in a row that my wife and I had gone with Eurocamp. In the previous two years we had minor problems, mostly caused by young, inexperienced and poorly managed couriers. But 2009 will be the last time we use Eurocamp. We stayed at four sites and this is a summary of our experiences:
Larochette, Luxembourg - we arrived and they tried to put us in a tent rather than the mobile home we had booked. We eventually got the correct accommodation and a free meal and bottle of wine as compensation. Young, student couriers with young, not as bright leader.
Herbolzheim, Germany - we asked about things to do in the area especially walking and cycle routes. The couriers could only point us at one city, two theme parks (we are in our 50s) and said that there were no walks or cycle tracks. We walked out of the campsite and found way marked walks and cycle tracks right outside the gates. The Tourist Office, a 15 minute walk from the campsite, showed us more to do than we had time for during our stay. Young, student couriers with young, not as bright leader.
Manor Farm, Interlaken, Switzerland - we cannot recommend this site highly enough. The couriers are middle aged and excellent. When we arrived the leader spent a bit of time finding out what we wanted to get from our stay and his advice was tailored to perfectly match this. All three couriers knew the area very well and each day at least one of them would check how we were getting on and give us new advice about our plans for the next day. Perfection! What we cannot understand is why Eurocamp do not feature this site in their catalogue - it is wonderful. There are only two warnings: no pool, but the lake is great; and little shade.
Rougemont, France - we found bed bugs in our mobile home on the first night. We were moved to a another dirty mobile home with an ever present smell of sewage for the rest of our stay. Although the lead courier promised us the world it took months and months of negotiations to get more than token compensation. I am thinking of putting the pictures of the bed bug infestation on a social networking site. Young, student couriers with young, not as bright leader.
Whenever we have experienced problems with Eurocamp there always seems to be student couriers lead by a not so bright, 'career' courier. They have scant knowledge of the local area. They only do the bare minimum or less and only appear at the end of your stay to collect a tip - they are never rewarded by us.
The best stays we have had have been where mature couriers are employed. They clean accommodation as soon as it is vacated, not just before it is needed, and have excellent knowledge of the local area.
We used Eurocamp in Italy for the first time this year and it will certainly be our last, they were discusting, they were the only caravans on union lido which were awful!!!! the rooms were full of ants it was filthy when we moved in and im not surprised, i was speaking to a rep who only lasted 4 week she had to get out, they paid her £2.35 per hour!!!!!!! upto 12 hours a day, they are dreadful, they should get reported!!!!! i never do reviews as its not my thing, but after my experience with eurocamp i think everyone should be aware, we paid £2,000 for a dirty, crap, shoddy caravan, never again. we know who we will be going wiv next year,, thanks euro rep for all info xxx
We used Eurocamp 2 years ago in France and the experience was good. That was the first time we go with Eurocamp and the first time staying in a luxury tent.
We have no complaint about Eurocamp from the begining to the end. Here's why
- After we make our booking online, we received a confirmation immediately. Few days later, we received a well presented package consisting of travel tickets, accommodation vouchers, tourist guidebook of area, Michelin Map of Region and GB/IRL sticker and a nicely designed rucksack.
- When we reach the holiday campsite, we were received by a friendly courier who directed us to our tent and help us settle in. The couriers would visit us periodically to make sure that we are having a relaxing time and to answer any question about the place and the facilities.
- Most Eurocamp sites are very picturesque location. One first camp was in Jura. Our tent faces the lagoon and it was quiet and very scenic. Our second campsite was in Mersault, a wine region in Burgundy. We were surrounded by rows and rows of grape vine, it was a lovely experience.
- The couriers at the Eurocamp make checking out easy too. They will visit us the night before departure so that we can leave without any hassle the following day.
I recommend Eurocamp for a inexpensive, outdoor style kind of holiday. The luxury tent is fully equipped with stove, fridge and beds. Most of the holiday campsites have a supermarket, restuarant and facilities like swimming pool, canoeing, biking, paddle boat.
I have worked as a childrens courier for holidaybreak, that owns keycamp and eurocamp.
Eurocamp has several good things about it:
*Flexibility of self catering, and being left alone for holiday unless you need help
*Friendly young couriers
*Local area advice from couriers
*Your kids can make friends and so can you as tents/caravans are quite close together and kids are free to roam around site
*Usually good swimming pool/bar areas
*Good discounts if you book online or haggle with the call centre
*You can drive down so take a lot of stuff with you, Eurocamp book the ferry for you
There are some downsides:
*Despite Eurocamp having a better rep than Keycamp, the couriers are trained at the same place, all together, so you arent neceserrily getting a better service by paying more
*Caravans can sometimes be outdated
*If it rains and you are in a tent, the courier has to come and dig you a trench so its a bit depressing
*North france isnt always hot so dont be too upset if it rains!
*Can be very expensive if you book high season
I really loved working for them and am going to work for them again next year.
I've been Eurocamping for a long time, using both tents and mobile homes, in France and Italy, and have found that, providing you shop carefully, you can get a great holiday at a good price.
WHAT IS IT?
Eurocamp basically hire out tents and mobiles homes all set up ready for use for you on a variety of camp sites across France, Spain, Germany, Italy and possible a few other places.
They provide not just the tent or mobile but also all the basic equipment you need - a fridge (fridge/freezer in a mobile home), cooking facilities, barbeque where sites permit, plates and cutlery, pots and pans, blankets and you can hire sheets and towels, sun loungers, beds and table and chairs, and in the mobile homes also a mircowave. Some mobiles have air conditioning and most hve some form of heating.
You get on site couriers who speak excellent English and have local knowledge and a cheap rate on ferry crossings if you decide to drive across the channel.
Tents sleep six and mobiles sleep between 5 and 8, depending on the one you pick, and costs vary considerably depending on time of travel, type of accommodation and disocunts available.
OUR 2008 TRIP
We went to Pesciera del Garda on the southern part of Lake Garda for ten days in early July. We booked a mobile home which was designed to sleep 7 - one double bedroom, one triple room (using bunk beds so the room was really suitable for children) and two on a sofa bed in the living room - though there would have been limited privacy for anyone sleeping there. We were four - two adults and two children and it was the right size for us.
We hired a cot and a high chair for our little one, at what I thought was a fairly steep cost of £18 each, but the overall cost was good as we paid around £800 for the mobile home, linen and towel hire, cot and highchair for nine nights on a site which offered good facilites - a big site with animation, access directly to the lake beach, four swimming pools with slides etc, a great shop, a restaurant and a bistro/bar, tennis and basketball courts, beach volleyball, an air-conditioned gym, laundry facilities and children's play equipment. I got a large discount (around £300) by booking online and picking it out of what was available - we booked in April.
Eurocamp have a range of games and toys you can borrow at no charge like boules, scrabble, monopoly etc, should you need someithng to wihle away an evening.
Mobile homes give you the chance to self cater which is so much cheaper and nicer with small children than being in hotels and you can sit outside on your decking in the evening and have a quiet drink once the kids are in bed, which is perfect. Animation does give you the chance to go and do some things altogether - my three year old daughter loved the kiddie disco they ran for an hour every night at 8.30pm, and we sat, had a beer and watched her have fun!
The equipment is well thought through - a filter coffee maker, cheese grater, pasta bowl and pyrex casserole dish all come as standard, as well as barbeque tools.
The shower in our mobile was a fair size and had great water pressure.
You can't check in til 3pm, which is sometimes difficult to organise if you are driving yourself a long distance. You have to be out again by 10am in the morning, which I have always found hard, given you have to wash up breakfast, pack he car, sort out the kids etc- and they are in to clean quite quickly after ten!
You are then responsible for the cleaning of the mobile, so mum still gets to clean the toilet!! Bit of a busman's holiday that one!
Some pitches are better than others, and they do sometimes put up rows of eurocamp mobiles or tents, so it is bit like a mini housing estate at times, but then maybe your kids get to play with other kids they meet, so it has its advantages.
They make you pay for the whole thing 8 weeks before the holiday, so you do have to plan your finances carefully.
Eurocamp is one of a number of companies who offer this kind of service, but what they do which most of the others don't is let you book very flexibly, so you can book any number of days if they are available - from one to 30! Many of their competitors let you book from Saturday to Saturday only. It provides a chance to live in a fairly outsdoorsy way, but still with the comforts of home, and you can fly drive by adding your own travel costs and they give you a discount if you don't take their ferry crossing. Book without discounts in high season though and it could cost you well over a thousand pounds for 10 days though!
You either love camping or you don't. I used to fit into the 'don't love it' category as we used to travel and camp all over Europe and believe me it wasn't my idea of fun. My husband used to be an obsessive driver. He would drive for about 8 hours by which time it would be getting dark and we would have to scout round for a site. We never booked anything in advance so just hoped that we would find a site. By this time I was always fed up and didn't want to play the camping game. It's not like either of us are very practical and it used to take us hours to put the damn tent up! We once stayed on a site outside Lagos, in the Algarve and our tent was a joke. The pegs were too weak and would not go into the ground so we had to place large stones on the top of each peg to hold the tent down. One gust of wind and the tent was all over the place. I am sure all the other campers thought we were mad.
So after years of grappling with tents, we decided that it was time for a change. We still wanted to go camping but didn't want to actually put the tent up ourselves so we packed our Paladin 5 away for good and decided to give Eurocamp a try. We did once book with Eurosites but on the whole we prefered and still do prefer Eurocamp so I am going to reveiw one of Europe's leading camping specialists who have been in the business for over thirty years.
First things first....
You can look up destinations and sites on line on the Eurocamp website. It's very simple and just like any other holiday web site. You just key in search for a holiday and then fill in the details which are usually how many adults, children aged 4 and above, children aged under 4. You then have to choose the type of resort - campsites (tents and mobile homes) or holiday villages (apartments). Next you have to select a country or region, your preferred dates and what type of accommodation you would like to stay in. The choice is - any type, tent, mobile home or chalet. You then press the Search button and a selection of sites will come up with prices.
If you don't like booking on line you can always request a brochure either on line or by telephoning. I am not sure if travel agents supply Eurocamp brochures as I always used to phone for my copy. Booking by telephone takes a little longer but the staff are usually always very helpful and will answer any questions you have about ferry crossings or particular sites. They will aslo calculate the price for you.
Choosing your park
If you are choosing on line the simplest option is to go on the Eurocamp site and look at the map of all the parcs available. Although the majority of parcs are based in France Eurocamp do have sites in; Italy (Tuscany, Italian Riveira, Italian Lakes, Italian Adriatic and Southern Italy) the island of Elba, Sicily, Corsica and Sardinia. In Spain sites are located in Catalonia and Cantabria. Other countries are Portugal, Slovemia, Austria, Croatia, Germany, Holland, Luxembourg, Switzerland. and Florida, Once you have chosen the location you just key in the code of the campsite and you will then get a detailed price.
We always opted for a tent as it is the cheapest option. I always found the tents quite spacious. You spend most of the time outside so really it is only used to sleep and sometimes cook in depending on the weather. Features of the tent are: 3 bedrooms with a double bed and 4 other singles. A gas cooker with a grill and a hob. This uses bottled gas. Kitchen utensils consist of pans, cutlery, crockery - everything you need including a fridge and a coolbox. The tents are hooked up to the electricity and there is a water carrier for you to use also. The living room space opens out doors so you can sunbathe on the sun loungers under the parasols. Most of the sites are grass but some are gravel and sand.
In mid summer the tent can get very warm and sometimes uncomfortable. Personally I think it is always best to choose a site with lots of shade especially with small children in case they get sick or overheated as the tent can be too hot. My son had tonsilitis one year in Corsica and a raging temperature. We had to make up a bed for him outside under the trees and keep bathing him down with cold flannels as it was the only way to keep him cool.
I have never stayed in a mobile home or a chalet so I can't really make a comment. I have peeped through windows some times and they seem to look very spacious.
Travelling to your Destination
Usually our choice of travel was the cheapest option - the mid day ferry crossing from Dover to Calais.which is included in the price. You can choose a different route but have to pay a supplement also if the crossing is at peak times or at weekends. Air travel and motor rail can be arranged by Eurocamp but extras will have to be paid additionally.
From personal experience booking a holiday with Eurocamp looks pretty easy. The crunch comes when the extras are added. What you think looks like a real bargain isn't. Supplements to pay will be insurance, extra day supplements, welcome pack supplement, additional junior tent supplement, overnight stops etc etc. So always check the supplements before you decide.
Facilities on site
Obviously these vary from site to site and it is up to you to choose the holiday that is best for your family's needs. Some sites are very quiet and hidden away in the country, others are extremely lively with lots of sports facilities, waterparks and discos. Smaller sites have one or two representatives to advise you and make your holiday as comfortable as possible. Larger sites like the one I stayed on in Port Grimaud in the South of France had about 6 couriers. Over the years I have found some to be very friendly and helpful and others to be lethargic and not very caring.
I would say that most of the sites will have a children's club to suit children aged from 5 up to 13+. Clubs take place in the morning and late afternoon. Activities are organised by qualified children's couriers to keep the kids occupied. For children aged 12 months up to the age of 4 there are playgroups where parents can join in with the activities. Soccer station is available for children aged from 5-16. This offers training and coaching in soccer skills and helps all sorts of children from different parts of Europe and the World to enjoy the love o football. This activity will have to be booked in advance as it is very popular with families.
I have always been very pleased with the activities organised by Eurocamp. Children do get bored on holiday and this is a great opportunity for them to meet and play with other kids and also to give Mum and dad a break.
I think that covers all the information.
For someone who doesn't really like camping I think Eurocamp are great! There is a great choice of sites and it is brilliant to drive all day and then know when you get to your destination you don't have to do anything as the tent is ready for you. As we are a family of obsessives we have always tried to see as many countries in one holiday. That's okay if you have the energy for it but it can become tiring, moving on every night. On the other hand we have had camping holidays spread over 6 weeks taking in about 3 countries and I was bored after the third week. Yes, I know - there is no pleasing some people. At least you have a choice and you can arrange your travel and destinations and length of stay to suit you and your family. Try it at least once and see what you think. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.
Now the Negative
Health and safety
I had a bad accident at a site above Florence. Coming from the toilet block I slipped as the ground was very jagged and the site poorly lit. I tripped over one of the ropes and split my hand open. It was a very bad cut and I must admit I was scared as it looked nasty. My husband tried to find the rep for the site and at first couldn't so I went into the washblock and tried to clean it up. He eventually found the guide, who had had a few too many beers, and was in a poor state. We went back to his tent for some dressings for the wound. I might add at this point that the tent was an absolute disgrace. Food and rubbish everywhere. Not very hygenic at all. The rep looked at my hand and said that perhaps we should go to the hospital. It was very late and I was in a state of shock, I didn't want to go to the hospital probably because I was scared of a foreign hospital (ridiculous I know) and I thought it would be okay if bandaged up.
The next morning it was one big mess. The whole hand was septic and boy did it hurt. This time I did go to the main hospital in Florence and had to wait in a queue for ages while bodies were being wheeled in and out (I don't know if they were dead or not). I didn't want to look.
Eventually I was seen by a doctor and three students who couldn't speak any English. They cleaned the hand up,stitched it up and gave me a tetanus jab in the bum (am I allowed to say that). The students thought it was hilarious! I bet they did!
I was given a course of antibiotics and told to visit any hospital in Italy where I was staying every 3 days. So I had a tour of Italian hospitals. Although the hospitals were grim the staff were brilliant and luckily I didn't have any complications. I know I am rambling here but I am complaining on this occasion about the lack of care on that site. I was really disgusted and when I arrived back in UK I wrote to Eurocamp several times to complain about this situation. They sent me a long winded letter of apology and £25 discount off the next holiday. I will leave you to think about that one.
Okay, thanks for reading. Hope you enjoy the review.
We first went Euro-camping about 15 years ago when I our children were 5 and 1 (blimey how they've grown). Basically we were skint but wanted a holiday abroad, and Eurocamp seemed to fit the bill.
We were so impressed that we have been at least every other year since - although we have now progressed to mobile homes rather than tents. So how does it work?
This is dead easy, although when you first look in the brochure it might seem a bit daunting. Basically you get a price for a basic holiday and then you add amounts for days, increased spec of accomodation, travel routes etc and that gives you a pretty good idea of your price - then you call them (I prefer to call rather than do things on line because you can ask questions then). I've always found the staff to be very knowledgeable and friendly. You tell them where youd like to go, and which dates, and what sort of accommodation, and they will tell you if its free. If there's a problem, they've always got a suggestion to help you out. It might be an alternative site, alternative accommodation or even a two centre holiday - which can be good for variety.
Once youve booked you pay a deposit - and then a few weeks before you pay the balance and you get all your stuff through. Its a right little goodie bag too - you get maps, local guides, things for the kids, travel tickets, and theres usually a little gift there too. We've had rucksacks, document folders, picnic blankets. Its a nice touch.
The basic cost of the holiday includes standard ferry or shuttle tickets. If you want a more expensive route it just gets added to the bill. You can even go Motorail - which I love (but thats a whole different review!). They also give you a route to get to the campsite so its very difficult to get lost (unless of course the French have changed the roads which they did one year and we got horribly mislaid). To me the journey on holiday is part of the fun so make the most of the places you see on the way. You can even book stopovers in other campsites or hotels if you want to split the journey - and dont mind living out of a suitcase.
You are asked not to arrive before about 11 oclock to give them time to clear the accommodation. This can be a bit of a bind if you arrive on the 6.00 am motorail, or the campsite is close to the port. But once youre there, the couriers will welcome you and show you to your accommodation. They explain whats on the site and how things work - and theres usually a welcoming bottle of wine which is a nice touch.
Basically two types - tents and mobile homes. Tents are usually to one spec and mobile homes range from the lovely to the luxurious. Care on choosing your mobile to make sure it has enough bedrooms. The tents are large and airy - there are two and sometimes three sleeping areas, with sprung camp beds and zip up compartment doors. Theres a lounge and kitchen area with a cooker and fridge. The tent is floored throughout with tarpaulin. Its not your Boy Scouts slumming it type camping - this is sophisticated.
If you like your creature comforts and can afford that bit extra - go for the mobile home. You get lots more luxury - beds (!) a shower, your own washing facilities, microwave. It doesnt feel quite so much like geting back to nature, but if it rains and you see the 'tenties' getting waterlogged or dragging mud into their tents - you can look smug!!
Outside theres space for a car, a table and chairs for al fresco dining, and sunloungers.
Oh how I love continental camp sites! No ploughed fields and a rusty old toilet here. Toilet and wash blocks (you only use these if youre in a tent) are always clean and close and they are very good for striking up friendships over the washing up. There are play areas for the kids - the sites are so safe they can wander to them on their own - and games areas with things like table tennis and swings.
There is ALWAYS a bar, and usually a good quality restaurant. Most times there is a pizzeria or take away too. Most evenings some sort of entertainment is laid on from local singers to a disco for the teenagers, but its not intrusinve and if you want a quiet drink its easy to have. Or you can purchase a bottle of wine and drink it - with the neighbours - back at base.
There's a shop which has most things that you'll need - like the corner shop its a bit more expensive than the super market, but great if youve forgotten anything.
So - all in all I think I would recommend Eurocamp to just about anyone. My tips for potential new Eurocampers?
1. Take a small box of provisions to save you having to shop when you get there
2. Take sleeping bags to save having to make beds. you can get the kids to sit on the m in the car to save space
3. Make friends with the couriers - they are a mine of useful information
4. Make friends with your neighbours - its good to sit and drink wine with people on the long balmy nights
5. Look at other campsites in the area you are staying - it may give you ideas for next year and some sites are more scenic than others
6. Ask other Eurocampers for their tips on other places to stay.
There - that'll do for now - one final tip - if youre thinking about going book as early as possible - you might get a discount and youre more likely to get the site and accommodation you want.
As a parent with 2 children I am always on the lookout for cheap family holidays. I have been an avid camper for many years, but due to the weather thing I won't camp for longer than a weekend in the UK. Eurocamp, are well known for providing pre-erected large canvas frame tents in sites across Europe, we have used Eurocamp and Keycamp on previous occasions, the sites are generally very well kept, clean and with all the usual facilities, restaurants, shops and swimming pools. The couriers are always on hand for any info required, you go into any of these sites and you are immediately greeted by the Eurocamp reps with the hospitality tent, with local tourist brochures etc, and usually Eurocamp, Keycamp and Camp Europe are all parked next to each other offering similar info. The cost for the hire of a Eurocamp tent in peak season is in the region of £800 - £900 for 12 nights but that includes ferry and tent, which is a reasonable price for a family holiday (up to 5 people), the tents give you a fridge, hob, cutlery and crockery, 1 double bed and 2 singles (all camp beds) with the option of a third single if necessary. On some sites you have a barbeque as well, and you do have picnic furniture. You can upgrade and spend more on a caravan. However last year we worked out that if we did it independently taking our own tent we could halve this price. We decided to drive down to Italy and I bought a European campsite book and chose the site I wanted to use. From a language point of view I speak good French, OK German and no Italian so I thought if I phoned the site I would be able to converse in at least one language but got the dreaded answerphone and didn't leave a message. Then by accident I stumbled across an advert for Eurocamp Independent. They have independent pitches on most of
the sites featured in their regular brochure. So I phoned and booked straight away, the whole holiday (excluding petrol) cost £450 for 2 weeks, including ferry (Dover/Calais). For this price you get to use the Eurocamp courier as well, we also booked a couple of nights in one of their tents on the way down and back up for convenience, which was a good thing in view of a heavy rainfall overnight on the way down as there is nothing worse than packing up a wet tent. The site was, as expected very well organised and clean with a good swimming pool and, being Italy, an excellent restaurant and pizzeria. We stayed in Cecina in Tuscany. We had the choice of pitch, all with electric and chose one in a family area with a small hill leading down to our tent. That was our one mistake as it did flood one day with a torrential downpour but, our fault, we should have known better. The Eurocamp representatives were nice enough and the kids got to borrow from their large games chest (things like connect 4, chess, draughts) which is great as you can cut down on the baggage. I think they can also use the kids clubs but there wasn't one available on our site. As is usual with all the Eurocamp sites I have stayed on the shower facilities are very regularly cleaned and their are plenty of them, and with a basic shop, a newspaper stand and a speciality local produce stand selling loads of fresh fruit and veg. The continental shops all have fresh bread and a deli in them as well, but you have to be early for the bread. The electric hookup in Italy is the same as the Uk one, but you do need an adapter for other parts of Europe. The one thing about being independent, especially as far down as Italy, and I?m not sure if it is an advantage or not is that the majority of Brits are all in the pre-erected tents and caravans, so you do end up with the lo
cals in the touring part of the site, having said that it was probably a lot quieter where we were and there was more room for the kids to run around. There was another English family staying close by, and they had no cooling facilities for their food and another advantage of having booked through Eurocamp was they had been able to rent a fridge ? hows that for service, I don?t know if its available on all sites though. For anyone that likes camping and has a family this is an excellent way of going abroad, cheaply, for a couple of weeks. If anyone wants to contact them for a brochure the telephone number is 01606 787951 as they are administered separately from the regular service.
Two years ago we decided to have a foreign holiday with our children. We had 3 of them at the time aged 9, 7 and 4. We were not wanting to spend a fortune on the holiday but decided that we wanted a fun family holiday. We decided to take a Eurocamp holiday, to stay in a tent and visit a few places. I have camped many times before. Pitching and striking tents every time we moved and packing every thing away, it is a lot of hard work. The idea of arriving at a site with the tent ready to use, the cooking equipment there and bed ready to sleep on it was an excellent idea. The luxury of a Eurocamp holiday may seem small to anyone who is used to staying in guest houses, hotels and the like but to us it was magic. We stayed at 3 sites altogether. The first site was a small site in the Loire Valley. There was plenty of privacy at this site with hedges between each pitch and lots of trees around the site. The toilets were a bit far from the tent but apart from that it was an excellent site. There was a swimming pool which we used daily to cool down. Bicycles were available for hire and there were other areas to play. We loved this site. The second site was in Britany. This was a much larger site. There was a pool to swim in which was always busy. The pitch I was at was very close to the toilet. The site was very big and busy. To get to the beach was very easy just a short walk down a path. The third site was a big open place with not a lot to recommend it. It was close to the ferry ports so was probably used a lot for short stays. There was a childrens tent at this site, these have to be paid for by the night. We had it for free as they did not bother removing it before the next people stayed there. The children loved having their own tent to play in but I did not think it was worth paying the extra for. Each tent we stayed in was almost the same. There were beds for 6. The kitchen equipment include
d a cooker and a fridge. There was seating for 6. You knew what to expect at each stop. In many ways the accomodation was basic but it was a lot cheaper than other places to stay and a lot less bother than independent camping. We will go on Eurocamp again all 6 of us. The company keeps sending us brochures. One year we will respond again as this was a family holiday to remember. The cost of the holiday includes the tents with all the content, for a two week holiday, the ferry or tunnel across the channel. If you want to use a longer crossing there is a suppliment to pay. Some sites charge a suppliment depending on the facilities they offer and the location of the sites. If you want to stay longer you can pay a suppliment and if you want a shorter holiday they charge you less.
Eurocamp has been around for nearly 20 years now and it has transformed the idea of a camping holiday into what you would expect from a hotel holiday. You can take a Eurocamp holiday in France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Holland or Denmark. You can even do four different countries, one year we camped in France, Italy, Switzerland and Germany all in the same holiday. The holidays tend to be self-drive although we have met people who have flown to their destination and then hired a car. The cost of a basic Dover Calais ferry is included in the price, however if you are willing to pay a small supplement you can use other ferry routes including Eurotunnel. As well as tents there are usually mobile homes available, however since all our holidays (10+) have been spent in tents I will mainly confine my comments to living under canvas. The tents are designed to take a maximum of 6 persons although once you get over 4 it starts getting a bit crowded. However there is the possibility of having an extra smaller tent for kids (probably best for 10yrs+) at certain of the sites. All of the beds have a proper mattress; all you need to provide is a sleeping bag. In addition there is a 4 gas burner and grill together with a fridge for keeping the wine and beer cool. As well as the above all cooking and eating utensils are provided so in terms of camping equipment you don’t need to take anything, although bits of string, pegs etc are always useful. The basic holiday is for 14 nights and you can lengthen or shorten this with a corresponding change in the price. You can stay for the whole time on one campsite or if you are like us you can visit 3-4 different ones. If you only stay one night you do have to pay a small supplement. The sites are many and varied, some are small and in the country others are large and on the coast, the variety is immense, however they are all described in great detail in the b
rochure. Similarly some are best for families with small children others for those with lively teenagers. The facilities vary between sites but most have a swimming pool, a small shop, hot showers and children’s playgrounds as a minimum. Some are like a small holiday town in itself with restaurants, discos etc. Once again you pays your money you takes your choice. Every site has a number of couriers on it who in our experience have always been generally helpful, occasionally you come across some useless ones but you can usually get most of the info you want from the camp reception. After each site you have a card to fill in rating the couriers, which you send by freepost, so if you do come across bad service let Eurocamp know. A vital part for us has been the children’s couriers, they are not available at every site but the brochure tells you which ones have them. They will do activities with the children for two hours every morning and two hours in the afternoon. Again they can be varied but in our experience are usually good and it gives you a bit free time and allows them to meet other children. Not all the people who go on Eurocamp holidays are English there are likely to be as many Dutch and Germans as English so you do get to meet lots of different types of people. If you can go outside the mid-July, mid August period then it is a lot cheaper and less crowded, however it is never too bad. Spend a long time looking at the brochure and decide what type of site you want. If you do decide to visit more than one site then make sure the distance between sites is not too great. And book early!!!. The most popular sites are often fully booked up six months in advance. One drawback you still have to walk to the toilets in the middle of the night (not true for mobile homes) however it serves you right for drinking so much.
Just a quick little question as at a campsite in Estartit ALL the Eurocamp reps were thrown off camp. This begs the question ......WHY? Whilst we were there with EUROSITES we only saw Eurocamp reps at night Crashed out on sunloungers much the worse for Alocohol even though they still had guests on site . I am not against Eurocamp as I have in the past used that company and only took advanatage of Eurosites through a Daily Star offer of a two week holiday including the ferry costs for the huge amount of £200 for SIX people.